Sunday, March 28, 2010

06/11-13/04 Bonnaroo @ Manchester, TN

Dave Matthews & Friends
06/11/04 (Fri) Bonnaroo Music Festival @ Bonnaroo - Manchester, TN
Set 1: Dodo, Trouble, Up and Away, Solsbury Hill, Stay Or Leave, Save Me, Oh, Up On Cripple Creek, Some Devil, Dancing Nancies, Thing, Tell Me Something Good, Grave Digger, Grey Blue Eyes, So Damn Lucky, Too High, Fire, Hey Bulldog
E: Waste, Everyday, Bathtub Gin, Drums and Bass jam
Lineup: Dave Matthews and Friends: Dave Matthews, Trey Anastasio, Brady Blade, Tony Hall, Ray Paczkowski and Tim Reynolds

Bob Dylan
06/11/04 (Fri) Bonnaroo Music Festival @ Bonnaroo - Manchester, TN
Set 1: Down Along The Cove, Tell Me That It Isn't True, Samson & Delilah, Watching The River Flow, You Win Again, Cold Irons Bound, Sing Me Back Home, Most Likely You'll Go Your Way (And I'll Go Mine), Highway 61, Pancho & Lefty, Seeing The Real You At Last, Blind Willie McTell, Honest With Me, Don't Think Twice It's Alright, Summer Days
E: Cat's In The Well, Like A Rolling Stone
Lineup: Larry Campbell - guitars, slide, pedal steel, cittern; Bob Dylan - vocals, keyboards, mouth harp; Stu Kimball - electric guitar; Tony Garnier - bass, standup bass; George Recile - drums

Umphrey's McGee
06/11/04 (Fri)
Set I: Walletsworth, Resolution> Jazz Odyssey, Wife Soup, Nothing too Fancy, Bright Lights> Jazz Odyssey> Prowler> Glory> Ocean Billy> The Triple Wide> Jam1> moe. switch1> Jam1> And Justice For All, Bridgeless, Push the Pig> March of the S.O.D.> Hurt Bird Bath, In the Kitchen, 40's Theme, Nemo, I Ran, JaJunk2
Encore: Miss Tinkle's Overture> Mulche's Odyssey
1 the members of moe. came out one-by-one and took over for Umphrey's for a "set break"; moe.'s set was Recreational Chemistry > Brent Black > Enter Sandman; Michael Travis (String Cheese Incident) was on percussion for Brent Black and Enter Sandman; for Enter Sandman, Vince Iwinski was on lead vocals, a la James Hetfield
2 with Norwegian Wood jam and My Name is Mud tease

06/11/04 (Fri)
Set 1: Bernie Intro (pop goes the weasal > That's All > Ants go marching..), Seven Laws of Woo?, Crash Victim/Black Science Navigator, Interworld and the New Innocence > Bernie and Lili Haydn Jam, (Phase 1) Brain Laswell & Buckethead Jam, (Phase 2) Praxis Jam, (Phase 3) Drum n Bass Jam, (Phase 4) Praxis Jam
Set 2: Buckethead Breakdance solo > Herbie, Brain drum solo, Buckethead solo - Big Sur Moon > shred solo > Pure Imagination > Pirates life for me > Machine Gun, Praxis Jam > Bernie Worrell Solo, Maggot Brain ft. Lili Haydn, Drum n Bass Jam, E: Night of the Slunk, Praxis Jam > ft. Lili Haydn, Praxis Jam > ft. Lili Haydn, Praxis Jam, Praxis Jam
Lineup: Bill Laswell - Bass, Buckethead - Guitar, Brain - Drums Bernie Worrell - Keys, Lilly Hayden - Violin

Vida Blue
06/11/04 (Fri)
Set 1: Most Events Aren't Planned, Pick Up the Pieces, Ochimini, Get Ready, Who's Laughing Now, Where's Popeyes > Just Kissed My Baby, Electra Glide, Fresh Tube, Subterranean Homesick Alien, Sheep, Little Miami (Reputation), Cisco Kid, CJ3
E: Russell's Tune, Cars Trucks Buses

06/12/04 (Sat)
Set 1: Shibuya, Never Called You Crazy, Bittersweet, The Moil, Bongo Joe, Crazyhorse Mongoose *, All Behind You Now, Heart of Steel, Bakers Dozen +, Sympathy for the Devil ^, Tiger Roll, Space Headz March, Doublewide, Whole Lotta Love
^ with J.J. Grey
+ with Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra
* with Eric Krasno

The Dead
06/12/04 (Sat)
Set 1: Tennessee Jed > Good Lovin > Self Defense, The Weight, Me & Bobbie McGee, Mr Charlie > Jack Straw > Casey Jones
Set 2: St Stephen > William Tell Bridge > The Eleven > Dark Star > Shine On You Crazy Diamond > Dark Star > Drums > Space > Morning Dew, Help On the Way > Slipknot > Franklin's Tower > Lovelight
E1: One More Saturday Night
E2: Box Of Rain

