REVIEW: Mack Bailey House Concert

F Philpot (
Tue, 21 Apr 1998 17:22:01 -0400 (EDT)

I first heard Mack Bailey 10 or 12 years ago when he opened for Glenn
Yarbrough at the Birchmere outside Washington, DC. I don't remember the songs
he did that night, but I loved his voice from the moment I heard it and I
determined to find some more chances to hear him.

That hasn't always been easy. Mack has been lead vocalist with The Hard
Travelers for the last 10 years and has played many local dates, but he hasn't
done a great deal of solo work. When I thought about starting a house concert
series a year and a half ago, Mack was one of the first people I thought of
inviting. Frankly I was tired of driving 40 to 50 miles to attend his
occasional solo show and I thought maybe I could lure him into performing in
my living room.

He did a very well received show last spring and returned for a
repeat Sunday
night. We had a full house and it was a great evening.

There are two things that I especially like about Mack: He has an
gorgeous tenor voice and he knows how to combine songs to do a great program.
Sunday night he did many of his own songs, "High Gear," "Through Your Eyes,"
"Rock Me Grandpa," "Virginia When It Rains," (among others) along with some
songs written by friends, "The Coast Is Clear" (Tim Malchak), "'Till I Hear It
Horses" (John Denver and Joe Henry.)

Mack brought his wife, Lauren, and beautiful four-year-old daughter,
Caroline, to the show and he said he made a decision when Caroline was born
not to tour so he could be home with her. It's a decision I understand, but
Mack is one great performer and maybe when Caroline is a bit older she'll
understand if her dad is gone every once in a while.

If he performs in your area, he's not to be missed.

Frank Allen Philpot
Bethesda Acoustic House Concerts