Richard R. -- 3/4/99 -- Trocadero Theater -- Philadelphia, PA
Rich N. -- 3/4/99 -- Trocadero Theater -- Philadelphia, PA
Fred Schulze -- Bowery Ballroom
Jess -- 3/4/99 -- Trocadero Theater -- Philadelphia, PA
John -- 3/4 in Philly, and 3/5-3/6 in NYC
dr -- 3/5 and 3/6 -- The Bowery Ballroom -- NY, NY
Jess -- 3/5/99 -- The Bowery Ballroom -- NY, NY
Matthew -- 3/5/99 -- The Bowery Ballroom -- NY, NY
Jess -- 3/6/99 -- The Bowery Ballroom -- NY, NY
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On a cold Thurs. 3/4 in Philly, the lads came out about 9:45 to yelps of "Rupe....Rupe.." from the crowd, and one boisterous guy continuously yelling "I Want Everything" (He was pleasantly rewarded later...) The 19-tune, 100-minute set started with three songs from G.BLUES, the same opening songs as last month's D.C. show. Ripping into "I See the Light" as the fourth entry proved that the band is still not about to stick with the same set list nightly, although the overall structure remained similar. Adam Duritz added to the uniqueness of the show by joining in on a few songs and flat-out taking lead vocals on two! He seems to be a genuine Cracker fan and the band certainly enjoyed his interaction.
The planned "Trials and Tribulations" after "Eurotrash Girl" didn't work due to guitar problems, so we were treated to the possibly-overplayed "Lonesome J.Blues". "T&T" shuffled its way finally after "Teen Angst" and the always-spooky "Dr. Bernice". "This is Cracker Soul" is always a pleasant treat, this time priming the audience up for a hard-rocking pair of "Sweet Thistle Pie" and "100 Flower Power Max.", a song which works so much better at this point in the set than in the earlier spots of the past few tours. "Pix of Matchstick Men", the crowd-pleasing "World is Mine", "I Want Everything", and the more-often-than-not last song "Low" were included, as well. A drippingly-beautiful encore of "Big Dipper"/"St.Cajetan" sealed the evening as a great Cracker show.
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After that came Cracker (after a generous introduction by Adam Duritz)
Set list in order:
1.James River 2.Been Around the World 3.7 Days 4.I See the light (w/ Adam Duritz backing vocals) 5.Eurotrash Girl 6.an attempt at Trials and Tribulations that was aborted because of guitar troubles 7.Lonesome Johnny Blues 8.Teen Angst 9.Dr. Bernice 10.Trials and Tribulations 11.Pictures of Matchstick Men 12.The World Is Mine 13.This is Cracker Soul(cut, got new guitar) 14.This is Cracker Soul w/ Adam Duritz on lead vocals 15.Sweet Thistle Pie 16.100 Flower Power Maximum 17.I Want Everything 18.The Dylan song With Adam Duritz on lead 19.Low (Adam Duritz backing vocals and tambourine) *encore* 20.Big Dipper 21.St. Cajetan (total strings broken by David, 2)notes on the show... very cool. sounded great. =) What I thought was really cool was that David put his foot up on the monitor "Johnny style" during Sweet Thistle Pie, I Want Everything, and Low. Don't know how significant that was but it just felt good to see it up there... =) Dr. Bernice is SO cool!!! especially w/ the new arrangement (I know I've said that before but I have to say it again!) Adam was great and cool and it was fun to see him up there w/ the guys having such a great time. Lots of energy! Sorry I don't remember more about the show... I do know I got patted down before entering though! Strictest club I've been to so far as far as that's concerned.
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That had to be the most incredible road trip I've ever taken.
Philly: Jena Kraus, Gigalo Aunts, and Cracker
New York night one: Jena Kraus, Gigalo Aunts, and Cracker
New York night two: Jena Kraus, Lionfish, and Cracker
A bit about each place first ... the Troc is Philly is nice, but the stage is a little high. We ended up staying back a few body widths for this show rather than get neck cramps pressed up against the 30' tall stage (okay, it wasn't that high, but you get the idea. It looks like a small old theater, complete with a balcony, and they even converted the projector room to a bar.
