Playbill: Albert & Gage

Along with folks like Dana Cooper, Albert & Gage could be poster children for the Kerrville Nation. Christine Albert and Chris Gage are exactly the kind of folk duo you'd imagine if someone asked you to imagine an Austin folk duo. You want some meaningful poetic stuff? They've got it. A little Western swing cutey with sassy, tongue-in-cheek lyrics? Ditto. Want to rock it out just a little? Here's the Kerrville version of Joe Ely's version of "Dallas." Mind if they dust off a little blues while they're at it?

Make no mistake, these two are aces. They've played together since 1993, and both have the talent to lead plus the musicianship to be solid accompanists. Though he's seldom flamboyant, Gage is a top class flat-picker and can do just about any other thing on an acoustic guitar he sets his mind to. He's also an accomplished keyboardist. Albert is no slouch as a player herself, and she can sing as corn-countrified as Iris Dement or sound entirely sophisticated like Patsy Cline. And no one ever walks out of an Albert & Gage show without marveling at the harmonies.

No doubt they'll be playing most of their widely acclaimed 2005 album Cry Love, but once inside the confines of the old spaghetti bar they'll likely reach deeper into the song bag for covers of chestnuts like "Return of the Grievous Angel" or Charlie Rich's "Who Will the Next Fool Be." It should be a great night with part of the cream of the Texas folk circuit. -- William Michael Smith

Albert & Gage perform Saturday, February 24 at Anderson Fair, 2007 Grant, 713-528-8576.

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William Michael Smith