06/12/04 (Sat)
Set 1: To Defy the Laws of Tradition, American Life, The Toys Go Winding Down, Groundhog's Day, My Friend Fats, Jerry was a Racecar Driver, Over the Electric Grapevine, De Anza Jig, Mr. Krinkle, YYZ, Those Damn Blue-Collar Tweekers, THELA HUN GINJEET, Frizzle Fry, Harold of the Rocks, Tommy the Cat

Addison Groove Project
06/13/04 (Sun)
Set 1: 11 Headed > Neo Geo > Crullers > Neo Geo > Juniper, Beantown, Love and Happiness ^, My Apartment, Have a Cigar, Reverend *
^ With Andy Moroz, Jenifer Hartswick, Dave Grippo
* with Cattle from Camper Von Beethoven on Trombone

Medeski, Martin and Wood
06/13/04 (Sun)
Set 1: Curtis > New Planet, Toy Dancing*, Down On Me*, New Planet*, Shine It > Improv > Queen Bee > Lonely Ave+
* with Cyro Baptista
+ with Robert Randolph

Trey Anastasio
06/13/04 (Sun) Bonnaroo Music Festival @ Bonnaroo - Manchester, TN
Set 1: All Things Reconsidered, Coming To, No Name, No Name, The Inlaw Josie Wales*, Another Trey Tune Unnamed+, Guyute, Flock Of Words^
Set 2: Mr. Completely > Sing a Song, Simple Twist Up Dave, Alive Again > Night Speaks To A Woman, The Devil Went Down to Georgia, Curlew's Call, Sultans of Swing, Push On Til the Day, Small Axe, Last Tube, Ether Sunday, Black Dog, E: First Tube
*Trey on acoustic
+Trey on electric
^Trey on acoustic & vocals, Jennifer Hartswick on Vocals.

This was my first festival in the U.S. I owed my friend some money so I bought him a ticket to Bonnaroo instead so he'd be forced to drive us. The ticket was a little more than I owed him, so I called the remainder a birthday present, since he'd be turning 21 during the fest.

As it turned out, a Toyota Celica was not the ideal vehicle to take three guys plus gear on a 15 hour trip to central Tennessee. That doesn't even take into account the 12 hour wait to get in the festival gates.

When, we finally got in, the festival was well underway. We were completely drained and had to take in Dave Matthews & Friends and Bob Dylan from our campsite. We set up our tent and promptly fell soundly asleep for several hours.

We woke up to an incredibly stacked late night line up. In a span of a few hours we hopped from stage to stage taking in the diverse sights and sounds. We started with Umphrey's McGee and Jack Daniels. This set would become legendary and catapult UM to a modicum of jam stardom, but it was just starting, as was our night and fest.

Next, we caught the Bill Laswell's supergroup Praxis featuring P-Funk organ grinder Bernie Worrell and masked fried chicken enthusiast Buckethead, who led the group through a haunting rendition of "Pure Imagination" from Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory.

We caught the end of Chairman of the Board Page McConnell's Vida Blue project with Allman Brother Oteil Burbridge and funky Meter Russel Batiste, before getting back to Umphrey's McGee, still going hours later. They had completed a full band segue with moe. and were tearing up the Flock of Seagulls classic "I Ran." This set hooked me on UM for a while, but I never again saw them capture the energy of that late night set.

The next day we barbecued and lounged and made it to the concert area some time in the late afternoon for some footbaggery.

Galactic's set featured a crackling lightening bolt at an opportune moment in a jam and shortly thereafter the heavens opened.

We sought refuge at a Maceo Parker funk throwdown.

The rain put a damper on the rest of the night's activities. We stood in the pouring rain for hours waiting for The Dead. This was my first Dead experience with the remaining original band members.

Finally, they took the stage and burst into the sunny "Tennessee Jed" featuring the affirmation, "Ain't no place I'd rather be!"

I had to leave after second set to catch Primus, another all time favorite group, for the first time. Their set was also delayed, but thankfully there were dry seats. The stage set was simply three gigantic balloons with eerie eyeball projections. Sadly, I had little energy to fully appreciate the bass onlaught.

The next day, I caught a slew of my favorite jazzy funky groups like Soulive, Addison Groove Project and Medeski Martin and Wood.

Phish's Trey Anastasio closed out the fest with his other band, but after a long weekend of rain, sweat and tears, the Nashville Youth Orchestra was not the type of music we were looking for, so we slowly drifted into the grounds to soak up the rest of Trey's set amid distant fireworks.

Then, we had another 15 hour drive back home to digest the festivities.

