Archive for August, 2011

September 2011 Music Calendar

Calendar updated daily!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

  • (Free ) Lo Down Loretta Brown aka Erykah Badu (DJ set) meets Adrian Younge @ Le Poisson Rouge
  • ($5-$8) DJ Questlove presents: Bowl Train @ Brooklyn Bowl (11pm set)
  • ($15) Karl Denson with DJ Williams Projekt @ The Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($30-$38) Panic! At The Disco @ Rumsey Playfield, Central Park
  • ($30-$40) Gary Peacock, Marc Copland, Victor Lewis @ Birdland New York
  • ($38) Darius Rucker @ Best Buy Theater

Friday, September 2, 2011

  • (???) Ladell Mclin Live @ Shrine
  • (Free) Jason Linder Trio @ Rockwood Music Hall Stage 1
  • ($10) Honey Island Swamp Band @ Hill Country Live
  • ($10) Mark Guiliana’s “Beat Music” & Jeff Taylor @ Rockwood Music Hall Stage 2
  • ($15) Karl Denson with DJ Williams Projekt @ The Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($30-$40) Gary Peacock, Marc Copland, Victor Lewis @ Birdland NY
  • ($30-$50) Bill Kreutzmann / 7 Walkers @ City Winery
  • ($109-$400) Electric Zoo Festival @ Randall’s Island Park, NYC

Saturday, September 3, 2011

  • (Free) West African Band @ St. Nicks Pub (12am ~ Harlem)
  • ($10-$15) Rumble Dogs (Feat Erik Deutsch, Scott Metzger, Andy Hess, & Joe Russo) @ Cameo
  • ($30-$40) Gary Peacock, Marc Copland, Victor Lewis @ Birdland NY
  • ($30-$50) Bill Kreutzmann / 7 Walkers @ City Winery
  • ($99-$199) Rock The Bells @ The Beach at Governor’s Island
    • Nas/Cypress Hill/Erykah Badu/Talib Kweli/Mos Def
  • ($109-$400) Electric Zoo Festival @ Randall’s Island Park, NYC

Sunday, September 4, 2011

  • ($5) Headtronics featuring Steve Molitz , DJ Logic, and Freekbass @ Brooklyn Bowl (11:30pm set)
  • ($12-$14) Stanton Moore Trio Feat. Will Bernard and Robert Walter @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($25) Elton John Wine Pairing @ City Winery
  • ($109-$400) Electric Zoo Festival @ Randall’s Island Park, NYC

Monday, September 5, 2011

  • (Free) Teddy Kumpel Loopestra with Shawn Pelton and Andy Hess @ Rockwood Music Hall Stage 1
  • ($8) Jim Campilongo @ The Living Room
  • ($25) Mingus Orchestra @ The Jazz Standard

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

  • (Free) Sonya Kitchell & Friends @ Rockwood Music Hall
  • (Free) Kevn Kinney @ Rockwood Music Hall Stage 1
  • ($25-$45) Umphrey’s McGee @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • (Free) Dred Scott Trio @ Rockwood Music Hall (midnight set)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

  • ($15) The Louis Armstrong Centennial Band @ Birdland NYC
  • ($25) Jeff Coffin’s & The Mu’tet featuring Felix Pastorius @ Iridium Jazz Club
  • ($25-$45) Umphrey’s McGee @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($45-$53) Paramore @ Terminal 5

Thursday, September 8, 2011

  • ($5-$8) DJ Questlove presents: Bowl Train @ Brooklyn Bowl (11:00pm set)
  • ($10) Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band @ Sullivan Hall
  • ($25-$45) Umphrey’s McGee @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($30) Joey DeFrancesco Trio feat Larry Coryell & special guest Pat Martino @ Iridium Jazz Club
  • ($40-$49) TV On The Radio with Broken Social Scene @ The Williamsburg Waterfront

Friday, September 9, 2011

  • Tiny Rager covering The Catskill Chill Music Festival ($120)
  • ($10) Mike Delledera Band @ R Bar
  • ($12-$15) Digital Tape Machine (featuring Joel & Kris of Umphrey’s McGee) @ Music Hall of Williamsburg (11:30pm)
  • ($15-$19) Red Baraat @ Mercury Lounge
  • ($20) Eric Lindell @ Sullivan Hall
  • ($25) Orchard Lounge @ Webster Hall
  • ($25-$45) Umphrey’s McGee @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($30) Joey DeFrancesco Trio feat Larry Coryell & special guest Pat Martino @ Iridium Jazz Club

Saturday, September 10, 2011

  • Tiny Rager covering The Catskill Chill Music Festival ($120)
  • (Free) West African Band @ St. Nicks Pub (12am ~ Harlem)
  • ($20-$35) Brother Joscephus and the Love Revival Revolution Orchestra @ Hiro Ballroom
  • ($30) Joey DeFrancesco Trio feat Larry Coryell & special guest Pat Martino @ Iridium Jazz Club
  • ($50-$100) Tedeschi Trucks Band @ Beacon Theatre

Sunday, September 11, 2011

  • Tiny Rager covering The Catskill Chill Music Festival ($120)
  • ($5) WETLANDS Class Of ’96, 15 Year Reunion Party, Ulu, Fat Mama @ Brooklyn Bowl

Monday, September 12, 2011

  • ($8) Jim Campilongo Electric Trio with Tony Mason & Stephan Crump @ The Living Room
  • ($18-$22) Diane Birch @ City Winery
  • ($25) Mingus Orchestra @ The Jazz Standard
  • ($65) Blondie @ Highline Ballroom

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

  • ($7) Afro Funky Party w/ Zongo Junction, Top Shotta & DJ Offbeat @ Cameo Gallery
  • ($10-$15) An Evening with Zach Deputy (with band) (EARLY SHOW) @ Rockwood Music Hall Stage 2 (Early show 7pm)
  • ($15) Secret Cheifs 3 @ Le Poisson Rouge
  • ($20) John Ellis Band @ Jazz Standard
  • ($20-$25) JJ Grey & Special exclusive screening of new documentary @ City Winery
  • ($20-$25) Funky METERS @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($50-$60) Steve Earle and the Dukes (and Duchesses) featuring Allison Moorer @ Town Hall
  • ($65) Blondie @ Highline Ballroom

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

  • ($10-$15) An Evening with Zach Deputy (with band) (EARLY SHOW) @ Rockwood Music Hall Stage 2 (Early show 7pm)
  • ($15) The Louis Armstrong Centennial Band @ Birdland NYC
  • ($20) John Ellis Band @ Jazz Standard
  • ($20-$25) Funky METERS @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($40-$45) Steve Earle and The Dukes (and Duchesses) featuring Allison Moorer @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
  • ($60-$250) Steely Dan @ Beacon Theatre

Thursday, September 15, 2011

  • ($5-$8) DJ Questlove presents: Bowl Train @ Brooklyn Bowl (11:00pm set)
  • ($20-$25) Funky METERS @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($28) Vonda Shepard @ B.B. King Blues Club and Grill

Friday, September 16, 2011

  • (Free) Taylor Carson @ Rockwood Music Hall Stage 1
  • ($15)  Buzz Universe @ The Canal Room
  • ($12) Greensky Bluegrass @ Sullivan Hall
  • ($17-$55) Brooklyn Indie Music Fest
  • ($20) Bonobo DJ Set @ Rocks Off Concert Cruise Series
  • ($60-$250) Steely Dan (12 night run) @ Beacon Theatre

Saturday, September 17, 2011

  • (Free) West African Band @ St. Nicks Pub (12am ~ Harlem)
  • ($7) New York Funk Exchange @ Club Groove
  • ($10) Daniel Bennett Group @ Tomi Jazz Club
  • ($10) Papadosio + TBA @ Public Assembly
  • ($20) Widespread Panic Pre-Party featuring Jerry Joseph & Wally Ingram @ Rocks Off River Cruise Series (2pm set)
  • ($20) Widespread Panic Post-Party featuring Jerry Joseph & Wally Ingram @ Rocks Off River Cruise
  • ($27-$32) Ghostland Observatory @ Terminal 5
  • ($42-$52) Widespread Panic @ The Williamsburg Waterfront (5:30pm)
  • ($60-$250) Steely Dan @ Beacon Theater

Sunday, September 18, 2011

  • ($50-$350) Tony Bennett @ Metropolitan Opera

Monday, September 19, 2011

  • ($8) Jim Campilongo @ The Living Room
  • ($25) Mingus Orchestra @ The Jazz Standard
  • ($60-$250) Steely Dan @ Beacon Theatre

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

  • ($20-$24) Clap Your Hands Say Yeah @ Bowery Ballroom
  • ($25) Taj Mahal Trio @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($30-$40) Coltrane Revisited feat. Steve Kuhn, Tom Harrell, Vincent Herring, Andrew Cyrille, Lonnie Plaxico @ Birdland New York
  • ($60-$250) Steely Dan (12 night run) @ Beacon Theatre

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

  • ($15) The Louis Armstrong Centennial Band @ Birdland NYC
  • ($25) Jim Weiders ProJECT PERCoLAToR with music legend Garth Hudson of The Band @ Iridium Jazz Club
  • ($25) Wicked Knee featuring feat. Billy Martin, Steven Bernstein, Curtis Fowlkes & Marcus Rojas @ Rocks Off River Cruise Series

Thursday, September 22, 2011

  • ($5-$8) DJ Questlove presents: Bowl Train @ Brooklyn Bowl (11:00pm set)
  • ($10-$13) Fool’s Gold / AM & Shawn Lee @ Mercury Lounge
  • ($30-$40) Coltrane Revisited feat. Steve Kuhn, Tom Harrell, Vincent Herring, Andrew Cyrille, Lonnie Plaxico @ Birdland New York
  • ($32) POPs Ball feat. Anders Osborne (& band) with Dave Malone (The Radiators), “Big Sam” Williams (Big Sams Fnky Nat), John “Papa” Gros (Papa Grows Funk), DJ Logic + sp guests, plus Outer Borough Brass Band @ Hiro Ballroom
  • ($40) Max Weinberg 7 @ Iridium Jazz Club
  • ($50) Wilco @ Central Park’s Summerstage
  • ($60-$250) Steely Dan @ Beacon Theatre

Friday, September 23, 2011

  • (FREE ~ $5 after 10:30pm) Elephant Revival @ Pianos (upstairs)
  • ($10) Sister Sparrow and the Dirty Birds @ Sullivan Hall
  • ($10) Shawn Lee’s Ping Pong Orchestra @ Lovin’ Cup
  • ($15-$18) The Nappy Roots @ Mercury Lounge
  • ($17) Roger Clyne & the Peacemakers with Sons of Bill @ Highline Ballroom
  • ($20) Cornmeal and Leftover Salmon with Sharon and Said @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($25) The Birdland Big Band directed by Tommy Igoe @ Bridland New York
  • ($35-$45) Brandi Carlile @ Town Hall
  • ($40) Max Weinberg 7 @ Iridium Jazz Club
  • ($50) Wilco with Nick Lowe @ Rumsey Playfield, Central Park
  • ($60-$250) Steely Dan @ Beacon Theatre

Saturday, September 24, 2011

  • (Free) West African Band @ St. Nicks Pub (12am ~ Harlem)
  • ($8-$12) Particle @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($15) Dangermuffin followed by TWIDDLE @ Sulivan Hall
  • ($20) Words* Rock* & Sword: A musical Celebration of Women @ Le Poosion Rouge
    • Featuring Toshi Reagon,Tamar-kali, Joan As Police Woman, Meshell Ndegeocello, Morley, Marcelle Davies Lashley, Imani Uzuri, Alsarah, Stephanie Battle, Arooj Aftab, Sun Singleton, Judith Casselberry, Invincible, Slanty Eyed Mama and many more…
  • ($23-$28) Lotus @ Terminal 5
  • ($25-$35) Mason Jennings @ Irving Plaza
  • ($30-$40) Grace Potter & the Nocturnals @ Rumsey Playfield, Central Park
  • ($30-$40) Coltrane Revisited feat. Steve Kuhn, Tom Harrell, Vincent Herring, Andrew Cyrille, Lonnie Plaxico @ Birdland New York
  • ($36.50) Southside Johnny + the Asbury Jukes @ B.B. King Blues Club and Grill
  • ($40) Max Weinberg 7 @ Iridium Jazz Club
  • ($60-$250) Steely Dan w/ Celtic Thunder @ Beacon Theatre

Sunday, September 25, 2011

  • ($8) Local X Local ft. The Coup (featuring Boots Riley) & Japanther with Special Guests @ Brookyn Bowl

Monday, September 26, 2011

  • ($8) Jim Campilongo & Tony Mason @ The Living Room
  • ($25) Mingus Orchestra @ The Jazz Standard
  • ($27) Colbie Caillat @ Best Buy Theater
  • ($50-$57) Ray LaMontagne and the Pariah Dogs (supported by the Punch Brothers) @ Rumsey Playfield, Central Park
  • ($55-$70) The Zombies (50th Anniversary Tour) with special guests Acoustic Strawbs @ City Winery

