Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Deadheads Boycott The Dead


Check out this article in Rolling Stone called Deadheads Boycott The Dead. My buddy Modeski clued me in on it. Sounds like a bunch of bullshit to me. But here's the jist:
Grateful Dead fans, perhaps rock's most dedicated bunch, are taking a stand against the band they love. Until recently, Deadheads could download countless live recordings of the band for free from third-party sites, including the popular Live Music Archive (archive.org), which once hosted nearly 3,000 Grateful Dead shows. All of the downloads were pulled last week at the request of Grateful Dead Merchandising (GDM), the group that handles official products for the band and is overseen by its surviving members.

Deadheads have answered in protest. In an online petition, fans have pledged to boycott GDM -- including CDs and concert tickets -- until the decision is reversed. (The band itself broke up in the wake of leader Jerry Garcia's 1995 death, but in recent years guitarist Bob Weir, bassist Phil Lesh and drummers Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann have toured simply as "the Dead.")

GDM recently began selling live music downloads through its online store. The sudden lockdown could be a simple non-compete strike, or it could foreshadow a long-rumored deal with iTunes that will make the entire Grateful Dead live vault available for purchase.

Fans were incensed that the policy change applies not only to official soundboards but audience recordings as well. Throughout their four-decade career, the Grateful Dead actively encouraged fans to trade live recordings and even designated a special "taper's section" at the concerts. In return, Deadheads largely respected the band's wishes that the concert recordings weren't sold for profit... More
I blame Jerry's wife Debra Koons. She's a cunt.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Trey Wallingford Setlist

11.19.05 Trey Anastasio Band, Wallingford, CT

Set I: Push On Til the Day (w/ Jen & Russell on horns), Cayman Review (w/ Jen & Russell on horns), Shine, Dark And Down, Money Love and Change, Wherever You Find It, Night Speaks To A Woman (w/ Jen & Russell on horns)

Trey Acoustic Set: Invisible (w/ Christina & Jen), Love That Breaks All Lines (w/ Christina & Jen on horns), Harry Hood, Sample in a Jar

Set II: Spin > Sand, The Way I Feel (w/ Jen & Russell), Come As Melody

Encore: Alive Again (w/ Jen & Russell on horns), First Tube (w/ Jen & Russell on horns)

Review pending... Highlights were acoustic Harry Hood and Sand. Senor had a great tme. Good to hear TAB with horns again!

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Trey Utica Setlist (with Mike & Fishman)

My friend Danny sent me a text last night and said it was an average show, but seeing Gordo and Fishman made it special. Here's the setlist courtesy of Phantsasy Tour:
11.11.05 Utica Memorial Auditorium, Utica, NY

Set I: Mr. Completely, Spin, Drifting, Dark And Down, Night Speaks To A Woman, Shine, Money Love and Change, Push On Til the Day, Come As Melody

Acoustic Set with Mike Gordon: Access Me, The Divided Sky (with FIshman on cymbals), Get Back On The Train, Heavy Things, Bathtub Gin> Ghost

Encore: Boogie On Reggae Woman (with Mike on Bass and Fish on Drums)
In the past few days, Trey has played with everyone from Phish. OK, let's hope he gets his shit together and decides to get the band back together.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Trey on Letterman Tonight

I betcha they are gonna play Shine. Anyway Trey will be on Letterman tonight, Friday November 11th.

Trey will be on Late Night With Conan O'Brien next Thursday night, November 17th and the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on Monday December 12.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Halfway There: Page Plays with Trey in NYC

Wow, talk about a nice surprise! Page McConnell came out and played four songs with Trey during the encrore at Roseland Ballroom. Page is by far my favorite member of Phish and it was a nice unexpected treat to see 1/2 of Phish together. Page played tenatively on Strange Design. He then got a little more aggressive on Waves. And kicked ass with Trey on Waste. For the second encire, Page, John Medeski, and Peter Applebaum came out for First Tube. Trey had four guys on keyboards at the same time. I had been debating all night whether the show was better that the Aladdin Theatre in Las Vegas show. Page coming out for the encore was the tie-breaker. If you skipped Roseland Ballroon, you missed a pretty good show.

Trey Anastasio Band Setlist, 11.08.05 Roseland Ballroom, New York, NY

Set 1: Air Said To Me, Night Speaks To A Woman, Sweet Dreams Melinda, Money Love and Change, Shine, 46 Days, Push On Til the Day

Trey Acoustic Set: Loving Cup, Pebbles and Marbles, Never, Sample in a Jar

Set 2: Sleep Again, Simple Twist Up Dave, Low, Mr. Completely, Spin, Come As Melody

Encore 1: Strange Design, Waves, Waste (all with Page and Trey on acoustic)

Encore 2: First Tube (with Page, John Medeki & Peter Applebaum

Chris Wood and his brother Oliver opened. They played a Dead song and a Beatles tune. I'll post a review tomorrow.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Review: Trey Anastasio Band, Cincy 11.5.05

Trey Anastasio Band Review by G-Money
Taft Theatre, Cincinnati, Ohio
November 5, 2005

Trey likes Cincinnati. I mean he REALLY likes playing here! How do I know? Well, there's the part where he told the crowd how much he likes playing here, and then there are the actual shows themselves, with the possible exception of the "comeback shows" of 2003 at US Bank Arena which were uneven at best. However the September 2000 at Riverbend Music Center was a barnburner! I would love to see that on a Live Phish release some day!

