From Marrakesh Express to A Better Life: Graham Nash's Musical Journey at Chautauqua Auditorium

Article Contributed by gratefulweb | Published on Sunday, June 25, 2023

If ever there were a time to appreciate the endurance of music, it was last night at the venerable Chautauqua Auditorium in Boulder, where legendary singer-songwriter Graham Nash graced the stage for his "Sixty Years of Songs and Stories" Tour. As the auditorium celebrates its 125th anniversary, Nash's compelling performance painted a vivid portrait of his life and a poignant reminder of the transcendental power of music.

Chautauqua Auditorium | Boulder, CO

Shane Fontayne, Graham & Todd Caldwell | Chautauqua Auditorium

At 81, Nash's voice is impressively still resounding. While he acknowledged a slight cold, it was evident that his passion was burning as fiercely as ever. Despite the ailment, he delivered a performance imbued with all the warmth, sincerity, and conviction that has characterized his remarkable career.

Graham Nash | Boulder, CO

Todd Caldwell on keyboards

One of the more heartfelt moments of the night was when Nash paid tribute to his longtime friend and fellow musician, the recently departed David Crosby. There was a noticeable air of emotion as Nash relayed his final communications with Crosby via Facetime, text, and email. Moving to the keyboards, Todd Caldwell's sublime performance provided the perfect musical background for Nash's vocals. A standout moment of the evening was Nash's haunting rendition of "To the Last Whale...A. Critical Mass B. Wind on the Water." With the recent loss of Crosby, this performance was particularly poignant and took on a new meaning, like a musical farewell to a cherished friend.

Graham Nash | Boulder, CO

Shane Fontayne on guitar

Amid the nostalgia, Nash also managed to inject a refreshing taste of the new. He introduced a few songs from his latest album, "Now," including a remarkable rendition of 'A Better Life,' a song he has only performed live once before.

Graham Nash | Chautauqua Auditorium

His set was a kaleidoscope of his extensive discography, with highlights including spirited performances of classics such as "Marrakesh Express," "Find the Cost of Freedom," and "Love the One You're With." Each song seemed to harken back to a different era, and yet they felt relevant and fresh in the intimate setting of the Chautauqua Auditorium.

Chautauqua Auditorium

In all its grandeur, the Chautauqua Auditorium provided the perfect backdrop for this historic evening. With its rich history, the venue has long been a cultural hub, hosting countless unforgettable performances since its establishment in 1898. Its 125th anniversary was elevated by Nash's mesmerizing performance, a poignant testament to the timeless beauty of song.

Shane Fontayne & Graham Nash

Indeed, this performance felt like a living, breathing testament to Nash's enduring musicality and commitment to human connection through song. Even as he navigated personal loss and a changing world, Nash used his voice to offer both comfort and challenge, embodying the dual roles of an artist as both a mirror and a guide.

Shane Fontayne, Graham Nash and Todd Caldwell

When a seasoned musician like Graham Nash steps onto a stage, magic is bound to happen. Last night at Chautauqua Auditorium, celebrating its 125th anniversary, Nash's "Sixty Years of Songs and Stories" Tour created an enthralling journey through time, music, and life, punctuated by the masterful accompaniment of guitarist Shane Fontayne and keyboardist Todd Caldwell.

Thanks Graham for a terrific night of music and memories

In conclusion, Graham Nash's performance at the Chautauqua Auditorium was more than just a concert. It was a testament to the enduring power of music, a celebration of a long and storied career, and a touching tribute to a lost friend. It was a night of powerful emotions, nostalgia, and new memories, all under the roof of a historical and esteemed venue. The magic that unfolded in this century-old auditorium last night was undoubtedly a testament to the timeless magic of music itself.

Graham Nash | Boulder, Colorado

Chautauqua Auditorium | 6/24/23

Graham Nash - photos by mike moran