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

  • ($10) New York Funk Exchange @ Club Groove
  • ($55-$70) The Zombies (50th Anniversary Tour) with special guests Acoustic Strawbs @ City Winery
  • ($75) George Thorogood and the Destroyers @ B.B. Kings Blues Club

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

  • ($15) The Louis Armstrong Centennial Band @ Birdland NYC

Thursday, September 29, 2011

  • (Free) Mark Guiliana @ Rockwood Music Hall
  • ($5-$8) DJ Questlove presents: Bowl Train @ Brooklyn Bowl (11:00pm set)
  • ($7) Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($10) Dopapod plus lespecial, Easy Over, Cosmic Dust Bunnies @ Sullivan Hall
  • ($12) Alecia Chakour & The Osrah  @ Littlefield, Bklyn
  • ($20-$25) The Felice Brothers @ Webster Hall
  • ($55) Adrian Belew Trio, Tony Levin Stickman, King Crimson Finale @ The Iridium Jazz Club
  • ($65-$80) RadioHead @ Roseland Ballroom

Friday, September 30, 2011

  • ($10) The 9th Annual New York Burlesque Festival (The Premiere Party) @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($14-$16) The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger @ Littlefield, Bklyn
  • ($30) The Association w/ Bernie Worell @ B.B. King Blues Club and Grill
  • ($45-$56) Primus @ Roseland Ballroom

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In the Fall people from all over the world head to the Catskill Mountains to gaze at the lovely foliage and relax in nature. This September they will be flocking to the Catskills once again, but this time it is for nature and something equally important, Live Music.The second edition of the Catskill Chill Music Festival will take place Friday September 9th until Monday September 11th at Camp Minglewood and it promises to be an epic weekend of music and good times. Camp Minglewood is an ideal festival site with lush nature surrounding the site.  Sleeping options range from camping in a tent to RV’s to renting a cabin. Weekend camping tickets are only $105 advance. Single day tickets range from $50-$70. Camp opens 9:00 AM Friday and will remain open for campers until Monday at 3:00 PM. Music begins Friday at 2:30 PM and ends on Monday at 3:00 AM. You can purchase tickets here!

There is an amazing variety of music at this year’s festival and something for music lovers of all kinds.  An awesome line up of DJ’s are booked to play.  Be ready to groove to the funkified beats of Nutritious or if you like your beats a bit more psychedelic, go check out DJ Logic for a nice face melting.  DJ Kras will also be spinning his unique blend of beats. Speaking of face melting, Conspirator (a project featuring Marc Brownstein and Aron Magner of the Disco Biscuits) promises to melt your face off. Perpetual Groove also brings its unique blend of psychedelic groove dance rhythms to Camp Minglewood.  

The spirit of The Grateful Dead will be a major part of this festival with two of Garcia’s musical partners, Melvin Seals and Bill Kreutzman on hand. 7 Walkers will be bringing the spirit of The Grateful Dead and New Orleans together with their unique blend of Grateful Funk featuring Bill Kreutzman on drums, the legendary George Porter on bass and Papa Mali on guitar.  Melvin Seals, Jerry’s long time keyboard player will bring the timeless JGB to the festival to keep all the cats down under the stars happy.  Also bringing the Funk to the Catskills that weekend will be Big Sam and his Funky Nation, Ivan Neville’s Dumpstafunk, The Pimps of Joy Time and Sister Sparrow and the Dirty Birds.  Big Sam is a New Orleans favorite; a massive hulk of a man who makes a trombone look tiny in his hands and sound ohh so sweet.  And Dumpstafunk is the funk project of Neville Brother Ivan Neville which brings a heavy double bass version of mind blowing funk to the table. The Pimps of Joytime are a Brooklyn band bringing some of NYC’s best danceable Funk to the mountains. Sister Sparrow and the Dirty Birds will be bringing their own brand of sultry Funk to the table for all to enjoy.

For those into wild crazy late night beats, you are in for a treat watching Adam Deitch and Break Science. Also Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad and Wyllys and the New York Hustler Ensemble will have the dance floor thumping into the morning hours. John Brown’s Body and Zach Deputy will bring their own unique versions of modified blues and reggae to the Chill for people to Chill to.  All these bands and so many more for one glorious weekend in the Catskill Mountains at Camp Minglewood.  A Rage not to be missed.

Can’t wait to get to camp to see all my friends.  See you there……

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In it’s fifth year on the musical map, Camp Barefoot 5 provided one of the year’s most positive festival experiences for 2500 music lovers this past weekend at Camp Hidden Meadows, in Bartow, West Virginia.

Welcome to Camp Barefoot!

Welcome to Camp Barefoot!

Camp Barefoot 5 | August 18-20th, 2011 | Camp Hidden Meadows, Bartow, WVIn an ever-growing music festival world, full of mainstream acts, money grubbing production companies, cookie-cutter designs and investors and promoters who are in it for the wrong reasons, we are lucky when we can find a festival that continues to evolve yet keeps a firm hold to its charm.

The best music festivals do not rely solely on their line-up, their location, or their staff.  It is a seamless combination of all of the above that has left a lasting impression on this professional festival goer.   I have attended multiple festivals around the world this year and I can’t get around the fact that a festival so quaint could be so satisfying.

Every year just gets better and better. I love how the line-up changes from year to year but still has the local and regional acts that I have grown to love! This is def. one festie you can hit up by yourself and leave with a ton of new friends. ~ MrHarryHood83 on JamBase

The two main (quaint and perfect) stages @ 4am Thursday

The two main (quaint and perfect) stages @ 6am Thursday

When thinking on how to approach this article, I wrote out a list of refreshing and positive points about the fest that became endless.  The campers, the location, the weather, lack of cell-phone service, the size, the WONDERFUL staff, the vendors, artists and special large and small-scale musical collaborations.  The list went on till I hit about 150 points and put down my pen.  I recognized that Camp Barefoot contains everything one might want out of a music festival and that there are aspects of this event that other festivals can’t replicate.

The Atmosphere

The River that runs along the Main entrance and Family Camping.

The river that runs along the Main entrance and Family Camping. Completely accessible to all who care to enjoy it for whatever reason. Children colored rocks along the water all weekend.

Location, Location, Location: A good drive off the beaten path into the mountains of West Virginia, one of the most important and refreshing aspects of this festival is the location.  Once 30 minutes outside of Camp Hidden Meadows, telephone service shuts out.  This is such a blessing in disguise for those of us who are addicted to their phones and the internet. Five days of uninterrupted country camping. There is a cleansing aspect felt from the disconnection of this addiction that you feel immediately. There are rivers, walking paths, quaint bridges, and lush green landscape to pop up ones tent.

Thank you Camp Barefoot for the most baller end to my summer I could possibly ask for!!!!!! What a beautiful weekend in the valley, hours away from cell phone service, surrounded by some of my best friends, funky music, and an amazing view!!! ~ Danielle Christenson

You can't help but feel wonderfully isolated and country-fried at Barefoot!

You can't help but feel wonderfully isolated and country-fried at Barefoot!

As the name suggests, Camp Hidden Meadows is nestled into a small scale valley which should probably hold no more then 3000 people.  Tickets were limited to a maximum capacity of 3,000 people this year. VIP only sold 40 ticket making it a nice, small space to get to know your neighbors. The location of VIP this year was much more pleasant as well.  Last year, there was cow poop in many of the fields. This year, I heard a rumor that only just the day before did the poop get picked up manually by staff. THAT is dedication! We will definitely be pumping VIP up with more heads next year after the success of this year’s Barefoot.

So down home and earthy 🙂 (giggle!!) I wanna go back!! ~ Aslan Deacon (Jam Cruise Head Cheerleader)

There is a large on-site lake with a make-shift tube slide that functions as a wonderful amenity for those needing a refreshing cool-down from the afternoon sun (which never got TOO hot) or a shower.  Personally, you couldn’t pay me to get in that lake (rumor of leaches and what not) but I enjoyed knowing it was there for fun! It was constantly in use and pleased everyone who entered!

The lake/swimming hole at the top of the hill.

The lake/swimming hole at the top of the hill. I never made it back up once the festival started. (Sunrise, Thursday morning)

World's largest fully steerable single aperture antenna telescope (http://www.gb.nrao.edu/)

World's largest fully steerable single aperture antenna telescope (http://www.gb.nrao.edu/)

One of the greatest aspects of all is the night sky.  Camp Barefoot is located 14 minutes away from the World’s largest fully steerable single aperture antenna telescope (http://www.gb.nrao.edu/). The placement of this telescope became knowledge to me while trying to figure out why there were no telephone towers in the area.  The placement of this telescope became UNDERSTOOD to me when I looked up into the sky on the second night of the festival. Just…WOW!!

Kids #2

Little ones ran around all weekend. Smiles and giggles abounded.

There are no words that do justice to the spectacular view we were given of the constellations on the second night. I literally hung out by the porto-potties in Family Camping getting lost in the Milky Way and various other galaxies for half an hour until a friend walked by and MADE me move. Another time, I saw five shooting starts in one hour.  Barefoot places you in the stars. Literally, there are layers upon layers of stars.  Seemingly closer, they practically reached out for me in the moments I melted into them.

Sadly, the stars didn’t present themselves in such a manner on the surrounding nights as they did that second night.  However, they still shined brighter and truer then this country-girl turned city-chick has ever experienced.  I lost the stars to the bright lights of the urban bustle years ago and it’s one of the things I miss most of country living. If for nothing else, the vision of the night sky from this venue is worth everything it takes to get there.

Vending Area Art Peice

This monster art piece began at the start of the festival and was finished by the second day. It was also the wall that defined the vendor area's beginning. I tried repeatedly to help them spray paint but alas...

The Dog Element

This guy made sure you had your rager pass before you were let backstage ;)

This guy made sure you had your rager pass before you were let backstage 😉

Dogs are an integral part of the Barefoot experience.  Each year, Camp Barefoot walks away with the Rager Award for Best Dog Population. Hands down!!  I don’t care who you are, dogs make things better and there are hardly any festivals that allow dogs these days.

Puppy Love!!

Puppy Love!!

It must be noted, especially in the bigger festivals, that our scene has lost its innocence in the canine area.  Wookies walk around with aggressive looking breeds on purpose and today’s lot dogs are scary and used for protection and aggressive portrayal.  I love all dogs and I try not to discriminate (being an Equal Employment Opportunity Counselor for NYC PARKS and all) but being surrounded by multiple aggressive looking dogs is not something I enjoy. There is no such thing as a scary dog at Barefoot 🙂

At Barefoot, even my girlfriend who can’t stand dogs was loving up on the sweet faces that ran lose over the weekend.  There was a tie-dyed pug, a mini-pin in a dress, an enormous Great Dane with Dalmatian markings that towered over young children and numerous muts with bandanas around their necks who literally ran free wearing smiles. Yes, even the dogs smiled this weekend.  Barefoot is blissful.

Rolling Stream Rage

Rolling Stream Rage ~ We spent a lot of time by and in this lovely stream 🙂


Continuing the puppy love, there were numerous activities held throughout the weekend that promoted fundraising for the Humane Society of Pocahontas County.  Currently raising money for their new shelter, this local shelter is in desperate need of donations to provide for homeless pets. Hippie Olympics ($20 a person), Fans Vs Bands Kickball ($30 a person), and the sale of $1 raffle tickets raised over $1000 this year which went toward the building fund.

Hippie Olympics Participants & Winners

Hippie Olympics Participants & Winners

In exchange for camper’s generosity, Camp Barefoot hands out phenomenal prizes. The winner of the Hippie Olympics received:

1st place: (2) CB6 “GOLD” ALL ACCESS package passes for 2012, (2) snowshoe all day ski lift tickets, (1) Chapin Matthews Painting, 2) CB5 stickers, (2) William Walter & Co. CDs, (2) DJ Williams Projekt CDs, (2) Funkuponya stickers

2nd place: (2) CB6 VIP passes for 2012, (1) Kevin Vigil painting, (1) XL Williams Walter & Co t shirt, (2) CB5 stickers

3rd place: (2) CB6 general admission tixs for 2012, (1) Rae Vena Painting(1) William Walter & Co medium t shirt, (2) William Walter & Co. CDs, (2) CB5 stickers

4th place: (1) William Walter & Co. small t shirt, (2) William Walter & Co. CDs, (2) CB5 stickers

Precious Rager…

Kickball participants paid $30 and received a backstage laminate (giving you access to the showers backstage and any other adventures one might find back there) and one of the Barefoot 5 Buddha Posters painted by Aaron “AJ” Masthay.  Great stuff if you ask me and even better once you recognize that it’s a small festival and you don’t have TOO much competition against you so the possibility of you winning a prize is large!

Finally, as always, the event is kid and Earth friendly featuring a KidZone and waste reduction programs.  Over the weekend I saw little one in the river being washed or running across the fields with a towering dog and leash in their hands. There was also Car Pooling movement that numerous friends took advantage of.

A nice Hammock City set up by EMO in the audience field for campers to relax and watch the music! The stages are behind me as I take this picture.


Clothes Line

Clothes Line - simple art piece strung from the tree tops near the third stage. Feel that country vibe yet?