Looking back at setlists, I would have loved to catch David Byrne and Ween, among others, but that's Bonnaroo.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

05/08/04 Matisyahu @ Half Moon ROCC, New York, NY

Rocks Off are concert promoters based in NYC. The owner used to book talent at the Wetlands. He also has some awesome and hilarious tattoos including the unicorn/dolphin rainbow pictured above, which has become somewhat of an Internet meme.

I interned for them for a summer and change in 2006, but this was my first concert cruise.

Matisyahu would later become a pretty big star for a "Chassidic Reggae Superstar" as he was billed. We found out about this show from a slightly creepy old hippie Jew who was scheming on my friend's erratic Israeli cousin.

I have to say I was quite impressed with his band, his energy and his beatboxing skills. There's no stage on the boat, so the band plays on the same level as the crowd. At one point, Matisyahu pulled my friend "on stage" to dance it out.

The concert cruise experience is such that it doesn't even really matter who's playing, although Rocks Off books consistently entertaining acts. A boat ride around the island of Manhattan, taking in sights like the Brooklyn Bridge and the Statue of Liberty, is enough of a that the music is just gravy.

04/30/04 + ??/??/04 ulu @ Ramapo Valley Brewery, Suffern, NY

Richard Gehr of the Village Voice called ulu's jazzy funk "Gumby-textured squonk." Sounds about right.

They were one of those talented bands that never moved up to the level of similar groups like Medeski Martin & Wood and the Greyboy All-Stars. It was a treat seeing them in my local haunt.

The highlight was an instrumental version of David Bowie's "Space Oddity" with an audience sing along.

I saw them once again at the same venue, but the crowd reaction that time was so poor that they didn't even do an encore.

They do a mean cover of the Super Mario Brothers theme song.

03/18/04 Dark Star Orchestra @ Mexicali Blues, Teaneck, NJ

12-01-1973 Boston Music Hall, Boston, MA; w/one drummer (Dino)
Set 1: Promised, Sugaree, Mexicali, Tennessee Jed, L. L. Rain, China Cat> I Know You Rider, Big River, Brokedown, WRS Prelude> WRS Part l> Let It Grow, Casey Jones
Set 2: Around, TLEO, Me & My Uncle, Don't Ease, Bobby McGee, Half Step, Playing> Uncle John> Playing, Row Jimmy, Greatest, NFA> GDTRFB> Saturday Night
Encore: None
Filler: The Weight
DSO is the premier Grateful Dead cover band. They play full show covers, meaning that they will play a replica of a previous Dead show, often adding filler at the end. They occasionally play an original setlist of Dead songs.

My dad treated me to this show and I ran into an old high school/Israel friend.

The highlights were the covers of covers "Bobby McGee" and "The Weight."

I also saw the world's most perfect ass in tight white sweats.

02/20/04 Zen Tricksters/Good Rats @ Ramapo Valley Brewery, Suffern, NY

For a brief glorious moment in time, the Ramapo Valley Brewery served their own micro brews and booked some great bands. There wasn't much of a music scene in Rockland besides the community college punk rock and death metal and the stodgy Nyack jazz clubs.

It was a breath of fresh air not having to take an hour drive to any truly captivating music. It was all over before I knew it.

The opening act, Good Rats, was a classic bar band with Irish folk punk flavor and at least one instance of baseball bat/bar stool percussion.

The Zen Tricksters are one of the original Dead cover bands and their members have also played with various post-Jerry incarnations of the Dead.

I remember dropping a conversation to get to the front when they started "Eyes of the World," one of my favorite Dead tunes.

??/??/00 Soulfarm @ Old Mexicali Blues, Teaneck, NJ

The last post about Mexicali Blues jogged my memory.

Soulfarm actually used to be called Inasense. Some pop girl group bought out the name. I think I saw them once under the original moniker, in my high school auditorium.

The old Mexicali was on Cedar Lane, the main strip in Teaneck where all the hip Jews hung out on Saturday nights.

The main thing I remember about this show is smoking cloves and becoming incredibly lightheaded when I stood up.

01/29/04 Addison Groove Project/Zox @ Mexicali Blues, Teaneck, NJ

This band had a lot of potential before losing their bassist to cancer. Fuck cancer!

This was my first (possibly second actually) time at the new Mexicali Blues, right down the street from my old high school. I was at the original location once for a Soulfarm show.

This was just a fun time. Opener Zox was a throwback to my previous pop punk affiliation, but with a violin.

AGP brought some serious heat with their funk fusion onslaught.

After the show, we smoked backstage with the band.

The next day, I found a t-shirt in my car that has become one of my favorite. It's a (concert listings, reviews, etc.) shirt and it has silhouettes of musicians and the caption "GO SEE LIVE MUSIC" - my mantra! I still have no idea how it ended up in my car.

