Eighty-three and counting, the Cherokee Cowboy remains one of the last living links to the first wave of honky-tonk. Many a hillbilly hopeful has heard the clack of his bootheels on the streets of Lower Broad in the epochal ba-boom-ba-boom-ba-boom-ba-boom walking bassline that gives 1956s Crazy Arms its shuffling gait. But Price has never seemed interested in outlaw cred. Few male country vocalists have shown such dedication to the idea of lovelinessof string arrangements like a dance partners gently shimmering gown, of singing that extracts every ache of longing from a marvel like Kris Kristoffersons For the Good Times. Wed call him the Tony Bennett of country, but it might be more accurate to call Bennett the Ray Price of pop.
Fri., Oct. 2, 7 p.m., 2009