The weather is strange in the sense that it feels as though you run through every season in a matter of hours when the sun goes down.  The days are stunningly bright and perfectly sunny but once the sun goes down, within the hour a brisk intense chill takes over and the dew is close behind leaving everything covered in a thick layer of moistness. For those of you planning on attending in the future I suggest you don’t make the mistake I did and be prepared for these changes in the climate. Tank and bikini tops during the day and hoodies and layers for the night!

Just wanted to say thanks to the vendors last weekend also. Great food, clothing, art, and everything else! So much cool stuff to check out, thanks again! Thanks again for my favorite weekend of the summer! Such a great eclectic group of people, music, and art. Thanks to everyone for all the hard work, and thanks to all the bands for bringing it this weekend! Can’t wait to do it again!!! ~ Sean Reville

I am not going to lie, when it rained the second morning a crew of us went to the closet Hilton hotel one hour away for an adventure, a shower and some bad game show network TV until the sun came out.  This hotel run was in the plans for a friend of ours before we knew the rain would come.  It worked out perfectly as we were able to stock up on things from Walmart for a few vendor friends who needed supplies and campers who threw in a few orders before we left!

Vendor Row Shot From Hill

View from top of the hill near third stage looking down at Vendor Row! You can FEEL the country in this picture 🙂

Specific Highlights of the Weekend


One of our many delicious in-camp meals! Breakfast: Sliced Bacon-wrapped Filet Mignon with Potatoes, Scrambled Eggs w/ Red Peppers and Cheese. Tortillas and salsa not shown!

Crazy Arrival & THE HIPPIE DOME! There was lengthy debate as to what might greet us upon our arrival. Hillary Dovel, my traveling partner in crime, and I arrived at 4:30 am on Thursday morning.  We were greeted at the VIP entrance with a big vehicle blocking the only way onto the grounds.  Leave it to me to show up when no one is on duty. I had to snicker at the high level of security. I felt like I was home again. The sense of safety in the South felt good.

We left our car and walked down to the venue which was totally dead except for a few Wooks in the mist that hadn’t gone to sleep yet. It took us some time to figure out which campsite was ours because everyone was asleep and the layout of the grounds was different this year.  We found our WONDERFUL hippie palace that had been erected but where were our Ragers? They COULDN’T be sleeping? We tried peeking in tents but that got weird pretty much before we began and so we just assumed this pimped out spot was our home for the weekend and our friends had waited up long enough.

OUR HIPPIE DOME for the weekend! Thanks to John and Eric Way for thier hard work!

OUR HIPPIE DOME for the weekend! Thanks to John and Eric Way for their hard work! This was the living room and there was a kitchen and dining room off the sides. Epic! Epic! Epic!

Hillary and I choose not to sleep that evening. We spent the hours of 4:30 am to 8:00 am wondering the quiet camp grounds, checking out the space that would be taken over by raging hippies in a matter of hours. It was blissful watching the sun rise over the mountains and casting its golden glow on the green tree tops that create this lovely little dip in the serene The Blue Ridge Mountains. At 8pm, we finally crashed for a few hours.  The music began at noon 🙂

Cuddle Puddles Puffathons ~ Lil B

Kickball: Hillary Dovel has been setting up Kickball games quite literally around the world for our wonderful jam community over the past few years.  My first experience with her Kickball games was Camp Barefoot last year (EPIC!) followed by Jam Cruise Kickball in Jamaica (SERIOUSLY EPIC).  This year, Camp Barefoot Kickball was supposed to take place each morning at dawn (if players were awake) and there was a Fans vs. Bands game scheduled for Friday which ultimately moved to Saturday.

For the Bands Vs Fans game, each Fan put up $30 with the proceeds, totaling $300, going directly towards the Building Fund for the new Humane Society of Pocahontas County Shelter. In return, players received a backstage laminate (accessing you to the showers) for the rest of the weekend and a beautiful Camp Barefoot 5 poster.  I encourage everyone to sign up for kickball next year. It’s so worth it 🙂

Time Machine...

Sadly, this didn't work at the end of the weekend when we all wanted Camp Barefoot to start over!

This year, there is no doubt that the event was disorganized and this wasn’t anyone’s fault but our own.  Being Hillary’s wing lady, I take partial responsibility for literally dropping the ball!  We raged it so hard that we failed to promote kickball properly and have already discussed ways to eliminate this problem next year. Last year we were in the same state of rage but we promoted it much more with megaphones and people not liking us so much in those wee hours of the AM.  We are trying to find a middle ground to this promotion for next year!!!

Disorganization and lack of energy aside, there was one Dawn Kickball game that found campers sliding in the dew shortly after the sun came up one the first night.  As well, a pick-up game on Friday occurred which ultimately took the place of what was meant to be the Bands VS Fans game Saturday. Multiple fans and members of Pigeons Playing Ping Pong, Segway and The Mantras squared off in a no-rules game of Kickball that had silly hippies giggling from beginning to end.  Well, there is one rule…the only rule: NO BUNTING!

Thanks to all the members of the Bands who offered their time to give us such a great laugh as they kicked our butts. There is something really hilarious and wonderful about this event. I hope it continues on and really becomes an integral part of what makes Camp Barefoot a special experience.

Night Lights

The two main stages at night lit up by the wonderful 81 Productions!

Live Painting:  I have never seen so many live painters in one spot then I did this past weekend.  Jon Blake (Crazyredbeard) (a personal favorite and whose work we just purchased in April at Rock N Roll Resort), Chapin Mathews, Shannon Mordhorst, Jamie Morgan, Amity Dewey (one of my favorite new found artists), G. Scott Queen (who brings an edge and urban flavor to this his art), Kevin Vigil, Rae Vena, Carter Roach, Danny Phillips, and Aaron “AJ” Masthay (creator of this year’s Barefoot gorgeous poster) were all on site and are inspirational to the environment in the moment while painting. It really is amazing and a wonderful treat to buy yourself if you were so inclined and touched by a specific performance.

I think what keeps me painting at shows is the true love I have for the music and for the act of creating art. And what better place to do it then at a concert with a million kids jumping around? I love being able to inspire people with my art; my hopes are that they will go out there and do the same. Everyone is an artist. ~ Jamie Morgan

Live Painting - View of four of the artists!

Live Painting - View of four of the artists!

However, it was entirely too much. Don’t get me wrong, the art work and watching it be created during a live performance is actually very stimulating.  In fact, I suppose if I didn’t have a VIP Pass I might just have set myself up in the front row of the general audience near the painters to watch them create. I suppose, the amount of painters didn’t bother me so much as the location they were set up to paint. Set up in the VIP pit, we were forced to dance around them and try not to fall into them. I don’t even drink and I was falling into them at times when I wasn’t raging the rail.  It was just cumbersome and slightly annoying because you don’t want to harm their work or their toes. This might be the biggest issue I have with the entire festival and it’s not even something I TRULY care about so that just goes to show ya how great this weekend truly is!!

The beginnings of an audience forming for the music start on Thursday! Just look at that stunning blue sky and green mountain backdrop. Perfect weather also!

The Artists Care: Camp Barefoot is the ONLY musical festival I have gone to where members of other bands playing throughout the weekend are set up within the camping grounds mixed in with the fans.  Camp Barefoot is also the ONLY festival where I see members of other bands making their way to the front row to completely rage the rail for their favorite sets.  I watched the bassist for Pigeons Playing Ping Pong immerse himself in the culture of the festival all weekend playing kickball and wandering around engaging new people around their camp grounds. Segway’s manager did the same.

The smaller bands are humble and kind and there as much to learn and digest the music as much as they are to perform for their fans.  I ABSOLUTELY LOVE SEEING this type of involvement.   I will always be a fan first and I know how that rail riding feels.  But to see other artists doing the same, that is something special.

Music, Sweet Music


Musical Mustache Rage!

Everything at Camp Barefoot screams simplicity and value through it’s small scale.  Barefoot delivers the best music their region has to offer by way of the Virginia, North Carolina and Maryland jam band scene with a few special nationally recognized gems thrown in the mix.

Emphasis is on the reflection of the region vs the country’s staple Jam Bands that generally find their way headlining large-scale festivals. It is for that reason I love attending these small festivals. I love finding new talent and recognizing new musicians who are going to open up on our world.  I love writing about these groups that never get the coverage they deserve.

The lineup for Camp Barefoot is always littered with wonderful, small scale groups who leave a large impression on all their new listeners.  Here are this year’s stand-outs (in my humble opinion).

The Jeff White Band opened up the festival at 12pm Thursday on the main stage. His cover of Paul Simon‘s “Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes” is what greeted me as I awoke in our wonderful campsite. What a lovely, funky way to rise.

Sol Flo

Garry: Guitar and Vocals
Alicia: Guitar and Vocals
Tasha: Stand up Bass, Clarinet, mandolin
David Moo Young: Drums & Percussion

Sol Flo's surprising bassist Tasha Bear

Sol Flo's surprising bassist Tasha Bear

From Ashville, NC, Sol Flo was the first band that made me stop and take notice on Thursday afternoon. Originally an acoustic/folk hip/hip trio, Sol Flo has recently taken on a drummer from Central America named David Moo Young which seems to have rounded out their sound.  This weekend happened to be David’s first music festival.  Gotta love the virgins….

Sol Flo Guitarist Garry

Sol Flo Guitarist Garry

From where I was standing in VIP Camping, they sounded like a young soulful college band with attitude, delivery and some gnarly funky bass. I prefer a bass guitar line for breakfast so I took myself over to the stage to investigate. I was shocked to see a much more mature band.  Siblings Garry and Alicia Bullard provided the positively youthful, soulful vocals and guitar play while Tasha Bear played one mean bass.  She surprised me the most.  With the utmost respect, she kind of reminded me of my mother, only my mother can’t slap a mean bass like Tasha Bear can!

Family Tree:  This rock group reminded me of Guster. Their songs were catchy and fun.

The Judy Chops sisters...

The Judy Chops sisters...

The Judy Chops

Molly Murphy – Vocals, Guitar, Kazoo,
Sally Murphy – Vocals, Tenor Guitar, Kazoo
Jess Bergh – Percussion, Vocals, Guitar
The Reverend Bill Howard – Vocals, Electric Guitar
Terry Newman/ Remy Duguet/ Lorie Lichtenwalner- Bass

Stanton, Virginia’s The Judy Chops was the first group that got me truly excited. Rightly so, as they are talented members from other bands who have come together to purely entertain.  Reminiscent of Django Reinhardt styling one moment and bluegrass hip hop another, The Judy Chops have a refreshing sound and fun concept.  They mash songs together or rather “chop” them up and piece them back together to create an exciting musical experience.

In their song “Sex Monster,” I caught at least 15 songs beginning with Bloodhound Gang‘s “Discovery Channel” to Lady Gaga‘s “Bad Romance” to the Talking Heads‘ “Psycho Killer”. Then there was a mix of a Michael Franti‘s “Ganja Babe”, Keller William‘s “Boob Job” and a David  Pollard song.  After that insanity, they went into a swing-y Ella Fitzgerald tune. It was all over the map.

I gotta say off the top of my head The Judy Chops and Crucial Element were my new favorite find!! ~ Aslan Deacon

Their set was fun, danceable and full of chopped up pop tunes that had the thin crowd smiling ear to ear. As their set progressed, the crowd grew as the music called to them.  It’s been a long time since something fun and fresh like this has been put in front of me musically.  Their 3-part harmony was smooth amongst the chaos. This band would be killer to hire for a wedding and I mean that in the most positive way! So much fun!

Here is the Sex Monster video.  At the very end of the video Jess announces the name of the song and you can hear me scream my response 🙂 I was energized by Sex Monsters.

Crucial Elements

Joshua Crenshaw – Keyboards
Billy Austin – Lead guitar/vocals
Gregory Haynes – Guitar/vocals
Chuckie Luv – Drums/vocals
Jason Jarrell – Bass
ButtaFly Vazquez – Lead and backing vocals

Crucial Elements: Stage Shot

Crucial Elements: Stage Shot

Crucial Elements:

Crucial Elements: Greg Haynes

Crucial Elements singer ButtaFly

Crucial Elements singer ButtaFly

A member of my camp made friends with the keyboardist’s girlfriend and so we decided to check out this Richmond, Virginia band first thing Saturday morning on the Mustache Stage.  Bringing the best Roots and Reggae vibe heard over the weekend, Crucial Element is made up of five musicians who truly get into their music and message as they sing three and four part harmonies with that Reggae fire.

Their female vocalist, ButtaFly Vazquez, was phenomenal!  It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to recognize true talent.  She was absolutely born to sing. Like many bands at Camp Barefoot, Crucial Element handed out CDs, in this instance, Grow, Crucial Element‘s latest CD showing off the newest line-up of the group.

