Twist & Shout, Bethesda, MD on May 30, 1998 (two reviews!)
Webb final 96 Paris show
Webb In France 8/96
Bowling Green 7/19/96
Cubby Bear,Chicago 4/8/95
Blind Pig, 10/13/96
Be Here Now , Asheville, NC 2/22/97
Live at Blues Alley- Mississippi August 9, 1997
Live at Blues Alley- Mississippi August 9, 1997 : a second review!
Bluebird Theater- Boulder, Colorado Sept. 17, 1997 : check outseveral reviews!!
Fitzgerald's- Berwyn, Illinois (outside Chicago), January 2, 1998
Frankie's Patio, Tampa, Florida- January 24, 1998
Off Broadway in St. Louis- Feb 12, 1998
Off Broadway in St. Louis- TAKE 2
The Arcade Diner, Memphis on 3/27/98
Gypsy Tea Room- Dallas, TX @ 4/04/98
Ellington Fellowship Playhouse in Lynchburg, VA on 7/19/97
Thanks to Martin J. for this live review.
Chalk up another 5 or 10 new die-hards. It was blustery (well, for Lynchburg, and mid-June) as Webb and the guys took the stage for another blistering show at the Ell. The cool breezes off Rivermont Avenue were right on time, as lightning had trashed the club's AC a few days before. After the Goldfinger opening, gremlins appeared and knocked out Webb's mic. Following a little frettin' and pacin', Webb started a blues jam that, when the mic kicked back in, included Big Boss Man and a couple of others. The surprises continued a couple of minutes later when sound problems returned mid-Landlord. So Webb relocated to Tom's mic, apologized for the problems, and started plucking the (old) Budweiser theme song ("you've said it all"). BTW, to settle a long standing argument, after the show we asked WW if in fact he had done a Bud radio spot a few years back - he had, and I won. The treats continued with an instrumental Wildwood Weed (sorry Jim Stafford fans), and then came the gem of the night - a solo version of Long Black Veil. On of my all time favorites, Webb told us after the show who wrote it (forgot) before the Band cut it. The image of Webb stooped over Tom's mic, crooning that great old song was classic. The rest of the show was superb. No more sound problems, and a few standards that we hadn't heard in a while (Cold Front, Baby Please Don't Go). Oh, and another 60's/70's supergroup cover or 2 (see below).
Bryan Owings is (masterfully) back on drums, replacing Steve Ebe. Word was family man Steve is sticking close to home with a day job.
The Ellington shows must, in some circles, be reaching legendary status. An old theater off a wide boulevard, just a block up from the historic James River, lots of room for dancing and hat twirls. Webb really seems to get off here.
We hung around for about an hour after the show talking music with the guys in between autographs and photos. Webb was Mr. Accommodating, as usual. And the knowledge base is impeccable.
The Lineup: Drums - Bryan Owings; Bass/vocs - Tom Comet; Guitar/vocs - Joe McMahan
First Set: Goldfinger, Baby What You Want Me to Do, Big Boss Man, Shame on You (not sure about this one but it was NOT the Indigo Girls song), How Long Can She Last, Honky Tonk Hell, No Great Shakes>Sputnik, Landlord, Budweiser Theme (pre-frogs, fingerpick), Wildwood Weed., Long Black Veil Hit the Nail Right on the Head, Carryin' the News, Hittin' Where it Hurts, Everyday I Kick Myself, Cold Front, Baby Please Don't Go, Human Cannonball
Second Set: I'm Burnin', Poolside, The Rest Will Take Care of Itself, Hoodoo Witch, Lover>Who Do You Love>Lover (Joe is distracted by some antics in the dance crowd), Sittin' Pretty, It Takes Time (Otis Rush), Love in Vain (Joe on Slide), Slow Death, I Ride an Old Paint, Flat Out Get It, Tough It Out
Encores: (Let Me Stand Next to Your) Fire, Stay Out of Autos
Twist & Shout, Bethesda, MD on May 30, 1998
Thanks to Bruce M. for this live review.
Saturday, May 30, Webb and the guys raised the ceiling at Twist & Shout in Bethesda MD to a larger than last year's crowd and a good time was had by all (I'm sure a few ears were bleeding as well!). Webb even managed to twirl the hat at one point, though the poor guy had to stoop a bit to pull it off. You do the math: a full grown man (with hat) on a 12-inch riser in a room with maybe an 8ft ceiling....
