Gathering of the Vibes wrapped up another fantastic weekend in Bridgeport, CT’s Seaside Park on Sunday with four days of beautiful weather, great music, and of course, good vibes. The festival that began in ’96 as a memorial for the recently passed Jerry Garcia, and named “Deadhead Heaven – A Gathering of the Tribe” by founder Ken Hays has never strayed from that concept, as could be seen by not only two headlining performances by Phil Lesh & Friends, but with a Thursday headlining spot by Dead tribute band (though they have become much more than that to many of us), Dark Star Orchestra.Though Vibes catches a bit of flack from certain factions of the Bridgeport community, the work that Ken Hays and company has put into giving back to this area has to be given its due; with a massive food drive, donations to local schools to help with music programs, helping to create work for an area that is hurting for jobs, giving demonstrations on environmental sustainability and social consciousness, and just creating a positive environment for attendees, Vibes has come a long way in the past few years. And this year simply built upon that tradition.With older and younger Deadheads alike sharing in the groove, Vibes boasted some incredible performances this year. Thursday saw a nice, mellow opening day with sets from Dark Star Orchestra, the Original Strangefolk, the Nigel Hall Band, Ryan Montbleau Band, and a funky late-night set from Kung Fu & the Dojo Allstars. Being that Vibes is roughly 20,000 people over the course of the weekend, with only two stages (Main Stage and Green Vibes Stage), it’s easy to journey back and forth to catch a little bit of each artist, if that is what you are going for. Either way, it’s a short walk, and over the course of four days of being on your feet, that short walk means a lot.Friday saw more people in attendance, and had great early sets from Assembly of Dust, Railroad Earth, and up and coming New Orleans act The Revivalists. During Galactic’s 4:30 set, they brought out Revivalist David Shaw, who belted out a couple of tunes, including a set-closing rendition of The Rolling Stones “Gimme Shelter” that had everyone in the crowd rocking out. Los Angeles indie-folk band Lord Huron played a magnificent set on the Green Vibes stage, which overlooks the Long Island Sound and acted as the perfect backdrop to their inspired, yet chilled out sound. The bluesy, soul rock of the Tedeschi-Trucks Band was a perfect lead-in to the Phil & Friends set. Derek Trucks is simply a master on all things guitar; listening to him play leaves you in awe. And Susan Tedeschi has this soulful, raspy voice that compliments Trucks’ tone. It’s a beautiful thing to watch this couple perform. And seeing Eric Krasno (Lettuce/Soulive) switch over to the bass while joining them on their tour with the Black Crowes is an added treat, as he throws down some mean bass lines.The particular lineup of Phil & Friends that we had bestowed upon us at Vibes was nothing short of magical. I mean, John Scofield and John Kadlecik on guitar, Joe Russo on drums, and John Medeski on keys surrounding Phil? Really? Count me in! Not only was the crowd relishing the opportunity to check out this musical concoction, but the musician’s looked equally as amped. A “Scarlet Begonias” opener got things started on the right note, as the swaying of bodies commenced on this gorgeous Friday night. A cover of Bob Dylan’s “Just Like Tom Thumb Blues” received a warm welcome. The set continued on more of an upbeat vibe with a well-played segment of “Crazy Fingers>Friend of the Devil” that showcased the jazz side of this lineup, and acted as the intro into what we would be subject to over the four sets. A really good “Uncle John’s Band” set closer brought us to set break on a high note.The second set featured some really impressive improvisation from the stellar quintet. “The Golden Road>Viola Lee Blues” was slow and spaced out, while the “St. Stephen>Unbroken Chain” brought the energy back up. A “St. Stephen” jam was played to perfection and set the tone for the rest of the set, as a very welcomed and funky “Shakedown Street” began a segue of “Standing on the Moon>Going Down the Road” to end the set. Not surprisingly, this was the highlight of the night, as Lesh & Friends just plain went off on a jam tangent. It was psychedelic, concentrated, and jazz-fueled jamming all in one, as the pocket grooves that Lesh and Russo make together afforded Scofield, Kadlecik and Medeski the opportunity to give their own takes on the Dead’s music. A late-night set from Deep Banana Blackout kept things going on Friday night. Though there were some obvious sound issues, their set was nothing short of a dance party that everyone was ready for.Saturday started off with an early set from The Funky Meters, which honestly was just a bit too early for the New Orleans legends. A mid-afternoon set would have been more welcomed, after being up all