Kings of Belmont

Kings of Belmont

Kings of Belmont

Ross van Brocklin – Vocals, guitar
Max Collins – Vocals, guitar
Aaron Ahlbrandt -Vocals, keys
Chris Coleman – Bass
Sam Cushman – Drums

Kings of Belmont's Drummer

Kings of Belmont's Sam Cushman

I have to be honest with you friends. I have one live recording from this well-known Charlottesville, Virginia band on my computer that was given to me by someone whose musical opinion I value greatly. I attempted three individual times to listen to the show and each time I was turned off by various things.  I just wasn’t connecting with them in the right way.

I have heard such great things so perhaps I had to hear them live? Who knows, but it is specifically for that reason that I made myself go to their set and watch it in its entirety 11pm Thursday night on the Mustache stage. And guess what….I loved them!

They are anything but predictable and that is a great quality to have in a group. High-energy raging rock with some jamming musicality.  This is a great thing considering that the bassist on stage was making his debut with the band. With a solid sound, they bring a friendly feeling that one might vibe on from a house band.

I loved how super appreciative they were. They kept saying, “Thank you! We appreciate you guys coming up here. We know we are up against some pretty heavy hitters [Perpetual Groove]. Not only that, we are up THE HILL!!” ~ Hillary Dovel

Personally, I was stoked that this band was playing because I have been losing my grip on Perpetual Groove since last year.  The highlight of The Belmont set for me was when they broke out with a stellar cover of Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick In The Wall”. Wookies slowly emerged from the mist in every direction. It was killer. Their energy was unmatched that night and I was so happy that the option against Perpetual Groove was Kings of Belmont.

Click HERE for Kings of Belmont Live @ Camp Barefoot 5

The Mantras

Keith Allen – Guitar/Vocals
Marcus Horth – Guitar/Vocals
Justin Loew – Drums
Justin W. Powell – Keyboards/Vocals
Brian Tyndall – Bass/Vocals
Brent Vaughn – Percussion/Vocals
CAMP BAREFOOT MVP’s BABY!!! Only in backwoods West Virginia can you allow a psychedelic rock band to play till 6:45 in the MORNING!!! That is how Camp Barefoot closed out its wonderful four day hippie fest!  The Mantras are SO much fun!

A mantra is a sound, syllable, word, or group of words that is considered capable of “creating transformation ~ Thanks WikiPedia

The Mantra's Keith Allen

The Mantra's Keith Allen

Hailing from Greensboro, North Carolina, The Mantras, led by guitarist and vocalist Keith Allen, had two sets over the weekend.  Their high-energy first set was during the day, under the sun.  I don’t own any Mantra Cds and so I had forgotten about the sound of Keith Allen’s voice. It reminds me of Les Claypool in the way that he has an unusual inflection in all the right, quirky ways. Les Claypool, however, uses a microphone to create his sound.  Keith Allen just brings it naturally. His voice may be an “acquired taste” as I heard one fan put it but their sold out shows in their home state prove that it’s a taste that everyone enjoys.

There is also something to be said about a band who takes pride in their light show.  I ADORE a good light show. A good lighting director (like Chris Kuroda or  Jeff Waful) knows how light triggers our emotions and stimulates parts of our brains.  Healing Bear is the name of The Mantra’s light director and he brings that extra layer that every late night show needs.  I heard that he was asked by other bands to help them out as well. Gotta love the family sharing vibe.

I saw Keith backstage the last night of the festival and asked him if he was ready to close this mother down. He said he felt great and had made sure to get a good night sleep because he was planning on bringing the fire.  That he did.

The Mantra's Justin Powell

The Mantra's Justin Powell

Their late night set BEGAN at 4:35am.  Amongst their signature, fun-named songs like the bass-thumping “Magillicuddy” and “Metrognome,” there was a killer cover of The Grateful Dead’s “Terrapin Station.”  I was in Vendor Row when this song was being played and the notes trickled down the hill into my ears. I noticed multiple hippies around me spinning. It was a joyful site to behold. The Mantras also threw down a solid cover of London’s progressive rock band King Crimson‘s “Thela Hun Ginjeet.”  An enthusiastic set to say the least, bassist Brian Tyndall is always fun to watch as he throws around his black hair and it was a pleasure to see the group with their new keyboardist, Justin Powell who filled the slot nicely.

The Mantras are huge in their region and there is no questions as to why. I could go on and on about thier set however The Mantras are one of the few bands who got recorded so I will let you take a listen and decide for yourself! Enjoy!

Click HERE for The Mantras Live @ Camp Barefoot Late Night Set

Set List: Sweaty Monster Pt. 1, Cairo, The Prelude, Ska Face, Man You Rawk!, Dr. Ssanasinod, Thela Hun Ginjeet, Jabberwocky, Five Roads, Terrapin Station, Magillicuddy, Metrognome.

Showing that Mantra Love!

Showing that Mantra Love!

Former Champions

Walton – Guitars/Vocals
Wolf – Keys/Vocals
Ashby – Basses/Vocals
Bakes – Drums
Hyman – Sound
DJ Possum – Lighting Design

Former Champions was a pleasant find. Or perhaps it found me. My best friend from high school is best friends with the drummer’s wife.  Did ya get all that? Needless to say, I had to come give some love to this set and give it more than my usual ADHD infused attention.

This live electronic rock band from Richmond, Virginia took me a few songs to get into but once I got into their groove, I was into them fully.  Getting down in the front row and dancing up the sides. Describing themselves as “a modern, high-energy, musical ensemble focused on expressing ideas and emotions through sound and words,” they did just that. They played well-composed songs with on the spot improvisation, which is fine. That is what all jam bands strive to do. However, this bands goal is to influence and inspire the human spirit with their music and I felt it, I really did. I could tell because of the smile on my face, my happy ears and my grooving booty.

Their jamming and dark Nine Inch Nails’ cover of “Closer” was a highlight of this set for me. I am going to say, one of my top five songs of the weekend, hands down. I remember looking around thinking how happy I was to be dancing around all my best girlfriends and I know the music helped fuel my happiness in that moment.  The song took on so many meaning in that moment.  All bands seek to connect with something and Former Champion’s music reaches out and gets into you.  That is their goal and they succeed in that goal.

Roberts, Walter and Deitch

Robert Walter – Hammond B3 Organ
Eddie Roberts – Guitar
Adam Deitch – Drums

Eddie Roberts playing around with a stuffed weasel that was thrown on stage

Eddie Roberts playing around with a stuffed weasel that was thrown on stage

Holy Hell!!! POWER TRIO OF THE YEAR! Barefoot, like most musical events, is subject to a Radius Clause. Due to nature of the clause, bands can not play inside a certain mileage of a previously booked show so as not to draw audiences away from bigger venues. The contract stipulation is an lucky inconvenience for Barefoot due to the Masontown, West Virginia’s All Good Music Festival and Floyd, Virginia’s FloydFest flanking Barefoot’s dates and location.

Personally, I love these contractual clauses for a very specific reason.  Do you have any idea how many super groups have been created due to this clause.  I could go on for hours but I will just speak on the super group that got plugged this year for Barefoot.

Robert Walters, raging the Hammond....OMG!

Robert Walters, raging the Hammond....OMG!

Eddie Roberts putting on some psychedelic glasses after someone threw them on stage

Eddie Roberts putting on some psychedelic glasses after someone threw them on stage

First, you got the heavy, soulfully jazzy Hammond B3 organist Robert Walter from Robert Walter’s 20th Congress and The Greyboy Allstars. He is one of my top three favorite organists in our Jam scene. For those of you who were there, I am sure you enjoyed his facial expressions as his music flowed from his body. He is HEAVY with his playing teasing rock, jazz, soul, funk and multiple effects creating sounds only his fingers can find.

Next, you have New Yorker Adam Deitch who was simply born to drum.  Keeping bands such as Pretty Lights, Lettuce, Dr. Klaw and BreakSciene on beat, Detich is one of the brightest stars in the drumming community and my homie from NYC. This fierce set reminded me how much I enjoy his talent.

The music and the people made the festival! One of the best parts about Camp Barefoot is every year I feel like something happens (collaboration, sit-in, etc) that is a one of a kind event most likely to never happen again. Perfect example is Walter, Roberts, and Deitch all playing together and THEN Karl Denson running on stage like a kid in a candy store to join in. ~ Cullen Seward

...I liked that it wasn’t a mile walk from main stage to my spot. I left R,W & D to pee and get a beer and was back in like 5 mins! ~ Jeanelle Myers

Finally, you have masterful guitarist Eddie Roberts from The New Mastersounds out of Leeds, England.  His energy and styling is fresh, free and his sense of humor is on point. As a dense Wookie in the  audience threw a bottle on stage to which Roberts exclaimed, “If you are going to throw bottles, please make sure they are full.”  During another point in the performance, both Deitch and Roberts took turns having fun with a campers’ stuffed weasel named “Terrance” that made its way on stage and eventually tied to Robert’s mic by his stuffed tail.

Karl Denson came out to join the party for a song!

Karl Denson came out to join the party for a song!

This superb power trio had only performed together three times before gracing the main stage on the last night of Barefoot.  I was told earlier that they had chosen a collection of rare B-side songs to perform but they had so much fun on stage that they only got through a few. They ended up playing two of Deitch’s songs and a two of Water’s songs.  “Flood in Franklin Park” is a Grant Green song which Robert Walter’s made his own.  “A-1 Sauce” was a song that I didn’t recognize but Deitch killed it.  The entire set was the highlight of the whole weekend. I see massive amounts of live music and it’s not always that I get to see a new group in its earliest creation! You never would have guessed they had only played together three times prior to Barefoot.  The set was pure gold.

Kyle Hollingsworth getting DOWN!!!

Kyle Hollingsworth getting DOWN!!!

Kyle Hollingsworth’s Talking Heads Set

Kyle Hllinsgworth – Keys
Garrett Sayers – Bass
Dave Watts – drums

Kyle Hollingsworth (String Cheese Incident) is one of my favorite keyboardists after Robert Walters and this set was magnificent.  You also can’t go wrong with one of the best rhythm sections in America backing you up with Garret Sayers on bass and Dave Watts on drums. YOWZA! The Kyle Hollingsworth Band also played a regular set of their wonderful music however it was this Talking Heads set that left the lasting impression.

The energy from this set was unmatched as famous songs like “Psycho Killer” and “Crosseyed and Painless” made their way through the fields of dancing and singing campers. I weaved in and out of the crowd for this set and it was interesting to see the age differences recognize and not recognize the songs. Just a superb dance party. In those moments, I was so happy that Kyle was bringing this music to the ears of these musical newbies I found in the audience.  This is the one set that I wanted to find the most as a download. I am hoping it turns up.

John Staten - THE MACHINE!

John Staten - THE MACHINE!

Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe

Karl Denson – Saxaphone
Chris Littlefield – Trumpet
DJ Williams – Guitar
David Veith – Keyboards
John Staten – Drums
Chris Stillwell – Bass

Karl Denson gets down for his set!

Karl Denson gets down for his set!

A saxophone led band, I mean who doesn’t love that? It’s unique and Karl Denson is the hardest working man in the Jam community. Just go follow him around at Jazz Fest in New Orleans and you tell me different. Setting the bar in funk, Karl Denson came on after Roberts, Walters, and Deitch to complete the funky filled night of smiles and dancing.  Karl Denson can make you smile before even playing a note. He is just walking charisma.

DJ Williams (DJ Williams Projekt) has been asked to play in place of Brian Jordan while Brian takes on new musical challenges. I was so pleased to see DJ Williams being picked for this slot. He filled Brian’s shoes wonderfully and brought his own style of Virginia funk to the position. Drummer John Staten is SICK!!  I mean, what can I keep saying about him? He is simply amazing and stands so grand behind his rig.

If anyone befriended a space ghost or a man with big’ol fake boobies on his chest this weekend, please do get in touch!!! ~ Dave Fullerton

Thank You Camp Barefoot

Thank you, thank you, and thank you!!!  As a music lover, a music festival junkie and a critic, I can’t give enough love to this festival.  A festival that is surrounded by as much love and positivity as is put into it.  From the grassroots foundation to the focus on developing bands in the region’s scene, Barefoot is a Diamond in the Rough as far as music, environment and experience goes.  There just isn’t a better place to spend your weekend.  When the dates for next year’s Barefoot surface, you can be sure that I will be pressuring all my people to attend. I hope that this tiny (wink) review will stimulate you to do the same.

Thanks again Camp Barefoot for creating one of the best experiences of the entire summer. ~ August Joseph Heisler IV

Below is a list of media that I collected while putting together this article. Please give these groups a listen.  They are all spirited, high energy, wonderful regional groups from Virginia, North Carolina and Maryland and all deserve your attention. Thank you to everyone who tapes, records and captures the memories of these events.