Wayne Hancock and his band opened for Webb, and I have to say I was pleasantly impressed. I saw him two years ago opening for Webb as a solo and when you put 3 guys behind him he can rock! Kudos to his standup bass player who's mastered the art of literally standing on the bass while playing, and it was a special treat to finally hear Evans Johns as his lead string picker. After a lonnng set (one guy was spotted by Wayne to be looking at his watch), Webb, Joe, Tom and Brian Owings Jr. took the stage around 11:30.
Don't expect a set list here people, as I was way too busy dancing on top of my front booth seat. The music was loud, and to my recollection Webb only did one song off of Acres of Suede. Practically the entire Doo Dad release was done, as well as several from It Came From Nashville and a few from Town & Country and Hybrid Vigor. It was neat to make another new email friend as well as say hi to an old one (but did Darlene make it?).
Sadly, the chat between songs we've come to know and love was minimal, but we should all take heart Webb brought up the internet and website issues practically plugging it. Perhaps someone can help me out on WHICH website ("official, unofficial?") Webb spelled out for us, but I do know Ken got a special mention when Webb started to bring up the RRAF CD and Bobby Field and seemed a bit taken back several of us already knew about it!... something to the effect, "Who told you?, who told you, was it Ken?".
90 minutes later he left the stage and the cries of Webb!...Webb!...Webb! brought them back for an encore that included Poolside and a surprise gem, the Chris Kenner tune, Sea Cruise. Now the rest will have to take care of itself until next year. Judgung from other fans, I feel plenty spoiled to see him once each spring.
SET LIST: Goldfinger I'm Burnin' Cannonball Sputnik Hoodoo Witch Landlord Honkytonk Hell The Rest No Great Shakes Lover Not a Fighter Hittin' where it Hurts Sittin' Pretty Short on Love Baby Please Don't Go It Takes Time Flat Out Get It Tough It Out
Thanks to Michael E. for this second review.
Bear with me while I meander and prattle on about the show at Twist & Shout last weekend...
A couple of weeks ago while on the phone with my sister in Rockville, MD: "Guess what sis', the weekend I'm coming down from MA to see my nephews, my favorite recording artist on the planet "JUST HAPPPENS TO BE" performing at T&S, a mere 15 minutes from your house. What a coincidence..." (Little does she know, I've been planning this trip for two months! She doesn't suspect a thing!)
I invited a pretty cool friend of the family to join me at the show. Little did I know one of my very cool cousins (Linda, for the record) would be gracious enough to drive me since I've no idea where I'm going. (Remember this is the cousin to whom I sent a cassette of some of Webb's best work to try and recruit her into the "club"; and she didn't like the music! Don't worry, the story has a happy ending.)
Hey Webbsters out there, did you ever get the feeling nobody but us has ever heard of Webb and the boys? Well it's just not true! Despite the fact that whenever I mention who I'm going to see I get blank stares and "Who?" in reply, I've actually come to find that it's a small world afterall (for some reason, my nephew was singing this song all weekend).
Linda (the cuz) calls me and makes me guess what suprise she has in store for me. I have no idea. As it turns out, while preparing for a yard sale, a family friend came across a Webb Wilder hat that he got as a promo item from when he worked in a record store or something like that. Now this hat has never been worn, it's made of corduroy(!) and just says "Webb" on it. Talk about old... Now I'm even more psyched!
Saturday after noon one of the nephews starts feeling sick. (What would it be without one of them not getting sick when I'm visiting?) Anyway, Brotherinlaw takes him to the Dr. On their way out of the office, B-inlaw is wondering to the nephew if they'll get home before I go see Webb. Some guy in the waiting room hears this and says he saw the show the previous night in Philly!!!! Cool huh? When B-law gets home he tells me the story and says the gentlemen said something strange as they left the office. "He said something about wearing glasses", Blaw says wonderingly. So I says "Oh, he said 'Wear glasses if you need them', part of the Webb Wilder Credo. See it's right here on the back of my T-shirt."
On to the show...
Wayne Hancock was pretty good, playing some classic Hank Williams Sr, "Route 66" (one of my fav songs of all time), and some rockabilly (it can't be rockabilly if the bass player doesn't "ride the bass").
It was really nice to meet Bruce and Rich (stylin' in his T&C shirt) and put some faces to names. Bruce did a good review of the show already and we just got a setlist. I just gotta say that it was my favorite Webb show of all time, and then they played "Baby Please Don't Go" (my favorite song of ALL time (Webb's version of course)). What a great night. One other note: Webb mentioned that Les James was supposed to do the show with the band but couldn't make for some reason (couldn't get the wrestling mask off is my guess!).
My cousin and I danced all night. I think she's been assimilated!
Wearing glasses cuz I need 'em:
Final Paris show 1996
This is from Ron Freear as he made the march into France to see WW not once but twice (see next review!)
