The Jammys | 05.07.08 | NYC

Words by: Brian Bavosa | Images by: Rod Snyder

Jammy Awards :: 05.07.08 :: WaMu Theater at MSG :: New York, NY

Grace Potter & Warren Haynes :: 05.07 :: Jammys
The seventh annual Jammy Awards took place this past Wednesday evening at WaMu Theater At Madison Square Garden. Hosted by quite possibly the hardest-working-man-in-the-jam-scene, Warren Haynes, along with the scene's cutest gal, Grace Potter, the evening focused on honoring the legacy of Phish, as well as the eclectic pairings and jam sessions this event has become known for.

The evening opened up with Potter, Haynes, Booker T. Jones, Joe Russo and Will Lee (David Letterman, The Fab Faux) running through a slew of covers including CSNYs "Find the Cost of Freedom" and Al Green's "Take Me to the River." Next up, hard-rocking Rose Hill Drive welcomed Matisyahu to the stage for The Flaming Lips' "Are You A Hypnotist?" Like many middle-class, white, suburban kids growing up (myself very much included), Matisyahu was infected by the powerful potion known as Phish, only to have it literally change his life. Rose Hill Drive continued with Mountain's Leslie West and Potter. After some LOUD shredding, West joked that Potter was far more attractive than most of his other bandmates, before leading the group through a rollicking rendition of his signature tune, "Mississippi Queen."

A bit quieter, Keller Williams offered a solo rendition of his tune "Cadillac," which later took home the award for "Song of the Year." Immediately afterwards he was joined by actor Chevy Chase, who used to play drums with Walter Becker and Donald Fagen before they formed Steely Dan. Chase tickled the ivories on a rather different, funny take on "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" and a really fun medley of "Sweet Home Alabama" and "Take the Money and Run." When Williams later won the "Song of the Year" award, he sent Chase out on his behalf, further adding to the evening's comic relief.

Trey with The Fab Faux :: 05.07 :: Jammys
Up and comers Tea Leaf Green were joined by Allie Kral (Cornmeal) and Steve Adams (ALO) for "Taught to be Proud." Further expanding the crowded stage, Todd Park Mohr (Big Head Todd) and Glen Tilbrook (Squeeze) offered performances of Squeeze's "Pulling Mussels (From The Shell)" and "Tempted."

One of the highlights came when Page McConnell performed with jazz players Christian McBride (bass), James Carter (sax), Nicholas Payton (trumpet) and Roy Haynes (drums). McConnell seemed to take a back seat while these truly talented musicians absolutely tore through McConnell's "Magilla" and "Cars, Trucks and Buses." McConnell had a shit eating grin as these maestros gave his tunes a jazz-infused whirl.

Just as in music history, jazz proved to be the predecessor to funk and hip-hop. Galactic welcomed Chali 2Na (Jurassic 5) and surprise guest Doug E. Fresh for some freestylin' rhymes and "Think Back."

One of the most meaningful portions of the night occurred during a set by Beatles tribute act The Fab Faux, who took the stage with Joan Osborne. After a rousing "Come Together," they launched into "While My Guitar Gently Weeps." Halfway through, the crowd absolutely erupted when Trey Anastasio walked out with his axe strapped on. He proceeded to shred with reckless abandon in only his third public performance since his very public December '06 arrest. He remained for "Everybody's Got Something to Hide Except Me and My Monkey."

Trey Acceptance Speech :: 05.07 :: Jammys
As the night wound down, the focus of the rest of the evening was the guests of honor. Longtime photographer of the band Danny Clinch spoke of how everything about Phish was a family, from the band to the fans to the experience. He mentioned how they were the only band that could invite 100,000 people to a festival and make it seem intimate for each and every person. His speech was accompanied by a slide show of exclusive backstage shots featuring folks like Kid Rock and Jay-Z. When Clinch presented the award to the band, it was the first time that the four former bandmates had stood onstage together since their final performance in August 2004. That alone was an accomplishment that Jammys executive producer Pete Shapiro could hang his hat on.