night on Friday, but what are you going to do? Tough problems, right? The Roots threw down a set that had everyone gushing about it the rest of the day, and Grace Potter & The Nocturnals just seem to get better and better as time goes on. They straight rocked, and even threw in a nice tribute at the end of their set to JJ Cale (who passed away the night before from a heart attack), with a rendition of “Cocaine” as well as bringing out long-time friend Warren Haynes. Gov’t Mule played a rather mellow set, with a couple of exceptions, as they brought out George Porter Jr. for The Band’s “The Shape I’m In” and saxophonist Bill Evans (who was all over the place this weekend) for “Devil Likes It Slow,” and again with John Scofield and Porter Jr. on JJ Cale’s “After Midnight.”Phil & Friends first set had a few nice selections with “China Cat Sunflower>Cold Rain and Snow” and “All Along The Watchtower>I Know Your Rider” to close the set. However, it was during the second set, with Bill Evans joining in the entire time that things just went to another level entirely. “Alligator” opened up the set and the band never let up; the “Cryptical Envelopment>Dark Star>The Other One>Dark Star>Stella Blue” could very easily go down as one of the best Phil & Friends segments ever. The makeup of this lineup has some serious chops, and bringing in yet another jazz man in Evans was a brilliant move, as it did nothing but elevate the music to the next level; it truly was a magnificent thing to not only listen to, but to watch as well. Seeing such accomplished musicians on stage, reinterpreting the Dead catalogue alongside Phil Lesh (who had nothing but a smile on his face both nights) was an absolute treat, and will not soon be forgotten. The music got a push in a direction that it doesn’t always take, and it was great to witness it first hand. As the band ended with “Not Fade Away” with the crowd chanting “Our love is real, not fade away” through the encore break, Phil came back out to give his touching Donor Rap, and the band joined him in a spirited “Box of Rain”, which had a really nice jam to begin the song. Overall, both nights of Phil & Friends was excellent, but the second set on Saturday night is something that people will be talking about for awhile. Definitely give it a listen if you get a chance.Saturday late-night was where it was at, as Rob Garza of Thievery Corporation and James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem played some uptempo sets that had all the creatures of the night moving and shaking, as they both incorporated some dance, deep house, and NuDisco. All the rock and jam had been nice, but this was the perfect compliment to the night, as sometimes you just feel that need to let loose. On a side note, the sound was much better on Saturday night than it had been during Deep Banana Blackout’s set the previous night. Papadosio played a fitting sunrise set, that was highly anticipated throughout the weekend by many fans. Their set ended as the sun began to rise and saturate the sky with different hues of blue, purple, and orange. It was a fitting way to end an epic Saturday Vibes.As it’s never easy to wake up after a couple of days of going to bed at 6am or after, it goes without saying that hitting up any early music on Sunday was near impossible. However, after finally making it over to the Main Stage in time for a powerful set from the John Butler Trio, getting back to “normal” was almost achieved in time for the Black Crowes closing set at Vibes. It’s always nice to see Chris and Rich Robinson on stage together, especially when they both are actually looking at each other and smiling. The addition of Jackie Greene to this lineup was definitely the right move, as his style fits in very well with the Crowes. As you don’t get to see them that often, what could be looked at as a “greatest hits” set was received rather warmly from the crowd. The Rolling Stones’ “Jumping Jack Flash” got everyone singing along, and the band didn’t let up from there, as they played a pretty version of “She Talks to Angels” with Greene on mandolin, rockin’ renditions of “Soul Singing,” “Jealous Again,” “Remedy” and encored with “Hard to Handle>Hush.” Closing the festival out with the Crowes was definitely a good call, as they are one of the few remaining true rock acts out there. Not many front men have the stage presence of Chris Robinson, as he just looks so natural doing his thing on stage.If there is anything that can be said about Gathering of the Vibes this year, it is that one could look around and see great energy coming from every single body in attendance. People were having fun with friends (both old and new), family, enjoying the beautiful weather that was bestowed upon us, and getting down to some ridiculously good music. What more could you possibly ask for?-Chris MeyerCheck out a full gallery of photos from Vibes, courtesy of L4LM photographer Matt Enbar and Menbar-Photos.
