Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Picks For 2009...

Monday, December 28, 2009

Hiromi Uehara

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Jerry & Bobby Christmas

Sunday, December 20, 2009

12.18.09 Video for Breakfast

Here is the full video for the Breakfast's Harper Ferry show in MA:

12.18.09 Breakfast.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Summer Camp Announcements

May 29th, 30th, 31st

moe. (3 days)

Umphrey's McGee (3 days)

1. Brainchild

2. Kinetix

3. Yonder Mountain String Band

4. Ragbirds

5. Backyard Tire Fire

6. Family Groove Company

7. Keller Williams

8. The Avett Brothers

9. Cornmeal

10. EOTO

11. Gov't Mule

12. Bassnectar


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A Few Picks...

An NPR Story titled "Meeting the Monks" w/ Al from moe.

Willie Waldman Project

The Breakfast

Here are a few Breafast sets that I groundscored from the Breakfast Archive:


Monday, December 7, 2009

Medeski, Scofield, Martin & Wood 7.5.07

The Breakfast w/ Steve Molitz


Larry McCray

If you don't know about him; you should. This cat is a total beast.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Garaj Mahal 6.21.08

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Heady Medeski

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Sexfist Wins Chicago Bluegrass & Blues Contest!

November 16, 2009.

Chicago, IL. The Chicago Bluegrass and Blues Festival’s Last Banjo Standing tallied over 20,000 votes from Midwest music fans in the last month, yet a mere 7 votes separated 1st and 2nd place when voting ended at midnight on 11/16. Two bands earned it, so, two winners were crowned, as the Festival announced that both Sexfist and Great Divide will appear on the main stage with Bela Fleck & The Fleckstones, Dr. Dog and the Emmitt-Nershi Band this 12/12.

They’ll split the cash prize and share in the opportunity to repay their loyal followings with back-to-back sets to commence the day’s Main Stage lineup. Blues fusion extraordinaires Great Divide will kickoff the mainstage event, followed immediately by the hootenanny that is Sexfist. ADDED BONUS: Sexfist has invited its fans to enjoy “Break-Fist w/ Sexfist” while taking in the Great Divide set. More to come on what the boys will serve.

Sexfist, Chicago’s most politically incorrect band name, started as a duo in 2001 and has since become the five-man band spawned in May 2003. Often found under the moniker “The Henhouse Prowlers,” at clubs around the nation, Sexfist has found themselves comfortably alongside Cornmeal as one of Chicago’s two most popular bluegrass acts. On tour since 2004, you can find them every Tuesday night at the Red Line Tap and every second Thursday at Quencher’s Saloon.

Source: www.cbbfestival.com/blog

Sexfist Live at Schubas on 1.21.09

SexfistSexfist Live at West Fest on 7.12.09

Congratulations to Sexfist! It's great to see one of our favorite bands earn an oppurtunity like this.

- J-man

Molitz, Logic, Freekbass Project

DJ Logic, keyboardist Steve Molitz (Particle, Phil Lesh & Friends), and Freekbass are putting together a project to tour late winter/early spring 2010. They initially got together onstage for a jam during DJ Logic's set at the Church of Universal Love and Music in Pennsylvania over the summer. It turned out to be one of those magical musical moments, so they have decided to do some full shows together.

These three talented musicians are asking people that are interested to go to Twitter and answer "Name the new DJ Logic, Steve Molitz, Freekbass groove project. Tweet using the hashtag #logicmolitzfreek or hit DJ Logic and Freekbass directly at twitter.com/projectlogic and/or twitter.com/freekbass. The person whose name is chosen will be on the Lifetime - Guest List to this "yet to be named band's" shows.

Source: Jambase.com

Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Weather Report

"Founders pianist Joe Zawinul and saxophonist Wayne Shorter first met and became friends in 1959 as they had both played in Maynard Ferguson's Big Band. Zawinul went on to play with Cannonball Adderley's group in the 1960s and Shorter with Miles Davis's second great quintet where both made their mark among the best composers in jazz. Zawinul later joined Shorter with Miles Davis's first recordings of fusion music as part of the studio groups which recorded In a Silent Way and Bitches Brew, although Zawinul was never part of Davis's touring line-up. Weather Report is, despite this, often seen as a spin-off from the group of musicians associated with Miles Davis in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Initially, the band's music featured extended improvisation, similar to Davis's Bitches Brew-period work, and instrumentation included both a traditional trap set drummer (Alphonse Mouzon) and a second percussionist (first Airto Moreira, later Dom Um Romão). The group was unusual and innovative in abandoning the soloist-accompaniment demarcation of straight-ahead jazz and instead featuring continuous improvisation by every member of the band.

