Tag Archive for Raymond Weber

The Original Meters & Papa Grows Funk – May 5, 2012 New Orleans, LA @ Howlin’ Wolf

When you’re in New Orleans for Jazz Fest, there’s nothing like catching a Funky Meters show to reassure you that you’re in the right place at the right time. But, as we know, the Funky Meters only contain 2 of the original Meters band members, namely Art “Poppa Funk” Neville and George Porter, Jr.

That’s why the 2012 Jazz Fest became so exciting when it was announced that all 4 of the Original Meters would be playing their first club gig in New Orleans in over 30 years! Yes, we’re talking about all 4 original members: Art “Poppa Funk” Neville on organ, George Porter, Jr. on bass, Leo Nocentelli on guitar and Joseph “Zigaboo” Modeliste on drums.

Yes, these 4 original Meters members have reunited sporadically for shows in 2005, 2006 and 2007 (and for a few festival gigs in 2011). Yes, they’ve played New Orleans before. But this felt like the real homecoming. The price was steep, but for the few that could get in, it was worth every penny. Art showed that he can still play ferociously, despite his age of, in his words,“74 fuckin years old”. Although Zigaboo did joke about the senior citizen status of the band, they hardly played like it. Judge for yourself, because here I bring you 47 minutes of footage from this now legendary show.

The Original Meters
May 5, 2012 New Orleans, LA @ Howlin’ Wolf
Fire On The Bayou, Africa > Look-Ka Py Py > Funky Miracle, Encore: People Say:

Also, here is the set closing Ain’t No Use, shot by photographer Marc Millman. I strongly suggest that you check out some of his photos from this show and even consider purchasing framable prints of his beautiful imagery.

By the way, you can download the full audio from this show here.

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Finally, here are a few videos of the opening act, Papa Grows Funk, featuring Raymond Weber (ex-Dumpstaphunk drummer) subbing on drums.

Papa Grows Funk
May 5, 2012 New Orleans, LA @ Howlin’ Wolf
Shakin':

Papa Grows Funk
May 5, 2012 New Orleans, LA @ Howlin’ Wolf
Planet of Love & Hate:

Papa Grows Funk
May 5, 2012 New Orleans, LA @ Howlin’ Wolf
unknown tune:

Johnny Vidacovich at Bear Creek Music Fest: with The Trio, Jon Cleary, & Marco Benevento

It’s not often you get to see master New Orleans drummer Johnny Vidacovich play outside the city of New Orleans. But last November at Bear Creek Music Festival the man was everywhere sitting in with at least 5 different acts. I captured quite a big chunk of Bear Creek with my video camera, and I got some great footage of JohnnyV.

First I want to share a few videos of The Trio (which is the name of Johnny’s weekly Thursday night gig at the Maple Leaf, whether it involves 3 players or not). This particular Trio gig featured George Porter Jr on bass along with Jennifer Hartswick on trumpet. Freekbass was also a special guest for this set.

The Trio: Johnny Vidacovich, George Porter Jr & Jennifer Hartswick
Sunday, November 13, 2011 @ Bear Creek Music Festival
(4 of 4) Big Chief:

The Trio: Johnny Vidacovich, George Porter Jr & Jennifer Hartswick (w/ Freekbass)
Sunday, November 13, 2011 @ Bear Creek Music Festival
(2 of 4) Don’t Be Squeezin’ My Heart:

The Trio: Johnny Vidacovich, George Porter Jr & Jennifer Hartswick (w/ Freekbass)
Sunday, November 13, 2011 @ Bear Creek Music Festival
(3 of 4) Don’t Be Squeezin’ My Heart (cont.):

The Trio: Johnny Vidacovich, George Porter Jr & Jennifer Hartswick
Sunday, November 13, 2011 @ Bear Creek Music Festival
(1 of 4) Careful Who You Idolize:

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Next up is JohnnyV sitting in with Jon Cleary‘s “Piano, Bass & Drums” group, which features Johnny’s longtime Astral Project collaborator James Singleton on bass. BTW, the drummer on the second video here is Doug Belote, a drummer of quite some repute down in Cajun country. [Interesting factoid, Doug Belote briefly replaced Raymond Weber in Dumpstaphunk for a short run of shows in December of 2010 when Raymond was busy filming episodes of the HBO TV show Treme.]