As we went ot the opening night of Webb Wilder at Le Chesterfield Cafe in Paris (Webb's 1996 equivalent of the Star Club in Hamburg), we decided we had to go to the closing night as well.
Sure enough, word had got round Paris and by 23:30 the place was packed with very enthusisatic WW fans. After 5 songs, the set list was thrown out and end-of-term euphoria took over. We had 2 blues numbers, we had Rolling Stones songs, we had George Bradfute on guitar and Joe McMahan on bass for "Baby Please Don't Go" and "Hi Heel Sneakers", and most of all we had a REALLY good time.
"Loud Music" now seems to have acquired a new ending (stolen from the Who's "Won't Get Fooled Again") and "Louisiana Hannah" goes off in a different direction each night (this time it went into "Parchment Farm"). Is there no end to this band's encyclopaedic knowledge of rock?
Webb decided to build the encore into the set. This was a good idea, beacuse the place was so packed they couldn't get off stage! Within 30 seconds of finishing the set, the disco music was switched on and the cafe went into its 02:00 - 05:00 funky post-rock drinking phase.
The band should now be back at home in Nashvegas for a week's rest. They will need it, as at 02:15 they were still packing up the guitars before a 07:30 flight. (Brian Owings the drummer [ex-Delbert McClinton band] was on the verge of being sick all night, so it must have been a bad idea to sit next to him on the plane!) A short tour of the Carolinas is the next step in the campaign for World domination.
George Bradfute is going back to work on producing an album for Sonny George (check out last year's GB-produced "Sonny George's Rockin' Country and Western Roundup Volume 1" on Hermitage Records) but threatens to return to the WW band for odd outings, including some dates in October.
The set played on Saturday August 31st was as follows:
Human Cannonball, Nashville Bum, Goldfinger, Big Time, Meet Your New Landlord, Flat Out Get It, The Rest Will Take Care Of Itself, Cold Front, Sputnik, Baby Please Don't Go, Hi Heel Sneakers, King of The Hill, Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, Loud Music, Slow Death, Devil's Right Hand, Stay Out of Automobiles, Silver Wings, Tomorrow You Could Be Crying (Otis Rush), Sugar Coated Love, The Last Time / Satisfaction, Louisiana Hannah / Parchment Farm, Tough It Out
The Wednesday night show was broadcast live on Oui-FM so somebody somewhere must have a really good tape of the show (unfortunately we were back in the UK at the time). If so, please post to the WW-List immediately!
And a big hello to Joe McMahan's mother, who is a keen subscriber to the WW-List.
I'm already looking forward to next year's tour of France (and I don't mean the bike race). Au revoir!
This is from Ron Freear ([email protected]) as he made the march into France to see WW.
Just got back from France, where Webb is putting out some classic live gigs (first time I've seen him since March 1990 when he toured the UK with the Georgia Satellites). The French band consists of Webb, George Bradfute on bass (!), Joe MacMahan on guitar, and Brian on drums.
They flew in for the 9th Free Wheels festival at Cunlhat, near Clermont- Ferrand in central France. This turned out to be a 4-day Harley Davidson bike show and rock festival organised and policed by Hells Angels, attracting around 50,000 bikers from all over Europe. Iron Maiden topped the bill on Saturday 17th, with Webb advertised in the national press and on telephone hotline to headline on Thursday 15th.
We got there in good time on Thursday (after a 200-mile drive from the Alps) only to find that Webb had been rescheduled for Friday!! George Bradfute later explained that the band had also rearranged flights at the last moment to be there for Thursday, but the promoter must have screwed up, so Thursday was left to Microwave Dave, Lee Rocker (from the Stray Cats), and Jason and the Scorchers.
Webb did a 90-minute set on Friday in between Popa Chubby and Omar and the Howlers. The band were superb, even though they were struggling to find a way to finish "I'm A Lover Not A Fighter" ! The bikers seemed particularly fond of Webb's hat-twirling technique, but Webb's French vocabulary ran out after "Vive la France" and "Merci". The promoter wouldn't let Webb do an encore though, because a stripper was due on!!
On the way home, we took in the first night of Webb's stint at the Chesterfield Cafe in Paris (a great place opposite the Virgin Megastore and 20 yards off the Champs Elysees). The cafe only holds around 200 and we got a table 2 feet in front of Webb's microphone stand! They came on at 11:30pm and played for nearly 2 hours. They were even better than at Cunlhat and were obviously enjoying themselves, extending some songs and throwing in a few cover versions.
