So, we’re back – the 3rd annual Bowlive held in Brooklyn’s own Brooklyn Bowl. This is the favorite time of year to be eating lots of fried chicken, hearing bowling pins crash while listening to some of today’s finest musicians in a room where only 600 can comfortably stand, or dance. The first night went off without a hitch. Here’s my recount – it gets increasingly harder to understand my notes as the night goes on….
No real preshow for me. I got to the Bowl at around 8:15pm, the show didn’t start until 9pm. I dropped my coat and bag off, said some hellos, hit the ladies room, got a drink and settled in for the evening. Chatted with my friend and looked to the right of me, there was John Scofield talking with some people, no less than 4 feet from me. I noted it but couldn’t bring myself to gawk at him. He’s one of my guitar heroes-being so close to greatness made me nervous.
Soulive alone. The trio (Eric Krasno and brothers Neal and Alan Evans) just came off their three night Snowlive weekend in Boulder Colorado, and they sounded tight. Soulive usually sounds tight but tonight they sounded like they had tightened a few notches up. They played alone, and for the first few songs I was so enthralled I had forgotten guitarist John Scofield was going to join the stage.
The trio just nailed the first set of the Bowlive 3 run, my friend turned to me and said, “first set, eh?”. I laughed and shook my head. It had already gotten heavy with funk and bass… We were only a hour in.
Bathroom Run. Smoke Break. Hit the bar. Get back near stage left.
Alan introduces John Scofield onto the stage and off we go.
Nigel Hall joined Neal Evans on the keyboard before he grabbed the mic to sing a slow bluesy serenade.
Here are my notes on that:
Nigel slow serenade soulful sexy and raw. 10pm. Organ keys reverb right through The Brooklyn Bowl
Nigel wails. Scofield wails. Organ wails and a hot beat by Alan. Damn. Night 1 w the posse surrounding me, all goo love in the air.
First set. Jesus. It just started and it’s crazy funky souled up in here.
Scofield gives props to Soulive and particularly Nigel. Sweet. They go into Boozin’. Scofield is in love with Nigel. You can see it by his face.
Next, a crazy banter w Scofield and Neal. This rage officially melts the Bowl at 1022 pm.
Set Break: I’m kinda floating at this point. With permagrin wide I made it outside, chatted with friends, and realized I was starving. Good thing the Bowl has some good food.
I dropped my coat and winter crap back near my spot next to the stage and went for food. Apparently I wasn’t the only one who had such an idea. So I hit the ladies room instead.
Soulive comes on the stage, alone once again. I find a dark corner close my eyes and groove hard in anonymous land. I went there. But I was in dire need of food. So, off to the restaurant!
Food choice? The Beach french bread pizza. Oh my. Lord. Yum. Not for vegetarians but for a pork filled meat lovers delight? I highly recommend. Soulive plays while I wait for my pizza. Food!! Come quickly. They’re raging!
By the time I settled my bill, i heard the unmistakable southern guitar twang on the stage Luther Dickinson from The North Mississippi Allstars on the stage. I have a permagrin wide on my face. Can’t help it. He’s sans beard but still hot. And, shreddinggg his guitar.
Luther and Kraz tease Santana before Kraz goes off leading into Jimi Hendrix’s Hear My Train. Plucking frenzied glory jam.
I love it when guitarists banter with each other with their instruments. Tit for Tat back and forth as we fall into a shredding glory.
I walked away from the first night thinking, “damn, if this is first night, …. phewwwww”
What a way to start…Scofield and Luther Dickinson. Fantastical. Unimaginable. I love Bowlive, for mashups just like this.
Set 1: So Live, Hat Trick, Tabasco, Red Baron, What You See, More Than You Know, Boozer
Set 2: El Ron, One in Seven, Hip Hug Her, Never in all my Days, Uncle Jr., Ghetto, Hear My Train Encore: Stone Free