So what I am saying is that Trey had a pretty good track record coming into the Queen City. So I was looking forward to seeing the new improved TAB I had first witnessed 3 months earlier in Indianapolis, with the added female vocalists and kick-ass Tony Hall on bass!
Trey Anastasio SETLIST 11/05/05

Night Speaks To A Woman, Sleep Again, Sand, Shine, Dark And Down, Invisible1, Alive Again, Come As Melody, Sample in a Jar2, Dirt2, At the Gazebo2, Pebbles and Marbles2, Chalkdust Torture2, Money Love and Change, Tuesday, 46 Days, Push On Til the Day

Encore: First Tube> Cincinnati

1 With Trey and Les on acoustic guitars
2 Solo acoustic
I arrived an hour or more before the show in hopes of finding any type of "Shakedown Street" near the venue. Alas, there was none to be found, just a few veedubs parked in the nearest lot next to the venue, jamming some tunes and drinking some imports. Because this was in the middle of downtown, and because that downtown was conservative Cincinnati, I didn't expect much of an outside scene and I guess to that extent I wasn't surprised. Undeterred, I went to Margaritas Cantina for mas tequila and preshow fire up with my loyal jamband partner, Mr Fabulous and his foxy sidekick, Meaux!

We arrived in Taft Theatre just after the opening act of Tea Leaf Green, so I can't really comment on them, other than to say that I like what I have heard of them on Nugs.net. Mr Fabulous has scored us some nice seats on the floor, right center, about 35 rows back.

It was great to see the show even closer than the balcony seats I have had for the last Trey show with Dr Pauly and Snailtrax and for Widespread Panic. As the opening notes of Night Speaks to a Woman rang out the place absolutely EXPLODED with energy! Once again, as in Indy, Trey picked a winner to open the show! The band played it well, and Mr Fabulous commented "You can really HEAR the bass in the mix this time!"

It was true of course, Tony Hall is up in the mix and driving the band much better the previous Taft show with a different bass player.

Sleep Again was the next song and never was a song more appropriately titled! I fought hard not to pass out from boredom and smash my head on the seat in front of me. I guess what I am saying is that the new songs are just not doing it for me yet. It’s not just because I am not familiar with them. I can hear a songs potential even on the first listen, but the new one are just not moving me much. Having said that though, I must say that Sleep Again does have a really nice Beatle-ish Strawberry Fields-feel to it, so the jury is still out on that one.

Sand was next, and it was one of the highpoints of the night for me. Well played and grooved out, it makes you wonder what these guys could do with a few MORE Phish tunes in the set. Shine was next, and I think this one is gonna take a while for me to get into. At this point I decided to try my favorite concert trick:

SEE HOW CLOSE I CAN GET TO THE FRONT!

As you take each additional step past each row a surge of adrenalin spikes though you..... 20th row.... 15th row..... where are the security/ticket people in the right center of the floor? Nowhere to be found my friend, that's where, and so I worked my way over to an empty seat in the SECOND ROW!

I saw the situation for what it was: Manna from heaven, and quickly ran back up to Mr Fab and Meaux and brought them back down with me to enjoy the rest of the show from the Third row! Meanwhile, I had befriended all my fellow freaks and was now leaning on a sub-cabinet in the FRONT ROW!

So it was from this vantage point that we enjoyed the rest of the show. It was great to see the band so close and watch their eye contact and facial expressions. I could tell how much Trey was enjoying himself during the show. He never stopped smiling and exchanging grins with bandmates. Tony Hall was the biggest ham of all, making faces and interacting with the front rows the whole show!

Alive Again was another highlight with the band hitting the carribbean groove on all cylinders. Come as Melody was consistently good, as it has been for many years in concert. That brought us to the mid-set "Trey revisits Phish acoustic style."

I actually look forward to this part of the show and he did not disappoint. As he picked up his acoustic, Trey addressed the crowd: "I really love playing here in Cincinnati! I remember the Phish tour in 2003 when we played here and there was a fire at the hotel we were staying at(The song Cincinnati is about that night). Anyway, they were making announcements about the fire, and I look out my window and a fire truck had just pulled up right in front of the hotel. Then I see one of those fire truck ladders on the back of the truck angling up and coming right up toward ME on the 12th floor! I start looking around the room, thinking I have started the fire! As I got into the hallway and see the other guys in Phish, I say to them, 'Man for a second there, I thought I had started that fire.'

Phish, Mike and Page all respond in unison, "Yeah we thought the same thing too!!"

The whole crowd gave a cheer!

Then he continued: "Now I am gonna play a few Phish tunes for you."

(Crowd erupts)

"Yeah I love those guys and (paraphrasing here) as for the future, who knows?"

Well that was quite the comment, but probably shouldn't be overanalyzed. We will just have to keep our fingers crossed on that one!

The first song on the acoustic set was a new one for me. Acoustic-style that is! Sample In A Jar was well received with a fun sing along on the choruses. Dirt was even better! One of my favorite late period Phish tunes, it was great to hear it get an acoustic treatment which translated well. Pebbles and Marbles is not one of my favorites, but it seems as if I am in the minority on that one, as the crowd was singing along throughout. Chalkdust Torture was next, and this is one tune that I felt did not translate in the acoustic format as well, save for the fact that everyone got to yell out "Can I live while I'm young?" one more time!

The second electric set then got underway, and Money Love and Change was tight and funky, another "A List" jam in my humble opinion. Tuesday was next, and it was headbanging time at the Taft! As the last notes of Tuesday faded out, we got back to the groove with 46 Days. While I enjoy this Phish tune as much as the next fan, I would love to see Trey pull some other Phish groove-tunes out again. Anybody for Wolfman’s or how about a nice Moma Dance?

Push On Till The Day continued in my favorite carrribean/new orleans/salsa grooves that Trey solos over so very well! The show was wrapping up in a strong fashion!