At the end they seemed a bit unsure about whether to stay on stage or to go off and hide, and by the time they found a hiding place (on the stairs leading to the toilets!!) the audience had stopped clapping, so we were deprived of an encore yet again. Still, the band were very friendly and chatted with a very appreciative audience. (Webb revealed that he wants to play again in Dublin, Glasgow and London, so there's hope for Great Britain yet!)
Set lists were as follows:
Cunlhat (16 August): Human Cannonball, Goldfinger, Big Time, Meet Your New Landlord, Carrying The News To Mary, Wild Honey, Sputnik, I'm A Lover Not A Fighter, Hitting Where It Hurts, Every Day I Kick Myself, Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, Loud Music, Flat Out Get It, Slow Death, Stay Out Of Automobiles
Paris (20 August): Goldfinger,Big Time,Human Cannonball, Short On Love,The Rest Will Take Care Of Itself, Sputnik, I'm A Lover Not A Fighter, Hitting Where It Hurts, Every Day I Kick Myself, Nashville Bum, Cold Front, Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, Loud Music, Flat Out Get It, Meet Your New Landlord, Tiger By The Tail (!), Carrying The News To Mary, Louisiana Hannah/Polk Salad Annie, Hi Heel Sneakers, Tough It Out
The residency at Le Chesterfield Cafe continues until August 31st, so any European fans should definitely get down there. Incidentally, the Acres Of Suede album was on heavy rotation in the car during our travels, and my wife thought it was a Greatest Hits compilation so I think it must rank up there as one of his best albums so far.
7/19/96 at Bowling Green
This is from your friend in Webb, Rich Horton
Well on to Bowling Green! I was driving back to St. Louis from the DC area when I decided to take a little side trip to see the show in BG. I'm glad I did! It was a really good show. The band was not exactly tight, but they were quickly working towards it. It took the crowd a little bit to get into the swing of things, but they warmed up pretty well by the end of the evening. Webb was in fine voice. A friend of mine saw in at the Bayou in DC recently and said that he sounded a little worn out from the New York shows, but he seemed no worse for wear in BG.
Just a few random thoughts:
- I thought it was odd that they decided to start out with "Goldfinger". I always thought "Hittin' Where it Hurts" was a classic opening number that quickly got crowds into the show.
- The new stuff sounded great! I wish he would have played "Scattered, Smothered, Covered in Love"..... oh well, maybe next time.
- here is the set list (in no order whatsoever):
Hittin' Where it Hurts, Human Cannonball, Louisiana Hannah, Tough it Out, New Landlord, Big Time, Sputnik, Everyday (I kick Myself), The Rest Will Take Care of Itself, Goldfinger, Lover Not a fighter, Nashville Bum, Old Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, Flat out Get It, Carrying The News To Mary, Why Do you Call
There may have been a 2nd encore, but I was not feeling well after a long "Louisiana Hannah" 1st encore (which was GREAT!!!) and had to leave rather quickly (that's what I get for eating at Arby's).
Webb Wilder at the Cubby Bear in Chicago Saturday night 4/8/95
Webb Wilder, the last of the full grown men, brought his band, the Nashvegans, to the friendly and intimate confines of the Cubby Bear (Wrigley Field stands directly across the street) last Saturday and proceeded to put on an awesome display of the type of music missing from today's radio waves. With the recently released "Town and Country" (T&C) album, Webb has added another great bunch of songs to draw from while performing a live set. As per usual, he and his band did not disappoint. They ripped through a 1 hour and 40 minute set which is detailed below. For those of you who missed it- it was your loss.
Driving and parking in Chicago is always a blast but suffice it to say, we made it to the Cubby Bear in plenty of time to catch the opening band Kevin Solem. As expected, it was a typical opening band- I've heard better, I've heard worst. Soon the gear on the stage was moved in preparation for a good dose of pure rock and roll. The Cubby Bear was packed with close to 1000 people as Webb took the stage. This was the last show of a three show swing through the Chicago area billed as WXRT's Webb Wilder weekend. The lights went down and a WXRT DJ introduced Webb to his adoring audience. Webb opened the show with "Goldfinger" the instrumental from the T&C album adapted from the James Bond movie of the same name. The set moved much too quickly for me but then again, I would have Webb play about a 3 or 4 hour show. "Big Time" from "Doo Dad" rocked the house followed then by "Human Cannonball" from "Hybrid Vigor"- such a great song you almost want to join the circus!
