Trey Anastasio kicked off his tour at the Paramount in Seattle Tuesday night and is now continuing down the road with his ten-piece band. This band is a dream that Trey has had for years and just now, in the last year or so, he has had a chance to actualize it. The most important thing for a band, according to Trey in a recent radio interview in Seattle, is that everyone gets along in the bus. Phish had to institute a "no talking rule" for them to be able to travel harmoniously from show to show. (They are currently using a "no playing" tactic.) Trey's current band is made up of people who are getting along well in the bus, so far, and who also happen to be incredible musicians.
Joining Trey in this congenial setting is Andy Moroz (trombone), Jennifer Hartswick (trumpet), Russell Remington (tenor + soprano saxes), Dave Grippo (alto + baritone saxes, clarinet, percussion), Tony Markellis (electric + acoustic basses), Cyro Baptista (percussion), Russell Lawton (drums), and Ray Paczowski (keyboards). Northern California's Peter Apfelbaum (saxophone, flute, Hieroglyphics Ensemble) will join the tour in San Francisco.
The show at San Francisco's Bill Graham Civic show is going to be most special with the addition of Michael Franti & Spearhead. If Trey's guitar isn't enough to get the hairs standing up on the back of your neck, then the spirit of Spearhead will certainly do it. With socially inspired lyrics and the most energetic and uplifting mix of soul, funk and hip-hop, this band will have the entire Civic Center bouncing up and down on Grove Street. Maybe Michael will have some words to share with Trey's friendly band, too... Spearhead will also perform at the Trey show in Vegas next weekend along with The Roots, Antibalas, and Los Lobos. Vegas Baby!
Trey and Co. will also be heading both nights of this weekend's Mountain Aire Festival to be held at the Calveras County Fairgrounds. The diverse line-up looks like some seriously good times. Saturday night, before Trey, is Ween and Les Claypool's Frog Brigade, who were created for a set at the Mountain Aire Festival two years ago. Elvis Costello performs before Trey on Sunday night along with Galactic and Robert Randolph. More guitar love will be on the grounds with Jerry Joseph, Will Bernard and Derek Trucks.
Mountain Aire has a long and strong history. The site itself is the setting of the first story ever published by Mark Twain, "The Fabulous Jumping Frog of Calaveras County." The festival originated in 1974 and continued throughout the next thirteen years with acts like the Doobie Brothers, Warren Zevon, Tom Petty, the Cars, and ZZ Top. The festival took a ten-year hiatus after 1987's amazing show, featuring the Grateful Dead and Carlos Santana, outgrew the location. It returned in 1998 with Widespread Panic, Ben Harper, Ani DiFranco, and the return of Phil Lesh.
Memorial Day weekend is here. Take advantage of your Monday off and have some real fun this weekend. And go check out Trey and his band when they come through your town in this next month. They've had almost a year and some serious studio time since they've last been on the road together. The new album is really pristine with some impressive orchestrations. And who doesn't like a band that gets along so well in the bus.
JamBase | Thrill Valley
Go See Live Music!
Later and late Night Events after Trey on Friday Night in San Francisco:
Tea Leaf Green at the Elbo Room.
Netwerk: Electric and Vibrational Alchemists DJ Saxton, Capt. Harris and Scotty (STS9 Crew DJ's) at the Boom Boom Room