Friday, March 26, 2010

12/31/03 Disco Biscuits/The New Deal @ Hammerstein Ballroom, New York, NY

The New Deal opened and played an interlocking set; Set II was a Battle of the Bands with the Disco Biscuits taking the stage under different identities
Set I: Morph Dusseldorf1> Aceetobee, 42> Basis For A Day2
Set II: Basis For A Day3 4 5, Above The Waves6> Svenghali6 7, Svenghali6 7> Above The Waves6, Blame Canada10 8 9, Kyle's Mom's A Bitch10 8, It's Easy MMMKay10 8, Chocolate Salty Balls (P.S. I Love You)10 8, Fuck That Doll10 11, Sweating Bullets10 11, Frog Legs12, Pilin' It High12, Oname' Wa13, Ohio Gozaimasu10 13
Set III: Rock Candy> Voices Insane7> Pygmy Twylyte> Voices Insane7> Rock Candy, Munchkin Invasion14> 42
1 with "Hot Air Balloon" fake-out
2 segued into New Deal set
3 segued out of New Deal set
4 with new years countdown
5 band leaves stage and an emcee introduces the Battle of the Bands
6 Performed as "The Disco Biscuits"
7 dyslexic
8 Performed as "The Cartmans"
9 with Ericalynn Gruenberg on vocals
10 1st time played
11 Performed as "Fuck the Robots"
12 Performed as "The Perfume"
13 Performed as "Panda Power"
14 completes 12/30 dyslexic version
This was my first time seeing the band that would later become one of my favorites, but I went to see The New Deal. It was also my first New Year's Eve concert.

We drove into the city and had a few drinks at a friend's apartment, thinking we had some time to kill.

When we got to the venue, the line was practically around the block, so we sat down to kill some tallboys in the adjacent deli.

We finally got inside and found our balcony seats. My least favorite thing about Hammerstein is the inability to move freely between the balconies and the floor.

I think we caught the last several minutes of The New Deal's opening set, before they segued seamlessly into the Disco Biscuits. Either way, the only music I vividly remember is The Cartmans portion of the Battle of the Bands segment the Biscuits had concocted as a New Year's schtick. "Kyle's Mom's a Bitch" and "Salty Chocolate Balls" were the only tunes I knew. I don't even remember what happened at midnight.

Talking to seasoned fans after the show, most were quick to tell me that the band should not be judged by this anomalous performance. Still, it would be a couple years before I would see them again.

Just prior to leaving, we struck up a conversation with some lovely Bisquettes in the balcony, when a young gentleman sat down in front of us regurgitating typical acid gibberish like "It doesn't matter, man!" Sadly, our lady friends jetted when the young spunion began to remove his pants. Shortly later, I saw him leaving the venue on a stretcher.

12/27/03 The Machine (Pink Floyd tribute) @ BB King's Blues Club, New York, NY

I can't remember if it was this show or the one on the exact same date a year earlier, but I was with this girl I was crushing on and I was a little frustrated with the unrequited nature of the relationship. Then, against character, I hit on another girl, only to be shot down. Not my finest hour.

11/29/03 The New Deal/Brothers Past @ Bowery Ballroom, New York, NY

Set 1: I Feel Love > Juno > VL Tone, Jam > G-Nome > Don't Blame Yourself, Jam > Glide
Set 2: Jam > Dancehall Jam > Jam (?) > Deep Sun > Jam > Delay Tower > Deep Sun, Homewrecker > Ravine > A Little While > Jam > Gone, Gone, Gone
Encore: Home > Back Off

The New Deal is one of my all time favorite bands. Every time I see them, it's just a non-stop dance party. This was also my first time at Bowery Ballroom, consistently ranked one of the top music venues in NYC by those who rank such things. I don't think I've actually gone to the Bowery for any reason other than a New Deal show.

I had already played their self-titled release into the ground and this was their release tour for Gone Gone Gone which was even better.

They always seem to step it up in NYC and at the Bowery especially. This night was no different. They even had a sexy vocalist from the album come out to sing a song or two.

I'm still hooked on these guys.

I don't think I made it in time for Brothers Past, marking the beginning of a long string of near misses with that particular band.

11/21/03 Galactic @ Roseland Ballroom, New York, NY

At one point, I think Galactic was my most frequently seen band. This was the first time I saw the New Orleans funk outfit.

I don't recall much, but I remember I dragged a few friends out, one of whom would rarely make the trek to NYC.

09/01/03 Sprite Liquid Mix Tour @ PNC Bank Arts Center, Homdel, NJ

Somehow I managed to convince my friend, who would rarely leave the comforts of his basement bedroom, to drive us to New Jersey for this musical celebration of lemon lime soft drink. Then I spilled SoCo and Lime all over his Toyota Celica.

I think we bought some weed in the parking lot and he got his fake ID taken away, the same ID that worked just fine in Atlantic City.