Reedman Wayne Shorter further pioneered the role of the soprano sax (taking the torch from Sidney Bechet's, Lucky Thompson's, Steve Lacy's and John Coltrane's earlier efforts) and both Zawinul and original bassist Miroslav Vitouš experimented with rock guitarists' electronic effects, Zawinul on piano and synthesizers, Vitouš on upright bass, often bowed, as a second horn-like voice.

By 1976's Black Market, the group's music had evolved further from the open-ended funk jams into more melody-oriented, concise forms, which also achieved a greater mass-market appeal. Most notably, this album introduced virtuoso bassist Jaco Pastorius into the group, although he only played on two of this album's tracks. Alphonso Johnson (who played on the other 5 songs) decided to leave Weather Report to play with the Billy Cobham/George Duke Band (a group that featured a young John Scofield on guitar). Black Market was perhaps the most rock-oriented studio album by Weather Report, in part due to former Frank Zappa sideman Chester Thompson playing drums on most of the songs (he later would be recruited into the touring band of Genesis). Black Market again won Down Beat's album of the year.

The addition of Jaco Pastorius helped push the group to the height of their popularity. Their biggest individual hit, jazz standard "Birdland", from the Heavy Weather album in 1977, even made the pop charts that year. The group also appeared on the Burt Sugarman produced series The Midnight Special, performing Birdland and Teen Town. Heavy Weather proved to be the band's most successful album in terms of sales, while still retaining wide critical acclaim. Pastorius established a new standard in fretless electric bass playing and added two compositions of his own. Heavy Weather dominated Weather Report's disc awards, including their last Down Beat "Album of the Year" award."

The Weather Report:

8:30 (Live)

Black Market

Heavy Weather

Mr. Gone

Night Passage

Weather Report


-Mr. n00b

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Original Fish - Country Joe & The Fish

Of all the music I have listened to from the 60s, Country Joe & The Fish seem to stick out the most. Besides the impact The Grateful Dead, The Beatles, Jefferson Airplane, Jimi Hendrix, The Doors, Janis Joplin/ Big Brother & The Holding Company, etc. had on the development of Psychedelic Rock, which in turn influenced many varieties of Rock... Country Joe and The Fish represent a lot of what the counter-cultural movement stood for and are definitely one of the most, if not the most underrated band on the scene. Their lyrics being strongly anti-war or psychedelically driven, really shows the image they were putting across. Their music? It developed through the years. Electric Music for the Mind and Body is an acid drenched album full of great organ/ guitar solos and trade offs. The bass player lays down some great lines and at the same time allows for space so the other members can jam. As the years went on they added orchestration to their compositions in addition with the psychedelically driven guitar style and spacey organ while incorporating genres such as jazz, blues, country, rock, and psychedelia. These guys are the shit, seriously check em out!

"The group's name is derived from leftist politics; "Country Joe" was a popular name for Joseph Stalin in the 1940s, while "the fish" refers to Mao Tse-Tung's statement that the true revolutionary "moves through the peasantry as the fish does through water." The group began with the nucleus of "Country Joe" McDonald (lead vocals) and Barry "The Fish" Melton (lead guitar), recording and performing for the "Teach-In" protests against the Vietnam War in 1965. Co-founders McDonald and Melton added musicians as needed over the life of the band. By 1967, the group included Gary "Chicken" Hirsh (drums) (born Mar 9, 1940, in Chicago, Illinois); David Cohen (keyboards) (born 8 April 1942, in Brooklyn, New York) and Bruce Barthol (bass) (born 11 November 1947 in Berkeley, California). The 1967 lineup lasted only two years, and by the 1969 music festival Woodstock, the lineup included Greg 'Duke' Dewey (drums), Mark Kapner (keyboards) and Doug Metzler (bass).

