Nashville singer-songwriter Suzy Bogguss confesses that she’s not necessarily big on preparation.
“Rehearsing is not my cup of tea,” she says. “I call it the ‘R’ word’ — that shows you how much I like it.”
But she’s been practicing hard for tonight’s show in Ann Arbor, a rare solo performance that will feature just Bogguss and her guitar and whatever ideas she’s come up with in her “R” sessions.
“The Ark is one of my favorite places to play,” notes Bogguss, 49, an Illinois native who had a string of country hits in the late 1980s and ’90s (“Cross My Broken Heart,” “Drive South,” “Just Like the Weather,” “Hey Cinderella”) before starting to experiment with her sound in the late ’90s and leaving the Nashville establishment to record for smaller labels.
“I’ve been there lots of different ways, with all different kinds of bands. There’s a living room kind of vibe there, and the audience is so great. They seem to take all my foibles and everything, so if I try some new stuff, they’re not gonna be like, ‘Whoa, that wasn’t what we expected.’
“I figure some of these folks who have seen me there a few times, they won’t care of I get goofy. They’re used to me being goofy, anyway.”
Bogguss will have some fresh material to perform, in fact. She’ll be previewing songs slated for her next album, which was recorded in New York City and produced by jazz musician Jason Miles. Among them is “Heaven,” a song about the aftermath of a friend’s death from cancer that she’s already performed live, and Bogguss expects to mix in a few more with her established repertoire.
“I’ve been rehearsing a bunch of them,” she says. “My husband (musician and songwriter Doug Crider) was telling me the other day, ‘Don’t play all new songs. They’ll want to hear some of that old stuff you haven’t done in a long time.’
“I know enough as a fan myself that people want to hear a lot of the songs they’re familiar with, and there’ll be a lot of that — just a little toned down from the kind of country-rockin’ stuff I’ve done.”
Suzy Bogguss performs at 8 p.m. Friday (August 25th) at the Ark, 316 S. Main St., Ann Arbor. Tickets are $25. Call (734) 761-1451 or visit
Send your thoughts and comments to