First Tube was the first encore and was also well played with the new light show/effects twirling flowers of light over the sidewalls of the theatre Cincinnati was the encore, and that song and Tuesday bring one of the few criticisms I have about the new Trey show:

Too many and too long on the hard-rockin' Head-Banging Riffs!!My god if I wanted to bang my head for 15 minutes straight I could have gone to a Megadeath concert! Maybe I am in the minority, but I spoke to a few "tourheads" and they felt the same way. Anyway that is just a minor glitch in an otherwise good performance.

Overall I would say that it was a good show, getting closer to the potential of what this new band can do. But instead of watching Trey in the front row of a small theatre would I rather be on the lawn with 20,000 seeing Trey , Mike , Page and Phishman?

YOU BETCHA

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Vegoose Day 2: Fear and Loathing in Vegoose

I finally got some rest and felt ready to rage and raise hell for Day 2 of Vegoose. I was excited to see the Flaming Lips and to catch Widespread Panic close out the festival on the main stage in the stadium.

I wore my costume and I realized that you instantly bonded with other people who wore similar costumes. Doctors bonding with doctors. The exchanges usually went like this.
Other Guy: "Doctor!"
Me: "Doctor!"
I also found myself walking up to slutty nurses and fondling them. Only at a musical festival in Las Vegas can I get away with groping women, especially when they are in skimpy outfits and have been rolling on ecstasy for two straight days. For a brief moment, I knew what Frank Sinatra must have felt like.

Like any competent doctor, I took inventory of my party favors. I was well stocked and the Joker, still dressed as an UPS guy, was ready to go after he put together a new batch of packages. On our way in, he handed one package to two girls dressed up like Super Mario Brothers... Mario & Luigi. They were crocked on something and couldn't believe that the Joker was actually giving them a gift.





He also gave a package to a bunch of bumblebee bees. I always thought that people who got dressed up like insects were strange. At any jamband performance, you will most certainly run into at least one girl with some sort of butterfly wings or angel wings on during the concert. I used to joke around with my ex-girlfriend who I followed Phish with about those girls who used to be spun out on acid or molly and dressed up like butterflies. They usually traveled in packs of 2 and 3 other wasted girls. We wondered if they had some sort of process to determine who would wear the wings that day.
Hippie chick 1: "I get to be the butterfly!"
Hippie chick 2: "No me!"
Hippie chick 1: "OK, but you have to be a slutty butterfly!"
Vegoose was populated with a lot of females dressed as insects and pets like cats, mice, dogs, and bunnies. I liked the girls who opted to incorporate cleavage into their cat costumes.

We arrived in the fairgrounds to catch the end of Umphrey's McGee's set. I have been listening to them for several years and they have their moments. I kinda like their stuff from a few years ago compared to today. We skipped Michael Franti & Spearhead which is feel good reggae music. They were opening up on the main stage for moe., who I've seen enough to know that I'd rather skip them and see Ween at the Snake Eyes stage.

The Joker knew a lot more Ween songs then me and they were hit or miss for me. Either I really dug how they were playing a song, or I was waiting for it to end. Thank God their songs were short. The crowd at the Ween show was mixed with a lot more weird skater burnouts and indie rock kids than trust fund hippie kids from Colorado and Seattle. Although more people wore their costume on Day 2 of Vegoose, I saw plenty of people who looked freaky and you might mistake them for actually dressing up for Halloween. This one guy in particular reminded me of a pedophile heroin dealer. He was tall and lanky and had a mullet just like Randy Johnson except he looked like Bob Saget. He could not stop sweating and had a very young girl with him. I could not decide if it was his girlfriend or daughter. Everytime he put his hand up her shirt I prayed to God it was his girlfriend.

Ween eventually played my favorite tune Roses Are Free which Phish has been known to cover. We saw the entire set then wandered over to the Joker's Wild Stage and watched the end of set from Spoon, an Austin based band. I was pretty impressed with their sound, partly whiny-indie rock ballads with a heavy influence of Velvet Underground and a splash of Bruce Springsteen. I was bummed when their set end. That's how I can tell if I like a band. I wanted to hear more. As the crowd from Spoon thinned out, we made our way to the front of the stage to get a good spot for the Flaming Lips.

The Joker was busting on the indie rock kids at the Flaming Lips show who were too cool to wear costumes at Vegoose. They would ask him for a free package and he'd tell them straight up that he only gives them out to people who took the time to come up with a creative costume and then wear it. After all, it was a Halloween themed music festival.

The Joker delivered Wayne, the lead singer from the Flaming Lips, a UPS package. He and other band members came out to set up their own equipment. The Joker rushed to the front and screamed, "I have a delivery for Wayne!" I caught a couple of pics of Wayne going along with the joke and signing for it.


Wayne signs for a package


The sun slips away at Vegoose

Because we were the first night after day light savings time, it got darker much earlier. I also felt that bands played better at night because the darkness was more conducive to the music. The sun went down just before the show began. While we were waiting for the Lips to tune up, we befriended a group of four girls who were hanging out next to us. They spoke kinda funny and I knew they weren't from anywhere near by. One of the girls sounded just like Joanne and even said "no" and "show" like her. I figured out they were Canadian. I had three guesses: Toronto, Calgary, and Vancouver and went with my gut. One of the girls nearly fainted when I asked, "Hey you ladies wouldn't be from Calgary would ya?"

"How did you kn-oooow that?"

They were giving one of their friends a hard time about passing out too early the night before and one of the girls said, "We're not being mean. We're Canadian and have odd senses of humor."

I know," I said, "I've seen Degrassi. It's my all-time favorite Canadian TV show."

She laughed and admitted it was her favorite show too.

So the set was kick ass. The Flaming Lips were the highlight on Day 2 hands down. They had the best set up with a huge motion picture screen behind the band. There was a camera on the microphone for Wayne and sometimes, they'd cut to that shot and you'd see his huge head on screen. All these people got dressed up in costumes and were dancing on stage... all types of animals and weird things.