The band came to perform an early example of psychedelic rock. The LP Electric Music for the Mind and Body was very influential on early FM Radio in 1967. Long sets of psychedelic tunes like "Section 43", "Bass Strings", "Not So Sweet Martha Lorraine", "Janis" (for and about Janis Joplin) and "Grace" (for singer Grace Slick) (all released on Vanguard Records) were often played back to back on KSAN and KMPX in San Francisco and progressive rock stations around the country. Their first album charted at #39 on September 23, 1967, their 2nd album at #67 on February 3, 1968, and their third at #23 on August 31, 1968. Country Joe and The Fish were regulars at Fillmore West and East and Chet Helms' Avalon Ballroom. They were billed with such groups as Jefferson Airplane, Grateful Dead, Quicksilver Messenger Service, Led Zeppelin, and Iron Butterfly. They played at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967 and at the Woodstock Festival in 1969."

Get Some Country Joe:

Electrique Music for the Mind and Body (1967)

I Feel Like Im Fixin To Die (1967)

Here We Go Again (1969)


Mr. n00b

Monday, November 9, 2009

Henhouse Prowlers

... Have you ever come across a band that the mere thought of the band itself, not being more popular, boggles your mind? As you stand listening to the music; the people around you, (often times fewer in number than most shows you attend) dance uncontrolably. Smiles from ear to ear, the bar constantly serving beer to people looking over there shoulder in excitement of getting back to "action". From songs you've never heard prior, to great renditions of classic traditionals, song after song has you purely wanting more. For me The Henhouse Prowlers are that band. With tight instrumental exchanges and clean, often family like harmonies resinating through your eardrums, to your heart, to your feet. There is nothing else to do but dance, smile and be happy to be in the presence of good company.

I was first introduced to The Prowlers through a friend of mine who played for a band called The Flatbellys. After bringing up his understaning of our mutual love for bluegrass music; he told me there was a band that I had to check out. I did just that, and man I'm glad I did. It was the first time I saw a bunch of younger bluegrass pickers in a bar wearing full suits. I was blown away by not only the music, but the band's professionalism in addition to their kindness as individuals. Following the show, we spent some time drinking and talking about music... Little did I know that this experience was going to be the first of many I would have with this band.

I was pleasently surprised to see that The Henhouse Prowlers were playing Summer Camp Music Festival, a festival that I was attending in Illinois. Their set was fantastic, and once again had me looking around scratching my head. What would these festival going hippies take with them from this band? Would they tell their friends? Would they seek them out in the future? Lastly, what were they doing playing this tiny little stage in the woods...? The smiles were just as bright as I had seen the last time.

The next time our pathes crossed, they were playing agian at the same bar that I had seen them play prior, however this night would be different, and would lay out the foundation for our friendship. The Circus Bar was packed for this Bluegrass Night and The Prowlers didn't disapoint. Following the show, I stuck around to help with equiptment, with the selfish motivation of convinsing them to play an aftershow in my livingroom. It took little to no convincing what so ever, and the next thing I know; I'm sitting in a van with one of my favorite current bands, giving directions to my place.

We had a blast that night. Homebrews, impromtu jams, great conversation and for me; solid memories.

The more recent show of their in which I attended was at Bell's Brewery. Once again, I was satisfied. Thus sealing the deal for The Henhouse Prowlers being one of my favorite bands. I have and will continue to do everything possible to promote their music, and turn people on to the band that I have come to love.

I say this with complete honesty; they are one of the few bands that deserve a 5 out of 5, for every show that I have seen them play.

Henhouse Prowlers 10.29.08

Henhouse Prowlers 10.16.09

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Review: Disco Biscuits & UV Hippo 10.28.09

Jes, Greg, and I decided to drive down to Kalamazoo, MI for the recent Disco Biscuits show and Ultraviolet Hippopotamus after-show. We arrived in Kzoo, and got in. I had to wait a little for my friend to show up with my ticket, so Jes and I waited outside. As we waited we watched 3 people get kicked out, a couple people freaking out about it, others seemed happy to not be going to jail. We already knew this was going to be rowdy. The Disco Biscuits played the Kalamazoo State Theater, a beautiful theater with what I would say to have pretty good acoustics. The crowd, was the usual bisco crowd, spun out kids everywhere, everyone a total mess, security roaming around everywhere, kicking kids out who were zonked out on chairs, running through the aisle chasing people. It was seriously out of hand. At one point we noticed a dreaddy pregnant lady. I had to take a break from the crowd at that point.

