Umphrey’s McGee’s Joel Cummins Presents ‘JoelBowl’ Livestream
Umphrey’s McGee keyboardist Joel Cummins let fans have a hand in determining what and how he would play for Wednesday night’s livestream. Dubbed “JoelBowl,” in reference to Umphrey’s football-themed UMBowl concerts, the 110-minute performance featured a mix of classical material, a jazz tune, choice rock covers and a handful of originals.
Cummins kicked off the solo piano set with an improvisation that spanned over 10 minutes to abide by fan voting. A cover of Derek & The Dominos’ “Layla” was the first full song of the frame. Next up was “Flamenco Sketches” by Miles Davis, which won out in a vote of three pieces of music that are “beautiful, inspiring and relaxing.”
A pair of classical compositions followed in Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s “Solfeggietto” and Beethoven’s “Two Sonatinas In F.” The first Umphrey’s original of the night was “1000 Places To See Before You Die,” a tune the band debuted in 2007 and have only played six times since. “1000 Places To See Before You Die” gave way to a cover of the Grateful Dead’s “Eyes Of The World” at the request of fans. Viewers were then able to dictate the next song played and they chose Tears For Fears’ “Mad World” over Muse’s “Ruled By Secrecy” and Counting Crows’ “A Long December.”
Cummins kept JoelBowl coming with early Umphrey’s original “Kimble” played at points in a minor key, a.k.a. “Evil Kimble.” The keyboardist worked from one UM instrumental into another, rewarding fans who voted for him to learn “Kabump.” Joel then finished “Kimble” and had another song sandwich in store with “Sweetness” coming in the midst of Steely Dan’s “Peg,” a winner in the first round of fan voting.
Joel had setlist shenanigans in store towards the end of the set as he followed a version of UM’s “Wife Soup” by bringing out his wife, Dasha. Joel was accompanied by Dasha on Phish’s “If I Could.” Dasha provided harmony vocals, played a shaker and a little bit of piano during the song from Hoist. For the finale, JoelBowl 2020 came to a close with old school Umphrey’s original “Divisions.”
Watch JoelBowl 2020 below:
Set: Improvisation > Layla, Flamenco Sketches, Solfeggietto, Two Sonatinas In F, 1000 Places To See Before You Die > Eyes Of The World > Mad World, Kimble > Kabump > Kimble, Peg > Sweetness > Peg, Wife Soup, If I Could*, Divisions
* – w/ Dasha on vocals, shaker and piano