Tyson Ritter singer/songwriter of the All-American Rejects is set to portray Gregg Allman in the indie biopic Midnight Rider, reports Rolling Stone. Ritter’s past performances can be seen in NBC’s Parenthood, and in the Amazon producton Beta. Gregg’s late brother Duane is set to be played by musician turned actor Wyatt Russell (Cowboys And Aliens). Both musicians will add credibility to the production by re-recording Allman’s music for the project.Based on Allman’s autobiography My Cross To Bear, the film will begin shooting in February in Savannah, Georgia. Variety reports that the film will be broken into two parts. The rise to fame and the golden years of stardom, followed by recovery from the dangerous excess of substance abuse, and Gregg’s six marriages. The most intriguing marriage to see depicted will be that to actress and singer Cher.
Well, this seems pretty ironic. A California businessman has reportedly placed a $40 million bid on Michael Jackson’s famed Neverland Ranch estate, with the intended purpose of transforming it into a therapy camp for victims of sexual abuse.According to NME a source said, “His goal is for the place to be used to help children in a serene setting recover from the trauma of sex abuse. The plan is to have children come there for treatment, and they will also hire trained therapists who would help the victims through the use of equine-assisted therapy, which works to improve the kids’ self-esteem, and it helps them to become more outgoing.”Jackson has been accused of child sexual abuse for years, and though he was acquitted of some charges in 2005, new allegations came about after his death, and as recently as late last year.
Electrofunk wizard GRiZ has announced a headlining appearance at the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Morrison, CO, on September 4th. The show, billed as ‘An Evening Of Funk,’ will see performances from The Floozies, Manic Focus, Sunsquabi, and Muzzy Bearr.Tickets for ‘An Evening Of Funk’ are available now!
Two additional “Fare Thee Well” shows in Santa Clara, CA on June 27 and 28 have been confirmed. The lineup will be the same as the previously-announced shows at Soldier Field in Chicago, featuring Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Bill Kreutzmann, Mickey Hart, Trey Anastasio, Bruce Hornsby, and Jeff Chimenti.The following letter was posted on Dead50.net:Dear Heads,Although none of us knew it when we walked off the stage at Soldier Field on July 9, 1995, the Grateful Dead’s long strange trip ended in Chicago that night. As you are aware, twenty years later, we’re returning to Chicago to properly say Fare Thee Well.But every good ending must start with a beginning. For us, it all began fifty years ago when we grabbed a bunch of instruments off the walls of a music store in Palo Alto California and began banging away on them in the back room, at night after the store had closed for the day.Since we made the decision to go back to Chicago to say our final goodbye, it has become clear to us that we first need to return to our beginnings, where we first said hello — to each other and to all of you.And so it is that we have decided to plug in for two additional shows on June 27 and 28 at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California — just a dozen miles south of where Dana Morgan’s Music Store once stood. At Levi’s — as at Soldier Field — we will have the pleasure of being joined by Trey Anastasio, Bruce Hornsby and Jeff Chimenti.Ours wasn’t just a long, strange trip — it was a VERY long, VERY strange trip. We weren’t sure what it was going to be like to put a punctuation mark on the end of it. None of us anticipated the overwhelming outpouring of love and interest following our initial announcement of the shows at Soldier Field, and we were blown away by the response.We have tried to do the right thing wherever we could for the Chicago shows by honoring the roots of where we came from, while dealing with the realities of the current times. But that’s hardly comforting when you’re shut out of tickets and your only option is inflated prices on secondary ticketing websites. That would piss us off too.From the moment these shows were first talked about, we have been thinking about what we could do to honor the roots of our Deadhead experience, even in the face of changing technologies. (Remember: Ticketmaster didn’t even go online until we got out of the game.) These shows were always intended as an expression of our gratitude, to both the music and the fans, so it’s important that we get things as right as we can.We have always been proud of our in-house mail order ticketing process, and the phenomenal way our fans have built a tradition out of turning a standard envelope into a frame-worthy piece of art. Some 60,000 mail order tickets were issued for the Soldier Field shows by the good folks at Grateful Dead Ticket Sales — yet we were still crushed to see how many of your beautifully designed envelopes did not get tickets.For shows of this magnitude, it’s impossible to eliminate every scalper. However, we offer you this: Working with our partners, we are using an online ticketing platform for the Levi’s shows that will help ensure that the tickets for these shows will get into the right hands, the hands of our true fans. We believe that this process is the best way to give each of you an equal opportunity to obtain tickets at the most affordable possible prices. We are are proud to announce that 65,000 tickets per night will be available via the “online mail order” for the Levi’s shows. For the nuts and bolts, go to Dead50.net.We will not be adding any more Fare Thee Well shows. The three Chicago shows will still be our final stand. We decided to add these two Santa Clara shows to enable more of our fans to celebrate with us one more time. But this is it.We love you guys more than words can tell, and hope to see you in the Bay Area or Chicago. If you can’t make it to the shows, we are working on ways for you to still experience our Fare Thee Well, from wherever you might be. Stay tuned for those details.Gratefully yours,Billy, Bobby, Mickey & PhilThe shows will be held at Levi’s Stadium, home of the San Francisco 49ers NFL franchise. A ticket lottery is underway, running from now through April 14th at 11:59 PM – probably a wise decision, considering the mail order envelope flood that overran GDTS TOO after the Chicago shows were announced.Good luck getting tickets!