Before they started, Wayne came out in a huge plastic ball and walked into the crowd. It was cool to see him actually walking back and forth. I snagged a few photos while this was going on. Simultaneously, the roll I took kicked in and I started to feel pretty groovy. The Joker was shocked I got so many decent photos during the Flaming Flips.

The Flaming Lips even did a karaoke session. Using their huge projection screen then put up the words to Bohemian Rhapsody and the entire crowd sung along. It was a little cheesy, but a lot of fun. Wayne would launch these party streamers into the crowds and toss confetti all over the first few rows. They settled into some of their tunes like Fight Test and Yoshi Battle the Pink Robots both Part 1 and Part 2.


Wayne does a Bubble Walk


So we left just before the Flaming Lips ended to cath the remainder of Trey Anastasio Band in the stadium on the main stage. Sadly, he played a lot of the same stuff from two nights before. We missed most of that. We also skipped The Meters, Jack Johnson, The Digable Planets, and The Arcade Fire in order to catch Trey, the Lips, and Widespread Panic.
Trey Anastasio Band Vegoose Setlist

Set 1: Spin, Push On Til the Day, Tuesday, Night Speaks To A Woman, Sleep Again, Shine, 46 Days, Waste *, The Inlaw Josie Wales*, Back On The Train*, Flock of Words*, Brian and Robert*, Air Said To Me, Money Love and Change > Low

Encore: Come As Melody

Show Notes: * solo acoustic
After seeing Trey close with Low in consecutive, I'm convinced that his best jam out song at the moment. It was definitely the weaker show of the two Trey played in Las Vegas and the crowd was not as jam packed as I thought.

When Trey ended, we moved down from the seated section to the floor which was general admission. We made our way to 10-15 rows back in front of Dave Schools. The Joker gave out the rest of his packages and whatever I had been taking was at it's peak.


Panic came on a little late and started out strong.
Widespread Panic Vegoose Setlist

Set 1: Disco > Space Wrangler > Henry Parsons Died, Don't Wanna Lose You > Last Dance > Sleeping Man, I'm Not Alone > North, Ribs and Whiskey, Solid Rock > Give, Slippin Into Darkness* > Thin Air** > Jam** > Drums > Hatfield > Fixin' To Die***, Tall Boy > Chilly Water

Encore: Goin' Out West, None Of Us Are Free

** With Trey Anastasio on guitar
*** With Col. Bruce Hampton
The first three, Disco > Space Wrangler > Henry Parsons Died, were rockin' tunes and he boys got off to a hot start. George finally has found his groove with the rest of the band and he's playing his best stuff to date. I was faded on some hash about half way through and pulled my shit together during Sleeping Man. I'm a big fan of Ribs and Whiskey and I though Schools showed me why he is one kick ass bass player.

Trey Anastasio came out for two songs and that caught me by surprise. I should have expected a special guest, especially at a music festival. But I was too faded and it didn't occur to me that Trey was still in the building. He tore it up and jammed out harder with Panic than with his own band. Maybe, the boys should kick George out and hire Trey full time? Seriously, download the Vegoose show just for Trey's jam on Thin Air Smells Like Mississippi. "Pure sickness," as Daddy would say.

Col. Bruce Hampton came out for Fixin' to Die and that was a lot of fun. By that point, both the Joker and I were tired and we moved to the back of the stadium for a session and to relax. Panic closed out the set with two kick ass tunes and favorites of mine Tall Boy and Climb to Safety.

Panic played the best show out of all the bands I caught inside the stadium (Phil Lesh & Friends, Dave Matthews & Friends, Trey) and the third best overall behind Beck and The Flaming Lips. I left knowing that they were going to play one wicked show the next night on Halloween.

I made the drive home a lot easier since I was much more awake than the night before. When we got back the Joker was exhausted and passed out. He partied to dawn two straight nights and his body was wrecked. I took a cat nap and headed over to the Mandalay Bay to see of I could get an extra ticket to the sold out Galactic show. No such luck. The only people who had tickets were sketched out locals and they were probably fake and definitely overpriced.

I ran into this guy named Eddie also looking for an extra. He's really from Chino and I knew him from Phish tour many years back. He used to have dreadlocks and I didn't even recognize him at first. He was dressed up like the Baumer from the Royal Tenanbaums. His girlfriend dressed like Gwyneth Paltrow's character from that flick. I dug their costumes. After we couldn't find tickets we retreated to the hooker bar which was swarming with ladies of the night. Eddie was also fascinated by the various hookers doing their deed, even in the middle of a crazy music fesival weekend like Vegoose, where spun out fucked up people who had not slept in three days partied shoulder to shoulder with cowboys in town for the bull riding championships along with high priced hookers looking for their last john of the night.

I hung out with Eddie and his friends from Orgeon in particularly this one dude named Dodger. I never got the explanation of his nickname but he was a squirelly looking guy with a enough acid to dose the entire state of Wisconsin. I looked at my cellphone and realized that it was almost 5am and officially Halloween. Back home in NYC, friends of mine were riding the subways to work on a cheerless Monday morning while Dodger decided that he was going to buy two hookers a few drinks and slip them a dose of liquid sunshine. As one of the girls put a glass to her lips, she glanced at me as she caught her last breath of sober air.

"See you on the other side," I whispered to her across the bar.