Despite the sheer ridiculousness of the crowd, the show for the most part was really good. I am not the biggest Bisco fan, but they threw down. The jams were well executed and the peaks were to the utmost Bisco style. The light show was awesome, and had some great moments, but I felt there was too much strobbing and spinning lights everywhere to focus on the music. I had to sit down for most of the show. As for the tunes, they played really well, for Bisco. Overall I would give it a 4/5 for a Disco Biscuits show. But for my overall taste; I felt some musicianship was lacking in certain areas. The drummer absolutely beasted it as did bro on the guitar. The bassist laid it down when he was actually playing the bass, but my only real problem was the keyboardist. He continually moved around his body to the beat while playing literally two notes. Ive never seen a keyboardist doing so much on stage, movement wise, and doing absolutely nothing keyboard wise. He had his tiny moments but overall it was simplistic and boring keyboard playing. He is much better than that and could lay down some fat licks in between his chord playing if he really wanted to, hes absolutely capable.

Rating: 3.5/5 for me... for a Disco Biscuits show 4/5

Ultraviolet Hippopotamus

After leaving the Bisco show, we headed over to UV Hippo. These guys can throw down, I saw these guys two years ago and had fun but wasnt that impressed. Recently, earlier this year, I saw them again for the first time in a while. I was blown the fuck away. These guys can JAM. They are a progressive style rock band. They keyboardist is absolutely insane, mooging out real hard and making it real spacey. Hes got a nasty tone on the keys as well, the kind that makes you clinch your jaw and grind your teeth (in a good way). He is a great player all around. The two guitarist are awesome. They communicate so well during the jam, doing great trade offs of call and response, each of them throwing down riffs that were mindblowingly slick and amazingly non-repetitive. The drummer is great and versatile, raging his styles from rock, to jazz, to bluegrass, to trance, to space. The percussionist lays down some good shit as well. The bassist also lays down some fat licks that brings it all together. These guys are awesome, one of the best bands in Michigan in my opinion. The Bisco after party was absolutely awesome. They really threw down. They played all their hits, and they nailed each one of them. They had a nice little light show that went along with their music perfectly. A number of crowd favorites/ super crunchy tunes were played and all of Papa Petes was getting down. They definitely got their name out there the other night, there being a lot of biscuit fans who didnt know who they were. All in all they put on a spectacular show and I see nothing but good things for this band.

Rating: 4.5/5

UV Hippo's Whunurth Late Night Set!

-Mr. n00b

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Review: moe. Halloween, Albany.

The moon lit the evening sky, as a mass of people lurked out in front of the Washington Square Armory. The energy was high, and the excitement was clear. Entering the castle-like venue it was it became apparent that it was going to be a packed house, and sweltering hot. Upon passing through security, the lobby opened up to what appeared to be a large gymnasium. The house lights dimmed, the stage lit up and out came moe dressed in skeleton costumes. Approxamately two and a half weeks after their last show (due to tour/date cancellations) moe came out heavy.

The first couple of songs sounded good, with some good guitar work and a tease of what was to come in the light show. Then the song "Farmer Ben"... This song provided some rapping as well as a bummer of a vibe for the crowd, who was left looking around in confusion. Following up that mess was a version of Paul Simon's "Call Me Al". This was one of the songs on the fan based setlist voting that I did not really want to hear, but turned out sounding really good, and the crowd dug it. The first beast of the show came when they played "George" taking it through twenty plus minutes of wailing, dance and space. This was the first point in the show that the crowd went absolutely nuts.

The highlight of the show for me was the "Echos (Pink Floyd), Stash (Phish), Meat, Eyes of the World (Grateful Dead)>Echos, Rebubula>Darkstar (Grateful Dead)>Rebubula" This core section of the show really made it for me. It was great to hear moe cover a Phish song and jam it out harder than Phish. My level of excitement shot through the roof when they broke into the song that I voted on for the set; "Eyes". I was a little unsure of how it would sound coming from moe, but it had the same sweet, mellow, flowing vibe that the Dead created. The Rebubula was uber beastly and the crowd was extremely responsive. Then to go into "Darkstar right after playing "Eyes" caught me off guard, yet pleased me to the extreme. Finishing the segment with Rebubula...

For the encore moe came back out and played a version of Tenacious D's "Fuck Her Gently". For an encore, it was completely awful. A lot of the younger bro'ed out cats were really into it and screaming the words at the top of there lungs... Quite a mess. They then played "Don't Fuck With the Flow", which had a very swing/jammy grove. The encore's saving grace was "Crab Eyes" which left everybody wide-eyed, and completely killed.

