Monday, October 20, 2008

Experience Hendrix!

I saw an awesome show last night at the Palace Theater in Waterbury - the Experience Hendrix Tour 2008. But get this, I didn't just see the show, I had an all access backstage pass, courtesy of my friend and colleague Analog Mike, who was bringing some custom made Analog Man Sunlion pedals to his pal, Kenny Wayne Shepherd.

The show was fantastic! Check out this all-star line up in attendance: Eric Johnson, Buddy Guy, Brad Whitford of Aerosmith (another Analog Man customer), original Howlin' Wolf guitarist Hubert Sumlin, Kenny Wayne of course, Jonny Lang, Eric Gales, Bernard Allison, and Mato Nanji. All this in addition to original Jimi Hendrix bandmates Mitch Mitchell and Billy Cox. Mitch only played on a few songs, so Chris Layton of Double Trouble held down the drum duties for most of the night.

I have to say (not to make anyone jealous), it was a blast hanging backstage, standing 3 feet away from Eric Johnson and Brad Whitford, chatting it up with Kenny Wayne (well, actually Mike was doing most of the chatting), and Jonny Lang with an ear to ear grin over getting a King of Tone pedal and an Analog Man t-shirt. Mike and I even went up to the balcony for a bit to check out Eric Johnson's set.

The music, of course, was great throughout the entire evening. But the thing that impressed me most was the way most of the guitarists just hung out in the wings all night watching each other play when they weren't on stage, all respectfully attentive and cheering each other on. Hubert Sumlin was so enthusiastic he even got up and started dancing a little (he's 76!). That's the stuff that made my night.

Unfortunately, I didn't think to bring a camera until I was halfway to the show, so you'll have to settle for a picture of my pass and this setlist that I got backstage.


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