Tons of live video of CB5


Big Something

Big Something: “A Simple Vision” & “Josh’s Disco” (Pro Audio)


Brothers Past

Brothers Past Live at Camp Barefoot on 2011-08-20 (August 20, 2011)

* I heard from a number of people that this was their favorite set of the weekend


DJ Williams Projekt

DJ Williams Projekt: “This World” live (Pro Audio)

DJ Williams Projekt: “Cake” live 8/19/11 (Pro Audio)


Down Home Country Band

Downtown County Band | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/18/2011 | 1 of 3

Downtown County Band | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/18/2011 | 2 of 3

Downtown County Band | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/18/2011 | 3 of 3

Future Rock

Future Rock | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/17/2011 | 1 of 6

Future Rock | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/17/2011 | 2 of 6

Future Rock | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/17/2011 | 3 of 6

Future Rock | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/17/2011 | 4 of 6

Future Rock | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/17/2011 | 5 of 6

Future Rock | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/17/2011 | 6 of 6


Jesse Chong Band

Jesse Chong Band: live@ Camp Barefoot (Pro Audio)


Kyle Hollingsworth


The New Deal

Camp Barefoot 2011 The New Deal I

Camp Barefoot 2011 The New Deal II



Papadosio – Method of Control – Live at Camp Barefoot 5

Papadosio – Curve – Live at Camp Barefoot 5

Papadosio – Find Your Cloud – Live at Camp Barefoot 5

Papadosio – Cue – Live at Camp Barefoot 5

Papadosio – Advocate of Change – Live at Camp Barefoot 5

Papadosio: “Direction” & “All I Knew” live (Pro Audio)

Papadosio: “Frequence” live 8/19/11 (Pro Audio)


People’s Blues of Richmond

Peoples Blues of Richmond | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 1 of 11

Peoples Blues of Richmond | “Nihilist Blues” | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 2 of 11

Peoples Blues of Richmond | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 4 of 11

Peoples Blues of Richmond | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 5 of 11

Peoples Blues of Richmond | “Motherfucker” | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 6 of 11

Peoples Blues of Richmond | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 7 of 11

Peoples Blues of Richmond | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 8 of 11

Peoples Blues of Richmond | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 9 of 11

Peoples Blues of Richmond | “Go Home” | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 10 of 11

Peoples Blues of Richmond | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 11 of 11


Pimps of Joytime

The Pimps of Joytime | “My Gold” | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 1 of 4

The Pimps of Joytime | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 2 of 4

The Pimps of Joytime | “Janxta Funk” | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 3 of 4

The Pimps of Joytime | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/19/2011 | 4 of 4


Perpetual Groove

Perpetual Groove: “Robot Waltz” live 8/18/11 (Pro Audio)

Perpetual Groove: “At the Screen” live 8/18/11 (Pro Audio)



Segway | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/17/2011 | 1 of 3

Segway | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/17/2011 | 2 of 3

Segway | Camp Barefoot 5 | 8/17/2011 | 3 of 3

Segway showing us some heat during their Saturday late night set.


Zach Deputy

Set I: Savannah, Butter You Up, Troubles, Working With, Shark Fin, Let It Out, Scrambled Eggs

Encore: Twisty Twisty & Headed Home



Zoogma at Camp Barefoot – M-10

Zoogma Camp Barefoot – New Luxury


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Return To Forever IV Press Photo

Return To Forever IV Press Photo

Documenting shows like these is what influenced me to start my site.  I was sick of missing performances, looking them up and finding three paragraphs about epic moments in musical history taking place in my city.  Three paragraphs with no set list, no body behind the paragraphs, no feeling behind the words. When a show of such epic proportions such as Return To Forever comes around YOU – DO – NOT – MISS – IT.  And if you do, that is where I come in.

Return To Forever IV

Return To Forever IV

I have been asked continually over the past month WHO is this group? WHY are they so important? WHY are you missing the Royal Family Affair for them? WHY aren’t you going on Phish tour with your man? WHY WHY WHY?

Forget answering questions for a minute and just imagine the pain you get when someone you know explains that they don’t know who Jerry Garcia is.  The pain you feel when they say they have no idea who Miles Davis is or who the Red Hot Chilli Peppers are.  Can you feel that pain?  Right inside your chest, around your heart?  Inevitably, inside your head you are now asking the questions.  How can these people not know?  How can they not understand?  How can they not have heard?

Return To Forever is the answer to all these questions. A power house of musicians, a super group of instrumentalists, a musical institution.  Return To Forever helped define a musical genre and has only graced the planet as a unit for a total of five times since 1977. Epic.

You are going to need a little background first.

The Beacon Theater marquis

The Beacon Theater marquis

What is Jazz Fusion?

In the late 1960’s, jazz musicians began blurring the lines of their traditional training.  Allmusic Guide states that “until around 1967, the worlds of jazz and rock were nearly completely separate”.  However, based on the circumstantial situation of young jazz musicians being forced to play electronic equipment, jazz began it’s evolution into a new musical genre called Jazz Fusion or Jazz Rock.  Quite simply, Jazz Fusion is jazz that is strongly influenced by other styles of music.

Here’s a more in depth definition which shows you why this music is influential to the Jam Band / Funk scene:

Jazz fusion is a musical fusion genre that developed from mixing funk and R&B rhythms and the amplification and electronic effects of rock, complex time signatures derived from non-Western music and extended, typically instrumental compositions with a jazz approach to lengthy group improvisations, often using wind and brass and displaying a high level of instrumental technique.

~ Thank you Wikipedia ~

Peter Max presented this portrait to Corea before the 1st night!

Peter Max presented this portrait to Corea before the 1st night!

Jazz Fusion has deep roots in the Jam Band scene.  The connection is crucial and distinct.  While Jazz Fusion was being created and acknowledged in the 1970s, rock artists such as Cream, Grateful Dead and The Jimi Hendrix Experience were getting a lot of publicity and fame for their lengthy improvisations based on blues, rock, psychedelia and some jazz. These rock artists had an impact on Miles Davis, the king of jazz development, who generated a ton of media attention to this new jazz-rock genre with his ground-breaking 1970 album release Bitches Brew.  From there the genre grew and exploded into numerous different directions eventually leading to the World Fusion movement of the 90’s.

Allmusic lists the following jazz-rock categories:

  • Singer-songwriter jazz-rock (Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, and Tim Buckley)
  • Jam- and improvisation-oriented rock groups (Traffic, Santana, Cream)
  • Jazz-flavored R&B or pop songs with less improvisation or instrumental virtuosity (Blood, Sweat & Tears, Chicago, Steely Dan)
  • Groups with “quirky, challenging, unpredictable compositions” (Frank Zappa, the Soft Machine)

Four major groups led the world in popular Jazz Fusion in the 1970s:

  1. Weather Report
  2. The Mahavishnu Orchestra
  3. Herbie Hancock’s HeadHunters
  4. Chick Corea’s Return To Forever

I will let you do your own research on the first three, which I strongly encourage you to do, and get down to the nitty gritty.

The Creation of Return To Forever

Famed artist and designer of RTF Tour teeshirt, Peter Max

Famed artist and designer of RTF Tour teeshirt, Peter Max

After playing on Miles Davis’s ground-breaking jazz-fusion album Bitches Brew, pianist and composer Chick Corea was in a prime position to chase this growing style of music and experiment with it’s development. He formed a number of avant-garde jazz bands before finally forming Return To Forever in 1972.

There have only been four incarnations of Return To Forever in the past 40 years.  This is a fact that makes this reunion so EXTREMELY important.

  • 1972-1973: First group created and focused mainly on Latin-inspired music to include Flora Purim (vocals), her husband Airto Moreira (drums and percussion), Corea’s longtime musical co-worker Joe Farrell (saxophone and flute), and the young Stanley Clarke on bass.
  • 1973-1976:  Farrell, Purim and Moreira leave the group to form their own band.  Bill Connors (guitarist ), Steve Gadd (drummer) and  Mingo Lewis (percussionist) were added. Stanley Clarke is still the bassist. A replacement on vocals was not hired and all the songs were now instrumentals. Shortly before 1975, Lenny White would take over for Gadd and Lewis due to touring and career conflicts. As well, 19 year old prodigy Al Di Meola would step in to cement himself as guitarist.  The group had finally taken shape having now completely changed into the jazz-rock style and found themselves at the on the US pop album charts.
  • 1977: Corea shocked Clarke by deciding to change the lineup of the group and to not include either White or Di Meola.  The final incarnation of Return to Forever featured a four piece horn section and Corea’s wife Gayle singing vocals. After the last studio album, Musicmagic, Chick Corea officially disbanded the group and so began the feuds within the group.

Musical Gossip: It is believed to be an issue over Scientology that caused the rift between Clarke, Corea and the other musicians.

  • 1983: Return To Forever regroups for a short tour but no albums are recorded.
  • 2008 Reunion: The classic Return to Forever line-up of Corea, Clarke, White, and Di Meola reunited for a tour of the United States. No new music is recorded.
  • 2011 Reunion: A new, amazing line-up is created for a US tour.  The rift between Al Di Meola and Chick Corea ensures Di Meola’s absence in the line-up. Mahavishnu Orchestra alum and violin virtuoso Jean-Luc Ponty and guitarist Frank Gambale have taken his spot while Lenny White and Stanley Clarke were welcomed back into the line-up.

Now here we are three days after the show and I can’t stop typing my heart out.  A friend of mine happens to be good friends with Lenny White. Because of this friendship, I was granted access to the entire band and two nights of musical creativity that has cemented itself as one of my top 10 Most Exciting Musical Adventures ever.

Let the show begin…

My wonderful welcome package! Shirt and Hat in the bag!

My wonderful welcome package! Shirt and Hat in the bag!

Return To Forever IV – The Return

Chick Corea – Keys
Stanley Clarke – Bass
Lenny White – Drums
Frank Gambale ~ Guitar
Jean-Luc Ponty ~ Violin

I entered the Beacon Theater all alone.  My man was out west touring with Phish and the rest of my musical crew were either at The Royal Family Affair in Vermont or at The Brooklyn Bowl seeing Bustle in Your Hedge Grow for a nice cheap price.  All were musical options that I wish I could have been a part of.  However, no matter how much I thought of checking out of NYC for the weekend there was no way I was missing Return to Forever, not to mention the amazing bonus opener,  Zappa Plays Zappa performing only 40 blocks away from my apartment for two nights.  This was too much of a treat to resist.

So, there are some of the answers to the “WHY?” questions.   I adore my Royal Family and I love Phish tour but those groups are mere peasants in music compared to the kings I got to see on stage.

Corea, Ponty and Clarke

Corea, Ponty and Clarke

Upon entering the Beacon both nights I went to the box office and picked up my comped ticket and my Back Stage pass from the generous Lenny White! I took to my Row “E” Orchestra seat and just took in the energy around me.  Again, I was alone, so in my excitement I engaged the MULTIPLE men around me.  Why men, because there were no women, hardly anywhere. It was quite nice.  One obvious perk became clear when I used the restroom.  The line for the men’s room was a mile long while I literally walked right in and out of the stall within a span of 2 minutes. Absolutely no line.

In a packed hall, 5% of the audience might have been women. Needless to say, I got some strange looks and eventually, I had men of all ages coming up to me asking me why I was there.  I couldn’t believe their blatant gender discrimination but I understood why some people just couldn’t resist asking why a young (30 years young is young to this crew) pretty female was there all alone to see these old man bands.  I proudly explained I was there mainly for Return To Forever but I was equally excited for the Zappa Plays Zappa performance having seen them multiple times before and knowing that Dweezil and his friends would shred our faces.

Zappa Plays Zappa

Zappa Plays Zappa

Zappa Plays Zappa Opens

Zappa Plays Zappa opened up both nights for Return To Forever. Led by the jazz/rock legend’s son, Dweezil Zappa, on guitar, Zappa Plays Zappa continues to breath life into the work of the late Frank Zappa. Joining Dweezil is a rotating cast of musicians, some of who played with Frank before his passing.

Zappa Plays Zappa

Zappa Plays Zappa

Both nights the set list was the same with a few variations in delivery:

  • “Po-jama People” ~
  • “Fifty Fifty” ~ Opening the first night with this song, Jean-Luc Ponty came out the second night and played this song with the band.  It was a wonderful thing to behold as Jean-Luc was privileged enough to play with Frank Zappa when Dweezil Zappa was only 4 years old.
  • “St. Alphonzo’s Pancake Breakfast”

  • “”Don’t You Ever Wash That Thing” ~ The first night, Ben Thomas (vocals) dropped the mic during the climax of the song and picked it up at such a time that the lyrics exploded and the entire band laughed along with the audience.
  • “What’s the Ugliest Part of Your Body?” ~ A funny tune with Doo-Whoop styling.
  • “Big Swifty” ~ Released the band a little more and ended the set.

Dweezil Zappa raging his strings...

Dweezil Zappa raging his strings...

Return To Forever couldn’t have picked a better band to open for them.  They couldn’t find a better fit to open our sense to jazz fusion and prepare us for the experience we were about to be delivered both nights.

The beauty behind anything involving Frank Zappa, aside from the amazing shredding compositions he created, is the fan base.  THEY ARE DIE HARDS!  Very often, people pass up the opening band. However, at the 8pm start the venue was moderately packed with die hard fans of Zappa. Lucky for me, I was in the Return To Forever friend’s and family section so most of the people were in the back hanging with the band and I had rows of seats open in front of me.  I loved this.

Thanks to Dweezil and Crew for the wonderful warm up!

Thanks to Dweezil and Crew for the wonderful warm up!

