Whenever Lyle Lovett reconvenes his Large Band, fans put aside whatever they were doing and pick up right where they left off.
This joyous amalgamation formed in the late 1980s always stood outside a contemporary framework anyway. Sharp-dressed musicians open the show with a vintage jazz or swing instrumental, paving the way for Lovett’s hybrid mixture of country, gospel and stark singer-songwriter confessionals.
The 55-year-old singer known for his wry, deadpan humor has become more of an interpreter over the years. Last year’s album, “Release Me,” planted two originals among 12 covers, including the title track (done by many, but safe to associate with Engelbert Humperdinck in Las Vegas).
After a stripped-down acoustic show with John Hiatt at Green Valley Ranch two years ago, Lovett’s debut at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts should make some righteous noise.
Contact reporter Mike Weatherford at mweatherford@ reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0288.