We saw Sublime sound alike Slightly Stoopid, "Crazy Game of Poker" roots rockers O.A.R. (Of a Revolution), Talib Kweli and hip hop production duo The Neptunes with their live band N.E.R.D.

Other acts on the bill that we either missed or I can't recall seeing include live hip hoppers The Roots and sacred steel string master Robert Randolph & The Family Band.

07/30/03 Phish @ Tweeter Center, Camden, NJ

Set I: My Friend My Friend, Lonesome Cowboy Bill1, Scents and Subtle Sounds, You Ain't Going Nowhere2, Spock's Brain, Chalkdust Torture, On Your Way Down, Fast Enough For You> Taste
Set II: Twist, Bug, You Enjoy Myself, Walls of the Cave
Encore: Secret Smile
1 First since 10/31/98 or 169 shows
2 First time played

This was my first Phish show. I wouldn't get to many more until 2009, since they called it quits in 2004.

My friend who had been doing the entire tour, as Phish fans are apt to do, called me up on the day of the show and offered to drive me down. I was basically broke at the time, but I decided to empty my bank account to see the band with whom I had been steadily becoming obsessed.

Somewhere in Israel, my tastes turned from pop punk and third wave ska to jam. Maybe it was Boombamela and maybe it was the mescaline-infused hike through the hills, but I would soon be sucked irrevocably down the proverbial rabbit hole of improvisational rock music.

That shift in the winds came to a crux at this concert, featuring the band at the pinnacle of the modern jam scene.

I wasn't too familiar with the band's extensive canon yet, but I recognized a few songs. In retrospect, knowing far more now than I did then, the set list was rife with rarities and interesting selections.

I recall hacky sacking in the grassy lot with a ballet dancer, drinking beers bought out of a random cooler, selling cigarettes to finance my friend's touring, and wondering what was up with all those balloons.

While standing on line for a burrito after the show, someone gave me two free tickets to the next night's show, also in Camden. Emotionally and financially drained, I passed the tickets on. I still regret that decision, but the return of the band in 2009 certainly softened the blow.

06/26/03 Neil Young & Crazy Horse @ Madison Square Garden, New York, NY

This was my first time seeing a concert at The World's Most Famous Arena and my only time seeing the great Neil Young.

My dad treated us to some floor seats, which was probably my most expensive concert experience.

This was in support of Neil's Greendale album, a rock opera which tells the story of the Green family and their life and times in a small fictional California seaside town.

For the live show, they incorporated actors and a full stage set, so this was one of the more lavishly produced spectacles I've witnessed. It was akin to a Broadway production.

The band played the album in full and encored with the classics "Rockin' in the Free World" and "Hey Hey, My My." Unfortunately, we had to leave early so that the car wouldn't end up locked in the parking garage overnight.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

04/18-20/03 Boombamela @ Hof Nitzanim, Israel

I lived in Israel for the first half of 2003. Unfortunately, I lacked the funds to catch higher profile acts like Infected Mushroom and Wu-Tang associate Remedy.

I can recall at least one small club show, but the main musical event was this three day festival on a beach.

I had never been camping, let alone camping on a beach for three days. I bought a tent at the central bus depot in Jerusalem for the equivalent of $15 and managed to get it to a friend just about to depart. So, I secured a spot in the Niveh campground.

There was a lot of psytrance and typical hippie festival fare, including the aforementioned Moshav Band and a seemingly out of place bagpipe outfit.

At one point I got kicked out of the nude beach for refusing to remove my underwear. I did, however, stick around long enough to bum a cigarette off a naked lady.

I lounged on the beach by day and danced all night.

I smoked hash with a European gentleman at 4:20 on 4/20.

On the last night, I tripped on acid for the first time and basked in the glory of sexy horses and a Mediterranean sunrise.

The crazy thing is that, after the hippie fest cleared out, another fest, with a heavier focus on electronic music, took over the beach. I'm sure more than a few folks stuck it out for both, but I was utterly drained and ready to recover.

12/27/02 The Machine (Pink Floyd tribute) @ BB King's Blues Club, New York, NY

I can't remember if it was this show or the one on the exact same date a year later, but they opened the show playing Dark Side of The Moon along while the Wizard of Oz was projected behind them. While cliched, that was one of the cooler moments of my concert career.

12/03/02 SoulFarm/Moshav Band @ BB King's Blues Club, New York, NY

Another Hanuka Soulfarm/Moshav Band party.

09/21/02 Goldfinger @ SUNY Oneonta Field House, Oneonta, NY

I never went away to school, opting for local options instead, so visiting my friends at Oneonta was the closest I got to the college experience.

On this particular jaunt to the upstate locale, Goldfinger was playing in the Field House. The memory that sticks out is the kid that went up on stage to eat a Twinkie out of the drummer's ass cheeks.

