Poet, performer and pretty cheeky' according to one fan, Patti Smith gave an enthusiastic, sell-out crowd at Ulverston's Coronation Hall an intimate insight into the last four decades of rock in this first official electric night' of the European tour of her new rock tribute CD 'twelve'.

Dressed in high boots, a long white shirt and a dark jacket, Smith danced, stomped and dropped to her knees on the faded Persian rugs laid out on the stage as she told stories, sang ballads and retreated to her rock roots.

Weaving tales of her visit earlier that day to Wordsworth's Dove Cottage, with real and imagined encounters with its inhabitants, Patti Smith demonstrated both her talent as a wordsmith and her prowess as a performer. Her vocal interpretation of each song became the focal point of a performance, a vocal documentary of the last four decades of rock.

At times her clarinet was slung recklessly over her shoulder, seemingly abandoned, only to be suddenly cradled between her lips producing delicate sounds, as she took us through some carefully selected songs from 'twelve'.

Her musical tour included Jimi Hendrix's Are You Experienced?, which she originally recorded live at Electric Lady Studios, where she met Jimi Hendrix briefly on the steps in 1970, to George Harrison's Within You Without You, which she describes in the CD's booklet as a musical landscape both strange and spiritually stimulating', an apt description for both her concert and the album.

Fans were treated to such rock greats as The Rolling Stone's Gimme Shelter, Changing of the Guard by Bob Dylan and White Rabbit by Jefferson Airplane. She performed favourites from the era that helped shape her still-strong music persona. Patti added in Because the Night, which she co-authored with Bruce Springsteen, just another superb collaboration during this colourful career.

Other songs on 'twelve' include Midnight Rider by the Allman Brothers, Paul Simon's The Boy In The Bubble, Nirvana's Smells Like Teen Spirit and Stevie Wonder's Pastime Paradise.

She told the story of how forty years ago she waited until after midnight to listen to new music on the radio and the magical' experience that still haunts her to this day of hearing Soul Kitchen by The Doors. Her rendition is also magical.

Patti Smith played the audience with as much energy and enthusiasm as she did her instruments. She would lull us into silence with powerful ballads, respond to rowdies with lines like "Have you been to the Stan Laurel school of comedy?", crawl down off the stage to chat with the audience, turn the mic to the singing crowd and rouse both those standing and sitting into waving fists in the air shouting power to the people'. She followed the standing ovation with a fantastic finale, Neil Young's Helpless.

Patti Smith's 'twelve' has been in the works since 1978 and proves good things come to those who wait. Don't wait to add it to your collection. There has not been a finer tribute to the greatest four decades of rock and roll. Patti Smith is on tour in the UK for the next two weeks before heading for the continent.

This concert followed her poetry performance the night before at Kendal's Brewery Centre, all part of the Women's Arts International Festival, now in its second week.

Review by Kate Whiteside Patti Smith and Band Coronation Hall, Ulverston Friday May 11