Lindi Ortega Big River SK, July 18
Published Jul 20, 2014"But you know what? I survived." So ended Lindi Ortega's story of her airplane being struck by lightning as she flew into Saskatoon for her Friday evening show at the Ness Creek Music Festival. And it was an appropriate anecdote: decked out in fiery red cowboy boots and boasting a sassy Southern attitude, the Toronto-born, Nashville-based Ortega delivered an electric performance as the sun set on Saskatchewan's boreal forest.
For just under an hour, Ortega blitzed through songs from her three studio albums, sprinkling in a few covers that cemented her country cred (including a rumbling, churning, horns-free version of Johnny Cash classic "Ring of Fire"). Sure, Ortega's original tunes, like "Little Lie" off her Juno-nominated 2011 album Little Red Boots and "Hard as This" from 2014's Tin Star, might not have been as immediately recognizable. But their catchy down-home rhythms — coupled with Ortega's own infectious personality — had showgoers grinning and two-stepping in the makeshift sand pit in front of the stage right into the night.