Maybe I don't regret missing out on the college experience after all.

08/11/02 Warped Tour @ Asbury Festival Area, Asbury Park, NJ

This was my last Warped Tour. I don't see a return in the near future. The funny thing about punk rock crowds is that you get older and they stay the same age.

Celtic punkers Flogging Molly absolutely killed it to close out the day. "Salty Dog" remains a favorite to this day.

After the festival, we swam in the Atlantic for a bit and then called it a day.

06/05/02 DMC Regional:Mr. Sinista/A-Trak/The Beatnuts @ BB King's Blues Club, New York, NY

DMC stands for Disco Mix Champions and it is the premier competition event of turntablism, the art of manipulating sounds with two turntables, as opposed to DJs who merely spin records.

A-Trak won in 1997 at the age of 15; he is now Kanye West's DJ.

The winner in 2002 was Japanese DJ Kentaro.

We were treated to some ridiculous beats and scratchery, as well as some cool swag.

It didn't seem as if The Beatnuts were actually going to show, but they did indeed come on stage a bit after midnight if memory serves correctly.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

04/22/02 Reel Big Fish @ Irving Plaza, New York, NY

I've seen this band quite a bit and I recall very little.

They were in Baseketball.

03/13/02 Less Than Jake @ Birch Hill Concert Hall, Old Bridge, NJ

Dirty Jersey!

I had the bassist sign my sneaker.

02/25/02 Soulfarm/Moshav Band @ BB King's Blues Club, New York, NY

After the Wetlands shut down, Soulfarm moved their Hanuka/Purim parties to B.B. King's eponymous club, which is a lot more corporatized than you might expect from a bluesman like King and infinitely more so than the grassroots Wetlands, but the show must go on.

The Moshav is the semi-communal settlement in Israel where all the hippie Jews live and the Moshav Band provides the soundtrack. They are also frequent guests at thjese shindigs.

If I recall correctly, I was packing a flask of Bacardi 151 at this show.

12/06/99 Jam Master Jay @ NBA Store, New York, NY

Somewhere in the MTA system, en route to this performance, my friend and I got stopped by transit police for being underage and out of school on a weekday. Apparently, they hadn't heard about Hanuka.

After a detour to an NYPD outpost and a confirmation call to parents, we were on our merry way.

This was supposed to be all of Run DMC, but only Jay showed up. The event was to promote the launch of NBA on TNT or something like that. He spun for about 30 minutes and then signed some autographs. I still have the autographed flier.


??/??/01 Jimmie's Chicken Shack @ SUNY Rockland Performing Arts Center, Suffern, NY

After the aforementioned No Doubt debacle at RCC, I believe this was the next rock concert allowed at the venue.

Jimmie's Chicken Shack first came to prominence with it's minor hit "High," which was popular around the same time as Marcy Playground's "Sex and Candy." Since I purchased both albums simultaneously, the two bands are forever linked in my head. I think they even did a tour togetehr fairly recently. That's neither here nor there.

The show was pretty good, highlighted by my personal favorite "Hell" and the poppier "Do Right."

I don't have the stub anymore, but it cautioned: "NO MASHING ALLOWED."

No Doubt must've really done a number on that place.

??/??/01 Cash Money Crew/Fat Joe/Ja Rule, Funkmaster Flex Celebrity Car Show, NJ

This was another car show with an even bigger focus on hip hop. It was the first of a now-annual event put on by Hot97 DJ and automotive enthusiast, Funkmaster Flex.

The basic idea was to bring together all the local hip hoppers and have them bring out their whip(s) to show off.

The funny thing is that the stars wandering around the show were often bigger than the ones on stage - Busta Rhymes, Swizz Beatz, etc.

09/09/01 Ice T/The Beatnuts @ Shea Stadium parking lot, Queens, NY

I used to go to a lot of car shows featuring the kind of tricked out vehicles featured in The Fast and The Furious. This particular event was notable for the inclusion of live hip hop.

The Beatnuts are one of the all-time great underrated NYC hip hop groups and I was pretty excited to see them live. They did not disappoint.

We also met skateboarder Rob Dyrdek (pre-MTV reality show fame), who was apparently part of Ice-T's entourage for the weekend. He signed my friend's Canon GL-1.

Google research has basically confirmed the date, which seems like lightyears before two days later in my memory banks.

08/??/01 Dead tribute @ Wetlands, New York, NY

I wasn't really a big Dead fan in 2001; I was more into the iconography than the music. But I knew I had to get to the Wetlands one more time before it succumbed to the gentrification of SoHo.

The only song I remember is "Touch of Grey."

08/04/01 Warped Tour @ Sunken Meadow, Randalls Island, NY

Another summer, another Vans Warped tour.

This was my first time at Randall's Island after hitting the New Jersey date the year before.

