Allman Brothers Band, United Palace Theater, 3.15.10 – Updated

Pre-show:  Honey, we’re not at the Beacon anymore.  After 3 subways and 45 minutes of travel I got up to the United Palace Theater at 175th St.  Found a ticket no problem, Row A, Orchestra.  Karma, folks, is good.  Checked out the theater, wow so beautiful.  Carved walls and ceilings, sweet comfy seats.  Killer!

Set 1: Hot’lanta, Can’t Lose What You Never Had, Trouble No More, Come & Go Blues, Rocking Horse > Little Martha Tease > Jam > Rocking Horse, Gamblers Roll, Only You Know & I Know, Kind of Bird, Statesboro Blues

Hot’lanta rocked, Trouble No More w/ Warren singing, Oteil’s bass deep and low, setting the pace and the vibrations through the theater. Derek and Oteil are bouncing back and forth between each other, Derek shreds.  I mean, wow.  I hear “clank clank clank” from a cowbell, hit at exactly the perfect moment and Gregg’s keys lift us higher.  Warren makes that “wah, wah” sound on the mic, scatting in his own Warren way.  (Ed note:  Warren’s scatting is much different from Oteil’s scatting … and scatting is my new word of the week.  Warren scats in a “wah wah” way, where Oteil scats like he’s plucking the bass.  I guess that is the obvious difference.)

Set 2: Melissa, Good Clean Fun, Black Hearted Woman>Other One Jam, The Weight, Every Hungry Woman, Jessica > Will The Circle Be Unbroken > Oteil Solo > JaBuMa > Jessica    Encore: You Don’t Love Me

Highlights: Gregg on guitar for Melissa, Black Hearted Woman > The Other One Jam, The Weight, Jessica, Oteil Solo and Oteil on Drums, Butch on Timpani – ok, the whole second set.

Gregg comes out with his acoustic for Melissa.  So pretty.  It’s Gregg’s song and he sings it perfectly.  Then we go into a shredding Black Hearted Woman>Other One Jam.  Oh my.  Warren wailed, Derek shreds that guitar to pieces, I love it when he taps the strings with his whole right hand.  Jeezzzz.  His fingers play that instrument at mock speed.  The whole place was standing, although not really dancing.  Just watching.  In Awe.  Damn.

It was fun to watch Derek and Oteil play, Derek walks over to Oteil, Oteil’s back to the crowd and they both go off into a soft and sweet beat together, playing off of each other.  This ends in a funky jam, with barely any Warren playing, just soft strumming.  Ends up Derek starts shredding that guitar to pieces, no facial movements at all – stoic.  My theory?  He doesn’t breathe while he shreds.  He takes a big breath before he goes into it, and doesn’t breathe afterwards.  Watch his face, he turns red.  That’s my theory on it.  W O W.

After he’s done destroying his guitar, he turns to Warren and Warren starts shredding.  Back and forth, Warren’s fast paced plucking, Derek’s shredding, Oteil’s beat keeping in time with these two crazy fast players.  Warren may be the lead man, but Derek owned this jam.

photo by: Karen Dugan

Then Oteil’s solo.  Um.  I didn’t know a bass guitar could sound like a jazz guitar, reminiscent of Pat Metheny.  I was like everyone else, standing, not dancing, watching intently.  Then Oteil goes to Butch’s drums and Butch moves to the timpani.  Oh good lord, we have drums.  Awesome drums.  Speechless drums.  Sick.

It was a night of shredding glory.  I love fast, Southern guitars, and that’s why I love the Allman’s.  They are still in town this week.  I may have to go back up there.

After the Brothers went off stage they had this lovely picture montage of Duane on the LED screen.  People screamed “Duane”… I said his name too.  Swooning over the whole evening, my guitar heros all on stage tonight I floated onto my hour long subway ride, permagrin all the way home.

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