The Chris Grace Band kicked off the Virgin College Mega Tour visit at Regis College in Weston, Massachusetts, April 24, 2004. Despite infrequent blustery wind bursts on that Saturday afternoon, Grace & Company were undeterred by the menacing weather and delivered a stellar micro-set under the campus stage-tent.
The Chris Grace Band comprised Grace on acoustic guitar and lead vocals with James Elliott on bass, Dim Gurveich on tambourine, Kyanu Kim on electric guitar, and Marc Slutski on drums. "The name is Chris Grace from New York. Thank you everyone for coming", was the greeting Grace imparted to the college students collected in the campus courtyard.
Grace kicked off his mini-set with "Mariann", a melodramatic rocker which coincidentally leads off his new CD EP Evidence. Elliott and Gurveich contributed harmony vocals. The seated band projected a cohesive sound and tight stage presence.
"Leave The Lights On", a melodic but subtle rocker off Evidence, was empowered by Slutski's driven drums and Elliott's solid bass playing. "This next song's 'Hush'", introduced the lone selection from Compulsion, Grace's 2002 release. The power ballad featured a strong vocal from Grace.
The unreleased "Do We All" crackled in performance with a potent rock-current vibrancy. Stage chatter among the band members prompted Grace to inquire to the assembled student's directly, "Is this an all girls school? Is that right?"
The Chris Grace Band kicked up the tempo of "Take It All Back" on stage. Grace belted out an animated chorus supported by Elliott's melodic bass lines that anchored this spirited number. The mellow intro of "In Dreams" featured Gurveich on acoustic guitar for this moderate-tone ballad.
"Faithful" was a second unavailable tune performed by the group. Grace began the song solo on acoustic guitar accompanied by his mellow vocal, which segued progressively into a fiercer vocal. "Thanks a lot - Chris Grace - have fun in class", was a parting salutation for those in attendance.
Kudos go to the tour soundman who kept it all together and refined the crystal clear sound of the band. Following the Chris Grace Band's abbreviated performance, Grace was inundated by Regis College females seeking both autographs and photos with the photogenic young artist.
Weston setlist: Mariann * Leave The Light On * Hush * Do We All * Take It All Back * In Dreams * Faithful
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The Chris Grace Band overpower the elements
by Timothy Tilghman