It was also my first time catching some of my favorite bands like Rancid and Dropkick Murphys.

The lasting memory is the insane amount of dust at the venue. I was blowing mud out of my nose for days.

The mosh pit during Pennywise was especially intense.

I remember waiting on line outside the venue trying to impress people with my cool new "Fat Lip" ring tone. What a dork.

07/20/01 Big Apple Circus @ Palisades Center, West Nyack, NY

This obviously wasn't a concert, but I have a ticket stub for it and the circumstances behind it are mildly amusing.

A few weeks earlier, I had taken my new girlfriend on our first double date to a movie at the mall.

After the movie, we decided to venture around the circus grounds in the adjacent commuter parking lot.

One thing led to another and we ended up kicking it with some circus folk - a trapeze artist and an usher. They hooked us up with some free tickets.

I don't remember much of the circus itself because we got a little blitzed by the train tracks.

Monday, March 22, 2010

07/17/01 Reel Big Fish/Goldfinger @ Roseland Ballroom, New York, NY

This tour had the clever comical name Crouching Fish, Hidden Finger.

These were two of my favorite bands at the time and this joint effort did not disappoint.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

07/15/01 Area:One Festival (Moby, Outkast, Incubus, Nelly Furtado) @ Jones Beach Theatre, Wantagh, NY

This was quite a show. I remember there was a lot of buzz about the venture, possibly due to the diverse genres being presented by organizer Moby (an aptly named descendant of Herman Melville).

I went with the friend who introduced me to the sweet leaf. It was a pain in the ass taking public transit to Jones Beach. I think it was the first and last time I had to endure that ordeal.

We were still in the parking lot as pop R&B chanteuse Nelly Furtado belted out her hit single "I'm Like a Bird."

I'm not a big Incubus fan, so I skipped their set. There was definitely some other acts, but I don't remember any of them.

We were a little disappointed about the proximity of our seats to the stage.

Outkast was fresh off the success of Stankonia. The stage set was some sort of caveman wonderland. They were amazing - big lights and bright colors and "Bombs Over Baghdad." I told that to the reporter outside the show. Turns out he worked for Rolling Stone and I ended up in the magazine's Fan Notes section. I hope that wasn't my 15 minutes of fame. For months, I feared they would print my positive comments about Nelly Furtado, killing my little street cred.

Moby put on a fairly stellar set switching between guitar and conventional electronic music accoutrement, drawing heavily from his fully commercialized Play. Nelly Furtado filled in for Gwen Stefani on "South Side."

Friday, March 19, 2010

06/27/01 Green Day @ Hammerstein Ballroom, New York, NY

Just a couple weeks prior, I had returned from Birthright Israel with a new girlfriend so I took her to a punk rock show. Much to my dismay, she avoided the mosh pit due to a recent nose job. I should have known then it wasn't meant to be.

I got Billie Joe Armstrong to sign my ticket stub outside. I wonder if that's worth anything.

This was my first time at Hammerstein.

05/15/01 MxPx/Good Charlotte @ Irving Plaza, New York, NY

I got way too high before this show. I smoked in the afternoon, but I was still too stoned to mosh hours later.

I saw one of the Madden twins of Good Charlotte outside before the show. Now they're all Hollywood.

05/04/01 Blink-182/Sum41 @ Roseland Ballroom, New York, NY

I'm not sure if I got there in time for Sum 41, but I hope I did because I was digging "Fat Lip" at the time.

My only lasting memory of this show is my friend's girlfriend's brother disparaging my claim that I was a child of the '80s.

03/09/01 Soulfarm @ Lion's Den, New York, NY

This was another Soulfarm Purim party at a new locale that would become a new stomping grounds of sorts for me later on.

It was notable for the fact that it was my first time smoking weed. My friend had been pretty adamant in convincing me to give up my anti-drug stance for a while and she finally succeeded. I got so baked, I couldn't even finish the Mike's Hard Lemonade I had purchased to further inebriate myself.

The rest of the night was a blissful blur of all my stoner friends welcoming me to their ranks. I also recall the Drums segment of the show sounding especially poingant.

The girl I was crushing on at the time was there, giving me a little attention, but ultimately leaving me longing.

I ran into a rarely seen Kosher Chinese restaurant co-worker and we playfully argued whether she worked where I worked or vice versa. I didn't know it at the time, but it was the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

It was also my mom's birthday, which somehow makes perfect sense.

02/20/01 Less Than Jake @ Roseland Ballroom, New York, NY

For what I think was my first time seeing one of my favorite bands, I remember very little about this show.

They covered Kool & The Gang's "Celebration."

I saw my friend's brother outside. I have much more in common musically with the brother than the friend. We've both followed the trajectory of punk/ska > hip hop > jam/electronic.

