I’ve just returned from the Dave Matthews Band Fan member site (The Warehouse) on my annual quest for tickets to the two DMB concerts that they perform in West Palm Beach.
The Warehouse allows members to request tickets before they go on sale to the public. This is the 13th year of going to DMB concerts with my love Shannon. This year would have marked the 14th year of Dave concerts for us but DMB didn’t tour in 2011 (the only year that Dave and his mates didn’t tour in over 20 years).
Now we wait and see what kind of seats we’ll get in the fan lottery (seats are divvied up by seniority in the DMB fan club). Wish us luck! Last year we had the best seats we’ve ever received and it really made for an amazing show. This puts me in mind of our upcoming anniversary of meeting in Phoenix – our 14th.
In honor of Dave Matthews Band imminent arrival in West Palm Beach for their two night stand on Friday and Saturday (July 20 and 21, 2012) I found a big eyed fish (youtube link) to snap with my camera. This fish was peaking out at me on the fence of a restaurant dumpster hideaway (Panama Hattie’s in Palm Beach Gardens).
For you non Dave fans the band took their first year off from touring in over 20 years last year. With the year off we’re pent up even more than normal to see them. We’ve missed the guys and their tunes so much. I’d love to hear Shan’s favorite #41 this year. And Big Eyed Fish would be great. It’s a tune that alternates between haunting and humorous in both lyric and tone.
Shannon and I made our annual two night pilgrimage to see Dave Matthews Band over the past two evenings at West Palm Beach’s Cruzan Amphitheater. I’ll cover the Dave stuff first and then end with a roundup of our family news and attendees for these shows.
Rating for Friday’s performance: 4 out of 5
Here’s a little homemade YouTube video from a fellow fan from Friday’s show.
Rating for Saturday’s performance 4 out of 5
Highlights: All the cover songs they performed: Peter Gabriel’s Sledgehammer, Sly and the Family Stone’s Thank You, Pink Floyd’s Money and The Beatles’ Money (these were played back to back).
Dave introducing Old Dirt Hill (Bring that Beat Back) during his set on Saturday night. He recounted a story about a reporter asking him if this song was about him and that he had replied that the song was not about him. After the interview he thought about it more and realized that Old Dirt Hill WAS about him.
Cover songs: Even though I had read about these cover songs it was something else to see and hear them. I was really amazed to hear how Dave sounded singing them. The band appeared to really enjoy playing some different material as well. Dave’s dancing on Thank You (for letting me by myself) during night two’s encore was especially lively as he performed his uniquely goofy dancing much to the appreciation of everyone present.
The other highlights included Tim Reynolds playing AMAZING GUITAR on a number of electric guitars through the entire set. He wheeled out a Red Fender Stratocaster (Tim’s go-to guitar) for much of the evening but also played a Gibson Flying V for many tunes and busted out a Gibson Les Paul for a couple of songs as well. Especially great was his slide guitar that he played on two tunes. This and his playing overall really added texture and edge to the Band’s performance. The interplay between him and the regular band were really additive to the show. While it was great to hear him solo, I was also impressed with how he slipped right into Dave’s sound playing rhythm guitar to the point where, if you weren’t paying attention, you wouldn’t be thinking there was any difference to Dave’s normal sound.
It was strange without Butch Taylor playing piano and keyboards and even more so without sax player LeRoi Moore, who is out for the summer tour since his ATV accident of a few weeks ago. You can leave LeRoi a get well e-card at his hospital’s web site. Dave actually played piano on one song on Friday night’s performance. We’d like to see more of this Dave!
Jeff Coffin, who normally plays sax for Bela Fleck and The Flecktones filled in brilliantly for LeRoi. Shannon and I were blown away that he could play each of the songs so fluidly. I shouldn’t be surprised, he’s such an accomplished musician and he’s played pretty extensively over the last twelve years with Dave and the crew. But it’s still something to see someone drop into a brilliant live band like DMB and actually keep up. Amazing.
It was a blast as always. I’m sorry that my over appreciation for Tequila spoiled the first night (sorry everyone!). That’s all I’ve got to say on that score. That, and I think I’m making a pledge to just not drink at any more Dave concerts from here on out so I don’t make anyone miss any of his songs!
Here’s the set list from Saturday’s show.