Jon Cleary: Piano, Bass & Drums (w/ Johnny Vidacovich)
Saturday, November 12, 2011 @ Bear Creek Music Festival
Reconsider Baby, Get Low Down:

Jon Cleary: Piano, Bass & Drums
Saturday, November 12, 2011 @ Bear Creek Music Festival
I Get The Blues, Tipitina:

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Finally, I have some videos of Johnny sitting in with Marco Benevento performing the James Booker classic, Junco Partner. After that is a few more Marco Benevento videos, including one where Marco passes me his bottle of Makers Mark from the stage. That was a good start to the afternoon!

Marco Benevento (w/ Johnny Vidacovich)
Sunday, November 13, 2011 @ Bear Creek Music Festival
Junco Partner (James Booker cover) (1 of 2):

Marco Benevento (w/ Johnny Vidacovich)
Sunday, November 13, 2011 @ Bear Creek Music Festival
Junco Partner (James Booker cover) (2 of 2):

Marco Benevento (w/ Robert Walter)
Sunday, November 13, 2011 @ Bear Creek Music Festival
You Know I’m No Good (Amy Winehouse cover):

Marco Benevento
Saturday, November 12, 2011 @ Bear Creek Music Festival
Greenpoint, The Real Morning Party:

Marco Benevento
Saturday, November 12, 2011 @ Bear Creek Music Festival
The Real Morning Party (cont.), Atari:

Marco Benevento
Saturday, November 12, 2011 @ Bear Creek Music Festival
Hearbeats (The Knife cover):

And if you made it this far, then you are certainly a big JohnnyV fan. At that, you will be glad to know that Johnny was recently added to the Live Music Archive. I have recently uploaded over 30 audio recordings spanning from 2001 to 2011 and they are all available to be streamed or downloaded for free over at http://www.archive.org/details/JohnnyVidacovich.

Pre-Bear Creek 2011: Medeski Martin & Wood / DumpstaJam Prequel in ATL

I’m going to start my Bear Creek Music Festival coverage with some pre-fest festivities from Thursday, November 10, in Atlanta, GA. I started the evening at the Variety Playhouse with my 47th Medeski Martin & Wood show. The opening act was a blues band called Scrapomatic featuring Kofi Burbridge on vocals as a special guest for the entire show. Kofi has a silky smooth voice and the tunes were playful blues numbers. However, after the first 30 minutes, people got antsy. The vibe was a little too relaxed for the restless crowd that was starting to pour in.

MMW started their all request set with two tunes from their classic 1995 album, Friday Afternoon In The Universe: The Lover > We’re So Happy. Between these two songs it sounded like Billy was teasing Moti Mo (one of my friend Greg and I’s requests for the evening). My video of We’re So Happy starts out a little rough with some heads in front of me, but about 3 minutes in the people in front of me let me step up to the front and film the song with a clear view. You can view the video below.

After a brief acoustic detour into Duke Ellington territory on Acht O’Clock Rock (with an interesting John Medeski mellotron section), the band slid into a third song from the Friday Afternoon album, Last Chance To Dance Trance (Perhaps). This was a very long and expansive version, clocking in at around 18 minutes long including an acoustic piano section and an illyB drum solo. They closed the set with a tambourine and melodica infused version of the old New Orleans mardi gras song, Tootie Ma Is A Big Fine Thing.