McConnell, Mike Gordon and Jon Fishman all gave brief speeches, followed by Anastasio, who was visibly overwhelmed. He thanked a number of key members of the Phish community over the years, and spoke about how he and the other guys felt that Phish was something so much bigger than the four of them. When he abruptly finished, the four men simply embraced and bowed before slinking off into the warm New York night. There was no musical reunion for the four of them but it was nice to see this band honored for the stamp they'd placed on music and so many lives and music. The memories of Coventry seem a bit easier to swallow after this positive spotlight on the major musical accomplishments that have been the foundation of our scene for the last 20 years.

The night wrapped up with The HeadCount All-Stars, which featured Marc Brownstein (bass) and Jon "Barber" Gutwillig (guitar) from The Disco Biscuits, The String Cheese Incident's Kyle Hollingsworth on keys, Russo on drums and Umphrey's McGee's Jake Cinninger on guitar. This star-studded lineup ran through "Wilson," "2001," "Run Like An Antelope" and "Maze" in the true spirit of Phish. Aron Magner of the Biscuits sat in on "Maze" for a double keys attack with Hollingsworth. The songs have their own innate sound but were also a fitting tribute to the band that inspired a lot our shared musical universe.

Even though this was the last, official Jammys, it managed to go out on a high note by honoring Phish and holding true to their formula of all-star collaborations.

7th Annual Jammy Awards Winners

Live Album of the Year: Umphrey's McGee, Live at the Murat
New Groove of the Year: Cornmeal
DVD of the Year: the Disco Biscuits, Progressions
Download of the Year: Phish, "Headphones Jam"
Mimi Fishman Award: Rock the Earth
Song of the Year: Keller Williams, "Cadillac"
Tour of the Year: the Disco Biscuits/Umphrey's McGee, D.U.M.B.
Grahmmy Jammy: Lee Crumpton, Homegrown Music Network
Archival Release of the Year: The Grateful Dead, Three From The Vault
Studio Album of the Year: moe., The Conch
Live Performance of the Year: Gov't Mule and Guests, Bonnaroo
Lifetime Achievement Award: Phish

Phish - Acceptance Speech
Phish - Acceptance Speech
Trey Anastasio
Mie Gordon - Acceptance Speech
Trey Anastasio with The Fab Faux
Trey Anastasio with The Fab Faux
Trey Anastasio
Trey Anastasio
Trey Anastasio with The Fab Faux
Trey Anastasio with The Fab Faux
Danny Clinch
Booker T. Jones
Warren Haynes with The Fab Faux
Warren Haynes
Warren Haynes
Grace Potter
Grace Potter
JamBase's own Andy Gadiel
Chevy Chase
James Carter
Christian McBride
Roy Haynes
Nicholas Payton
Joe Russo
Peter Shapiro
Warren Haynes - Live Performance of the Year Acceptance Speech for Gov't Mule
Umphrey's McGee & the Disco Biscuits - Tour of the Year Acceptance Speech
Marc Brownstein
the Disco Biscuits - Acceptance Speech for DVD of the Year
Jake Cinninger
Jake Cinninger
Joan Osborne
Joan Osborne
Allie Kral - Cornmeal
Allie Kral - Cornmeal
Doug E. Fresh
Doug E. Fresh
Ben Ellman - Galactic
Jeff Raines - Galactic
Sharon Jones
Sharon Jones & Chali 2na

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psogator43 starstarstarstar Fri 5/9/2008 04:29PM
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solid review...nice pics...great to see trey having fun on stage

windorascrub Fri 5/9/2008 04:54PM
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I thought they did Are you a Hypnotist? by the Lips. At least that was what I read. Morning of the Magicians would have (and maybe was) so much sicker than Are you a Hypnotist?

jalew Fri 5/9/2008 04:58PM
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nice pictorial. thanks.

freetime3 starstarstarstarstar Fri 5/9/2008 05:05PM
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Great reveiw along with great pics!! It looks like a great time. Just looking at Chevy Chase makes me laugh. Ms. Potter....all I say is WOW.

johnnygoff Fri 5/9/2008 05:09PM
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What a night people! for the last supposed Jammy's show, this was done right.