The Zappa fans truly energized the audience.  After every song there was a standing ovation. During every song there was someone who was screaming at the stage.  Dweezil Zappa ripped the guitar open numerous times and the band followed Frank’s coockiness to deliver a stunning 35 minute opener.

RTF IV entering the stage!

RTF IV entering the stage!

Return To Forever Returns

The Beacon filled up during the course of the Zappa Plays Zappa Set but it wasn’t until the lights went down for the men of the hour that all the seats around me filled up.  Both nights, just like Zappa Plays Zappa, were similar but with a few variations in delivery.

Lawrence Fishburne Introduces RTFiV

Lawrence Fishburne Introduces RTFiV

The first night, Return To Forever members simply came on stage without any introduction. We were in a standing ovation from the start.   These gods of fusion stood at the edge of the stage, in a line, bowed, wave and blew kisses. The audience ate it up and it wasn’t until they began playing their instruments that the audience quieted. From this point, we couldn’t miss a note. The second night, Lawrence Fishborne, looking pleasantly plumper then I have ever seen him, came out to introduce the super group. Sadly, I only saw the end of this introduction because I was coming back from the restroom.

Laurence Fishburne backstage with RTF

Laurence Fishburne backstage with RTF

The audience the first night was electric.  As the music played, I recognized that I had never heard The Beacon more quiet then I was experiencing right then. Every single pair of eyes was fixated on the stage.  Every single person’s interest was on that stage.  Why??  Because that is how utterly amazing and respected these men are as musicians.

And then the music began….

SET LIST: Both Nights

Medieval Overture
After the Cosmic Rain
Romantic Warrior
Encore: Captain Senor Mouse
Encore: School days

Upon taking to their instruments, they immediately flew into “Medieval Overture”.  The first song off their sixth album, Corea immediately led the stage in the songs beautiful melody.  After the gorgeous opening, Stanley Clarke’s turn at the microphone.  He spoke of how happy he was to finally hook up with Corea in NYC all those years ago.  He spoke to the different versions of the band and how happy he was.  But most importantly, he wanted to thank US.  He wanted to thank his audience, his avid followers, for supporting this venture and this group for 40 years.

We got some funky flare with “Sorceress” as Corea and Ponty lead the song through Lenny’s chunky funky drumming. Corea continually reared his melodic imagination and rhythmic energy.  It was then time for Chick Corea to pick up the microphone.  He spent some time speaking to his beloved audience.

“The members of this band are from all around the United States. Ponty is from Texas, Corea jokes.  Laughter erupts. “But this [NYC] is our musical home. Where were you born Lenny?”  Laughter erupts again.  “‘RIGHT HERE,” screams Lenny White!

The whole group raging it proper!!

The whole group raging it proper!!

Corea introduced each member of the band.  When it came time to introduce Jean-Luc, there was a standing ovation.  I have honestly never experienced so many standing ovations in one night.  Chick described Ponty as the guy who has inspired every single person on the planet in his instrument.  And then, I experienced what could possibly be one of the longest standing ovations I have ever witnessed and it was so well deserved. The emotions in me swelled for Ponty.  At that point, I wish I had more of my musical friends around me, experiencing this magic with me.  Just the sheer respect being shown to these musicians was special enough.

And into Jean-Luc Ponty’s “Renaissance” they went, paying homage to the master that had joined this version of the group. Ponty, 69, added class and extra lyricism to the mix. One of the beautiful things about these two nights is that the group recognized each other fully.  There was a little portion of the show dedicated to the showcasing of each artists. The first few songs were Corea’s and White’s, next Ponty, then Stanley and then back to Corea.  It was wonderful.

“Since all the guys in the band are such good composers, I wanted to have everyone’s compositions add to the new RTF IV vibe.  So we all agreed: let’s open it up – which is the way we like it, and I think the way the fans like it too.” ~ Chick Corea stated in a press release.

Clarke takes to the mic to speak of his love for us all!

Clarke takes to the mic to speak of his love for us all!

Ponty took the mic next.  Walking to the front of the stage, he spoke in length about playing with Frank Zappa, how Dweezil was only 5 years old at the time and how very proud he is of Dweezil for continuing his father’s legacy in music.  There was another round of applause for Zappa Plays Zappa.  Then Jean-Luc spoke of three bands that defined the jazz fusion Genre.  I listed them earlier in the article.  With the exception of HeadHunters, Ponty has had the distinct pleasure of playing in all three groups and thanked us all for allowing him to play for us. He then introduces Stanley Clarke and that is when things got compeltely show-boating amazing.

Stanley showcasing his awesomeness!

Stanley showcasing his awesomeness!

Stanley Clarke’s “After The Cosmic Rain,” a gospel-infused song, brought Stanley Clarke to the forefront and he thumped and plucked the living hell out of the strings.  Imposing a flamenco-style bass virtuosity upon us, he was absolutely on fire while he literally shredded his electric bass. Getting up in Lenny White’s face, I can’t believe he didn’t break multiple strings with the strength of his playing.  “Day Ride” followed and Stanley continued to be the focus on the stage. Out of the whole group, he was making his presence known in a vivid way.

Stanley Clarke is THE MAN!!!

Stanley Clarke is THE MAN!!!

“Romantic Warrior” showcased Gambale and Clarke, who captivated the audience. Gambale, an Australian, did not labor in the shadow of Di Meola. If anything, he’s a more flowing, tasteful, melodic player and he shone during the samba-like stretch of “Romantic Warrior”. Di Meola fans who disagree should note that Corea introduced Gambale as his “favorite guitarist.” I agree, his melody is just more friendly.

Lenny White rages the stage!

Lenny White rages the stage!

They ended the set with Corea’s much-loved song “Spain”. However, the group did not play the stuffing out of it. Instead, there were short, single-chorus solos from Ponty, Gambale and Corea before White bashed out a solo. The tune’s real treat came when Corea conducted a duet of sorts with his fans, exhorting it to sing back his short, snappy melodies, which they did.  This was actually quite hilarious as Corea hit higher on the scales and faster in rhythm.

Frank Gambale acknowledging his praise!

Frank Gambale acknowledging his praise!

At the end of the set, the musicians came to the end of the stage to a roaring applause and a standing ovation. I was so wrapped up in the fact that it was over that I forgot that there would be an encore and got very sad yet invigorated about what I had just witnessed.

After only a few seconds of clapping, the super group came out to end the night with Clarke’s fun clap-along jam tune “School Days”. Gambale is absolutely wonderful and he displayed a sweep-picking like no one I have ever seen.  Ponty unleashed flurries of notes before sparring and holding his own with Clarke, proving once more that they belong in the Return To Forever family.

The Meet and Greet

Clarke, myself and White

Clarke, myself and White

Gamble and TinyRager!

Gamble and TinyRager!

After the show, I met my friend by the backstage door and was let into the private meet and greet backstage.  This wasn’t the Meet and Greet that VIP paid a couple hundred bucks for…nope.  This was a PRE-PRIVATE Meet and Greet.

It was there that myself and 20 other people got up close and personal with these amazing musicians. Again, I was asked how I had come to fall for this style of music. It blew their minds as the room was full of die hard male fans and their clueless wives.  I was lost with my jaw on the ground, I was shocked, I was speechless and couldn’t quite form words at times but I was the happiest I had ever been meeting a group.

I watched the grown men around me shaking and just melting in front of their idols in music. Ponty was quite and seemed shy but I was able to get a smile out of him as we spoke of his time with Frank Zappa and Weather Report.

OMG!  Jean-Luc Ponty and TinyRager

OMG! Jean-Luc Ponty and TinyRager

Chick Corea and TinyRager

Chick Corea and TinyRager

Frank and I connected on our colorful clothing while Chick Corea’s wife and I bonded over the diet that has helped her loose 90 pounds while Chick has lost 70.  The entire shown I had wondered why he looked so frail.

Stanley and I spoke about the various experiences I have had with my favorite bass players this year and how meeting him was just the icing on the cake.  Having danced on stage with Larry Graham and getting a giant hug from Bootsy Collins in Switzerland, having spent a few minutes enjoying Marcus Miller and now this.  The meetings of my bass heroes would be complete if only Les Claypool would have dinner with me!

Views from the Meet and Greet room!!!

Views from the Meet and Greet room!!!

**  Editor’s Note:  Please excuse the poor quality of the pictures. I never saw a single professional camera in the venue either night. As well, Chick Corea’s professional photographer even had his finger shaken at him when trying to sneak a few pictures. The Beacon is crazy about it so I was forced to use my Droid phone.

Also, I’d like to specially thank Andy Kahan for giving me the opportunity to experience this epic adventure and allow me to help bridge the gap in music.

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August 2011 Music Calendar

Calendar updated daily!

Monday, August 1, 2011

  • ($8) Sonya Kitchell @ Union Hall
  • ($8) Jim Campilongo @ The Living Room
  • ($25) Mingus Orchestra @ The Jazz Standard
  • ($30-$40) Terence Blanchard Quintet @ Birdland NY
  • ($35) Lykke Li @ Central Park Summerstage

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

  • (Free) Dred Scott Trio @ Rockwood Music Hall
  • (Free) The Wood Brothers – 3rd Annual Hudson Square Music & Wine Festival @ City Winery
  • (Free) AKUDAMA @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($20-$35) McCoy Tyner Quintet featuring Ravi Coltrane & Gary Bartz @ The Blue Note (2 Sets)
  • ($30-$40) Terence Blanchard Quintet @ Birdland NY
  • ($42.50) Sufjan Stevens @ Celebrate Brooklyn at the Prospect Bandshell
  • ($47.15) Death Cab for Cutie @ Williamsburg Waterfront
  • ($50-$85) Alison Krauss & Union Station featuring Jerry Douglas @ The Beacon Theater

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

  • (Free) Nutritious feat. Jeremy Joushua and Reverend P @ Bembe
  • (Free) Trey McIntyre Project (Asphalt Orchestra opens at 6:30) @ Lincoln Center’s Damrosch Park
  • ($20) Sister Sparrow & the Dirty Birds @ Rocks Off Cruise (Half Moon)
  • ($20-$35) McCoy Tyner Quintet featuring Ravi Coltrane & Gary Bartz @ The Blue Note (2 Sets)
  • ($25-$30) Fountains of Wayne @ Bowery Ballroom
  • ($30-$40) Terence Blanchard Quintet @ Birdland NY
  • ($35-$42.50) Sufjan Stevens @ Celebrate Brooklyn at the Prospect Park Bandshell
  • ($50-$65) Bebel Gilberto with Marcelo D2 – Summer Residency @ City Winery

Thursday, August 4, 2011

  • (Free) 2011 R&B Festival @ MetroTech
  • ($5-$8) DJ Questlove Presents: Bowl Train
  • ($5-$10) Charlie Hunter Residency @ Sycamore
  • ($13-$16) Filligar / Hollis Brown / The Punch Brothers @ Bowery Ballroom
  • ($20-$35) McCoy Tyner Quintet featuring Ravi Coltrane & Gary Bartz @ The Blue Note (2 Sets)
  • ($30-$40) Terence Blanchard Quintet @ Birdland NY
  • ($40-$60) Joan Osborne & Carter’s Chord – Summer Residency @ City Winery
  • ($45-84) INXS @ Beacon Theater

Friday, August 5, 2011

  • ($8-$10) Apollo Run @ The Rock Shop
  • ($20-$35) Meshell Ndegeocello presents A Night of Gil Scott-Heron Covers @ The Blute Note (2 sets)
  • ($22-$30) Fountains of Wayne – Full Band Acoustic Show – with Nicole Atkins @ City Winery
  • ($30-$40) Terence Blanchard Quintet @ Birdland NY

Saturday, August 6, 2011

  • (Free) West African Band @ St. Nicks Pub (12am ~ Harlem)
  • ($5) Langhorne Slim @ The Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($8-$10) DJ List Christee (Kevin Barnes from of Montreal) @ Brooklyn Bowl (late night set)
  • ($12-$18) The Duke & The King – Album Release @ City Winery
  • ($20-$35) Meshell Ndegeocello presents A Night of Gil Scott-Heron Covers @ The Blute Note (2 sets)
  • ($30-$40) Terence Blanchard Quintet @ Birdland NY
Sunday, August 7, 2011
  • (Free) Blitz The Ambassador @ Damrosch Park Bandshell
  • ($5-$10) Q-Tip (DJ Set) @ Brooklyn Bowl

Monday, August 8, 2011

  • ($8) Jim Campilongo @ The Living Room
  • (10-$12) Scrapomatic feat. Mike Mattison and Paul Olsen @ The Blue Note (2 sets)
  • ($25) Mingus Orchestra @ The Jazz Standard
  • ($30-$40) Guster & Jack’s Mannequin @ Central Park Summerstage

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

  • (Free) Dred Scott Trio @ Rockwood Music Hall
  • (Free) “Salute to Hip Hop” feast. Rob Base & FunkMaster Flex @ Marcus Garvey Park
  • (Free) The Wood Brothers – 3rd Annual Hudson Square Music & Wine Festival @ City Winery
  • (Free with entry before 7pm – $7) The Jam Stampede (feat. members of the Zen Tricksters) With Special guest: Kenny Kosek (of the Jerry Garcia Band)@ The Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($20) Maurice Brown Effect @ The Jazz Standard
  • ($45-$55) Bon Iver @ United Palace Theater

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

  • (Free) Nutritious feat. Jesus Pablo @ Bembe
  • (Free) Mark Guiliana @ 55 Bar
  • ($5-$10) The Jason Crosby Band @ LIC Bar
  • ($15) The Louis Armstrong Centennial Band @ Birdland NYC
  • ($20) Maurice Brown Effect @ The Jazz Standard
  • ($20-$23) Chris Robinson Brotherhood @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
  • ($23) Reel Big Fish & Streetlight Manifesto @  Best Buy Theater
  • ($35-$45) Band of Horses @ Hammerstein Ballroom

Thursday, August 11, 2011

  • ($5-$10) Charlie Hunter Residency @ Sycamore
  • ($10-$12) Bustle In Your Hedgerow Feat. Joe Russo, Marco Benevento, Dave Driewitz and Scott Metzger @ The Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($25) Mandrill @ B.B. Kings
  • ($37.50) New Riders of the Purple Sage @ Rockin’ The River Cruise
  • ($40-$60) Joan Osborne – Summer Residency w/ Gina Sicilia @ City Winery
  • ($50) Nas and Damien Marley @ Central Park’s Summerstage

Friday, August 12, 2011

  • Royal Family Ball (Straton, VT)
  • ($10-$12) Bustle In Your Hedgerow Feat. Joe Russo, Marco Benevento, Dave Driewitz and Scott Metzger @ The Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($32.50-$40.15) Sonic Youth @ Williamsburg Waterfront
  • ($50-$130) Return to Forever IV with Zappa Plays Zappa featuring Dweezil @ The Beacon Theater
Saturday, August 13, 2011
  • Royal Family Ball (Straton, VT)
  • (Free) Abigail Washburn @ Lincoln Center
  • (Free) West African Band @ St. Nicks Pub (12am ~ Harlem)
  • ($12) Stockholm Syndrome @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($46-$129) Bassnectar’s Bass Island W/ Bassnectar @ Govenor’s Island
  • ($50-$130) Return to Forever IV with Zappa Plays Zappa featuring Dweezil @ The Beacon Theater

Sunday, August 14, 2011

  • Royal Family Ball (Straton, VT)
  • (Free) “Gospel Explosion” feat. Donald Lawrence & Special Guests, hosted by Hezekia Walker @ Central Park Summerstge
  • (Free) Roots of America Fest with Big Sam’s Funky Nation, Bettye Lavette & The North Mississippi Allstars Duo @ Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts
  • ($40-$75) Slightly Stoopid @ The Beach Governor’s Island
  • ($150-$180) Beyonce @ Roseland Ballroom

Monday, August 15, 2011

  • ($8) Jim Campilongo @ The Living Room
  • ($25) Mingus Orchestra @ The Jazz Standard

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

  • (Free) The Wood Brothers – 3rd Annual Hudson Square Music & Wine Festival @ City Winery
  • ($5-$10) The Jason Crosby Band @ Spike Hill
  • ($20-$35) Tribute to Ray Brown: Christian McBride & Dee Dee Bridgewater @ The Blue Note (2 sets)
  • ($30-$40) The Masters Quartet: Steve Kuhn, Dave Liebman, Steve Swallow & Billy Drummond @ Birdland NY
  • ($150-$180) Beyonce @ Roseland Ballroom

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

  • ($14-$17.50) BoomBox @ Bowery Ballroom
  • ($15) The Louis Armstrong Centennial Band @ Birdland NYC
  • ($20) Turbine @ Aboard The Half Moon (Rocks Off Cruises)
  • ($20-$35) Tribute to Ray Brown: Christian McBride & Dee Dee Bridgewater @ The Blue Note (2 sets)
  • ($50-$65) Bebel Gilberto with Marcelo D2 – Summer Residency @ City Winery

Thursday, August 18, 2011

  • Camp Barefoot (Bartow, West Virginia)
  • (Free) Mark Guiliana @ 55 Bar
  • ($5-$10) Charlie Hunter Residency @ Sycamore
  • ($5-$8) Biz Markie (DJ Set) @ The Brooklyn Bowl (late night set)
  • ($8) New York Funk Exchange @ The Bell House
  • ($12) Wyllys & the NY Hustler Ensemble feat. Jennifer Hartswick & Natalie Cressman of Trey Anastasio Band @ Sullivan Hall
  • ($20) Mickey Hart Band @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($20-$35) Tribute to Ray Brown: Christian McBride & Dee Dee Bridgewater @ The Blue Note (2 sets)
  • ($26) Buckethead @ B.B King
  • ($30-$40) The Masters Quartet: Steve Kuhn, Dave Liebman, Steve Swallow & Billy Drummond @ Birdland NY
  • ($40-$60) Joan Osborne & Carter’s Chord – Summer Residency @ City Winery

Friday, August 19, 2011

  • Camp Barefoot (Bartow, West Virginia)
  • (Free) Mark Guiliana @ The Jazz Gallery
  • (Free Entry before 7pm – $5) Rubblebucket @ Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($20-$35) Tribute to Ray Brown: Christian McBride & Dee Dee Bridgewater @ The Blue Note (2 sets)
  • ($30) Jonathan Coulton @ Rocks Off Cruise
  • ($35) Ginuwine @ B.B. Kings

Saturday, August 20, 2011

  • Camp Barefoot (Bartow, West Virginia)
  • (Free) West African Band @ St. Nicks Pub (12am ~ Harlem)
  • ($15-$18.50) Perpetual Groove @ Bowery Ballroom
  • ($20-$35) Tribute to Ray Brown: Christian McBride & Dee Dee Bridgewater @ The Blue Note (2 sets)
  • ($30-$40) The Masters Quartet: Steve Kuhn, Dave Liebman, Steve Swallow & Billy Drummond @ Birdland NY
  • ($66-$126) Steve Angello @ Governor’s Island

Sunday, August 21, 2011

  • (Free) Bonerama @ Hudson River Park Blues BBQ @ Pier 54
  • ($20-$35) Tribute to Ray Brown: Christian McBride & Dee Dee Bridgewater @ The Blue Note (2 sets)
  • ($25) Iridium Jazz Club John Lee Hooker Jr. – A Tribute to John Lee Hooker @ Iridium Jazz Club
  • ($45-$105) Power 105.1 Presents Power Live: Fabolous, Kelly Rowland, Big Sean, J. Cole, Estelle @ Beach at Governor’s Island
  • ($50-$155) Chicago @ The Beacon Theater

Monday, August 22, 2011

  • ($8) Jim Campilongo @ The Living Room
  • ($25) Mingus Orchestra @ The Jazz Standard

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

  • (Free) Dred Scott Trio @ Rockwood Music Hall

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

  • (Free) Nutritious feat. Pete Moss @ Bembe
  • ($15) The Louis Armstrong Centennial Band @ Birdland NYC
  • ($50-$65) Bebel Gilberto with Marcelo D2 – Summer Residency @ City Winery

Thursday, August 25, 2011

  • ($20) Break Science featuring Chali 2na @ Rocks Off Cruise
  • ($5-$8) DJ Questlove Presents: Bowl Train
  • ($5-$10) Charlie Hunter Residency @ Sycamore
  • ($35) Voice of the Wetlands Allstars: Tab Benoit, Anders Osborne, Cyril Neville, Big Chief Monk Boudreaux,Jumpin’ Johnny Sansone, Waylon Thibodeaux & more @ Hiro Ballroom
  • ($40-$60) Joan Osborne & Carter’s Chord – Summer Residency @ City Winery

Friday, August 26, 2011

  • ($12-$15) The Heavy Pets w/ Zongo Junction @ Bowery Ballroom
  • ($15-$20) Dr. John @ Public Assembly NYC
  • ($100+) Dave Matthews Band Caravan feat. O.A.R, Soulive, The Wood Brothers and Citizen Cope @ Governor’s Island

Saturday, August 27, 2011

  • (Free Daytime Show) Apollo Run @ The Bell House
  • (Free) West African Band @ St. Nicks Pub (12am ~ Harlem)
  • (Free) The Charlie Parker Jazz Festival feat. Toots Thielmans, James Carter, Tia Fuller & Cecile Mclorin Salvant @ Marcus Garvey Park
  • ($10) Brothers Past @ The Brooklyn Bowl
  • ($100+) Dave Matthews Band Caravan feat. moe., Robert Randolph and the Family Band @ Governor’s Island

Sunday, August 28, 2011

  • (Free) The Charlie Parker Jazz Festival feat. Shepp Quartet, Medeline Peyroux, Anant Cohen, and The Gerlad Clayton Trio @ Tompkins Square Park
  • ($5-$10) The Jason Crosby Band @ LIC Bar
  • ($65-$85) Dickey Betts W/Full band and Kristy Lee @ City Winery
  • ($100+) Dave Matthews Band Caravan feat. The Roots, Gogol Bordello, Trombone Shorty and Bela Fleck @ Governor’s Island

Monday, August 29, 2011

  • ($8) Jim Campilongo @ The Living Room
  • ($25) Mingus Orchestra @ The Jazz Standard
  • ($65-$85) Dickey Betts W/Full band and Kristy Lee @ City Winery
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
  • (Free) Dred Scott Trio @ Rockwood Music Hall
  • ($30-$40) Gary Peacock, Marc Copland, Victor Lewis @ Birdland NY
  • ($46-$156) Crosby, Stills & Nash @ Beacon Theater
  • ($65-$85) Dickey Betts W/Full band and Kristy Lee @ City Winery
Wednesday, August 31, 2011
  • (Free) Nutritious feat. FourQuarters Collective @ Bembe
  • ($15) The Louis Armstrong Centennial Band @ Birdland NYC
  • ($15-$22) Jesse Malin & Juliana Hatfield @ City Winery
  • ($20-$35) Pat McGee with Deep River @ City Winery
  • ($35-$43) Bright Eyes @ Williamsburg Waterfront
  • ($35-$41) Sara Bareilles w/ Joshua Radin @Rumsey Playfield, Central Park
  • ($40) Bruce Hornsby & the Noisemakers with special guest Marco Benevento @ Beekman Beer Garden Beach Club
  • ($46-$156) Crosby, Stills & Nash @ Beacon Theater
  • ($50-$65) Bebel Gilberto with Marcelo D2 – Summer Residency @ City Winery

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My 1992 Sony CD Player :)

My 1992 Sony CD Player 🙂

I got my first CD player during Christmas 1995. I was 13. Up until this time, music to me had been limited to whatever I could find on the radio (which I couldn’t rewind), Disney princess movies, other fluffy movie and show soundtracks.

My grandmother had season tickets to Broadway musicals and Classical Series and so I drowned in those, willingly. That music also made up the majority of my tape collection. On the way to school I was able to hear the radio but my mother preferred country against our “harder” choices. We would bond over many of the bands from her time but I still never had what I considered true musical freedom until Christmas 1993 with the arrival of my first CD player.

Mariah Carey's Music Box Album Cover

Mariah Carey's Music Box Album Cover

I see this as a definitive moment in my musical development and the start of a major addiction. I was 15, had allowance and I needed things to spend my money on.  I would eventually join Columbia House, BMG Music (both no longer in existence as CD selling companies)and all the other companies that gave me music on the cheap.  I would scam them using multiple names, ending up with tons of CDs and not enough time to devour them all.  It was the start of my searching; searching for music that filled a hole.

I was given two CDs with my new CD player.  My parents, knowing my love for singing and pop culture, gave me Mariah Carey‘s Music Box.   My Uncle John (unsure of his motivation) gave me Simon and Garfunkel‘s Bridge Over Troubled Water.

Simon and Garfunkel's Bridge Over Troubled Water

Simon and Garfunkel's Bridge Over Troubled Water

Simon & Garfunkel

Simon & Garfunkel

I would come to memorize every one of the songs on both CDs within days.  I fell IN LOVE with Simon and Garfunkel while Mariah Carey disappeared in the back of my CD case after a few months and eventually from my memory.

I was immediately turned on emotionally and spiritually by Bridge Over Troubled Waters.  I was 13.  I struggled with anger and teenage angst and this CD connected with me on so many levels. The voices, the lyrics, the music.  A simply stunning CD. More importantly, it opened me up to a time period in music that I had missed…the 70’s. A  few months later, I would find Jerry and the musical hole within me would be filled.

There is so much to say about it but I won’t bore you with my run-on stories.  My point is that my connection with Simon and Garfunkel runs deep.  Paul Simon is sort of my Bob Dylan.  I can hear you all screaming now but it’s true.  He may not win in your books for the highest award of lyrical and/or song construction but in my book, he is #1.

The Auditorium Stravinsky stage, described in full in my Overview of Montreux Jazz Festival Post, was littered with musicians. I noticed an accordion, a xylophone, a piano, three guitars, a percussion section, one bass, two drummers, a piano and keyboard, horns, and a violin (I think).

