Review & Photos | Gathering Of The Vibes 2013 | Bridgeport

Friday, July 26:

Up and coming jam outfit Jimkata garnered more fans with a powerful mid-day showcase, Assembly of Dust, currently with a free album download available, rocked out the main stage for yet another year with front man Reid Genauer’s four-year-old son adding vocals to the contagious and bouncy chorus to “Second Song,” Railroad Earth exuded banging bluegrass and Tim Carbone’s patented fun fiddle for a dancing diversion, the Revivalists proved why they are now on many folks’ radar as a band to discover and Galactic further proved why they are arguably the funk kings of NOLA and beyond.

Tedeschi Trucks Band :: 6:30pm - 8:15pm :: Main Stage

Any band that possesses one-time child prodigy and number 12 on Rolling Stone’s Top 100 Guitarists of All Time, Derek Trucks (guitar), should have the audience chomping at the bit for a good time. TTB delivered the goods at Vibes. The versatile and professional band includes his wife Susan Tedeschi (guitar, vocals), Kofi Burbridge (keys, flute) Eric Krasno (bass) Tyler Greenwell (drums) J.J. Johnson (drums) Mike Mattison (harmony vocals) Mark Rivers (harmony vocals) Maurice Brown (trumpet) Kebbi Williams (sax) and Saunders Sermons (trombone), but it is the endless different sounds, tones and styles of play incorporated by Trucks that is the star attraction. The blues tour de force showed off their skills with “Ball and Chain” and “Bound for Glory” while “Sugaree” was teased for a moment and briefly incited the crowd. The set was trademark TTB, one complete with inspirational numbers in the southern tradition, mixed with more rambunctious bluesy ones. Already a blues legend, Trucks was once described as, “the most awe-inspiring electric slide guitar player performing today.” Nothing on this day would decrease the accuracy of that decree.

Set List: Misunderstood, Do I Look Worried?, It’s So Heavy, Made Up Mind, Sky is Cryin, Love is Something else (Intro), Midnight in Harlem, Part of Me, Wah Wah, Angel>Sugaree, Nobody’s Free, Get What You Deserve, Bound for Glory, The Storm

Phil Lesh and Friends :: 9:00pm - 1:00am :: Main Stage

The headliner of the festival and the direct link to the Grateful Dead lineage was slated to take the stage just after dark as the weekend commenced. Incredibly, the grizzled veteran and living symbol of the Grateful Dead era is 73-years-old. Some folks have grandparents that are 73 and they are not allowed to use the remote control to the TV set, yet Phil has access to the button – to the bomb. Yes, even today Phil can drop bombs like it's San Bernandino ’77 and he demonstrated it again on a blissful Friday night in Bridgeport. Arguably, this current band incarnation is the best Phil has ever amassed with John Kadlecik (guitar/vocals), John Scofield (guitar), John Medeski (keys) and Joe Russo (drums). Scofield is a jazz legend who used to tour with Miles Davis and the improvisational magic that ensued would leave any aficionado of the Grateful Dead satisfied. Even detractors, who claim that Phil should sing less, citing his often lack of vocal prowess, must have been pleased with his lack of opportunity on this night. The “Scarlet Begonias” was punchy and started the danceathon off proper. However, it was the second set opening segue of “Golden Road”>”Viola Lee Blues,” clocking in at nearly 20 minutes that showcased lengthy exploratory jamming and admirable musicianship. “Friend of the Devil” was a complete sing-a-long as the majority in attendance knew the words to the Robert Hunter-penned classic. A poignant and melancholy “Ripple” left the spent crowd satiated in a pleasant afterglow.

Set List: Scarlet Begonias > Just Like Tom Thumb Blues, Crazy Fingers > Friend of the Devil, Deal, Uncle John’s Band Set II: The Golden Road > Viola Lee Blues, St Stephen > Unbroken Chain, Shakedown Street > Standing on the Moon > Going Down the Road Feeling Bad E: Ripple

Silent Disco on the Beach

Initially, one may not think of Bridgeport as a bastion of beauty, but the beach at Seaside Park provided a surprising slice of heaven. One can listen to amplified music in silence while wearing comfortable headphones while watching hoola-hooping hotties on the beach. There were a plethora of quality acts at the Silent Disco including the talented Suspence from Boston, Imangeles, Mofo, Matt Haze, and Connecticon Sloedwn. One morning a seemingly endless litany of Beatles jams were served up. However, the highlight was a young man named Cosmal. Cosmal (Ryan Coyle) uses only live instruments to fuse together a uniquely layered sound with diverse textures and unexpected outcomes. The Long Island native draws in your senses, provoking one onto the edge, not knowing where the music will take you as it leads one on a riveting voyage through the unknown, a musical journey through a labyrinth of space and time - essentially everything a listener seeks when donning headphones and attempting to escape reality at 3 a.m. on a beach at a silent disco. He is one to catch. His girlfriend, and co-collaborator, Ali Laz, offers a visual aid by providing stimulating live art as the magic simultaneously unfolds.

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