Fri, 03/08/2019 - 12:35 pm

Bob Weir brought his newest project, The Wolf Brothers, to The Taft Theatre in Cincinnati on Wednesday night for an intimate and impressive performance that satisfied the theater full of his loyal fans. With a catalog as impressive and extensive as Weir’s, the band was able to curate a fantastic show full of songs spanning all of Weir’s career with The Grateful Dead as well as his side projects, solo work, and even some covers thrown in for good measure.

Taft Theatre | Cincinnati, OH

The trio known as The Wolf Brothers consists of leader Bob Weir on vocals and guitar, veteran music producer Don Was on bass (who has produced artists such as Ringo Starr, Elton John, and The Rolling Stones), and Weir’s longtime bandmate from RatDog Jay Lane on drums.

Shakedown in Cincy

Before the show even began, the theater was abuzz with enthusiastic deadheads, many who were eager to see The Wolf Bros. for their first time. A small but vivacious shakedown street was set-up in the parking lot near the venue, and the elegant architecture and beautiful theatre set the tone for a what felt like a classy evening getting ready to begin.

Weir & Wolf Brothers | Taft Theatre

The Wolf Brothers started the show off with a bang, opening with Grateful Dead classic Friend of the Devil as Weir played his acoustic guitar. After that, they continued with The Winners, a Weir & Wasserman song. The band’s chemistry was solid, and the music was refined, yet it had the looseness and freeform that gives Weir’s style so much life.

Bob Weir | Cincinnati, OH

The band continued to explore Weir’s catalog next with a Lay My Lily Down, a song off his most recent solo album, Blue Mountain, which had the crowd singing along joyfully. Before picking up his electric guitar, Weir treated the crowd to one more acoustic song- Me and My Uncle, originally a John Phillips song which has become a favorite from The Grateful Dead catalog and which was being performed for the first time of the tour.

Don Was | Taft Theatre

The music stopped long enough for Bobby to switch guitars before jumping right into an incredible electric rendition of Loose Lucy, another first for this tour. The crowd’s enthusiasm really began to intensify during this jam. Don Was played his stand-up bass so smoothly and naturally while keeping the song’s groove at the forefront of the music. His talent and natural chemistry with Weir and Lane, who have shared the stage together for years, was obvious to anyone in attendance.

Bobby & Jay Lane | Taft Theatre

After that, they played Eternity, another Grateful Dead tune followed by an incredible Ashes and Glass, which transformed effortlessly into Don’t Let Go, before transitioning back into Ashes and Glass to finish their first set.

Bobby Weir | Taft Theatre

Before you knew it, the band had returned to the stage and kicked the second set off with a dreamy rendition of Playing in the Band, which segued into The Music Never Stopped. It is impressive the way the band gave new life to Grateful Dead songs and put their own unique twist on tunes that have been played countless times by Bob Weir’s various bands and side projects. The stripped-down roster of musicians produces an authentic yet filtered outcome that kept these classic songs interesting and fun.

Weir & Wolf Brothers | Taft Theatre

Without stopping the music, just like the song says, they transitioned into Easy Answers, a Rob Wasserman cover, before bringing the jam back into The Music Never Stopped. The trio continued into another pair of Grateful Dead songs with Lost Sailor, which started out slow but grew into a blues-heavy jam by the end. Lost Sailor led right into Saint of Circumstance allowing the momentum from the first song to carry into the second.

Jay Lane & Don Was | Taft Theatre

One of the show’s highlights was an incredibly psychedelic version of The Beatles’ Tomorrow Never Knows, which took the extended jam as far as three musicians could possibly take it before welcoming the crowd back to the familiarity of the lyrics. Don Was’ grooving bass danced around Lane’s drum fills, all of which echoed through Weir’s guitar playing.

Jay Lane | Weir & Wolf Brothers

The second set continued with I Need a Miracle, another tune that had the crowd singing along, which led into Wharf Rat before coming to a strong finish with the toe-tapping, feel-good classic Going Down the Road Feelin’ Bad.