I knew that for the next ten hours, she'd be taking a ticket on a mind bending ride that not too many people can stomach, let alone survive. Hookers on acid in Las Vegas. It must be Halloween.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Flaming Lips Vegoose Photo Gallery

I took all of these on 11.30.05 at Vegoose. I was pretty wasted so here are the best of the bunch:














Wayne does a Bubble Walk











Thursday, November 03, 2005

Vegoose Day 1 Recap

"Freaks flock together and make all the lesbians scream." - Beck


We stumbled out of the Castle and drove to the Vegoose fairgrounds early. We didn't know if there would be a long line to get in like you would experience in other types of music festivals such as Bonnaroo or a summer ending Phish festival like IT or the Great Went. There was no security check so you could drive right into the parking lots, which helped speed up the process. Using a tip that I gathered from a taxi driver, I took Tropicana Ave. all the way down from the Excalibur past Boulder Highway right to Sam Boyd Stadium. It took less then 30 minutes. We saw the festival set up from the distance. I had never been to Sam Boyd Stadium, where UNLV plays their football games, so I wondered how everything would look. The Vegoose organizers took advantage of the adjacent practice and soccer fields and that's where the other three stages and main grounds were located. The actual stadium was used for the main stage.

We parked in the lot and cracked open a few beers. The people in the car next to us were from Colorado, so the Joker bonded with them since he lives in Boulder. Our styrofoam cooler broke in the trunk so it resembled New Orleans after it got flooded with a good inch of water. I had to scoop out handfuls of melted ice water out into the gravel.

The Joker wondered if we should wear our costumes. I noticed that less than 10% of the people we saw walking around were in costume. Across the aisle, three girls who got out of a red Jetta were getting dressed up. One girl slid into her Marilyn Monroe costume. She wore a blonde curly wig, a white dress, and had a rack about the same as Marilyn's. One of the other girls wore a freaky costume with red tights, a yellow dress, and a small red fireman's hat. The Joker went over and asked her to elaborate on her costume.

"I'm sexy disco firefighter chick," she said.

"Very cool. Where are you girls staying?" the Joker responded.

"Sleep?" she said at him in a condescending tone as she poured herself a mixture of vodka and orange juice, "We're not sleeping at all. We're staying up the entire time we're here."


That pretty much summed up Vegoose. People drove and flew in from all over the country to party it up for a few days in Las Vegas and see some kick ass music. Hippies from Colorado, frat boys from Southern California, hipsters from Brooklyn, and indie rock kids from the Midwest all converged upon Las Vegas to partake in the most unique musical festival I have ever attended.

We decided that the party girls were gonna crash and burn early. In festivals like Vegoose, you really have to pace yourself. The doors open at Noon and the last band ends around 11pm. In between, the hot Nevada sun and all the dancing tends to drain you. Then add late night shows which run to 4am and if you are drinking or taking drugs... the overall grind will eventually get to you.

The Joker wore his costume and I skipped mine deciding to save it for day two of Vegoose. The Joker went as an UPS guy and even got packages to hand out. He placed party favors in each package and would go around delivering them to random people in Vegoose who were wearing cool costumes. Included in each package were candy, party snaps, condoms, Mardi Gras beads, and other fun stuff. That's what the Joker added to Vegoose. Clever generosity.

We walked into Vegoose just around 2pm. As soon as you walk into the field in front of the football stadium, there is a Snake Eyes stage on the far left and the Joker's Wild stage on the far right. In the middle was the Clubs Tent where a bunch of the hip hop acts would perform. Throughout the fairgrounds, tons of food stands and beer trucks were set up. A ferris wheel stood near the Snake Eyes stage and in the middle of the entire field was the Vegoose Market where you could check out the poster art exhibit, marvel at the Great Evil pumpkin, and hang out with your favorite celebrities at the Impersonators Cafe. Also near the Clubs tent was the Twisted Cabaret show and the fake chapel where mock weddings were performed during the duration of Vegoose.

We missed Steel Train, The Islands, and Slightly Stoopid. We caught some of Devendra Banhart and she has a lovely voice. I wanted to see the North Mississippi All Stars so we headed over to the Joker's Wild stage. Those boys know how to play an amazing fusion of delta blues-rock-funk. We ended up skipping Beans and Holy Fuck in the Clubs Tent, and I had to make my first tough decision of Vegoose. With so many amazing bands playing at once, you inevitably had to choose one band over the other. Sometimes you would make a bad choice and discover that the band you skipped hand an extra special guest or played their best set in months. But you have to make a decision and stick with it. So we missed Beans with Holy Fuck, but the North Mississippi All Stars was a great way to kick off Vegoose.
North Mississippi All Stars Vegoose Setlist

Set 1: Teasin' Brown, Stompin My Foot, Mean 'Ol Wind Died Down, Bang Bang Lulu, Shake 'Em On Down, Hurry Up Sunrise, Ship, Moonshine, "Vegoose" Women > Po Black Maddie > Skinny Woman > Po Black Maddie, Po Boy > Snake Drive, Psychedelic Sex Machine, Goin Home, Horseshoe > When The Saints Go Marching In > Amazing Grace, Freedom Highway, Goin' South, Sugartown
After the NMAS set, we wandered around the attractions. The Impersonators Cafe featured a John Travolta look-a-like singing songs from Grease. Also spotted were Tina Turner, Bill Clinton, Rodney Dangerfield, Elvis, Sylvester Stallone, and Liza Minelli. On our way over to the Cabaret Tent, the Joker bumped into a guy who also wore a UPS costume. We stopped for pictures and the Joker gave the UPS guy a package.


We headed for the packed Clubs tent for Blackalicious. He had some great beats and got the crowd, mostly 99% white, grooving on his music. We didn't stay for the entire set because we wanted to get some fresh air. Thetemperature in the tent was about 110 degrees and I couldn't stop from sweating. We wandered around and caught one song from the Decemberists and avoided the main stage and String Cheese Incident. I've seen the Cheese like 30-40 times and if they weren't playing against G'ovt Mule, I would have gone to catch some of their set. During Mule, the Joker decided to give another packagae to Papa Smurf. As soon as Mule ended, we grabbed some food. The Joker had pizza and I had curly fries with cheese. I almost got the garlic fries.