Overall I thought the show was on. I thought the covers were well done, and the peaks were excellent. My main complaints were with the venue. They ran out of water after the third song, and by set-break were completely out of all water, Gatorade, and any sort of beer/alcohol. They were completely unprepaired, understaffed, and ended up putting a lot of people at risk for dehydration. This could have been a serious problem, and looking around I saw several people struggling to not pass out. It was extremely irresponsible.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

moe's Halloween show: moe. Halloween, Albany


Saturday, October 31, 2009

Review: Lotus in Buffalo, 10.20.09

We arrived at The Town Ballroom, to a line of people in costume. As we neared the front of the line we noticed a surprisingly heavy amount of searching by security. I was heavily patted down for what felt like two minutes. I was told I could not bring my camera into the venue, and I explained to the a gentleman holding the "press list" that I was on the list, but did not have a camera pass. Typically I can talk my way into or through any situation. Although tonight, with this extremely heavy security presence, it was not going to happen for The J-man.

As I headed back to my car a made a quick decision to swing by Lotus' bus to see if I could talk to someone about getting a photo pass. Luckily for me there were two gentleman stand next to the bus. One of the gentleman; Luke Miller,(who plays guitar and keys for Lotus) was kind enough to walk around to the front enterance with me and get me and my camera into the venue. On the walk around the block Luke and I spoke of his opinion of tapers and distributing live music for free. His responses were exactly what I expected based on the amount of live recordings Lotus has on the Archive and etree. In fact about five minutes prior I witnessed Luke trying to talk a security guard into letting a taper into the venue (successfully). Thanks Luke, I do really appreciate your help getting the photo pass.

Once inside; the foyer open up to a circular bar in the middle of a large room strewn with cobwebs. Passing through that room and a ticket checkpoint we entered the Ballroom. A room with multiple levels and a very comfortable vibe, as well as an additional bar on both sides of the room. The opening band will go unmentioned...

... As Lotus took the stage the crowd was noticably excited. The first set had it's moments but overall I was not overly impressed. Their new drummer sounded good and will definately mesh well with the band, however there were a few moments of scrambling that stood out to me. Again, I think he will do the band well, it's just going take time. I thought all together the bands peaks were extremely well done and had the place moving. The new light rig served them well and really provided an awesome visual show.

The second set was a lot more intense, with more peaks and wailing. The jams seemed more developed and seemed to take the crowd to a great place. Looking around there were lots of smiling faces and lots of movement. The second set went from song to song, through some of the more electronic down tempo sounds to the more natural guitar wailing. I thought the drums came together a lot better in the second set, and the lights really blew me away.

Additionally the Egg afterparty will go unmentioned...

Rating: 3 out of 5.


Show Link: Lotus 10.30.09 (Buffalo)


Thursday, October 29, 2009

Hallucination Engine - Material

"Hallucination Engine is a 1994 album by the New York based music group Material. The album mixes jazz, dub and Indian music."

This album is absolutely amazing. Bill Laswell, Wayne Shorter, Zakir Hussain, and Bernie Worrell to name a few. One of the best electronic projects i have come across in a while...


* Bill Laswell – basses, beats, loops, samples, etc
* Wayne Shorter – soprano and tenor saxophones
* William S. Burroughs – voice ("Words of Advice")
* Liu Sola – voice ("Eternal Drift")
* Simon Shaheen – violin and oud
* Nicky Skopelitis – acoustic and electric 6- and 12- string guitars, coral electric sitar, baglama and Fairlight
* Bernie Worrell – electric piano, Hammond B-3 organ
* Bootsy Collins – space bass
* L. Shankar – electric violin
* Sly Dunbar – drum kit
* Jeff Bova – synthesizers
* Jihad Racy – ney
* Jonas Hellborg – acoustic bass guitar and fretless electric bass
* Zakir Hussain – tabla
* Trilok Gurtu – tabla
* Vikku Vinayakram – ghatam
* Fahim Dandan – voice ("The Hidden Garden")
* George Basil – qanoun
* Michael Baklouk – daff, tambourine
* Aïyb Dieng – chatan, congas, percussion

Check It Out!