The Bowery Ballroom is nice. Some might say it's in a scary part of town (then again, some would say that about New York City), but then I live in DC and freely park my car at the 9:30 Club. The stage height was perfect (not that this is something I look for in a club, it just occurred to me because of the Troc).
Jena Kraus was the opening act each night for Cracker's opening band. It was just her and her guitar, not her old guitar though, that one was stolen. (She has a song about that...) The first night it was an unplugged acoustic and the other nights it was plugged. There weren't all that many people around to see her each night - but us dead heads on the east coast like to get to shows early, so we were there, front row center pretty much. (You know it's bad when you forget your left and right and think Johnny and Bob instead.) She sounds something like Jewel or maybe Janis, to sum her up as fast as possible. After her set the second night I reached out to grab her set list, she nodded, so I swiped it. Later on that night I was able to get her to sign the set list too (and I hope the picture that Nancy took of us together comes out!). She got a real kick out of me taking her set list, it seemed like it was the first time that had happened to her. : ) I felt guilty the next night though, she didn't have set list to play off. I must have swiped her only copy. She later told me that she has finished a cd, but it was shelved by the record company, so it may never see the light of day. : ( She's so small time she doesn't have a web page I can point anyone too, but I gave her my email address, so that might change one day (like I have any free time ...). Oh, if you want to hear her, she is on Blind Melon's Soup cd. She is singing with Shannon on Mouthful of Cavities (track #13).
The Gigalo Aunts were great in Philly and New York. I've heard *of* them, but never really heard their music. Now, I'm upset that Jill didn't pressure me (and the rest of us) to rush out and buy their cds. Thanks to Woody for passing me a couple of picks from the stage after their set. : ) (I got one for you too Jill, I think Jess has it.) Adam did introduce these guys both nights and helped them closed with "So You Wanna Be a Rock and Roll Star" which was great - and made me want to catch Petty doing it again.
Lionfish blew me away. LP caught my attention with her song hidden away on GB, but I'd never heard her band until Saturday night. She is an incredible singer. I couldn't find any of their stuff, even on cdnow, but you can order their stuff on their web site: http://www.lionfishmusic.com/ I have to get their two cds they have available. I was also able to get 3/4 of the band to sign their set list for me. : )
Now for Cracker
I don't know if any other show I could see could top these shows, especially the two nights at the Bowery.
This is all three nights run together ...
Adam introduced Cracker as his second favorite band. Cracker had so much energy on stage and they all looked like they were having an incredible time. I'm sure all the extra people running around the stage (LP, Joan, Adam, and Steve Wynn) helped. : )
Joan & Johnny did a beautiful version of Wedding Day. Just the two of them on stage alone under a spotlight. Damn, I love the last lines of that song.
Joan had a great time taunting all the guys on the stage, and the crowd even. Johnny got the most of the attention though. Poor lonesome Johnny. : ) She was stomping around the stage with a cordless mic -- she looks really dangerous with those platform shoes of hers. On the first New York night we saw her just walking away from the club .. we spotted the shoes.
Adam sang lead on This is Cracker Soul, and I think he summed up the whole Cracker thing" doing it. This version is going to stick in my head forever -- I loved it. He kept holding his arms out wide when saying "this is Cracker Soul". Adam sang back up (and played tambourine) on a few songs (on Johnny's side) -- During one of them he lunged at the mic for the next verse and he ended up hitting it into Johnny. *oops* They both had a good laugh about it though.
Johnny almost pounded me in the head with the neck of his black guitar a few times during some really good solos. I would love to sit and look at that guitar under a quieter setting. He's got tons of things drawn on it. Besides his "7" there is a bunch of mojo working stuff on it. I was also terrified that Adam was going to land on me while he was dancing around on the monitors. Nancy *_* and I saved him once when he got his mic cord wrapped around a monitor. We got a smile and a thumbs up from him for saving him. I got a high five as he was leaving the stage later.
LP (of Lionfish) was out to sing backup on a few songs too, and she of course did an incredible version of that Cinderella song. Seeing her do that song was probably the highlight for me (then again maybe when Adam sang This is Cracker Soul ...)
