Being that I haven’t been keeping up with all the shows I’ve attended, a round up post seemed to be the best way to go. So the last post was about Dubconscious; who were kick ass. Where have my musical tastes and taping taken me recently?
June 8th – 11th: Wakarusa
If you don’t know, Wakarusa is a four day camping and music festival hosted by the kind town of Lawrence, Kansas. Yes, that is right, Kansas. Now while I can appropriately say that I am not in Kansas anymore, I did bring back some fond memories and made some new friends. Rain or shine (or wind), Waka must go on and it did! I flew out there to meet up with the usual crew (think Langerado crew) but it was an adventure in itself flying and getting to the venue. My plan was this:
1. Get Tickets.
2. Fly to Waka
4. Party down!
6. Fly back.
Please notice the ???? on steps 3 and 5, as I wasn’t really sure how I was getting to and from the airports. Luckily, when you are going to a festival like this, it is easy to pick out those who share the similar interests and intentions of attending this festival. Taking off for Kansas I proceeded to get a little alcohol buzz going before my 8:30 AM flight. *GASP* drinking in the morning? Who would ever do that… Well, I would and I know of a lot others that would too. Please don’t take this for an alcoholic rampage as only two bloody marys were involved and all I wanted to was to sleep the whole way there so that I was ready to go. Besides, drinking at the airport is expensive! Thus, I proceed to go to the plane and get on. We take off and my slumber ensues. Que Joe sleeping… zzzz…. Later on I awake to the wheels hitting the ground and we are good to go right? Nope, we had landed back where we started! Apparently we needed some federal safety whatchamajigger and took off with out it. We are sitting on the tarmac for about an hour when this sketchy heady looking guy gets on the plane and goes to the back. This guy was most definitely not in line to get on the plane when we took off the first time. The flight attendant talks to him for a while and then escorts him up to first class. I thought to myself, this is the sketchiest TSA guy I’ve ever seen. Anyway, we finally took back off and the airline did give us some complimentary snack packs for our delays. So props to them. Finally we make it to Kansas and my quest to fill in the first ???? began.
Cue the sketchy guy from the plane. Observing his movements I came to the conclusion that the only reason that some heady looking guy is coming to Kansas is Wakarusa, duh. Our conversation was short and sweet. “Hey man, are you going to Waka?” I said. Heady dude responds with, “Yeah dude.” Pushing further I enquire, “Do you have a ride there?” Much to my delight he says, “Yeah my buddy is supposed to come pick me up.” Booya, doing well here, I ask then, “Could I catch a ride?” Headies always help out their kind and he answers, “No problem man, he should be here soon.” Wham blam, there’s the ride. Not bad eh?
Waka in it self was tremendous, the schedule heady, the weather, well a little hot but great! What bands did I attend?
Thursday: Disco Biscuits, Pnuma Trio, Lotus
Friday: MOFRO, Backyard Tire Fire, Disco Biscuits, Robert Randolph & the Family Band, New Monsoon, Greyboy Allstars
Saturday: New Monsoon, Gabby La La, Keller Williams and the Keels, Buckethead, Railroad Earth, Keller Williams, Benevento Russo DUO, ALO (Animal Liberation Orchestra)
Sunday: Tea Leaf Green, Larry Keel and Natural Bridge, Yonder Mountain String Band, Zilla, STS9 (Sound Tribe Sector 9), and Hurra Torpedo
Not bad for four days of music right? Highlights were the Zilla show, Larry Keel with guests from both Yonder and Railroad Earth. Sleeping during Gabby La La and awakening to her staring me down for sleeping. My feelings were come on it was hot, I didn’t sleep the last night due to the fact that the music stopped after the morning came thus making the tent too hot and others were doing it too! The fire department coming out and spraying the hose up to cool down the hippies instead of turning it on us. Tapers being prepared for such an occasion by having umbrellas on hand. Meeting everyone from Jacksonville, FL as those guys filled in steps 3 and 5 with a ride. The positive vibe. The lake, the heat. Seeing tents just go flying from the fierce winds. Meeting new friends from Indiana and of course DUO! Easily said, this was one hell of a weekend.
During the summer it is harder to see good stuff here in the ‘ville so I generally travel to the shows, but this hasn’t prevented me from taping. Crazyredbeard and I have been working on a demo tape for himself. Basically a compilation of all of his best live stuff. We did some recording sessions in house too which turned out great.
June 20th: The Slate Hill Show
Feeling the pains of not having taped anything for while, I ventured into the Outback Lodge hoping for some good tunes. I was rewarded with a fine, slightly drunken, showing by Slate Hill Phil and his Slate Hill Show. The music, which he claims is country though sometimes sounding like grass, is a combination of banjo, mandolin, and guitar. Perfect sounds for some grass, er uh, country. Being that it was acoustic the sounds came out really well through the C4s but man, some people were talking right in front of the microphones generally the whole time. Furthermore, there were a grand total of perhaps seven of us there so you can hear their conversations loud and clear. *grumble grumble* Oh well. I take the passive approach to taping because I have found that if you start asking people, especially drunk people, they generally just get louder or do something drunk like try to fight you, throw beer on your gear and generally stuff that we don’t want going on. Besides, their stories are funny, but shit y’all, STFU.
June 25th: Peen, Man Mountain Jr. and Intents
These shows were in honor of Natalie leaving the area and going on to graduate school. The whole setup could be attributed to a community effort. Everyone brought out their equipment which allowed the show to sound great at Orbit and we got a fine recording. Music started around 8:30 PM or so and ran until they kicked us out at 2:00 AM. I have the vast majority of the show tracked out already and will get it up on tapers.org when I can.
June 28th: Phil Lesh & Friends / Trey Anastasio & Mike Gordon with The Benevento/Russo DUO
I traveled to Raleigh, NC to the Walnut Creek Pavilion, now called the Alltel Pavilion at Walnut Creek, for a full day of music. Starting at 4:00 and going until 11:00 is not bad for one show. The Duo opened it all up with a normal however short set. We had just finished our margaritas and charged into the venue, which has a no re-entry policy, and they stopped. Well damn! Now we are stuck in $10 beer land and having just paid $500 to fix the car, that just wasn’t happening. Oh well, Phil came out fairly soon and we were taken for a ride. Here is the set list:
Set 1: Good Lovin, Tenessee Jed, Friend of the Devil > Hardest Part, Next Time You See Me, Berthaet
Set 2: Loose Lucy > Shakedown on 9th Street > Shakedown Street, They Love Each Other > Unbroken Chain > Death Don’t have no Mercy, Gimme Shelter, The Weight
Very solid. I really enjoyed the Friend > Hardest part. Joan Osborne was on vocals and did a beautiful job.
Next up was G.R.A.B:
Jam> Play, Pause, Stop, Dragonfly, Suskind Hotel, Sleep Again, Goodbye Head > Something For Rockets, Car Carrier Blues, Mr. Completely > Spin, Trouble, Seasons, Drifting, Mud City
E: Let Me Lie, Tuesday
Good stuff. A little sloppy I felt but this was their first gig (other than the impromptu Bonnaroo showing). I thought the best was the Mr. Completely > Spin. Sickness!
This post is dedicated to Natalie who, for the short amount of time I knew her, turned my world upside down, inside out, and every other way possible. I loved every minute of it. Holler on back girl!