Hallucination Engine

-Mr. n00b

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Steve Molitz/Dj Logic Project

(Source: Jambands.com)

"Steve Molitz will play a free show with DJ Logic at Brooklyn, NY’s Brooklyn Bowl this evening. The Particle keyboardist will join Logic for an evening of improvised music as part of the venue’s weekly Monday Night Football party. The two musicians recently shared the stage at Brooklyn Bowl and plan to form a new band with Freekbass later this year. Molitz is in New York for a performance with Playing for Change at Town Hall, while the New York-based Logic also performed with Carly Simon earlier this morning on Good Morning America."

Monday, October 26, 2009

Gettin' Dizzy

So I felt after posting a Miles section, i might as well post the man that Miles not only cited as his favorite trumpet player, but also his idol and mentor as a trumpeter coming up in the 30s and 40s. Dizzy's speed and tone along with his complex and catchy writing skills has made him one of the best and most influential Jazz trumpeters ever. If you know of Dizz and dont really listen, i recommend giving him a try. His unique skills made him ahead of his time allowing him to collaborate with other musicians of that time that were also ahead of their time. Such as the Bird, Monk, Blakey, and of course his "apprentice" Miles.

"Together with Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie was a major figure in the development of bebop and modern jazz. He taught and influenced many other musicians, including trumpeters Miles Davis, Fats Navarro, Clifford Brown, Arturo Sandoval, Lee Morgan, and John Faddis.

In addition to featuring in the epochal moments in bebop, he was instrumental in founding Afro-Cuban jazz, the modern jazz version of what early-jazz pioneer Jelly Roll Morton referred to as the "Spanish Tinge". Gillespie was a trumpet virtuoso and gifted improviser, building on the virtuoso style of Roy Eldridge but adding layers of harmonic complexity previously unknown in jazz. Dizzy's beret and horn-rimmed spectacles, his scat singing, his bent horn, pouched cheeks and his light-hearted personality were essential in popularizing bebop."

Get Dizzy:

Dizzy Atmosphere

Cool Breeze

Birk's Works


Salt Peanuts - Dizzy Gillespie,Charlie "Bird" Parker, Charles Mingus, Bud Powell, Max Roach


-Mr. n00b

Zimmer's Picks (DeadStash)

Originally, I was hoping to dedicate this installment of Zimmer's Picks solely to great versions of Slipknot!. However, as I waded through my myriad of Dead-shows, it became impossible to discern between an "epic" Slipknot! and an off-the-hook Help>Slip>Franklin's.

As any true fan will attest, the three-song-sandwich is probably the best way to enjoy any of these phenomenal tunes. And, personally, hearing one without the others always leaves me feeling particularly unsatisfied. The Help>Slip>Franklin's combo was always a great jam-vehicle for the Dead.....especially during the exploratory Slipknot! sections......and has truly earned it's reputation as a fan-favorite.

In putting together the shows for this installment, it was really hard for me not to limit my search to mid/late-70's shows. For my money, Help>Slip!>Franklin's was never better than it was from '76-'78; but there are, of course, some hidden gems out there from later decades.

So.....here are some of my favorite Help>Slip>Franklin's.

ps- I have intentionally tried to include versions that have a particularly nice/exploratory Slipknot! section, as an attempt to stay-true to my original goal.

First up are two great shows from 1976.

June 14 of that year found the Dead playing at the legendary Beacon Theater. You can't go wrong with the entire show, but the H>S>F is what seals the deal for me (especially the long Slipknot! section that clocks in over 13 minutes).

June 14th, 1976

I couldn't choose between the Beacon show and this one.....so I included them both! This show, from October 1, 1976 in Indianapolis, is high-energy right out of the gates....and just keeps getting better.

October 1st, 1976

Stylistically, the 80's were a big departure for the Dead from their 70's sound. But this is not meant to indicate that the material is sub-par. Listen to these two shows of classic 80's Dead and try to tell me that they weren't jamming as hard as ever.

The September 3, 1983 show, from the Boise Pavilion at Boise State University, is a prime example. The second set is filled with hard-jamming. The Slipknot! finds deep, deep places and then transforms into one of the most rocking Franklin's that I have ever listened to.

September 3rd, 1983

The Dead seemed to always play great shows at the Hampton Coliseum, and helped to establish it as a "destination venue" for generations of fans.....and other bands. In this concert, from 1989, the Dead certainly do not disappoint....a great version of Candyman, and an absolutely sublime Morning Dew. Not to mention the stellar H>S>F.