Weir & Wolf Brothers | Taft Theatre

Due to time restrictions, the band was only able to play one encore, so they left the crowd feeling hopeful and satisfied with an intimate and powerful version of Touch of Grey.

You can stream audio from the entire show here or on Nugs.tv.

Bob Weir | Taft Theatre

This show marks Weir’s fourth visit to Cincinnati in just over two years. Twice with Dead & Company during their summer tour and once with Bob Weir and the Campfire Band.

Taft Theatre | Cincinnati, OH

Set 1: Friend of the Devil, The Winners, Lay My Lily Down, Me and My Uncle, Loose Lucy, Eternity, Ashes and Glass > Don’t Let Go > Ashes and Glass

Set 2: Playing in the Band > The Music Never Stopped > Easy Answers > The Music Never Stopped, Lost Sailor > Saint of Circumstance > Tomorrow Never Knows > I Need a Miracle > Wharf Rat > Going Down the Road Feelin’ Bad

Encore: Touch of Grey

Tue, 03/19/2019 - 4:40 pm

Every summer for the past seven years, music fans of all ages and demographics have poured onto the banks of the Ohio River at one of Cincinnati’s largest waterfront parks- Sawyer Point and Yeatman’s Cove.

Nestled right next to downtown, the Cincinnati skyline offers a beautiful urban backdrop for this unique festival that has made me proud of the growing music scene in Cincinnati over the past few years. Not only does the cityscape play into the beauty of the venue, but it is seated right along the banks of the Ohio River, giving the festival a bit of character.

Bunbury Music Festival

Being that my house is less than fifteen minutes from the event, this festival has always been one of my favorites to attend for several reasons, mainly that I get to sleep in my own bed at the end of the night!

The festival is set to take place from May 30-June 1 this year, and with a lineup as diverse as this year’s, expect a large crowd. In the past, the event has sold out both full weekend passes and individual day passes, so we encourage you to get your tickets now.  

The event will feature two large main stages, as well as one smaller stage as well as an acoustic stage.

Run the Jewels

Cincinnati, being such an enthusiastic craft beer city, is home to many breweries both big and small that will set up in the Braxton Brewery Craft Beer Village, as well as some non-local breweries.

Attendees are encouraged to download the Bunbury app so that you can add your favorite artists to your lineup, read through the FAQ’s, and fully prepare yourself for an excellent weekend of music.

This festival lineup is full of discoverable artists that you haven’t heard of, big-name acts that you have heard on the radio, and countless talented bands who have entire careers of hits to preform. To prepare yourself for the challenge of creating your own daily schedule, we’ve picked a few artists to watch out for over the weekend. We also encourage you to dig into all of the artist’s catalogs on your own before Bunbury, so when the festival arrives, you know who fits your taste. You might even want to check out the Official Bunbury 2019 Spotify Playlist!

Bunberry Music Festival

Grateful Web’s Bunbury 2019 Artist Picks

Jukebox the Ghost- These guys make good old fashioned upbeat, dancy pop music. Their music makes me think of an early 2000’s iPod commercial, and the heavy use of piano in their sound blends styles like Ben Folds and Supertramp. Based out of Washington D.C., they are currently playing new music from their fifth studio album, Off to the Races, released in 2018.

Joywave- Joywave offers uniquely fresh and dreamy indie music with a healthy dose of electronic influence. 4-piece from Rochester New York

Clutch- These heavy motorcycle rockers have a very powerful lead vocalist. Any band that has been together consistently since 1991 surely is doing something right. Featuring Insane guitar solos and a crowd full of headbanging fans, these guys are great for new and old rockers alike.

Pigeons Playing Ping Pong

Pigeons Playing Ping Pong- This Baltimore based funky four piece truly knows how to throw a party with their instruments. Their rapidly growing fanbase known as “The Flock” is a testament to how contagious their music can be. With sweeping guitar solos, powerful grooving basslines, an eccentric frontman, and a drummer who holds it all together, Pigeons will have you cooing for an encore!