We wandered into the stadium to get good seats (well actually standing room/general admission on the floor) for Phil Lesh and Friends. We were on the left side about 10-12 rows back. Not too bad. By then, all the hash I had been smoking caught up with me and I was pretty faded. The stadium was not full all the way, but the floor was packed. We skipped Talib Kweli, The Shins, and the Codetalkers with Col. Bruce Hampton to see Phil Lesh. I heard that the Shins show was pretty good although the indie rock crowd wasn't into the show as much as some of the other fans.
Phil Lesh & Friends Vegoose Setlist

Set 1: Playin' In The Band > Truckin' > The Eleven > Rueben & Cherise > Magnolia Mountain*, Unbroken Chain, Shakedown Street**, You've Got To Hide Your Love Away**, Sugaree**, Help On The Way** > Slipknot** > Casey Jones**

Notes: * Ryan Adams song
**with Warren Haynes and guitar and Sless on pedal steel
Phil came out and he looked like he was in a great mood. He told everyone to get ready to have fun and do some serious dancing. Joan Osbourne filled in for Ryan Adams at the last minute when he had to cancel. I've seen Joan sing backup with The Dead before and she's not too bad. Although she harmonizes with the band in a better way than Donna Jean, alas, she's no Donna Jean.

The opened up with three kick ass songs... Playin > Truckin > The Eleven. I like Rueben & Cherise, a Bob Dylan cover that Jerry Garcia loved to play. Too bad Jerry wasn't there to play it. I heard that he used to love playing in Vegas. Unbroken Chain is always fun to hear since it was pretty rare that the Grateful Dead played it at the shows I saw. Then Warren Haynes came out to play and added another element to the show. He's played with Phil many times before and they sound great together. They busted out Shakedown Street, which was the highlight of the set. The entire crowd was grooving to that. We didn't stay the entire set. We wanted to get a good spot to see Beck, so we left early and headed over to the Snake Eyes stage. By then darkness had fell over the crowd.

Beck was playing against Primus and I had to make another big decision to skip Primus and catch all of Beck's set. We knew that Beck would cut into Dave Matthews and Friends set in the stadium on the main stage, but decided that Beck would be more fun to see. Besides, we'd catch the last hour or so of Dave & Friends, which was supposed to feature Trey Anastasio on guitar.

The Beck set was amazing and he was the highlight of Vegoose (both days). You can download the bit torrent here. He and his band came out wearing boy scout costumes and that ended up being the theme of the night. He cracked plenty of by scout jokes and included mentionings of is band members having to earn their merit badges. The crowd was into it and by then everyone was trashed. There was one girl who was dressed up like a beauty queen. She had on long pink gloves that covered up most of her arms. She kept holding her hand up in the air and made a sign for the number "4" as she held up four fingers.

"I'm looking for my friend Forrest," she slurred as she stumbled through the crowd. Every few songs or so she would circle back and ask us if we've seen Forrest.


Beck opened up with Loser, which was surprising. I guess he wanted to get it out of the way. The crowd dug it and I sensed that we'd be in for a great show. We didn't take down a full setlist but here's what he played: Loser, Devil's Haircut, Guero, Girl, Where It's At, New Pollution, Black Tambourine, Debra, and Mixed Bizness. I'm sure I'm missing a bunch of songs in there and he didn't finish every song. Debra was a blast! I love the opening lyrics... "I met you at J.C. Penny/I think your name tag said Jenny."

The Joker's favorite part was the ghetto blaster merit badge. During one of the songs, someone in his band kept bringing out a ghetto blaster, but each time it would be bigger and bigger until Beck wheeled out a gigantic Ghetto Blaster that was almost ten feet tall.

Beck brought up fans on stage and called them lost children. He would sing to his band in a faux campfire and even had a tent on stage. Beck also has like three percussionists banging on all kinds of stuff including plates and glasses using silverware. Beck is one of those artists that you have to see play a live show because you get to see just how much of a composer, bandleader, and music genius he really is.

We wandered over to the stadium to catch the end of Dave Matthews and Friends. We walked in during Save Me. Trey ripped it up on Circles. Then Dave & Tim played acoustic guitars for a few songs, but he played a lot of the same stuff we saw the day before. Since Dave was closing out Day 1 of Vegoose, he was the only act still playing.
Dave & Friends Setlist

Set 1: Dodo, Stay or Leave, Trouble, So Damn Lucky, Oh, Up And Away, Save Me, Circles, Some Devil (solo acoustic), Jimi Thing*** > What Will Become of Me*** > Pantala Naga Pampa ***, Two Step ***, Tell Me Something Good, Gravedigger, Hey Bulldog, Rocky Mountain Way

Encore: Everyday (with Trey Anastasio), Bathtub Gin (with Trey Anastasio), Up On Cripple Creek, Thank You

Notes: *** Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds only
We eventually got out into the parking lot and made our way back to the Excalibur. We stopped at Sonic on the way home for some late night munchies. I was so tired from smoking hash for nine straight hours that I almost fell asleep. I was fine until we hit traffic a few blocks from the Strip. That's when it became difficult. I managed to get the mother ship back home no problems. We had tickets to STS9 at the House of Blues in Mandalay Bay at 1am. I knew that in order for me to make that show, I'd have to partake in party favorites like molly to get myself up. I knew that would entail being up all night and not getting any sleep. I kinda passed out on the bed for a half hour and the Joker woke me up. I had another difficult decision and decided to skip the show and rest up. We still had another day of Vegoose including Widespread Panic on Halloween. I didn't want to peak to early and crashed.