At a few points David, Johnny, Bob, Frank, Kenny, Joan, Adam and LP were all out on stage at once. Wow. Joan and LP took over Bob's side of the stage, and it looked like Bob was having a great time behind them. : )
Nancy was kind enough to let me take a few pictures with her camera too. I hope the pictures of Kenny with his accordion all stretched out comes out clear. The other professional photographers were not all that kind. They were rude. They were coming up behind us and pushing people out of the way to get their shots of the band. I found a way to get them off my back though, if you bump into them enough while your dancing around they search for another spot. : )
It's also amazing that the drunken frat boys didn't show up. Well, at least I didn't get any beer down my back at any of the shows. : ) I'm sure someone else did though. Joan, Johnny, and Adam all took turns threatening to kicked a beer/water/martini all over me though. When you want to get rid of your drink at a show, don't pass it to the people at the front of the stage, the trash cans are in the back. : )
They closed the last set with a new song from Joan, she said it was only a couple weeks old. It was so new that you could see the band giving each other signals for various parts of the song - and they of course didn't miss a beat. Let's see some MTV band pull off something like that.
It was good running into some of the other people from the list too.
A few extra tidbits ...
Kenny was showing pictures of his new baby to a few people after one of the shows.
Frank does look good with his sideways haircut too : ) He looks even more like a wild man going at the drums. I love the look in his eyes when he's really getting into it.
We all got backstage (just the third night) and Jess and I were standing against the wall in a room above the club. Chris was some where near us, I don't know, we were packed in there so tight. Mango, Nancy *_* and Karen were talking to David & Johnny. Nearly every one was up there.
Jena, LP and others from Lionfish (not the bass player), David, Johnny, Kenny and Frank. Bob wasn't up there, but we passed him on the stairs. Frank (or someone else near Frank) kept turning the lights brighter in the room until everyone yelled about it - Frank was laughing though. I looked to my right to see who I was standing next to, and it turned out to be LP. LP told me that her, David, Johnny and Bob wrote that Cinderella song. I've got my email address in her little black book (Nancy's *_* email address is in there too, but it's upside down). Nancy *_* got her Cracker Coaster signed by LP too. I got a picture with Jess, Chris, Karen and David too!
We smuggled a few GB posters away the first night of the Bowery show, but they didn't put any out for the second night. : ( Oh, and I think I've completed my GB t-shirt collection - black, white and sticker. Mango gave David a copy of the Fillmore cd and Jess gave one to Woody, later we heard from Woody that their soundboard tape of the show had screwed up (nearly non existent) vocals - so it turns out our Fillmore cd is better than their copy. A few people are jealous : )
Oh, a really nice tip of the hat to the folks at the Bowery. After Jena's set (or maybe it was just before that) a waitress went around to take drink orders from everyone - including those at the front of the stage.
I think I bruised the inside of my knuckles from clapping so much the past three days. Ouch.
After the first Bowery show Frank was walking around the floor talking to people and came right up to Jess and pointed at her and said "Awesome web page!". She melted right away and we had to carry her home in a paper cup. : )
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Howard Stern even showed up Saturday to grace us with himself. He was boppin his head like the rest of us.
Both shows were sell-outs.
CRACKER were huge crowd pleasers. I haven't seen a concert from a band in a very long time to produce that kind of vibe that night. Wish you all could have experienced it for yourselves.
The bar has been raised......
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OK, then Jena goes on and John swoons some more... and got his picture taken w/ her.
Then came Gigolo Aunts. Again played great, same basic set list. BTW they were funny and nice guys too. Got a pick and sticker for you Jill (we were thinking of you the whole time!)
Then Cracker came on...
