With the exception of one nattering lady up front, the audience at Kelli Scarr’s Café Hotel show stood, and sat, at attention. “I kept looking at her to give her the death eye a little bit,” said the singer, who likes to perform with her eyes shut. “Because it really kind of, like, pulls you out of what you’re trying to do.” What she was trying to do, said Scarr, was not perform but rather present the audience with the most honest version of her music.
Judging from the applause, the packed room appreciated her effort.
Earnest and wispy, Kelly’s voice, like her work, carries the intimacy of a light touch. You can tell, even from the back of the room, that Kelli spent her 35 minutes on stage completely present in the music. “I’m trying to give the best version of that song every single night, and how I’m able to do that is by shutting my eyes and going into a world with the musicians,” said the singer.