The Joker went to the show and he said it was kick ass. Oh well. I missed another kickin' STS9 show. He ended up selling my ticket right away. The kids saying across the hall from us were also from Boulder. As soon as the Joker walked out into the hall, he encountered a spun out hippie girl. She wanted the ticket but didn't have any money. She went into the room for 15 minutes before she finally came out with a fistful of fives and one dollar bills. The Joker gave her the ticket and her friend stumble out into the hall.

"I'm so fucked up!" she shrieked. The girl had been rolling all night long as well. "Who are you?" she screamed at the Joker.

"I just sold your friend a ticket to Sound Tribe," he answered.

"I'm soooooo fucked up!" she screamed again before laughing and stumbling back into the room.

... to be continued

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Show Reviews: Trey Anastasio 10.28.05 and Dave Matthews with Tim Reynolds 10.28.05

Editor's Note: For a complete recap of what went down last Friday, visit the Tao of Pauly to read the extended version of this post called Vegas Friday: The Day Before Vegoose, which includes plenty of discussion about hookers.

The plan was to get to the Aladdin and sell an extra ticket that the Joker had. We then had back-to-back shows to see: Dave Matthews (solo) with Tim Reynolds at 8pm and Trey Anastasio Band at Midnight. Both were held at the Aladdin Theatre, but we had to leave after the Dave Matthews show and get back in line and come in to see Trey. Any guy who has been to a Dave Matthews Band show would tell you that Dave gets some of the best pussy at his shows. Hands down. Even Daddy agreed with my assessment of the talent in Dave's crowd. Yeah, as Molly reminded me why I went to see Dave Matthews... to hit on sorority chicks. They might dress crunchy and smoke enough dope to get an entire reggae band high, but they also shave their arm pits and wear Victoria's secret g-strings.

Within a few minutes of our arrival at the Aladdin, the Joker sold his extra ticket and I scored some dank from a hippie kid from California. It was a strain of blueberry and smelled delicious. He wanted to sell it to me in the actual casino, but I was too afraid of the eye in the sky, so we did the exchange some place else. We also scored some molly from a spun out dude with a sideways hat. We were set and headed for the bar near the poker room which started to fill up with people heading to the concert. I called AlCantHang for my one and only dial-a-shot during my multi-day bender.

We went into the venue early to scope out the hot chicks. We found our seats, grabbed beers, then went back into the rotunda to ogle at the chicks. The Joker befriended two from Boston and we chatted them up for while before the show began.

We had seats on the right of the stage near the back of the 200 section. The theatre is plush and spacious with a balcony. There's really no bad seats in the house. They do not allow smoking in the venue but that didn't prevent people from sparking up. Dave Matthews sang and played acoustic guitar while sitting on a stool. Tim Reynolds stood and played an amazing guitar and would drop plenty of loops into the mix. Dave kept making horrible Thunder from Down Under jokes and I was convinced afterwards that he was actually gay.

I knew about half of Dave's material and he played a steady mix of DMB and his solo stuff. I walked away super impressed with Tim Reynolds. If Dave played by himself, I dunno if I could have sat through the show... even with all the hot chicks in attendance. But Tim Reynolds held my attention.
Dave Matthews & Tim Reynolds Aladdin Setlist

Set 1: Intro > Bartender, What Will Become of Me, Save Me, Stand Up, Typical Situation, Help Myself, Stay or Leave, ??, Wharehouse, Cry Freedom, Too Much, Two Step, Tim Reynold's Solo, Smooth Operator/Where Are You Going?, Jimi Thing, Old Dirt Hill, When the World Ends, Gravedigger, Crush, Dancing Nancies

Encore: Everyday, Satellite
I kept joking around and saying, "Play Satellite." It's an inside joke that the Joker and I came up with at Deer Creek last year because if you had a guitar in a parking lot of a Phish show, a cute Dave Matthews chick would end up coming over and requesting her favorite song... Satellite by Dave Matthews Band. It's one of my least favorite songs and I kept saying it over and over all night. And on cue, Dave played it at the encore. The Joker and I looked at each other and laughed as we walked out of the theatre. Overall, the show met expectations. The chicks were hot and the music was edible.

We wandered out to the Strip to get some air and noticed that the casino and rotunda area started to fill up wit Phish kids and people getting in line for Trey's Midnight show. Las Vegas Blvd. in front of the Aladdin was turned into a mini-Shakedown Street where tons of people were selling various goods... legal and illegal... like posters, t-shirts, marijuana, and other psychedelics. We shuffled by the masses and wandered into a construction site adjacent to the Aladdin where we smoked up some of the blueberry and marveled at the bright lights of the Strip.

We wandered back over to the front of the casino and sat down to do some more people watching. There was a kid in a tie-dye who looked like he was in high school siting next to us with his girlfriend. She wore a long green dress and looked like she was barely 16 years old. He had a ton of acid to sell but was worried that he would get busted. We joked with him that we were FBI agents, but he sold us some anyway. He mentioned that he had not been to too many shows because he wasn't 21 and most bands that he liked had an age requirement of 21 and older. He was trying to tell the Joker that Cheesekids (teenagers who followed around String Cheese Incident) were good people.

"I know. I live in Boulder," answered the Joker. "I see Cheesekids and the guys in the band all the time."

The kid liked the Cheese and didn't even know they were from Colorado. That's what happens when you chomp on acid every day from ages 16 through 18. Although naive, he seemed nice enough and he had a hot girlfriend who we still couldn't figure out was jail bait or not. For a brief moment, I considered beating the piss out of him, stealing his drugs, and running away to San Francisco with his girlfriend. But then I'd have an Amber Alert on my hands. The federalies would lock me up and throw away the key for sure if I was caught with a glove compartment full of doses.