set list in order:
1.James River 2.Been Around the World 3.7 Days w/ Joan on backing vocals at Bob's mike 4.Teen Angst 5.Eurotrash Girl 6.Trials and Tribulations 7.Platform Shoes, Joan lead 8.100 Flower Power Maximum 9.Dr. Bernice 10.I See the Light (w/ Adam Duritz and Joan Osborne backing) 11.This is Cracker Soul w/ Adam Duritz on lead) 12.Wedding Day a duet w/Joan Osborne and Johnny 13.Pictures of Matchstick Men 14.Sweet Thistle Pie w/ LP from Lionfish and Joan Osborne backing 15.Cinderella LP from Lionfish singing lead 16.Get Off This 17.Steve Wynn sings lead on one of his songs "Tell Me When It's Over" 18.the Dylan song again "The Easy Chair" w/ Adam Duritz on lead, and Joan Backing vocals *he broke one of David's guitar strings! *encore* 19.Help Me w/ Joan lead 20.Low W/ Adam backing and on tambourinecomments... cool show... different perspective from Bob's side... shows it's good to see the shows from different spots when possible. Only drawback, no good view of the fully extended accordion. =( But clear shot of Frank from there. =) Oh and some of Bob's expressions, especially when LP and Joan were out to sing Sweet Thistle Pie were priceless. I hope Nancy's shots come out! (Joan and LP flanked Bob for their stint in STP and they were really playing it up) Also Joan really played it up the whole show w/ Johnny. It was pretty funny. =) She really can burn up the stage. LP's voice was stupendous on Cinderella. She's (LP) so tiny! It's amazing that someone so small can have such a huge voice. Adam was great as well.. Everyone looked like they were having so much fun... OH BTW the night David opened Adam's beer (I can't remember if it was Philly or the Bowery, but I think he had an opener on his key chain not the guitar cord...) Oh and I forgot to say that all 3 nights David said he wanted to thank the fans for sticking with them through the years. =) hmmm what else... Wedding Day was really pretty... Just Johnny, Joan and the acoustic guitar, no drums bass etc. Don't really know who the Steve Wynn guy is (of if I spelled his name right of if I got the song name right) but the song was not bad. Oh and HE broke one of David's strings. He was playing one of David's Charvels and popped a string in the song. That was the only string broken that night.... Oh and the icing on the cake. After the show, Frank walked right up to me and said he checked out my page and that he thought it was really cool! OK, so I almost melted right there. =) Anyway, you get that the show was super great BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE!
Afterwards they were selling t-shirts and CDs down stairs... and (oh I forgot to mention the place was plastered w/ GB cat posters and Mark did a fine job of nabbing them for the needy) so I got 2 shirts, the black one w/ the cat and the white one w/ a picture of the sticker that came on the CD when it came out. And yes Carol, Chris, got a black one for you as promised! =)
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Last night's show was the best live performance I've ever seen, by any band in any venue.
I thought Thursday's show in Philly was pretty good, but I (along with about a thousand other screaming fans) was completely devastated by yesterday's show.
Mental note: bring no more dates to any show in which Joan Osborne will be on stage.
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Jena played well again. Then Lionfish came on. They were really great and as soon as I financially recover from this trip I will buy their CDs from their web site! =) The band has 2 guys (drums and bass) and 2 girls (electric and acoustic guitar and backing vocals and lead and harmonica) LP played harmonica, and acoustic and electric guitar (not all at once, but overall =) She sings great and it sounded like the backing harmonies were really nice as well. Also, near the end they covered the Beatles classic from Abbey Road "Oh, Darling" and she simply tore it to shreds. Came really close to stepping on me a few times too. =) But seriously... this girl is amazing!
After that came Cracker...