I have one omission on song six and let’s face it, even sober I might have made an error on the rest. I’ll wait for another poster to fill in the blank on six and to double check my set list accuracy.
- Don’t Drink The Water
- Dreaming Tree
- One Sweet World
- Rhyme and Reason
- Blank! Will add later.
- Cover: Pink Floyd’s Money
- Cover: The Beatles Money
- Pay for what you Get
- Old Dirt Hill (Bring that beat back)
- Louisiana Bayou
- Grave Digger
- Ee Hee
- So Much To Say
- Too Much
- Tripping Billies
18. Encore: Rapunzel
19. Encore: Cover: Sly and The Family Stone’s Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin
Our Family Dave Stuff
Shannon being the oldest of 5 kids was the instigator in her family of their mutual appreciation for Dave Matthews Band. All of her siblings ranging from her baby sister Brittany (18) to her second oldest sis Kristen (25) are all fans that try to make it to see DMB every year. This year Brittany went with her boyfriend Alex and also in tow were Shan’s brother Michael, her sis Jenna and her boyfriend Will (who cites DMB as his favorite band).
On Friday’s show we also snagged an extra seat for my 12 year old Charlie so he could come with us. It was Charlie’s second concert (way too few for a 12 YO!). His first was a DMB concert we attended at Shoreline Amphitheater in the San Francisco Bay Area when Shannon and I lived in Los Gatos (near San Jose). On that occasion we went with my dad Lorenz and my oldest sons Max and Charlie. They all loved that first Dave concert but Charlie was much older for this one and as of three weeks ago has started to learn guitar. These things combined to make it much more interesting for him. Especially with Dave’s great acoustic playing and guitar pro Tim Reynolds playing in the band this summer – and playing electric for the entire set. More on that later. It was great fun for everyone on the first night. On Saturday just Shannon and I went and we got to hear the band play ‘our song’ – Crush, which was perfect!
On a closing note I’ve got to cop to the fact that I’ve now missed meeting up with TWO Miami friends at Dave Concerts. Three years ago I was supposed to hook up with Juan Monch and didn’t, and this Friday I was supposed to see my friend Carlos Villanueva. Somehow both of us managed to not text each other Friday! So sorry to have missed you Carlos!
This morning I got an email from my favorite Dave Matthews Band fan site with the very sad news that longtime ‘guest’ member and keyboardist Butch Taylor just left the band. Here’s the story on WeeklyDaveSpeak.com titled “After 10 years of Touring, Butch Taylor Calls it Quits“. As long time Dave fans, Shannon and I have always been perplexed as to why Butch wasn’t given full band status given the inclusive nature of the band. It seems just as hard to see him leave as it would if Stefan or another member were to go. Shudder to think.
Speculation I’ve read is that he was just really tired of being on the road and wanted to be home with his family back in DMB home town Charlottesville Virginia. Funny enough, my search for more news on Butch landed me on acclaimed T.V. interviewer Charlie Rose’s web site. There I found a ‘Butch Taylor’ tagged video that was actually a one hour video special on the entire band, their music and history. I have NO IDEA how I missed this Charlie Rose special. About two thirds of the way through the special they introduce Butch and strangely enough (or not) the one thing they show Butch talking about is how difficult being on the road is and how he missed his family. Not surprisingly all the band quickly agreed with Butch but it still struck me as pretty interesting given that he made the comment seven years ago.
I’ve embedded the Charlie Rose special below and even if you’re not a huge Dave head I think anyone interested even vaguely in music would find it very interesting. There’s much to see here in terms of their highly varied musical heroes, the eclectic mix of music styles, backgrounds and personalities that are just as far ranging.
Whether you know me or not I’m here to say that only my family is more important in my life than music and no other band is more important to me or Shannon than the Dave Matthews Band. I am truly saddened that when Shannon and I see them this summer for the umpteenth time Butch won’t be playing with them. We can only hope that he’ll soon miss his band mates and that his family will understand his desire to be with them again.
Butch we will miss you and we wish you peace, happiness and our sincerest gratitude for what you’ve brought to your band’s music, the songs, the fills, the leads, the solos, the rhythm and some serious pearly sparkle. You were lucky to be with Dave and Company and they were lucky to have you. And to your family, thank you so much for sharing him with us for all those years.