Joe Ely is usually heard playing country-rock with a band, but he is at heart a singer/songwriter, and for this six-song, 21-minute set at the 1990 Cambridge Folk Festival, he accompanies himself only with an acoustic guitar. He makes a judicious choice among his repertoire for the appearance, concentrating on story songs he or his erstwhile bandmate Butch Hancock wrote, notably Hancock's "She Never Spoke Spanish to Me" and his own "Me and Billy the Kid." The Texas/Southwest flavor gets into his music and his voice, as usual, and even if he isn't as revved up as usual, the songs stand up well on their own, revealing Ely as a folkie with an edge.
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AllMusic Review by William Ruhlmann