We went back in for Trey and found our seats, the next to last row in the 200 level. As one guy put it, two more rows back and we're out in the casino. He's the same guy who said, "Phish would have smoked the hell out of this joint!" I agreed but knew that Trey would bring his best efforts. There was a funny poster of Trey in the casino and he was making a face like he was jerking off. The Joker made an assertion that Trey's shows are actual 3 hour long masturbation session where he just jerks off on stage for a while. Ever since Phish broke up, we've had to experience Trey's spank sessions. But like I said earlier, everyone happily soaked up every ounce of his spooge and some Phishkids even sold samples on ebay.

I don't know all of Trey's new material. I know the names of the songs but I'm still not 100% comfortable with everything.
Trey Anastasio Band Aladdin Setlist

Set 1: Air Said to Me, Sleep Again, Money Love and Change, Tuesday, Dark & Down, Drifting, 46 Days, Night Speaks to a Woman, Come as Melody

Trey Acoustic (Setbreak): Invisible, Ether Sunday, Pebbles and Marbles, Bug

Set 2: Shine, Goodbye Head > Mr. Completely, Low

Encore: First Tube
The show started a little late, around 12:40am. The crowd was much more inebriated and more rowdy than Dave's fans. We were cooking pretty hard by then after the molly kicked in twenty minute earlier. Nothing too exciting happened until they started playing Money, Love, and Change. Trey ripped that up and I dug Jen Hartswick's background vocals. Trey played two more new songs before Drifting, an old TAB favorite. Then he busted out the only Phish cover of the set... 46 Days. The highlight (as usual) was Night Speaks to a Woman.

During his setbreaks, Trey's band takes a break while he sits and plays acoustic guitar. Ether Sunday was a nice treat. Pebbles and Marbles is arranged great on an acoustic. I don't like when Phish does it, but Trey manages to do a superb job with it. He ended the mini-set with Bug, another Phish song that I never saw played on acoustic guitar.

Second set was short with only four songs... all jammed out though. Shine is the new single from Trey and he even has a video of it. Eeek gad. At least the video was shot at Red Rocks over the summer during the show that the Joker and I attended. Goodbye Head is a song Trey wrote with his daughter. It's OK, but he could have done something much cooler with that time. The last two songs were the peak of the show... Mr. Completely > Low. The Mr. Completely was intense and that was the first time all night I listened specifically to Skeeto. Low seems to be the one song that they jam out pretty hard. I think it's the equivalent to Phish's version of Character Zero. Trey ends a lot of his sets with Low I discovered.

I put the First Tube vibe out and Trey picked it up. The light show with bubbles was pretty cool. I thought it was a snow machine, but I was spun our pretty hard by then. Overall, it was a good show but not as good as what we saw at Red Rocks this summer. It seems that Trey dropped all the cover songs his band was playing. That's great artistically... to play more original content. however, the newer songs kill the vibe of the show and because not everyone is familiar with his new stuff, most of them are hearing it for the first time and getting used to how it sounds. It takes bands years of playing together before they find a collective rhythm. Trey's band has only been together for a short while and they have more pressure to gel instantly instead of maturing over the years like Phish did. Trey can still bring it. He pays his heart out at every show. If he has fun, I have fun. But you can't help but wonder why Phish broke up. They guys and girls in his band are accomplished. They can be a good band someday. It's hard for me to grasp why Trey ditched three amazing musicians for several good ones.

The show ended and the crowd rushed back into the casino. I yelled, "They're letting the freaks out! Here come the freaks."

Thousands of spun out hippies, Phishkids, wookies, and other weirdos flooded the Aladdin casino floor just around 4am. For a tourist couple who had no idea there was a music festival going on in Vegas, they must have been freaked out to see so many dirty hippies walking around in a jovial daze. The unleashed freaks did nothing to deter the degenerate gamblers from plugging away at the slot machines. The kept their heads down and continued to gamble while they ignored all the weirdness that went down right behind them. Kids were slinging pot and molly behind rows of slot machines, while other spun out hippie chicks watched the various lights on other slots, or headed to the bar for post-show cocktails, or continued to dance at the bar above the poker room.

Grubby was in the poker room at the time and told me that the entire casino reeked of pot. He thought kids were actually smoking it inside. I'm sure that the aromas of various kind buds wafted from the theatre out to the floor. Grubby also said he saw a few braless hippie chicks wander through the poker room.

To read an extended version of this post, check out... Vegas Friday: The Day Before Vegoose.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Widespread Panic Las Vegas Halloween Setlist

10.31.98 Widespread Panic at Thomas & Mack Center, Las Vegas, NV

Set 1: Love Tractor > Imitation Leather Shoes, Born Under A Bad Sign, Time Zone, Papa Johnny Road, Vampire Blues*, Bayou Lena*, Old Neighborhood*, Weight Of The World*

Set 2: Superstition*, Rebirtha > Climb To Safety > Monstrosity > Drums & Schools Bass > Drums > Arleen* > Spirit In The Dark, I Put A Spell On You* > Fishwater*

Encore: ?, Nowhere To Run/Nowhere To Hide, Coconut

Notes: * with the Dirty Dozen Brass Band

What an amazing show and a kick ass way to end the Vegoose run in Las Vegas. One of the best Panic shows I've seen in a while. DJ Crystal Method opened and played during the setbreak. Stay tuned for a review!

STS9 Late Night Setlist

Courtesy of the Joker!

10.30.05 STS9, House of Blues, Las Vegas, NV

Set 1: New/improv, Murphy, Glogi, Ramone, Peoples, Grow, Untitled ("Instantly"), New/improv, Open E

Set 2: Orbital, What is Love?, Evasive > (long version), Kamuy, Move My Peeps, Arigato, Tokyo, Tap-In

Encore: Roy G Biv, Monkey Music > Moonsockets