Preshow: First stop was Brooklyn Bowl (again – my 3 night consecutive run at Bowlive even surprised me). But, as someone said, “They’re soooo good.”
Line: Long, House: Packed, Bar: couldn’t get to, On Stage: Nigel Hall on keys.
Set 1: Soulive (Eric Krasno, guitar; Neal Evans, keys; Alan Evans, drums).
Set 2: Soulive with 3 horns. Ivan Neville shows up with another saxophonist. Rage continued. Nigel and Neal were dancing with each other on one set of keyboards, Nigel’s left hand, Neal’s right hand –switch– Neal’s left hand, Nigel’s right hand. Wild, I can’t even describe it properly. I need to link to something to show what was going on. Here’s a link to see the dancing… its better than trying to describe it (a picture is a thousand words and all that). The energy was electric, and was sizzling through the Brooklyn Bowl. It was only 11pm.
Setbreak: longer than the usual 15 minutes. My friend started to shake and she said, eyes bugged out, “Oh my god, I just saw Robert Randolph.” I looked on stage, damned if I didn’t see a steel guitar up there.
Set 3: Robert Randolph and Soulive go absolutely nuts. Robert is a trip, his energy is so high, the roof was blown off the Brooklyn Bowl once again. Pure power, pure funky guitar riffs, crazy keys and incredible beats. We were on that “driving the one beat” train right into the ground. It was intense. Intense.
Set 4: I can’t remember if there was a 4th set. It all merged together at this point. The music lifted the Bowl and everyone in it a little bit higher. The stage was packed, 4 horns, 1 drummer, I conga player, Robert Randolph on steel guitar, cranking it out, lifiting that steel with his knee almost off the stage, Ivan Neville on vocals, then he moved to the keyboard on my side of the stage. Bass keys and more from Neal, Nigel on vocals. Insanity reigns at Bowlive.
Highlights: Hercules, Everybody Wants To Rule The World (cover), Ivan Neville sitting at the keys. I was so close to him I could have touched him. The legend. The look on my friends face when she realized who the special guest was. The Hendrix jam, Neville driving the blues into the ground. I will need to get a CD of that evening, without a question.
Aftershow: Went to a club in Alphabet City, Nublu. Will Bernard and friends were playing. The “friends” ended up to be Eric Kalb, drums and Charlie Hunter, 7 string. We got in late, and missed half the show. As we were getting settled, in walks a tuba and a trombone. (I know, how does THAT happen?) More insane energy, dancing, raging, and funk ended this long wonderful musical evening, and I stumbled a couple of blocks home. I’m still processing. I will write more notes as I remember them.
More great insight from Soulive’s Blog.
A link to the show on Archive.org is here.