Trey Anastasio Super Jam :: 04.30.05 :: Jazz Fest :: State Palace Theatre :: New Orleans, LA
The Super Jam was a long awaited announcement. Who will be in the band? What will they play? What will Trey sound like? These questions buzzed through the jam packed State Palace just prior to Trey and his band taking the stage. The show opened with the Zeppelin classic "In the Light." The cohesion we've heard and come to expect from the current God of jam rock guitar was not present during the flat opener. The unharmonious sound carried through most of the first set, while the crowd anticipated greater things to come. Not a moment too soon, New Orleans musician, former NFL player, and Sunpie front man Bruce "Sunpie" Barnes joined Trey. Armed with his accordion, he brought an energy to the stage that had been missing up to this point. "Bunny Bread" and "Tomato Song" heated up the State Palace and kick-started the night. With Sunpie challenging Trey as they traded licks, Trey's game was finally being questioned and reminded that this was the second Saturday night of Jazz Fest! Trey and his band built on that energy as they launched into the set closer, The Beatles classic "I am the Walrus." The set ended on an up-note - the energy and vibe were set for the second half.
Trey Anastasio Super Jam :: State Palace
Jazz Fest 2005 by Chris Goodyear
The second set welcomed Cyril Neville, Michael Ray, Dave Grippo, and Dirty Dozen members Roger Lewis and Greg Davis. The newest guests took turns honing their chops during the extended jam opening that quickly segued into the Meters' classics "Big Chief" and "Hey Pocky Way." Following Hendrix's "Foxy Lady," Mike Gordon took the stage for the Allan Toussaint classic "Sneaking Sally Through The Alley." The crowd went nuts, and the balcony shook. Considering this whole crew had never played together and the front guy just got back from vacation, the vibe was rocking. It is easy to lose musical sight during these "superjams" due to the stage presence of our adored musicians. Remember that if you fill a stage with known and loved musicians, there is no guarantee that the music is going to be good. This proved to be the case when Dave Matthews took the stage - the ensuing "Three Little Birds" was merely a good photo opportunity. What happened to Sunpie?
Overall, the music and energy of the second set was Cajun hot! The exact set list of the second set is still a bit cloudy - exactly as it should be on the final Saturday night of Jazz Fest. The guest musicians and song selections elevated the whole place, making you wonder whose show is this? But with Mike Gordon and Dave Matthews taking the stage, we were brought back to reality and informed that this indeed was the Trey Anastasio show.
Jen Katz & Decker
JamBase | Jazz Fest
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[Published on: 5/17/05]