In Si Kahn's song What You Do With What You've Got there is a line that goes "What's the use of the finest voice if you've nothing good to say." Joan Baez has the finest voice and she has always has something good to say. The audience that packed the New Theatre - the concert was sold out in days - came not just for that voice but to hear her have something to say. They were seeking affirmation that the optimism of the sixties that Baez epitomised was still alive. They were not disappointed.

She may have turned 66 and that unmistakeable soprano voice may not be as powerful as it once was but Baez can still move crowds. Untypically, she did not talk much between songs - maybe the tour was taking its toll on her vocal chords but once she opened with Dylan's Farewell Angelina, one could feel a warm glow fill the hall. Songs from some of the big influences on American music followed - the Carter family, Johnny Cash, and Steve Earle. And it was the latter's evocative Christmas in Washington that raised a special cheer - a lament at the coming to power of George Bush with a chorus "So come back Woody Guthrie, Come back to us now". Phil Och's timeless There But for Fortune was given added poignancy with a chorus give a sutble change: "And I'll show you a young girl with so many reasons why."

A gentle dig at Dylan is part of her routine and she obliged with her spot-on mimmicking of his voice on Love is Just a Four-Letter Word. Her finale was the not so gentle Diamonds and Rust, with its customary changed last line. Would it be diamonds or rust that she would take? No, she'll just take the grammys! Which is exactly what she did, receiving a Lifetime Achievement Grammy last month. There's none more deserving.