1990: Long indebted to older blues stars, Raitt was overcome with emotion because her contemporary and pal Stevie Ray Vaughan, the blues guitar great, had died in a helicopter crash the previous day. She dedicated "Nick of Time" to him for inspiring her to play the blues without "the torture" of booze and drugs. Jeff Healey opened.
1994: The recently crowned Grammy queen drew her biggest Minnesota crowd — 19,657. Her throat was funky but her performance was spirited. Keb Mo opened.
1998: After playing two giddy, gabby shows at the Orpheum Theatre earlier in the year, Raitt got back to her groove thing in a deliciously low-key performance. The highlight was Raitt singing with her birthday-celebrating mother, Marge Goddard, for the first time in public (on "Angel From Montgomery"). Keb Mo opened.
2002: With Lyle Lovett opening, this was an artistically satisfying double bill. Raitt sat in on vocals and slide guitar for two songs in Lovett's set, and he returned the favor on "Do Right Woman, Do Right Man" in her segment.
2006: She thanked the 9,652 fans for picking her show on a night when Los Lobos and Ben Harper were playing separate gigs in the Twin Cities. Her slide guitar was smoking. The surprise was fireworks elsewhere on the fairgrounds inexplicably exploding at the beginning of the heart-wrenching tearjerker "I Can't Make You Love Me." "Just a little percussion," she joked.
2009: Steve Raitt, her Twin Cities-based older brother who had died in April of brain cancer, informed nearly every song in a remarkably emotional evening. Her slide guitar was darker and moodier, her ballads more deeply felt and her excessive chatter was filled with sadness and celebration. Featuring a horn section for a change, Raitt's band jammed with opening act Taj Mahal's band on several tunes.
2012: Distracted by the impending rain, Raitt ceded too many guitar solos to excellent sideman George Marinelli. But she found her footing on a Bob Dylan tune and "Love Sneakin' Up on You," on which brother Steve used to always join her. Raitt duetted with opening act Mavis Staples, one of her heroes, on "Will the Circle Be Unbroken. "