set list in order:
1.Been Around the World 2.7 Days w/ Joan backing 3.I See the Light w/ Adam Duritz, LP, and Joan Osborne backing (by this time the photographers were crushing me against the stage so I couldn't dance to this song to get shots of Adam and Joan) 4.Eurotrash Girl 5.Cinderella w/ LP on lead 6.Wedding Day duet w/ Johnny and Joan 7.Sweet Thistle Pie w/ Joan and LP 8.Teen Angst 9.100 Flower Power Maximum 10.This Is Cracker Soul w/ Adam on lead 11.The World Is Mine 12.Trials and Tribulations 13.Platform Shoes Joan lead 14.Pictures of Matchstick Men 15.Big Dipper 16.the Dylan song w/ Adam on lead and Joan backing ?The Easy Chair? 17.Low w/ Adam backing and on tambourine *encore* 18.Lonesome Johnny Blues 19.a newly written Joan Osborne song w/ Joan on leadcomments...this show was also super great the energy was amazing... Being Johnny side put me right there for all the solos PLUS I got a great view of Kenny and his accordion during Eurotrash Girl and Lonesome Johnny. =) LP was great as was Adam... Joan was great too. After LP finished Cinderella, Joan came out and said she was a little intimidated after that, before she started singing Wedding Day with Johnny. Also near the end Joan gushed out something about how she was a red blooded Cracker fan and was proud to be singing w/ then and then, commented somewhat embarrassedly away from the microphone that it sounded so cheesy (hey, John help me out here, how exactly did she phrase it?) It was hilarious though. =) The new Joan song sounded really good, but it was hard to make out the lyrics. All the Cracker stuff was super great. =) Oh and we cracked the code for at least 1 Cracker song... when David holds up his index finger and mouths "one" that means they're playing 100 FPM. Yes I know we have too much spare time on our hands, right Mark? Chris? =) Chris, I'll let you tell them about your pick experience. =)
OK so the show was great, and afterwards, since Karen is just that cool, we got to go "upstairs" and hang out in the green room type area. There were about 15,000 other folks crammed into that room and I believe at one time both Chris and I almost tumbled onto Joan, who was sitting in a chair. Nancy and Karen got to talk with David and Kenny. (me, I'm too shy to, so I couldn't). Anyway I believe we've gathered that the Alaska dates are firm, there are some possible April dates in Colorado... and we aren't sure about the exact translation about the Shiner Song but it's something like "we're drinking and we've got girls and we're having a good time." =) Oh and David asked what song we'd suggest to go up next on his site Mango Mark suggested Shake Some Action, I blurted Pagan Birth of Jesus but I don't think it made it across the great divide into the conversation, then David mentioned he had some good clips of stuff recorded at the ..... drum roll please........ Symphony Show from Valentines day in 97!!! So lets all hope he puts those up! =) Oh, and Nancy and Karen got a photo w/ David and then Chris, Mark, John and I got a photo with David, then we had a close encounter w/ a very friendly and drunk Adam Duritz... He told us to have a nice night etc. and we responded accordingly... Then the bouncer guy grabbed my ass. Yep. You read it right. I guess I'm shocked since it's the first time I've every been groped... (yep made it all the way to 21 grope free) put his huge hand right on the right cheek and squeezed. then he said to move on out like that's why he did it, but you can tell an incidental push to a premeditated squeeze... anyway a surreal end to a surreal experience... funny though. =) Anyway, it was strange...
Great show though and a perfect birthday trip! =)
For the last song .. Joan came out and was explaining how new the song was and how proud she was ... and something about being a red blooded Cracker fan .. then she pulled the mic away from herself and turned to Johnny and David and said something like ... "damn, that sounded really lame .. " and then she laughed.
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thanks guys, your pal anne
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Though I knew ahead of time, it seems the fact that the Counting Crow's Adam Duritz was going to be there was a surprise to most folks who were pretty shocked when he walked out to introduce the opening act, Gigolo Aunts. He announced he'd be emceeing the show, then introduced the band.
The Aunts played for about an hour, a great set capped off by Adam coming out, beer in one hand, floppy tweed hat in the other, to sing lead on So You Want to Be a Rock and Roll Star.
After the Gigolo Aunts set, Adam came back out to introduce Cracker. Never had the opportunity to see Cracker live before this and I was blown away. It was just an amazing time. They played some stuff off their new album Gentlemen's Blues including Seven Days, and The World Is Mine and some older favorites like Sweet Thistle Pie, Euro Trash Girl and Teen Angst (What The World Needs Now).
Adam joined them to sing back ups and play tambourine on several songs, one of which as an incredibly spirited rendition of Low. Adam also sang lead on a cover of Bob Dylan's You A in't Going Nowhere and on This is Cracker Soul.
All in all a great evening of music.
James River Been Around the World Seven Days I See The Light (Adam sings with Johnny Hickman) Euro-trash Girl Lonesome Johnny Blues Teen Angst Dr. Bernice Trials and Tribulations Pictures of Matchstick Men The World is Mine Cracker Soul (Adam sings lead) Sweet Thistle Pie 100FPM I Want Everything A cover of Bob Dylan's You Ain't Going Nowhere (Adam sings lead) Low (Adam sings with Johnny Hickman) Encore Big Dipper St. Cajetan
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