Nicole Atkins’ recently released album Goodnight Rhonda Lee leans into a litany of comparisons with gorgeous effectiveness: Carole King, Roy Orbison, Patsy Cline. From opening tune “A Little Crazy” (a collaboration with Chris Isaak) to the title track, the album is at once a natural outgrowth of Atkins’ work in country leaning soulful rock and an homage to some of the greatest songwriters and singers of the past century in America. Atkins says the album is the result of a lot of personal struggle, and while we shouldn’t be glad for anyone’s struggle, there is certainly something great in the end product here.

Friday night you get the album up close at the newly reopened Cafe du Nord in the Castro District. The downstairs venue, once a stalwart of the SF music scene, was remodeled in 2015 with a new focus on craft cocktails and only occasional music (jazz only). It returned to live music in June of this year, much to the delight of the city’s fans.

Nicole Atkins, Lauren Ruth Ward, Thayer Sarrano
Cafe du Nord
December 8, 2017
8pm, $15