Run the Jewels- While they are by no means an underdog on this lineup, hip hop superstars Run the Jewels have taken the rap game by storm. The duo consists of producer and rapper El-P and rapper Killer Mike. Their intelligent lyrical wordplay causes them to stand out among others in the genre.

Greta Van Fleet- I’m not going to lie, this is probably the show I am most looking forward to this year. These young rockers are bringing back the days of eccentric flashy rockstars and epically composed rock anthems in a way that is reminiscent of the “good ole days” which none of them were around even to remember. Don’t let that statement worry you; they have studied some of the greatest rock bands in history enough to earn themselves a Grammy for Best Rock Album this year.

Greta Van Fleet

Streetlight Manifesto- Is there any better experience than listening to a ska band while spilling a beer and moshing around with your friends in the summer heat? Well, if you like ska music that probably sounds pretty nice. Either way that is what you’ll likely be doing if you find yourself at Streetlight Manifesto’s show during Bunbury this year.

Stone Temple Pilots- This year marks the 25th anniversary of their debut album, Purple, and with a new album that came out in 2018, the city of Cincinnati is ready to see how they’ve aged. Power chords, grungy vocals, and catchy hooks will have you reliving the 90’s rock revolution in which these guys were a major aspect.

FULL DAILY SCHEDULE

Friday, May 31: Fall Out Boy, Stone Temple Pilots, NF, Machine Gun Kelly, Pigeons Playing Ping Pong, Bayside, Joywave, Poppy, Witt Lowry, Taylor Janzen, HALFNOISE, RADATTACK, The Orphan The Poet, You vs Yesterday, James Gilmore, Julian Kerins, Chandler Carter

Stone Temple Pilots

Saturday, June 1: Greta Van Fleet, AWOLNATION, Sublime with Rome, Dashboard Confessional, Blue October, Jukebox the Ghost, Flora Cash, Jeremy Zucker, SHAED, Great Good Fine Ok, Tropidelic, The Blue Stones, Common Kings, Jack Burton Overdrive, Young Heirlooms, iamchelseaiam

Sunday, June 2: The 1975, Run the Jewels, Girl Talk, lovelytheband, Clutch, Streetlight Manifesto, The Aces, Reignwolf, The Clarks, The Candescents, Lauren Sanderson, TRIIIBE, bülow, Friday Pilots Club, Samuel Day

Weekend, VIP, and single day tickets are available on their website.

Fri, 06/07/2019 - 9:04 am

Despite the weather forecasts throughout the few days prior to the event, mother nature decided she’d cooperate with the city of Cincinnati last weekend as Bunbury Music Festival took place at Yeatman’s Cove and Sawyer Point. The venue sits along the Ohio River, with three of Cincinnati’s bridges and several skyscrapers looming above the stages.  Northern Kentucky’s neighborhoods sit just across the river, providing the perfect backdrop for an urban music festival.

Friday afternoon Ohio natives The Orphan The Poet kicked off the festival properly with their catchy style of indie pop-rock. Other daytime shows included Poppy, who performed on the main stage, sponsored by Monster Energy, Joywave, Witt Lowry, and Taylor Janzen.

Greg Ormont | Pigeons Playing Ping Pong

By the time The Grateful Web was able to make it to the festival, the afternoon had ended, and crowds were hurrying to make it inside to see acts like Bayside, Machine Gun Kelly, and Pigeons Playing Ping Pong.

Bunbury Music Festival

With a lineup as eclectic and diverse as Bunbury’s, you can assume that a good portion of any crowd has never seen or heard of the artist on stage. Because of this, the musicians are bringing a level of showmanship and talent to the stage that stands out, turns heads, and leave an impression on any newcomers that encourages further listening once the festival is over and they’re back at home.