Paul Simon’s desire to incorporate multiple multi-cultural instruments is a huge selling point for me being someone who likes to see change and diversity in her musicians.  Simon ranks up there with Bela Fleck for going out in to the world to be the hungry learner, the constant musical hunter. I find so much beauty in musicians like that. We need more musicians like that.

Paul Simon @ Montreux Jazz Festival

This would be my first time seeing Paul Simon live.  This was an epic moment  for me. I felt giddy, like a school girl (pun intended) going to see her first musical crush.  I imagined seeing Paul Simon many times in my life but I never thought the first time would be in this amazing auditorium in Switzerland.   I had to cross the world to make it happen and I couldn’t be happier.

The show was in The Auditorium Stravinsky and we were in the #3 box seats instead of #4 from the night previous. I wondered if any stars would surround me again.  Esperanza Spalding and Paul Simon had been my box neighbors just a night earlier as I watched The Miles Davis Tribute.

Tonight’s show would consist of multiples titles off Simon’s latest CD, So Beautiful or So What.   The CD is built around his acoustic guitar and as the title suggests, the songs consist of views on extremes. However, his projections find themselves somewhere in the middle. His songs lie between the worlds of love and indifference, good and evil, hope and heartbreak.  He speaks on everything from Christmas shopping to suicide bombers to Global warming.  It speaks of his nephew, who has been on multiple tours of duty to Iraq to Jay-Z and Jesus.

The Making of So Beautiful, So What

Singer-songwriter Paul Simon was listening to a box set of old American recordings one day. Among the songs, he found a Christmas sermon bearing the voice of Atlanta’s Rev. J.M. Gates, a hugely popular preacher in the 1930s and ’40s. That sermon stayed with Simon, who turned it into a song.

“It really struck me, not only because it was really an unusual way of having a Christmas sermon, because it’s very dark, it’s like a warning,” Simon tells Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep, “but also … there was a real rhythmic pulse to it … it sounded so natural. I lived with that for a while, and then I thought, ‘I could write a song called “Getting Ready for Christmas Day,” and find a way of making verses that lead up to the sermon and then follow the sermon.’ “

~ Excerpt from NPR’s interview with Paul Simon (04/12/11)

Boy in the Bubble
Dazzling Blue
Fifty Ways to Leave Your Lover
So Beautiful or So What
Slip Sliding Away
Peace like a River
The Obvious Child
Only Living Boy in New York
Learn To Fall
Questions for the Angels
Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes
Sounds of Silence

Kodachrome from 1973
Here Comes the Sun
Still Crazy After All These Years
Call Me Al

Simon started his set with “Boy In The Bubble,” the opening song on his 1986 album Graceland. Simon’s lyrics deal with the complex human consequences of modern technology. Do you recall the Boy In The Bubble from the 1980s?  Ironically, this was a perfect start to a show that would continue on with songs highlighting intense issues.

Dazzling Blue” followed and was the first song performed off Simon’s latest album.  The song has a heavy African vibe; the stage was cast in a blue curtain of light with the majority of light on Simon alone.  Beginning with a talking drum from India, the audience was immediately given access to the love that Simon has for different styles and texture of sound found in various cultures around the globe.

Miles apart, though the miles can’t measure distance
Worlds apart on a rainy afternoon
But the road gets dirty and it offers no resistance
So turn your amp up and play your lonesome tune

Maybe love’s an accident, or destiny is true
But you and I were born beneath a star of dazzling blue

~ Lyrics from “Dazzling Blue”

American rock drumming initiated the beginning to “Fifty Ways To Leave Your Lover,” a 1975 hit song from his album Still Crazy After All These Years.  The stage was filled with green light and Simon sang about the song’s mistress and her humorous advice to a husband on ways to end a relationship.

Fun Fact: G. Love covered the song on his album Fixin’ To Die (2011) which he recorded with the folk-rock band The Avett Brothers. ~ Thanks Wikipedia

And then Paul spoke…

“Hello my friends. I am so happy to be here.  This is my fourth or fifth time here.” ~ Paul Simon to his audience

The bluesy title track, “So Beautiful or So What,off Paul Simon’s latest album, began with two wooden bars being clapped together. The song verbalizes a lesson about life being what you make of it.

Bemoaning human frailty:

Ain’t it strange the way we’re ignorant
how we seek out bad advice
How we jigger it and figure it
mistaking value for the price
And play a game with time and love
like a pair of rolling dice.”~ Lyrics from “So Beautiful or So What”

I swear I heard a telephone ringing as part of the chorus. It was totally prevalent but I am not sure it was part of the song.  At the time, it didn’t surprise me but it made me curious. I loved this song, with its full sound and rock sensibilities.  There was a spoon on metal solo, accordion overlay, beaded shakers kept the beat and Paul showed his picking skills. One thing about Paul’s music, the sounds he conjures out of the various worldly instruments he employs in his music is what truly sets each song apart from the next.

Using his mouth in an unusual way to intro the song, Paul Simon chose another oldie, “Slip Sliding Away.” The best way I can describe these mouth sounds would be like when the drawings in the cartoons would take two coconuts to make the sound of a horse walking.  It was gorgeous…until there was an equipment malfunction.  Paul paused, tapping his fingers on his guitar until his other guitarist strapped in.  Flutes and harpsichords were being played but I couldn’t figure out who was playing the beautiful sounds. Simon accompanied the beauty with whistles and the song ended with acoustic scaling and whistling by Simon.

Peace like a River,” the 7th song of his 2nd studio album, highlighted the piano.  Paul’s voice cut right through me.  There is something so calming and soothing about his sound. The softness is romantic yet there is fierceness in his delivery that comes off as pure professionalism and eagerness to be different.

I found an eight minute video of the performance which shows nothing, but you can hear Simon on stage clearly and that is what matters:

Four drumsticks counted off as both drummers began the lead into “The Obvious Child.” This song is defined by it’s Latin-inspired rhythms and is off The Rhythm and Saints album released in 1990.  Reminiscent of a Big Band feel, we started moving in our seats.  Paul Simon knows what I like, he truly does.  Bright red lights blew up the stage as Josh was so moved he got up to dance.

Did Paul know his favorite fans were in the audience from NYC? Did he know that the NYCers who were there loved this next song? Perhaps not! But I like to think he did as he broke into “The Only Living Boy in New York.” This song touched me deeply as it was the only song sung off  Simon and Garfunkel’s 1970 release, Bridge Over Troubled Water, one of the greatest albums to ever grace this planet.

The irony was not lost on me that on the album it is Art Garfunkel who sings the song while Simon takes a secondary position in the delivery. Not this time.  Not tonight.

Bridge Over Troubled Water fun facts:

  • Fifth and final studio album by Simon & Garfunkel
  • Reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart on February 28, 1970
  • Won 1971 Grammy Award for Album of the Year
  • Won 1971 Grammy award for Best Engineered Recording
  • Title track won the 1971 Grammy Award for Record of the Year
  • Title track won the 1971 Grammy Award for Song of the Year
  • Won Best International Album at the first Brit Awards in 1977
  • #51 on The Rollings Stones ‘Greatest Album of all Time’ List

The tears trickled down my cheeks freely now. It had only been a matter of time before I knew this would happen and I did think it was going to happen sooner then it did.  It took eight songs to rip into my heartstrings.  I was immediately transported back to being 12 and hearing his voice for the first time and I prayed that he would sing more songs from this album but it never happened.

Learn How To Fall” was full of horns and fierceness. It was jubilant yet with a serious message of needing to “Learn How to Fall” before you can “Learn How to Fly.”

Then perhaps my favorite song of the performance was next, a song I had never heard before. A song off the new album called “Questions for the Angels.”

On “Questions For The Angels,” a middle-aged man strolls across the Brooklyn Bridge searching for heavenly help, only to be confronted with a Jay-Z billboard for a reply.

A pilgrim on a pilgrimage
Walked across the Brooklyn Bridge
His sneakers torn
In the hour when the homeless move their cardboard blankets
And the new day is born….

…..Downtown Brooklyn
The pilgrim is passing a billboard
That catches his eye
It’s Jay-Z
He’s got a kid on each knee
He’s wearing clothes that he wants us to try

~ Lyrics from Questions for Angels

Can I just give props to Paul Simon for picking on Jay-Z?  I don’t want to condone any negative tension but I find it hilarious, although not surprising,  that Paul Simon chose these lyrics. It makes me recall the feud between NAS (who I am seeing tonight with Damien Marley) and Jay-Z.  Would this bring Jay-Z down on Simon? Will there be retaliation through lyrics? Can you imagine that going down? Now, that is some musical drama that I would be interested in seeing take place…just saying.

Speaking on religious material making it’s way into the album:

“It’s not so much that it pops out in a larger way … it’s more frequent. I really had no plan to do that,” Simon says. “They begin as stories, and where they go is just a path I follow. Sometimes spiritual or religious imagery will be part of the story. It’s seldom the point of the story, but it’s a presence that lingers.”

~ Excerpt from NPR’s interview with Paul Simon (04/12/11)

It was back to the old school, this time with songs from Simon’s most famous album, Graceland. At this point I just couldn’t take notes anymore. I had to dance this out.  Other members of the audience felt the same way as they were lifted out of their seats during the dueling drummers solos during “Diamonds On The Soles Of Her Shoes.”  The song is a pure classic about a short relationship Paul Simon had with a diamond mine owner’s daughter, while recording in South Africa. She was very rich and privileged, yet she acted very down to earth, like a poor girl. The drummers were amazing playing off each other and I longed for a concert of just drummers.  Can you imagine? I can.

The Lady Smith Black Mombazo inspired song “Gumboots” kept the dance party going.  This song reminded me String Cheese meeting Bela Fleck.   There was picking on the guitars and a violin entered the mix.  The piano player got up and played the inside of his piano. There was such a wonderful mixture of sound and it kept us all on our feet.  It’s a beautiful song inspired by The Gumboot Dance which is an African dance that is performed by dancers wearing Wellington boots. In South Africa these boots are more commonly called gumboots.

The rest of the band joined the stage for “Kodachrome from 1973”   This song left the hall so full of sound. Great sound. My friends and I were all up dancing in our box. There was no calming us down.

There you have it 🙂 The end of the set. Exiting the stage to monstrous applause, the entire band left. The entire audience began clapping in unison without letting up.  Shortly after, Paul came out alone on his acoustic guitar.


When the notes trickled from the stage and the audience heard “Sounds of Silence,” the Auditorium went silent.  You could hear a pin drop. “Hello darkness my old friend”…and with that, the tears flowed freely again.

This was definitely the most intimate song of the night.  It tore at the heart strings, it made people smile, scream and feel something inside of them stir.  Paul’s music does that to you.  It’s such a classic song that everyone on the planet knows and is touched by it.

Hello darkness, my old friend
I’ve come to talk with you again
Because a vision softly creeping
Left its seeds while I was sleeping
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Still remains
Within the sound of silence

~ Lyrics from “Sounds of Silence”

Then the audience joined in by humming the lyrics. A single man and his guitar was standing alone on one of the world’s most famous stages and had the entire placed entranced. It was magic.  It was awesome. It was music at its simplest. Music at its best.

Here Comes The Sun” was the second choice with accordions and two guitars with Simon backing the melody.  And with that, the stage emptied again.

The following video has “Sounds of Silence” into “Here Come The Sun.” Enjoy!

!!!!!!!!!! ENCORE #2 !!!!!!!!!!

Everyone walked off stage and for a few minutes the audience just chanted in unison. Paul Simon came out yet again for a second encore. There was no end in sight and that was awesome.

I took out Josh’s Iphone and video taped “Crazy Love” in it’s entirety with GREAT quality.  Enjoy!

“Still Crazy After All These Years” was next. Paul didn’t have an instrument for these songs. Just his voice.

“We’re living in a certain time, and we’re aware of it. And that’s part of what we’re aware of, along with our own personal aches and pains,” Simon says. “The dialogue between what’s going on in the world and what’s going on internally seems to be a natural thing — well, it’s natural to me, anyway, to have these thoughts.” ~ Excerpt from NPR’s interview with Paul Simon (04/12/11)

Call Me Al” ended the set.  Everyone was finally up dancing now. Dancing down below me and clapping. The flute player moved to the  keys. There was a major bass rage. Only a few seconds but so funky! You know the bass line I’m speaking of??

“One of my favorite poets is Philip Larkin,” Simon says. “Philip Larkin didn’t write for several years before his life ended. And when he was asked why he didn’t write, he said the muse deserted him. It sort of scared me. That’s why I think I have no right to assume that some thought is going to come. … But I think, in my imagination, if it is it, there will probably be something else I’m interested in.”

At 70 years old, Paul Simon shows no signs of slowing down.  He is a master of his art, with a soft, intelligent voice, that attains an unmatchable sense of melancholy and tenderness. Regarding his latest cd, anyone who can take a sermon and build an entirely new outlook on life through it by music is stellar.  I was moved  and inspired by this show and I hope that this article touches you in some way that makes you go out and purchase the new album or perhaps invest in seeing him live. Simply Phenomenal.

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