Wednesday, August 15, 2007
Dave Matthews Band
A brief post on the Dave Matthews Band concert last night.
This show is an experience, a cultural phenomenon of our generation. Crowds of all ages flock to hang out all day in the parking lot to tailgate, grilling food, downing beers, and smoking. This is a highlight in youth culture, and luckily for them, Dave tours every summer, making this an annual experience nationwide.
I was surprised at how lenient the cops are with the partying behavior in the parking lots. SPAC has two large parking lots, both of which were packed to the brim, to the point where it was uncomfortable for cars to move around or get to the exit. Imagine if you were that influential on a crowd that you could bring that many people together to have a good time and relax in the summer? I wish I had the power to do that.
Maybe that's why he tours so much. Or maybe it's because of the ridiculous sum of money that he pools in every year. Maybe it's because the crowd is desperate to hear him play time and time again. I was so surprised at how the crowd became a part of the music experience, singing along with him, clapping with the music, and generally participating as much as possible, as encouraged by Dave himself. I've never seen a show where the audience contributed so much to the live performance, and it didn't even seem forced. It seemed natural. Now that's power too.
One reason I didn't get into Dave Matthews Band before was because of the huge cult-like drawing he pulls in. Teenagers become obsessed with them, almost to a level of Beatle-mania in the 60s. It seems like people worship him, almost like the band is its own religion. People get really serious about it. But, Dave is surely the "it" band of the 90s and 00s--maybe he even will be in the 10s. (Doesn't the "10s" sound or look weird on the screen?)
The band is so great to me because they don't just play singles during their show; they jam and play music together, and they play it very well. They have such a unique sound using unique instruments, like the violin. They are so comfortable and natural playing together--I'm blown away by their ability to transition from jam sessions into songs. I don't know how musicians do it, but Dave Matthews Band has mastered it. Their music is so beautiful; it makes you feel naturally happy. Now that's the kind of music I enjoy.
Highlight of the concert: Phish's Trey Anastasio made a debut, jamming with the band to "Warehouse." Now that's a moment that cannot be duplicated in one's lifetime.
Does anyone have a favorite Dave song or concert experience? Please feel free to share. Any Dave feedback or comment is welcomed and appreciated.
To end, I'll put the setlist for last night's show. Amazing.
Pantala Naga Pampa
You Might Die Trying
Rhyme and Reason
Hunger for the Great Light
The Idea Of You
Lie In Our Graves
Sweet Up and Down
Anyone Seen the Bridge?
American Baby Intro
All Along The Watchtower