Monday, August 11, 2008

I'll never stop loving DMB

You would think it would start to get old after the number of times you've seen a band in concert reaches double digits.

But there's something about the Dave Matthews Band. Each time I venture to a concert, I'm prepared to witness something amazing. Something new. Something that's so much more than a CD full of songs.

I wasn't disappointed with my 11th Dave Matthews Band concert.

My friend Amanda from the 'burg and I took our yearly trek to Alpine Valley Saturday for the DMB concert. We left early and arrived at the parking lot with plenty of time to enjoy some pre-show food and adult beverages. Sadly, our food was the sandwich variety since my little grill is still dead. Next year.

After enjoying our food and beverages and people watching, we headed towards the amphitheater and down the hill to secure a spot on the lawn. Then it was time to wait.

The Black Crowes opened and I have to admit, I wasn't impressed. The hour they played was kind of long for me, especially since they didn't play one of the three songs I knew. Maybe it was because those three songs are also on their Greatest Hits album from 1990-1999. I dunno. All I know was that was a long hour of music that didn't really appeal to me.

Then after a short break, there was Dave Matthews strolling onto the stage. Followed by the rest of the band. And they were ready to play. After hearing the first few chords of the opener, "Dancing Nancies," I knew it was going to be a good night. And when they followed it up with another old-school number, "Seek Up," my thoughts were confirmed.

They slowed it down with a couple of mellow tunes, but then pumped up the crowd with "Bartender," and kept the energy high with "Corn Bread."

Later in the night, after playing the intro to "Too Much," I was totally caught off guard. I seriously thought DMB was going to continue on with the intro and play "Too Much." And they played a few chords. And all of a sudden I realized what they were playing. "Halloween." No way. One of the Coolest.Songs.Ever. Dave screaming. Passion. One of the few songs I haven't heard live. Amazing.

A little while later, I got to see something I've never seen before. The stage hands pull out this piano to center stage and Dave sits down. First he's a bit chatty. Telling a story about how he once had a a bunny, a box turtle and a third animal (it started with a "B" but I can't for the life me remember what it was) and how they'd all died and were inside the box. Maybe you had to be there to find the story amusing.

But then he started playing the piano. "Out of My Hands." I've never seen Dave at the keyboard before. And it was just him. And Carter was back there on the drums, providing a little bit of a beat. Nothing else. And it was cool.

They finished out the set with one of my favorites, "Ants Marching." Then the stage went dark and they disappeared. But a few minutes later, they were back for the encore and treated us to "Don't Drink the Water," and an amazing version of "Two Step."

Like I said, this was my 11th show and they never get old for me. There's always something different. In addition to the music, this year Dave was really chatty on stage and busted out some cool dance moves. It was an amazing three hours. Well worth it.

And for those of you who care, the set list. One that I'm sure had many fans wishing they were sitting on the lawn at Alpine Valley just like me. Because seriously. "Spoon." "Halloween." Throw in the covers of "Burning Down the House," and "Money" and it was a good time.

Alpine Valley
Aug. 9, 2008

Dancing Nancies
Seek Up
Proudest Monkey
So Damn Lucky
Corn Bread
Eh Hee
Water Into Wine
Burning Down the House
Louisiana Bayou
Anyone Seen the Bridge?
Too Much Intro
Water Into Wine (Reprise)
Out of My Hands
You Might Die Trying
Ants Marching


Don't Drink the Water
Two Step


teacherwoman said...

I am so jealous! I would love to see DMB in concert but it has never happened... I guess he doesn't get around these parts of the woods ever!

Anonymous said...

So sad about LeRoi.

I'm amazed the band went ahead with the concert. It was awfully nice of them not to disappoint fans.