??/??/00 Pilfers/Mephiskapheles/The Ziggens @ Wetlands, New York, NY

Another Wetlands ska matinee.

I don't remember exactly when this show was, but I remember being blown away by the Pilfers' combination of pop, metal, reggae, dub, hardcore, ska, and soul (aka raggacore); the Mephiskapheles' evil satanic metal ska; and the Ziggens' little ditty "Something About a Waitress."

Chawalaleng just rolls off the tongue, doesn't it?

10/19/00 Limp Bizkit/Eminem/Papa Roach/Xzibit @ Continental Airlines Arena, East Rutherford, NJ

Say what you will about the credibility of these artists, but in terms of production values, this remains one of the best concerts I've seen. I hadn't planned on going, but when a friend offered me a ticket on the day of the show, I couldn't resist the opportunity to see two of my favorite acts.

This was right around the time of Limp Bizkit's horribly titled Chocolate Starfish and the Hot Dog Flavored Water and Eminem's best album, The Marshall Mather's LP, so it's safe to say that both were at or near the height of their careers. Eminem would coast at that peak for several more years, while Limp Bizkit would soon fade into cultural irrevelance.

This was the opener of the tour, which aimed to combine rap and rock for fun and profit.

Pre-Pimp My Ride Xzibit opened the show, followed by "Last Resort" rockers, Papa Roach.

Eminem came out in his then-trademark hockey mask and chainsaw to a stage set replicating his childhood home. He ran through all his hits amid various costume changes and visits to various rooms in the "house." I think Dido was on hand to provide the chorus to "Dear Stan." The performance had the acerbic vital tenacity of a troubled man that had just conquered the charts.

Limp Bizkit's stage set was even more outrageous with an industrial theme and blazing pyrotechnics sending heatwaves well out into the crowd.

10/04/00 Green Day @ Roseland Ballroom, New York, NY

Before they headlined Giants Stadium and provided inspiration for Broadway shows, Green Day played free shows at midsized venues to promote their new albums. This show was in conjunction with the release of Warning.

I don't recall the exact ticket procuring process, but it involved lining up outside Tower Records. Remember Tower Records? Remember buying CDs?

The show itself is hazy, but I'm sure it involved all their hits and their usual schtick of pulling audience members on stage for the punk classic "Blitzkrieg Bop."

They've certainly come a long way since then.

08/??/00 Soulfarm @ Wetlands, New York, NY

This night was an unmitigated disaster. My on-and-off girlfriend was about to embark on a yearlong trip to Israel and I wanted to show her a good time at my favorite NYC club before she left.

We missed the last bus to the city, or maybe it just didn't show up. Somehow we hitched a ride with a friendly stranger.

I remember nothing about the show except hanging out in the basement and scavenging for weed to placate my lady friend, who was becoming increasingly irritated with the situation.

To further complicate matters, I naively assumed I'd be able to hitch a ride home with a fellow concert attendee. That didn't really plan out and this girl had a virtual nervous breakdown fearing her parents would nix her trip.

Eventually, we did get a ride home from some Jersey associates, none the worse for the wear.

07/16/00 Warped Tour @ Asbury Festival Area, Asbury Park, NJ

The Warped Tour is an annual touring festival with a heavy focus on punk music and extreme sports like skateboarding. It's sponsored by Vans.

This was my first time at the festival and it was a sweaty mess of punk rock kids and skaters.

I finally got to see the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, as well as a lot of my other favorite bands like Green Day and NOFX. I had a pretty bad headache during NOFX and most of the ride home.

We saw Jon Comer walking around the festival grounds. He's famous for being the first professional skateboarder with a prosthetic leg.

05/30/00 Blink-182/Bad Religion @ Jones Beach Theatre, Wantagh, NY

This was fun because I wasn't planning on going until the day of the show and my friend called me up offering me an extra ticket. Blink-182 was my favorite band at the time and I also enjoyed bad Religion's current single, "Story of My Life."

The funny thing was that he had three tickets in a lower section and three tickets in a higher section. It was him and his girlfriend plus two of my other friends. You would think he'd want to sit with his girlfriend, but he ended up giving my two other friends the better tickets and leaving me with his girlfriend, who I hardly knew, in the nosebleeds.

At setbreak, I remember bumming a cigarette for one of my friends, which for some reason I enjoyed doing before I actually started smoking.

Years later, I would discuss the tour with a Darien Lake local on line for a roller coaster pre-Phish show. He preferred Bad Religion's performance to Blink-182's.

I got a free sample box of cereal in the parking lot and chipped my tooth on my tongue ring.

We saw a good amount of boobies on the way out. Hurray for boobies!

Then we got ridiculously lost on the way home and ended up in Staten Island. My friend must have been overtired because at one point he screeched to a halt on the Turnpike and swore he had seen a buffalo on the highway.