Obviously, Trey looking AND playing great was my personal highlight and worth the the 5 hour drive. Sharon Jones' appearance was stellar! Doug E. Fresh, by far, was one of the most up-beat moments in WaMu Theatre @ MSG.

The "Maze" via the Headcount Allstars was meant for that format w/ great splices of phasers, zappers and beats. Also, I truly believe all of the fans who voted COULD NOT have gotten the awards more spot than we did! Everyone who won their respective category deserved so (except maybe Assembly of Dust instead of Keller Williams for 'song of the year'. Also, The Chevy appearance was simply 'eh in my VERY humble opinion. With Keller's obvious Paul Simon comparisons and uncanny nack for 'lip trumpet', Simon's "Call me Al" may have been cliche but historically appropriate. Lastly, The post-jammys show w/ Galactic @ BB Kings was sa-weet! Chali 2Na's deep bass flow is much more enjoyable than Lyrics Born and provided a great juxtaposition to jazzier/funkier numbers Galactic laid down from 12:30-3:30 a.m. There is a reason STanton Moore is considered one of the finest drummers in the biz, let alone 'jam'. The guy is a fireball of energy and kept my attention the entire night. VIP sightings, including Jake Cinninger, ERic Krasno, Jon Fishman and Marc Brownstein were common place at BB Kings and the entire night could not have been any smoother or sweeter. Gadiel presenting an award was even a highlight. Thanks to all for that great event. Cheers.

FreshFlavor starstarstarstarstar Fri 5/9/2008 08:01PM
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Incredible pictures. Sure a bit of a bummer that Phish didn't play together, but they looked really happy. Which is definitely an important step. Jake the Vinegar Cinnenger is the man...and Grace Potter is as sexy as it gets. All around looks like an incredible evening of music and celebration. Thanks for sharing.

tgratefulapple Fri 5/9/2008 10:22PM
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grace potter, thats nnnnnnnnnnnniiiiiiiiiiiccccccccccccceeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!

COLOSKIER Fri 5/9/2008 10:26PM
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look at christian mcbride tearin' up that fretless bass like no ones business!!!

phishphry Sat 5/10/2008 08:28AM
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it was morning of magicians. what a night it was!

snappy Sat 5/10/2008 08:46AM
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Rod, you are one fine lensman, dude.

LTJFreak Sat 5/10/2008 08:47AM
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I love how Phish always seems to bring everyone together. Just one correction...Magilla is not a McConnell chart. Written and composed by Dizzy Gillespie and of course done by Phish.

gmoo Sat 5/10/2008 09:13AM
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Great pics! All the artists were deserving and I'm glad to see the Cornmeal love.

shanky95 Sat 5/10/2008 12:17PM
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That antelope from the HCAS looks pretty solid on youtube. Also, in the Phish acceptance speech, I think its funny how Mike and Page have to tell Trey not to forget his Jammy. Also, Grace Potter is gorgeous... just flat out unbelievable. Phish forever...

n-1 starstarstarstarstar Sat 5/10/2008 01:12PM
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wish i could have made it, sounds fun.

O1Roggae Sat 5/10/2008 03:33PM
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Reunions are nice

DubSaw Sat 5/10/2008 11:08PM
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why was chevy chase there?

Bryan24 Sun 5/11/2008 12:14PM
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Chevy Chase sat in with Keller Williams, I'm pretty sure he played some keys or piano.

Deibert starstarstar Sun 5/11/2008 12:17PM
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Roy Haynes. The guy is 83 and still hipper than anyone in the jam scene.

1048 starstarstarstarstar Sun 5/11/2008 01:14PM
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I posted the AUD of the Headcount Allstars in the Jammy's thread on the forum. It's pretty,pretty,pretty good.

Phunky Irish starstarstarstarstar Sun 5/11/2008 01:16PM
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Phunky Irish

I can only imagine what goes into putting together an event like the Jammys, all these famous musician under one roof and even to get all 4 members of Phish on stage together!!! Thank You soooo much Pete Shapiro and everyone else, truely a magical night in NYC... Phish wasnt a band, they were a way of life, and after that dissipated, you just hafta evolve from the times...I dont know why some people got upset and offended with the finale, Headcount All-stars paid a great homage to a great band...Please Jammys, live on forever!!!!

