How TWEET It Is...
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    Hey, hey, hey, come right away, come and join the party everyday!


    I hail from a long line of people who have perfected the art of "hurry up and wait." So getting in the elevator and pressing "CASINO" to arrive twenty minutes before the show felt like being given the luxury of winding a clock backwards.

    Last night's FURTHUR show at The Joint in Las Vegas was broadcast Live on Sirius XM23 radio. I made a small bet with myself that the band would take the easy route and play the safe songs, the popular or "poppy" songs, including Touch of Grey, the Grateful Dead's Billboard Top 100 Hit -- reaching #9 in September 1987.

    Good thing my wager was small since I could not have been more WRONG!! FURTHUR pulled out all the stops last night -- delivering a level of audio showmanship guaranteed to make satellite-listening fans envious of the approximately 4,000 fans in real-time attendance.

    This was my first visit to The Joint, a refurbished venue with amazing acoustics. Eddie, who manages one of the clothing boutiques in the hotel, told me, "the locals are disappointed by the renovation, since the small, intimate club formerly seating 900 is now too big and impersonal." Well, I thought "small and intimate" was a good thing, especially after being at Red Rocks. The Joint seemed like a very big cocktail party with live music. My friend Caren and I ditched our balcony seats right away and stood against the rail for the entire show. We had a perfect tree house view of the stage and the General Admission revelers below.

    The show opener, China Cat Sunflower, played without its pair, gave the early indication it was going to be "one of those nights." JUST NON-STOP Blues-Rock n' Roll joy! From China, they marched into the not-surprising, New (new) Minglewood Blues, "I was born in the desert, Raised in a Lion's Den." Bobby's altering of the lyrics to include, "Here in Vegas, everyone knows what to do." "The women in San Francisco sure know how to have a ball." "I'm going to San Francisco, even if I have to crawl," made the place cheer with delight, especially us Bay Area gals.

    With barely a transition, they rolled right into the Bob Dylan favorite, Maggie's Farm. Another Bob Dylan jewel, Like A Rolling Stone, is just a crowd pleaser and a party extender, no matter who's singing it. A, new-to-me Phil song, Welcome to the Dance, was lovely and I look forward to hearing it again when the show is uploaded. Thank you tapers!

    The second set blazed off with Golden Road (to Unlimited Devotion), Viola Lee Blues and then the extraordinary Wilson Pickett tune, In the Midnight Hour, making me wish I had my "honey" standing next to me. It was near perfection on this one -- just beautiful!

    For me, Stella Blue was the standout song of the evening. I don't want to take anything away from John Kadlecik's own stellar guitar and vocal talents, but when I closed my eyes for a moment, I thought I could see Jerry on the stage again. I know you know what I mean when I say, sometimes John is just freaky in that way. Maybe it was the years of "pretending" in DSO. But, on a night like last night, it's just heart warming and unsettling at the same time. That song, sung in that way, I think can melt the toughest, heartiest of fans. Just lovely!

    After a feet-moving, lyrics-shouting rendition of Scarlett, Bobby handed the lead vocals torch to John who lit up the house with Fire on the Mountain, completing the Scarlett/Fire duo in one of the most heart-pumping, raucous versions I've heard in a while. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say, I think the evening belonged to John. He just quietly delivered his no-fuss brand of guitar/vocal genius from his corner of the stage. Did I already use the adjective, STELLAR?!!

    Phil began his "Donor Rap" by asking the crowd, "I'll bet you come from all over." " How many of you are from out-of-state?" The Joint erupted in cheers! Then he asked, "how many of you are from here?" I thought the ceiling tiles would fall from the sky. Wow -- the desert fans put out quite an impressive showing or they have much stronger vocal chords than the rest of us

    I conducted a quick unofficial demographic study last night and it was nice seeing many, many of the fans were of the more experienced variety. Very nice indeed!!

    I'd be remiss if I didn't give a quick mention to the pure dichotemy of seeing Deadheads in full-pagentry wandering around a casino where pole dancers were doing their "thing" and a legion of convention goers in button-down shirts had just been released from a very corporate-y event. I wouldn't have minded tagging along with a social anthropoligist observing all of this last night!

    A special shout out to my new friends, Rob and Steve from Peoria and Jason from Utah. Rob, you might consider a second career taking pre-concert photos of fans. Nice pic taken with my iPhone. Thank you.

    Matt from Denver who bought my Las Vegas 'extra' off Craigslist and then brought his adorable son with him when he picked up the ticket; it was fun running into you in the lobby before the show, and then again during the show. What a show -- huh?

    To Mike and Mike, from the Denver airport. I kept an eye out for you guys, but couldn't spot you. Thanks for coming up to say "hi" in the airport and saying you recognized me from Twitter. Totally surreal!

    To the front office team at the HRH, thanks for the multiple room switches in an attempt to find the exact spot with the fastest, most consistent WIFI connection. You'd think it was circa 1990 here. Painful!

    And, to my friend, Caren, who flew in for last night's show and continues on the journey to LA with me today, "loved the overworked bartender on the third floor with the heavy hand -- sheesh!"

    It's on to LA today. I'm exhausted, which seems odd, since all I've done for four out of the last five nights is listen to music, dance, chat with people and write. It wasn't like I was the one on stage with a 6-10 pound guitar slung over my shoulder or giving my wrists a wicked workout wielding drum sticks or banging on piano keys for three-plus hours. How do those magicians of the stage make it look so easy?? There's a forecast for rain at The Greek. No umbrellas allowed. Could be a soggy evening, but then again, I've personally seen the heavens part when FURTHUR comes to town. Keep a good thought!


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    Reader Comments (1)

    I'm always a little breathless reading your posts. They're exhilarating!

    October 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSharon

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