Medeski Martin & Wood – We’re So Happy, Feelin’ Good (with Col. Bruce Hampton) 11/10/11 Atlanta, GA @ Variety Playhouse:

The second set began with a sit in by Col. Bruce Hampton on vocals, which you can watch above. Next was 25 minutes of sublime, groove-oriented, improvisation. You couldn’t ask for more, but we got more. The improv segued into a drum and percussion solo, which segued into another rarity: Sequel (also from the Friday Afternoon album).

John Medeski then topped off the set with a soft and sweet rendition of Everyday People by Sly & The Family. For the encore, Billy Martin announced that they would be playing a song from their “20” release. When crowd members asked the name of the song, Billy told them they would have to buy it to find out, since there were some “profundities” in the title. The name of the tune: Fuck You Guys.

I never got my Moti Mo or Chinoiserie requests, but I did get plenty of other Friday Afternoon songs, as well as a Duke Ellington fix, so no complaints here (well, except my complaint that Kofi never joined the band for a flute down…). However, I can confidently say that this blew the Chicago show out of the water and has to be in my top 5 MMW shows.

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As soon as MMW ended, we headed straight to The Masquerade to catch Ivan Neville’s Dumpstaphunk. We arrived just as the opening act, Orgone, began breaking down. I was glad we hadn’t missed Dumpstaphunk, and I knew I would see Orgone the next day at Bear Creek. (Shout out to Sergio for putting me on the guest list!)

Attendance was sparse as Dumpstaphunk hit the stage around 1am, and the band used this show as a warm up for their two upcoming Bear Creek sets. This was my first time seeing them with new drummer Nikki Glaspie and I came away knowing that she is more than capable of filling Raymond Weber’s shoes, while also bringing some added energy to the mix.

They played several new songs: Fame (a David Bowie cover), If I’m In Luck I Just Might Get Picked Up (a Betty Davis cover in which Nikki sings), Blueswave (which has been played only a few times since August of 2010), and Water (a Graham Central Station cover) (presumably this was the first time it has been played live, since they had lyrics sheets out and they had been in the studio days before this show). (FYI, Water was also the set closer Sunday night at Bear Creek with The Shady Horns.)

Near the end of the show, Nigel Hall, Ron Johnson, & Terrence Higgins showed up after their gig with the Warren Haynes Band at the Tabernacle finished. For the set closer, Meanwhile, Nigel Hall joined on keys, freeing Ivan Neville to jump on guitar. And for the encore we got a DumpstaJam prequel: Tony Hall & Nick Daniels sat out. Nigel Hall was on keys and vocals, Ivan and Ian stayed on guitar, Terrence Higgins got behind the drum kit, Ron Johnson took Tony’s bass, and Nikki got on Nick’s bass. They started with a slow and brooding version of Sly & The Family Stone’s Babies Making Babies then segued into Nigel’s Nick Daniels impersonation on Turn This Thing Around, then into a slow and playful version of Put It In The Dumpsta. Clearly these guys don’t take themselves too seriously and were just playing around for their own amusement, as the encore is kind of half-assed and tongue in cheek. It’s still cool to watch though….

DumpstaJam Prequel – Encore (1 of 2) with Nigel Hall, Ron Johnson & Terrence Higgins: Babies Making Babies (Sly Stone cover) > Turn This Thing Around > Put It In The Dumpsta 11/10/11 Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade:

DumpstaJam Prequel – Encore (2 of 2) with Nigel Hall, Ron Johnson & Terrence Higgins: Babies Making Babies (Sly Stone cover) > Turn This Thing Around > Put It In The Dumpsta 11/10/11 Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade:

Dumpstaphunk – Fame (David Bowie cover) 11/10/11 Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade:

Dumpstaphunk – Blueswave (new song) 11/10/11 Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade:

Dumpstaphunk – Water (Graham Central Station cover, first time played) 11/10/11 Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade:

Dumpstaphunk – If I’m In Luck, I Just Might Get Picked Up (Betty Davis cover) 11/10/11 Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade:

Dumpstaphunk with Nigel Hall – Meanwhile 11/10/11 Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade: