Wisconsin welcomed Goose back to the Cheese State for one more night of epic jams and good company on Saturday, July 3rd at The Pines Music Park in Eau Claire, WI. The band did not disappoint, as the pod shows turned mini festival included much more than just the music. The gaggle of fans participated in activities during the day, creating many new friends and memories. One lucky fan won two free tickets to Goose’s Fred Festival in Arrington, Va on the Lockn’ Farm.
The intimate setting at The Pines offered fans the ability to get to know one another, and that is exactly what they did. The El Goose Facebook forum, a group on Facebook dedicated to all things Goose, organized many activities, including an on-site Disk Golf challenge and a tubing expedition on the Chippewa River. Over 100 fans from around the country floated down the river together, and made many new friends in the process.
The daytime activities were certainly exciting, but the main attraction, that being Goose, crushed both of their sets with tight jams, incredible lights and inspired energy. The set kicked off with the melodic “Honeybee,” and included a sit in by crew member Jon “Coach” Lombardi on the rain stick. This was not the last we saw of Coach for the evening. “Bob Don,” a new tune from 2020, was up next, followed by an electric “Turned Clouds.” Goose unleashed their first cover of the night with the Bruce Hornsby classic, “The Way It Is,” which was dedicated to Rich and Warren. Keyboardist Peter Anspach really shined in this version, with impeccable vocals by guitarist Rick Mitarotonda. Drummer Ben Atkind also made a shout out to Groove Safe, the organization dedicated to stop unwanted touching at concerts. “Indian River,” from their album Moon Cabin, followed. The set wrapped up with the high energy dance party inducing “Yeti,” with a deep bass, guitar and synthesizer groove.
Set break was extremely short based on The Pines curfew, but fans were raring to go after the monster “Yeti” from the first set. The band began by announcing the winner of the Coach challenge, where fans dressed up like Coach, and the winner earned two free tickets to Fred Fest in August. Coach notably wears NY Mets gear and cargo shorts. Ironically, one fan looked exactly like Coach, and Mitarotonda announced earlier with a chuckle that “looking like him won’t help you win the contest.” Coach presented the tickets to the winners, both wearing Doey Joey t-shirts, and knighted them with the rain stick as the band played the "Bingo Tour" theme, from their online Bingo Tour last summer.
After the winners exited the stage, the band picked up right where the dance party stopped with “Creatures” > “Shama Lama Ding Dong,” a cover by Otis Day and The Knights. This was another jam for the books. The band cooled things off with “Rosewood Heart,” which segued into an electric “Dark Horse.” Mitarotonda put on a clinic with his incredible guitar skills and lighting director Andrew Goedde dazzled the crowd with an impressive lighting display. The set closed out with “This Old Sea.” The band quickly returned to end these special shows with crowd favorite, “Hot Tea.” It’s safe to say that many new fans were created from this set alone.
Goose is certainly hitting their musical stride in 2021, as each show is better than the next. They put in a lot of hard work during the covid-19 pandemic, which has yielded tremendous dividends. Tomorrow, they are back on stage for two nights in Livingston, MT and two nights in Denver, CO later this week. They are also hosting their own festival at the Lockn’ Farm August 20-22nd. Tickets are still available at www.goosetheband.com.
Honeybee1, Bob Don, Turned Clouds, The Way It Is23, Indian River, Yeti
Coach Contest Winners with Bingo Tour Theme, Creatures > Shama Lama Ding Dong4, Rosewood Heart > Dark Horse, This Old Sea
1 - Jon Lombardi aka Coach on rain stick
2 - Cover by Bruce Hornsby, dedicated to Rich and Warren
3 - Ben Atkind shouted out Groove Safe
4 - Cover by Otis Day & The Knights