Pigeons Playing Ping Pong | Bunbury Music Festival

This was the case with Pigeons Playing Ping Pong from the moment I arrived. Their upbeat and high energy style of psychedelic funk music seemed to be the perfect soundtrack for the evening. As you looked around the crowd, you saw nothing but smiles, hugs, dancing, and general music festival merriment. The band was having as much fun as anyone in the crowd, and it showed through their music.

Ben Carrey | Pigeons Playing Ping Pong

The main stage directly across the field in Yeatman’s Cove lit up as soon as Pigeons finished and you could hear NF begin his performance. Having never heard of the Michigan-based rapper, I immediately noticed his raw and powerful energy on stage and a crowd which seemed connected to the music on a very personal level.

Jeremy Schon | Pigeons Playing Ping Pong

I didn’t stay at NF too long because I was eager to see Stone Temple Pilots, who are celebrating their 25th anniversary this summer. They were performing on the Sawyer Point Stage, across the venue in a grassy field beneath Cincinnati’s “Big Mac” bridge. The 8: 45-time slot provided the perfect sunset show which was packed with plenty of their hits like Interstate Love Song, Plush, and Vasoline.

Fall Out Boy let everyone in attendance know that they were there to put on a show immediately with confetti cannons and fireworks in the first sixty seconds of their set. Having continually released chart-topping albums for over a decade, Fall Out Boy was out to please several generations of fans with one show. With the sun having completely set on the city and the Cincinnati skyline lighting up the skies, Fall Out Boy escorted the crowd back to a golden era of pop-punk as thousands of people sang along to their smash hit Sugar, We’re Goin’ Down.

Fall Out Boy

As they continued to bring their upbeat danceable basslines and catchy electric guitar riffs to their fans, on particular fan must have been getting notably wild and crazy because after they played Uma Thurman, they invited a 3rd grader from the crowd to come on stage and join them. “Let’s make this such an unbelievable story that nobody will believe you when you try to tell them at school,” Patrick Stump said before inviting the kid backstage and sending them home with a ton of Fall Out Boy merch.

The energy of the set continued to increase as the Cincinnati Red’s Friday Night Fireworks began erupting in the background of the concert. The fireworks seemed to come as a surprise to the band members, who absolutely loved the addition to their already spectacular light and pyrotechnic display.

Fall Out Boy | Cincinnati, OH

After the fireworks, the band brought the first night of Bunbury to an impressive conclusion and to the satisfaction of the cheering fans, they returned for an encore, ending the night with two of their most popular songs- Light Em Up and Saturday.

We arrived mid-afternoon on Saturday during Common Kings, which seemed to be in full-swing by the time we showed up. The crowd was full of energy, and the music matched the relaxing happy mood that mid-afternoon brings in the summertime.

Flora Cash | Bunbury Music Festival

Flora Cash was taking about to start on the main stage on the other side of the festival, so we headed that way and caught a lively performance by the married couple known as Flora Cash, an indie folk group.

Tropidelic | Bunbury Music Festival

In an effort to keep up with the carefully crafted schedule, we had to walk across the venue again shortly after to see Tropidelic. They brought their upbeat and powerful sounding hip-hop and funk fusion to a joyful crowd that praised each brass player as they took turns highlighting each other’s skills with various solos.

Jukebox the Ghost | Bunbury Music Festival

When I first heard that Jukebox the Ghost sounds a lot like Queen, I was skeptical- especially because of the cultural Queen obsession that is happening ever since the biopic about Freddy Mercury hit theatres. My skepticism quickly went out the door when we arrived to hear their lead singer and piano player hitting notes that most singers wouldn’t dare to attempt. And better yet, they were young! Something about seeing such a young 3-piece band with a grand piano and operatic vocals rocking out as a colorful crowd of millennials sang along made me happy.

Jukebox the Ghost

They must hear the Queen comparison a lot because they stuck an incredible Bohemian Rhapsody cover in the middle of their show, which ended with an entire crowd singing along before an epic breakdown that gave the cover a unique twist and made it their own.