October 8th, 1989

Finally, we come to the 90's.....just barely. This 1990 show, from Madison Square Garden, highlights some great playing from Bruce Hornsby....and the last GREAT H>S>F that the Dead ever played, in my opinion.

September 19th, 1990

Last but not least, I decided to throw in these two shows from 1974. Although it would be some time before the H>S>F would be completely realized, these shows do offer a glimpse of Slipknot! on its own, and in its infancy.

This show, from June of '74, includes the first full-realized performance of Slipknot!. The first set is typical '74 Dead, but the end of the second set it great. The Truckin'>Eyes>Slipknot!>China Doll>One More Saturday Night makes it all worth it.

June 20th, 1974

July 25, 1974, International Amphitheater, Chicago, IL. What can I say about this show......you just need to listen to it. An unbelievable show from start to finish. Make sure to tune-in for the second set Dark Star>Slipknot!.

July 25th, 1974

"They're not the best at what they do, they're the only ones that do what they do." -Bill Graham

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Review: Family Funktion & Sitar Jams

... I walk into the Abilene Bar, a two story house located in Downtown Rochester. The enviroment is quaint yet boasts a classy/casual/relaxed/at home kind of vibe. I find a table off to the side, within' plain view of a setup reminisant of a basement band. The drum kit, tucked off into the corner, was decorated with yellow prayer flags. Immediately to the left; was a rug, with a pillow, effects pedals and a mini synthesizer. To the left of that; the bass set-up with additional effect pedals and amps. I introduce myself to the three gentleman who, at the time were setting up/checking the sound. The Soundcheck abruptly comes to an end as the three wander off in their own direction. One of the gentleman, the sitar player introduces himself to me as Naryan, and follows up with several questions about my being there. After expressing my enjoyment of the band, my one and only time seeing them, my opinions of their music and building a fan base; Naryan seemed very comfortable and receptive. In the background, his brother; Aneal (bass) was shooting pool, while the oldest of the three brothers; Ravi, sits down to join our conversation.

The conversation switches between; touring, building a fanbase, the struggle to book gigs (and get paid for them), taping and distributing music and their new cd, soon to be released. There is a certain excitement and sense of pride that was easily detected when discussing the new cd. Naryan speaks very candidly about how they were pleased with their first recording. Quickly followed up with how much better the current session is going. "We're recording at the Goo Goo Dolls studio." (In Buffalo, NY) "The sound is so much better... and the engineers are really knowledgable." stated Naryan humbley yet confident. Ravi chiming in every once in a while with a overlooked detail. The topic then switches gears to who they listen to musically. Naryan immediately pays homage to Phish, with a huge smile on his face, as most Phish Phans do when describing the band. "I love Phish... I wish I was going to Phish Phest..." Later eluding to being jelous of his friends who will be in attendance.

Another round of beers brings discussion of beer itself. Naryan expresses his enjoyment of drinking good beer, and I quickly agree. He offers a taste of his IPA to his brother, then offereing me a taste. We all agree on it's delightful flavor. Soon after, the merch is set out on the table around which we've been having our discussion. Aneal comes over and joins, as we discuss Medeski, Martin & Wood, The Westcott theatre, and Ravi's desire to play a gig with Soulive. Within' minutes some of their fans start to show up. A cat by the name of Nick turned out to tape the show and another gentleman (who's name escapes me) is obviously a big fan; laying out a few requests and looking as excited as Naryan did when describing Phish.

Family Function & Sitar Jams takes the stage, Naryan exclaiming to me that they feel chill and are going to take it easy tonight. The Three brothers from Buffalo with the sole intent to bring the jams; begin with a very spacey progression reminding me a lot of MMW. They ease into a jam, drop the beats, and the baseline insues. Almost immediately Naryan is reaching down and utilizing the effects of his sythesiser, while Aneal and Ravi create a funk/dance kind of groove. The first set was extremely high energy with a lot of effects and expiramentation.

The second set involved more straight forward sitar, with a darker twist. Additionally a mic was plugged in so we were able to get a few details about some of the songs and a plethera of feedback. The jams were extensive, some lasting what I would estimate at Ten Minutes Plus. The drums were heavy yet calculated. The bass was funky yet spacey, and the sitar playing; innovative and destructive.

Rating 4.5 out of 5

Here is a copy of their first cd: Family Funktion & Sitar Jams


"Family Funktion is a band who's groove is only surpassed by their innovation. They have a way of taking you to outerspace and leaving you on the moon with a discoball."