Grace Potter

An Evening With Grace Potter • Eccles Theater • February 24, 2024

Reviewed and Photographed by Mike Ferguson

Photo Credit: Mike Ferguson

On Saturday, February 24th, 2024 Grace Potter and her band blessed our eyes and ears with an incredible and fun performance at the Eccles Theater in downtown Salt Lake City. This was not a venue I was very familiar with. The only other time I had been at this venue was to work as contract security for The Fiddler On The Roof in 2017. But this venue was the perfect setting for the energy and electricity Grace and her band exuded.

Eccles Theater

Photo Credit: Mike Ferguson

The George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Theater opened in 2016. It hosts touring Broadway shows, concerts, and other entertainment events. The primary “Delta Performance Hall” seats 2,468 people. It is located in the heart of downtown Salt Lake City right next to City Creek Mall. The venue staff is all top-notch. Getting into the venue was a breeze. I was able to get right to will call, give them my name, and pick up my tickets and photo pass. Once inside the theater I made my way to my seat and started getting my camera set up. Since this was my first time actually being inside the theater, I was loving all of the pretty details they put into it. From the “star-lit” lights in the ceiling to the cushy seats, it’s a great experience for a night at the theater.

Grace Potter

The show was set to start at 8pm. After everyone was filed into their seats, the doors remained open for quite some time. I was surprised to see that as the reputation of shows at this theater is that they start most shows on time. I did have a chance to chat with the venue staff who let me know that the delay was likely due to the amount of seats sold vs the number of people inside the venue did not quite hit the required amount needed to start the show. Most of the crowd seemed okay, but I did notice a few fans getting restless. After about a 30-minute delay, the doors came to a close, and people started cheering for the show to start.

The house lights went dark, and a few simple white lights shined from the stage. Looking to the stage, you could only see a silhouette of the band members walking to the stage. Then came Grace. Once the music started playing, right off the bat, I could feel this concert was going to be a great one. With the way Grace interacted with the band and the crowd, you can tell she is truly a performer who loves what she does.

Her first 3 songs were all fun, high energy, and made you want to dance types of songs. All of which started to get the crowd going and dancing as well. She even mentioned that she loved seeing people move around and extended the invitation to have some fans from further back in the venue move closer to the stage. While watching and photographing the first few songs of her show, the first thing I was able to notice about Grace was that she LOVES to dance. I could tell she truly enjoyed her music and telling her stories through song.

One of those stories she told was about how a few years back she drove across Route 66 in search of some inspiration and clarity. Something that connected with me as I have always had a goal in life to do this and just clear my head and reset. The biggest thing that stood out to me, however, was not that she had done this herself. But she had done this drive 4 times! This story immediately tied into her song “Mother Road”, as driving across Route 66 was her inspiration to write this song.

Throughout the night, I continued to enjoy her stage presence and her music. The thing about her that kept sticking out to me was just how POWERFUL her voice was. I have seen some great vocalists over the years, but WOW was she a great singer! 

Photo Credit: Mike Ferguson

About halfway through the set, there was a pretty funny skit where the roadies came on stage dressed as fire marshalls saying it was too loud, giving the band a break and leading into a more intimate acoustic set. Through her acoustic set, she played both guitar and piano and sang some of her slower, sadder songs. Unfortunately, at this point, I did notice an altercation between two fans in the theater sitting about two rows up from me. Which led to a shouting match and an ejection of both of them by security. It was really unfortunate that this happened through the acoustic part of the set as it really distracted from the otherwise amazing concert experience. 

After the acoustic set, Grace and her band started playing some more of her more upbeat songs. They teased at a cover of the song “White Rabbit” that the whole crowd seemed to enjoy and continued to tell some more stories and jokes to keep us all engaged. During one of the guitar solos, Grace and her lead guitarist had a really fun improv moment where she would sing a bit of vocals and then her guitarist would copy that and play it on his guitar. It was fun to see the little “follow the leader” game played on stage like that.

After the main set, the band and Grace all left the stage for a brief break before coming out for the encore. The encore was a lot of fun as well as she played a quick cover of the new Beyonce song “Texas Hold’em”. After this, they played “You and Tequila” as she was featured on that song by Kenny Chesney. The last song of the night played was “Paris (Ooh La La)”. This seemed like her biggest hit of the night as well.

All in all, with this being my first Grace Potter concert, I can definitely say that I would recommend her music and concerts to anyone who may be interested in a good Folk/Rock concert! I will look to return to another show of hers in the future!

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