Bunbury Music Festival

It was at this time that I decided to hit up Mikey’s Late Night Slice, a pizza vendor that EVERYONE seemed to be enjoying all weekend. As I enjoyed the delicious food and free coconut water that Kroger was giving away all weekend, I listened to Dashboard Confessional and took in the moment. I watched teenagers with first-festival amazement in their eyes, meeting up with friends and twenty-something-year-olds dancing carelessly around as their beer spilled onto their carefully tailored outfits. I watched as the 40 and up crowd navigated the young groups with excitement, confusion, and careful precision. And just like that, it was time to move onto the next concert!  

Blue October | Bunbury Music Festival

Back on the CVG stage, Blue October was drawing the largest crowd that the stage had seen so far that weekend, and they delivered a very intimate and moving concert experience for everyone.

Sublime With Rome

Sublime with Rome, who wound up being my favorite performance of the weekend, came out with a fan favorite, Smoke Two Joints. They continued playing all of the Sublime classics while sprinkling in some newer Sublime with Rome songs seamlessly. As the sun began to set, their lights came on and lit up the crowd. The band has been playing as Sublime with Rome for nearly ten years, and they are gearing up to release their third studio album this summer. In fact, their show at Bunbury was the beginning of a massive 40 show tour that will take up their entire summer! Towards the end of their concert, the crowd thinned out as people began migrating across the venue one last time to see the Saturday night headliners.

Greta Van Fleet | Bunbury Music Festival

Fresh off of their Grammy for “Best Rock Album of 2018” and a Saturday Night Live performance, Greta Van Fleet was the talk of the crowds all day Saturday, and the band most represented by patron’s t-shirts. They easily drew the largest crowd of the weekend, filling the entire length of Yeatman’s Cove until fans were in front of the Sawyer Point Stage.

Samuel Kiszka | Greta Van Fleet

Taking notes out of nearly every notable rock and roll page in the book, these young rockers delivered a performance that was reminiscent of an era none of them were around to witness, and neither was I for that matter. Even the large video display screens were projecting video that had been edited with black and white visual effects giving the impression that you were watching concert footage from the early ’70s.

Joshua Kiszka | Greta Van Fleet

Their larger-than-life sound consisted of epic guitar solos, hauntingly powerful vocals, and a triumphant energy that echoed across the Ohio River Valley and into Northern Kentucky. As Joshua Kiszka bounced around the stage as an animal let out of a cage, you could see and feel the emotion that each member of the band was putting into their own parts. The result was a surreal concert experience which will go down in Bunbury’s history as one of the festival’s greatest performances.

Jake Kiszka & Daniel Wagner | Greta Van Fleet

Getting a late start on Sunday meant I missed shows from Friday Pilots Club, Triiibe, Reignwolf, and The Clarks, among others. I arrived just in time to see Streetlight Manifesto starting their main stage performance. Just like any good ska band, they filled their show with hilarious on-stage banter, jokingly referring to the city they were in as anything BUT Cincinnati (“What’s up Indiana? Thank you, Hawaii,! Your city is on fire Cleveland!”).

The last of these quotes was referring to a mid-concert fire that broke out somewhere in downtown Cincinnati. Halfway through their set, smoke began pouring into the venue from a few blocks away, although the source of the fire was never confirmed. The smoke eventually dissipated and Streetlight continued crushing through their whole catalog of music. There is something about ska music and the summertime that goes together like peanut butter and jelly!

Dashboard Confessional | Bunbury Music Festival

Hard rock fans were already at the Sawyer Point stage waiting for heavy metal rockers Clutch to take the stage. When they finally did, they delivered a non-stop hour of music that had heads banging and air guitars shredding. These guys might have put on Bunbury’s heaviest concert of the weekend!

Hype was building among the crowds as we grew closer to the highly anticipated Run the Jewels show.  This hip-hop duo has been at the forefront of the rap music spotlight for quite some time now, and their concert was a contagious mix of high energy verses, empowering speeches, and was a downright crazy time.

