"It was all about the voice tonight," said Ruthie Foster, the spirited opening act from Texas. She couldn't have been more correct. Walking into the Scottish Rite Auditorium in Collingswood, NJ is an experience in itself. The historic 1930's art deco venue is an extremely intimate theater which holds about 1,000 people in a tight moon shape circle around the stage. The ambiance was perfect for one of the greatest voices alive today.
When we Yanks think about England, what comes to mind? High tea? Mary Poppins? The Queen Mum? The Stamp Tax? What about gumbo? How about fur-lined bucket hats and matching full length mink coats and platform shoes with the goldfish in the bottom? No? Allow me to spot you three letters and that should be a hint at where I'm headed: "U-N-K."
Years ago when trading cassette tapes of live Phish shows was all the rage, I remember coming across this historic performance and just being in awe of the amazing energy and enigmatic jams heard throughout this show.
Like many music journalists, I've reviewed a wide range of genres, including Christian artists. I reviewed hot gospel groups that got me up moving to their beat, soul singers who thrilled me with their vocal talents, and grungy screamer bands that I had to admire for playing rough metal venues. Some of the messages were in-your-face and radical. Others were just new takes on traditional themes and didn't do much musically or spiritually.
On August 18th, 2007 at the Tweeter Center in Camden, the sounds of powerful guitar combinations took center stage. Most people who love music equate the summertime with sitting on blanket on a lawn or dancing barefoot on the lawn of an amphitheater and enjoying the fruits of their favorite bands. This is what this show represented for a lot of people. These musicians have been staples to our scene for years, and for the most part, they haven't missed a beat.
The Warren Haynes Christmas Jam, an annual event to benefit Habitat for Humanity, brings some of the top musical talent in the world to the beautiful mountain city of Asheville, NC. This year the lineup stretched further beyond its traditional jam band focused roster to include such musical greats as Jackson Browne and Peter Frampton
Send out the riders, the British are coming, and they're packing heat. The four lads from Leeds known as The New Mastersounds opened for J.J. Grey & Mofro, hitting the Ogden Theatre in Denver on Friday night like a punch in the face and sending the crowd home with sore muscles.