1048 starstarstarstarstar Sun 5/11/2008 01:29PM
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Unfortunately I believe this was the last year for the Jammys:(

‹^› ‹(•¿•)› ‹^› {¬¿¬} starstarstarstarstar Mon 5/12/2008 05:46AM
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‹^› ‹(•¿•)› ‹^›      {¬¿¬}

the best live album of the year was LOTUS, Escaping Sargasso Sea.

Not UMPH. I really dis-agree, and I do like UMPH.

jenkinsear Mon 5/12/2008 11:07AM
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anyone know if the HeadCount All Stars is on archive?

bigfro Mon 5/12/2008 01:07PM
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Relix just announced that the Jammy's is being changed to a more mainstream rock awards show. They are following the lead of Relix and turning their backs on the "niche" Jam scene behind so they can be more like Spin and Rolling Stone. Ban Relix!

mcarroll Mon 5/12/2008 03:58PM
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Good call. The First Amendment is overrated.

bigfro Mon 5/12/2008 04:48PM
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They can suck all they want and still not get my money genius. So don't put out a phony argument Mcarrol. Are you saying that if Jam fans stops buying a magazine that no longer covers jam bands is somehow restricting their civil rights. They can suck all they want without my money. The magazine will still be legal and on the newstand if people choose to read it's crappy sell out pages.

So yes anyone who enjoys Psychedelic music should no longer purchase a magazine that has chosen to go in a different directions. They might pass out from how much bands like Kings of Leon suck, but they'll still have their first amendment rights to be bored to death by them. Relix's owners are getting old and scared and so they are attempting to be safe, but it will end up reducing their readership even more. They won't give Bisco the cover when they are trying to sell their 1st ampitheatre tour with Umph, but they sure as hell call them to save the Jammys, So Don't worry, next year they have the 1st amendment rights to suck as bad as Spin and rolling Stone.

johnnygoff starstarstar Mon 5/12/2008 10:37PM
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i usually don't comment twice but the comments above re: relix are inspiring two-fold.

a) i really am bonified sad relix is trying to enlarge their demographic. Unfortately, by branching out more indie, they could alienate their loyal dead-head foundation and simultaneously be a haphazard 3rd choice for "Indie". Basically, they could suffer the double-whammy. Like if your favorite hometown authentic Irish started to try to make BBQ pulled pork. Their pulled pork will be mediocre and won't attract the bbq crowd and they'll lose their loyal, cornbeef-eatin', guinness drinkin regulars. It benefits no one.

b) However, as a former newspaper reporter, i will never replace my hard-copy magazines for blog content. So, when it comes to the Jam genre, where else will I get my great jam coverage but relix. As the genre's niche publication with financial backing, they are destined to continue jam fans subscriptions. Unfortunately, they don't have direct competition in the hard-copy format. Thus, despite their indie content that I may both learn something from and/or flip through, I am still pseudo-forced to support the main GLOBAL publication "devoted" to the jam scene.

fwiw. cheers.

mcarroll Mon 5/12/2008 10:41PM
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I wasn't making an argument. I just thought your decree to "Ban Relix!" was rather funny. I'm not suggesting that you actually could.

booradley Thu 5/15/2008 12:27PM
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You guys do understand that it doesn't matter what Relix's musical format is, they have always produced mindless journalistic drivel with mediocre photography (except for Clinch's)

nice photo spread on the jammy's though

Jake Thu 5/15/2008 11:19PM
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Can I just point out that, yes, Grace Potter is beautiful but it's a bit unfair to be going "Trey is awesome, Warren's awesome etc. and Grace is HOTT!!!" I mean, let's talk about her music, because it freaking rocks, and she's not on stage to be a doll.

Also, while we're on the subject of women rocking, props to Joan Osborne for doing this stuff. Who else wants to see her on another Phil & Friends tour?

headySetList starstarstar Thu 7/31/2008 08:17AM
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speaking of this relix, cross over/everyone trying to be famous. Brian it says on your Myspace that you write for Rolling Stone, when can I see your articles