The remainder of the performance included appearances from Karl Denson, Eric Krasno, Jamie Lidell, Oteil Burbridge, Reggie Watts, John Medeski, Chance the Rapper & more. Bonnaroo promised an “80s Throwback Superjam”, and the festival did not disappoint! Led by Pretty Lights, DMC (of Run DMC) and Rob Trujillo of Metallica, the all-star set featured a number of guest appearances – both announced and unannounced.One of the biggest surprises of the set came at its beginning, as actors Jon Hamm and Zach Galifianakis showed up unannounced to sing “We Are The World.” Check it out: zach galifianakis and Jon Hamm (Don Draper) singing we are the world last night at #SuperJam
UPDATE [8/19/15]: Rototom Sunsplash Reggae Festival officially offered a formal apology to Matisyahu, going so far as to invite the star to reclaim his performance slot should he choose to return. The statement says that the festival “rejects anti-Semitism” and “admits that it made a mistake.” Read the statement below:A Rototom Sunsplash public institutional declaration regarding the cancellation of Matisyahu1. Rototom Sunsplash rejects anti-Semitism and any form of discrimination towards the Jewish community; we respect both their culture as religious beliefs and we sincerely apologize for what has occurred, thereby rectifying point 4* in the previous release regarding this controversy.2. Rototom Sunsplash would like to publicly apologize to Matisyahu for having cancelled his concert and invite him to perform at the festival next Saturday 22 August, as was initially programmed in the lineup.3. Rototom Sunplash admits that it made a mistake, due to the boycott and the campaign of pressure, coercion and threats employed by the BDS País Valencià because it was perceived that the normal functioning of the festival could be threatened. All of which prevented the organization from reasoning clearly as to how to deal with the situation properly.4. After 22 years of history, Rototom Sunsplash reaffirms its commitment to a Culture of Peace and respect between cultures, including the freedom of belief as recognized in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Spanish Constitution.* “Rototom Sunsplash, after having repeatedly sought dialogue given the unavailability of the artist for comment, in order to clearly declare himself regarding the war and in particular the right of the Palestinian people to have their own State, has decided to cancel the performance of Matisyahu scheduled for August 22”******It’s no secret that Matisyahu is Jewish. However, the acclaimed hip hop artist has intentionally avoided injecting his personal political message into his music, instead opting to spread a message of peace and love with his performances.For that reason, it’s rather shocking that the Rototom Sunsplash Reggae Festival in Spain asked Matisyahu to write a statement or release a video supporting “the right of the Palestinian people to have their own State.” Apparently, Matisyahu’s Jewish presence was threatening to some of the other artists, thus prompting the festival to make such a request.When Matisyahu refused, he was promptly removed from the lineup and replaced by reggae artist Etana.Matisyahu explained the situation in Rolling Stone, saying:I support peace and compassion for all people. My music speaks for itself, and I do not insert politics into my music. Music has the power to transcend the intellect, ideas and politics, and it can unite people in the process. The festival kept insisting that I clarify my personal views, which felt like clear pressure to agree with the BDS political agenda.Honestly it was appalling and offensive, that as the one publicly Jewish-American artist scheduled for the festival, they were trying to coerce me into political statements. Were any of the other artists scheduled to perform asked to make political statements in order to perform? No artist deserves to be put in such a situation simply to perform his or her art. Regardless of race, creed, country, cultural background, etc., my goal is to play music for all people. As musicians, that is what we seek.Meanwhile, the festival issued the following statement:Rototom Sunsplash has demonstrated on numerous occasions its sensitivity regarding Palestine, its people and the occupation of their territories by Israel, as demonstrated by the holding of numerous debates in its Social Forum; giving voice to pro-Palestinian organizations, activists and initiatives that, while being a minority, also seek dialogue from Israel, together with the peaceful coexistence of both peoples…After having repeatedly sought dialogue given the unavailability of the artist for comment, in order to clearly declare himself regarding the war and in particular the right of the Palestinian people to have their own State, has decided to cancel the performance of Matisyahu.Regardless of your political agenda, this is a blatantly outrageous act. Keep uniting people with your music, Matisyahu.
