Friday, August 7, 2009 Big Surprise review from The Beacon Theater

This show was being billed basically as an Old Crow Medicine Show show. But wow it was just so much more, way much more. And yah it lived up to the real title for the event. It was The Big Surprise. Actually the biggest surprise came from the newly renovated Beacon Theatre security. THEY WERE ALL OVER. This classic New York City concert venue used to be so chill... but no more. People were getting hasselled by the man all over. Even for dancing in the aisle during the encore. Beacon you now so totally suck!

Anyways Ephman was only able to scam one really good video. And actually it's with everybody pretty much from the show on stange. So enjoy it might just be a rare one.

If you don't know who Justin Townes Earle is, his lastname should be a hint. His dad is Steve. But Justin is in a world of his own. He came out and started singing songs off his new album Midnight At The Movies. He just sort of reminds Ephman of one of those 1930's Grand Ole Opry singers. He looks so awkward standing there with his body slanted to the audience, but that's the charm. You really must get a chance to see him live one day. Great stuff, and totally not living in his dad's shawdow.

Local NYC boys The Felice Brothers hit the stage next. Oh it should be mentioned that this concert was more like a review type of show. With bands all intermixing and everything. It was like a country orgy. In any event they cats came dressed in NY Yankee shirts and hats. And came ready to "rock out". They moved all over the place. The Felice Brothers in a weird way can be kind of summed up as the Beastie Boys, meet The Band, meet Bob Dylan, meet cajun. They really do jam well, and were super tight. Totally awesome to have the washboard pulled out and smashed against the cymbals. Nice.

Ephman's personal fav of the evening was Dave Rawlings Machine with Gillian Welch. That combo was just so angelic for the evening. He's never seen either play. And was so totally blown away by both Dave's guitar picking, his voice, and the selection of songs they played. Let's just say it was so special that Bob Dylan's Queen Jane Approximately not only stole the show, but could be one of the best covers Ephman has ever seen performed live. That's a big thing. Ephman's been to hundreds and hundreds of concerts. The crowd responded by simultaneously jumping up for a standing ovation. Oh can't forget the only women on the stage for the night. Gillian, you have the sweetest voice. Enough said on that, you just needed to be there.

Finally the bid draw of the evening Old Crow Medicine Show. They hit that stage already warmed up from playing with all the other acts during the evening and they were on fire. They have to one of the hottest bluegrass bands around today. Ephman has seen some really amazing bluegrass. Remember Del McCoury Band playing an all accoustic show at Carnegie Hall WITHOUT AMPLIFICATION!!! But Old Crow Medicine Show is a different beast. From the double banjo, to the crazy mouth organ playing, these guys must be totally exhausted now. This band runs all around the stage. Super energetic. The only downside to their set was the crowd. Shame on you crowd. They have a great sound to get up and dance to. The crowd was on their butts for most of the set (from where Ephman was sitting). If you're not familiar with this band, and Ephman expects the vast majority of you don't. See them. They are way better live then on disc.