AWOLNATION | Bunbury Music Festival

With a long weekend under my belt and a full work-week ahead of me, I headed home after Run the Jewels, skipping out on Girl Talk’s electronic sample-based music and the Sunday night headliners, The 1975. Overall my Bunbury experience was a great one that has me reflecting on my new music discoveries, resurfacing old favorites, and a providing a general appreciation for the city I live in and the amazing music scene that exists in Cincinnati. Bunbury offered many music fans a fantastic kick-off to their live-music-filled summer, and reminded many locals that they live in a lively city with people who genuinely want to make a positive impact through live music. I couldn’t have asked for more from Bunbury. See you next summer!

Sun, 02/09/2020 - 2:26 pm

Greensky Bluegrass brought their high energy showmanship to The Madison Theater in Covington, KY, on February 4, 2020, with Ghost Light in support as the opening band.

Madison Theater | Covington, KY

The Bluegrass State lived up to its name as music fans showed up and nearly packed the venue for the Tuesday night show. The atmosphere was set from the moment you started waiting in line. A banjo player was jamming outside in the cold, warming everybody’s spirits by playing tunes as the line slowly progressed.

Ghost Light | Madison Theater

The openers for this stretch of their winter tour were Ghost Light, a collection of amazing musicians whose skills and experience combine to form something much greater than the sum of each of their already outstanding individual parts. I was not aware of the excellent level of musicianship within this band until I arrived at the show, but I must say that they nearly stole the night from Greensky, picking up several new fans (myself included) by the end of their high-energy set.

Raina Mullen | Ghost Light

Greensky Bluegrass played a very solid show from start to finish, showcasing their skills to a rowdy audience of foot-stomping fans who were eager to hear each pick, strum, and pluck of their stringed instruments.

Greensky Bluegrass | Covington, KY

The quintet opened their show up with a fan favorite and title track from their most recent album, All for Money, which lead right into a high energy version of Grow Bananas. Next up was an extended version of a Newgrass Revival’s “Can’t Stop Now”, during which each member really began to tune into both the crowd and each other. As they took turns passing the jam back and forth between each musician, the audience began moving and grooving to their unique style of psychedelic jam-grass.

Anders Beck | GSBG

At one point in the first set, the band deemed the night as “Take It Easy Tuesday” due to the very laid back atmosphere and palpable chillness throughout the room. After some on-stage banter, this designation transitioned right into a cover of The Eagles’ “Take it Easy”, which resurfaced time and time again as the first and second sets progressed. Each time they moved from one song back into “Take it Easy”, you could see various fans throughout the crowd who couldn’t help but smile at the repetition of such a feel-good song.

Greensky Bluegrass | Covington, KY

After returning from set break, the band jumped right back into the jams with some high-energy versions of Do Harm, Freeborn Man, Bottle Dry, and Jaywalking.

Michael Bont | GSBG

As they’re known to do, they showed the audience just how good they are at taking a 100% not-bluegrass song and turning it into a fun, energetic, good-ole’ bluegrass jam with an exciting cover of Prince’s “When Doves Cry”.

Greensky Bluegrass | Madison Theater

Toss in a few other bluegrass classics, including a Bill Monroe cover of “I’m Working on a Building,” and they had quite a respectable second set. They punctuated the entire show with an original tune for their encore. “Who Is Frederico?” left their signature tasty bluegrass flavor in the mouths of all who remained until the end of the show.

Paul Hoffman and Mike Devol | GSBG

Check out more photos from the show.

Set 1: All for Money, Grow Bananas, Can’t Stop Now, Last Winter in the Copper Country, Hold On, Runnin’ the Briars, Take it Easy, Take Cover

Set 2: Do Harm, Freeborn Man, Bottle Dry, Jaywalking, When Doves Cry, White House Blues, I’m Working on a Building, Don’t Lie