Happy birthday to the one and only Dickey Betts! The Allman Brothers Band has certainly had something of a tumultuous past, but when things were running smoothly, the band was an unstoppable force of Southern rock reckoning. In this prime footage from 1979, the ABB take on the Capitol Theatre in Passaic, NJ for a fantastic performance.Thanks to Allman Brothers on MV, we have full footage of this exciting show. Dig it below!Check out the setlist (and timestamps) below:0:00:00 – Don’t Want You No More0:02:41 – It’s Not My Cross To Bear0:08:21 – Can’t Take It With You0:11:58 – Crazy Love0:16:04 – Need Your Love So Bad0:20:24 – Blind Love0:26:14 – Blue Sky0:31:15 – Just Ain’t Easy0:37:08 – In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed0:46:51 – Pony Boy0:48:27 – Statesboro Blues0:54:10 – Try It One More Time0:59:32 – Southbound1:06:02 – Wildflower1:12:43 – Jessica1:22:39 – Whipping Post1:34:43 – Pegasus (Part 1)1:44:56 – Drum/Bass Solos1:56:55 – Hey Bartender2:00:27 – Pegasus (Part 2)2:02:39 – Ramblin’ Man2:09:08 – Will The Circle Be Unbroken2:13:57 – Midnight Rider2:17:19 – Mountain Jam
“And if they don’t, we will,” Studaven said, referring to board members. As part of the fire department’s probation, documentation regarding its medical calls will be closely monitored by the authority. Holke, who had been demoted from captain to probationary firefighter after it was learned he didn’t hold a medical license, recently resigned from the Blue Lake Township Fire Department, according to Township Supervisor Don Studaven. The authority has permanently banned Holke from serving as an emergency medical technician or medical first responder in Muskegon County, according to Evans. The Medical Control Authority oversees emergency medical first responders who work for fire departments and ambulance services. The fire department has been put on probation by the Muskegon County Medical Control Authority, according to Dr. Jerry Evans, medical director of the authority. “The investigation concluded that, based on statements from the firefighters on scene, Mr. Holke did treat a patient while his license was expired,” Evans said in a prepared statement. The township board in April issued a written reprimand to Fire Chief Kim Busman for failing to ensure all firefighters were properly licensed. The board also disbanded its fire committee, a member of which had first brought up the licensing issue. Holke has previously refused to comment and requested that The Chronicle not further contact him. Working without a valid license in Michigan is considered a felony. Results of the authority’s investigation have been forwarded to state officials conducting their own investigation, Evans indicated. BLUE LAKE, TWP., Mich. The Blue Lake Township Fire Department will be under scrutiny for the next year after county medical officials determined an unlicensed firefighter provided medical treatment to a patient. The action follows an investigation by the authority into former township fire Capt. Steve Holke, whose emergency medical technician license expired in September 2005. “I’m confident that the (fire) chief and assistant chief are going to be on top of this thing all year, and longer than that,” Studaven said. “I’m sure that’s going to happen. Studaven said he’s not concerned about the probation, and even welcomes the additional monitoring the authority will provide. Holke, who has previously said he did not provide medical treatment while unlicensed, unsuccessfully appealed the authority’s findings to the authority’s Professional Standards Review Organization subcommittee, Evans said. Studaven said earlier the committee was disbanded because the township board wanted to keep closer tabs on the fire department itself. State investigators will meet soon with Blue Lake Township officials as part of their probe, said Robin Shively, manager of the EMS & Trauma Systems Section of the Michigan Department of Community Health.
The number of burn centers in the U.S. has dropped from 132 in 2004 to 127, and burn beds have fallen from 1,897 to 1,820, according to American Burn Association records compiled from voluntary reporting by hospitals.Read Full Story Associated Press interviews and an examination of official figures found that the shrinking number of beds is a growing cause for concern in this post-Sept. 11 world. U.S. hospitals are increasingly shutting down their burn centers in a trend experts say could leave the nation unable to handle widespread burn casualties from a fiery terrorist attack or other major disaster. Experts say burn centers are expensive to maintain and often lose money because they are staffed with highly specialized surgeons and nurses and stocked with sophisticated equipment designed to ease patients’ excruciating pain, fend off deadly complications and promote healing.