"Short On Love", "Cold Front", and, of course, "Sputnik", another great instrumental, soon followed. "Meet Your New Landlord" received a huge roar from the crowd as it is a fine song. "Original Mixed-Up Kid", "How Long Can She Last (Going That Fast)" from the recently re-released "It Came >From Nashville" CD (a must for any Webb Wilder fan!), "Lover Not A Fighter", and "Hittin' Where It Hurts" continued to keep the crowd going. "Everyday (I Kick Myself)" was next- this is a wonderful song about losing a loved one. "Nashville Bum" showed Webb's country side and "Talk Talk" gave us another taste of the new one.
Now it was time for some kicking slide guitar from George "Torch" Bradfute- the tone chaperone as the band kicked into my two favorite songs on the new album "Stay Out Of Automobiles" and "Slow Death". The crowd was really into these tunes. "Honky Tonk Hell", "My Mind's Eye" and "Louisiana Hannah" led into probably the best known Webb Wilder song "Tough It Out". The cheers continued as Webb and the boys left the stage. They dusted off "Baby Please Don't Go" as the encore.
The band, the Nashvegans, was as tight as ever. The rhythm section consists of Les James Lester (a Webb veteran) on drums and Kelly Looney on bass and backing vocals. As mentioned earlier, George Bradfute handled the guitars and added backing vocals as well. Webb, of course, was playing guitar and singing as well as ever.
It was an enjoyable night for all. The next time Webb Wilder is in your area, be sure to check him out.
Orlando 11/8/96 Webb Wilder at the Sapphire Supper Club
Thanks to Michael Eskandarian, for the review
Well, I made it to my second (and probably last if what Bob Soron said about Webb not doing in shows in Boston is correct) Webb show in Orlando at the Sapphire Supper Club last Friday.
Here is my collection of thoughts on the show:
First of all, NO that's not a typo in the subject line. That's how it was spelled on the club's November calendar.
I introduced myself to our own Jim Donato and his very nice wife (I think they're married, I can't remember). The first time I met them was at the Los 'jackets show on Holloween last week and I was wearing my wrestling mask so they didn't recognize me.
Not only was the warmup band (the Blacktop Rockets - Atlanta Rockabilly) pretty good, but THEY STARTED ON TIME! I can't remember seeing a band start on time at the Sapphire for a long time. I think another guy and I have convinced their lead guitar player to play his Gretsch (sp?) hollowbody and use the Strat as a backup. He switch to the Gretsch after breaking several strings on the Fender. During Webb's set, he announced that the 'Rockets' truck had been towed. Bummer!
By the time Webb started, there were some pretty toasted "fans" (obnoxious people) at the bar (they'd probably been drinking since happy hour). The worst one decided to take off his sweater and put on his newly acquired Webb shirt directly in front of the band. He was also taking the band's play list and trying to add songs to it. Fortunately, the band was able to pretty much ignore this loser.
The drummer was doing one thing I've never seen before: reading sheet music! I didn't even know one could write drumming music down. Very interesting. I believe Webb was fighting a sore throat. He sounded scratchy at the beginning of the show, but loosened up after a song or two. But at the end of the set, you could really tell he was really struggling. Despite this, the band still did two songs for an encore! Thanks guys.
Set List: Goldfinger, Big Time,Human Cannonball - (Interesting 'cause when the lines "i gotta tell you jack / john, it really gets me off" Webb sang "Man" instead of the names.), Lost In The Shuffle Wild Honey, Sputnik -(pronounced Shpuutnik" by Webb), King Of The Hill, And The Rest Will Take Care Of Itself - (On this one and the next two, Webb played a guitar whose body was shaped like a half of an ellipse. Anyone know what kind it was? See NOTE below), Hittin' Where It Hurts, Everyday I Kick Myself, Meet Your New Landlord, Carrying The News To Mary, Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, Loud Music, Louisiana Hannah - (Some very nice solos during this musical composition), Tough It Out
Encore: Sorry, I can't read my handwriting on the first one, Cold Front
Unfortunately, no "Scattered, smothered, covered", I guess the theramins don't travel very well.
This concludes my report. This will probably be my last contact with y'all for a while since I'm moving to Boston next week. Hopefully, I'll have internet access.
See ya.- signed Michael Eskandarian
NOTE from Lois: Thanks for the review ! The guitar you asked about (that's shaped like an ellipse) is a "Rear View" designed and made by George Bradfute!
The Blind Pig, Champaign, IL 10/13/96
Thanks to Robert.Krumm, for the review
In response to a recent request for a review of the Webb show at the Blind Pig, here it is...
The date: October 13, 1996
The scene: the Blind Pig in Champaign, IL
The event: the return of Webb Wilder & the Nash Vegans
On the Siskel & Ebert scale: 2 thumbs WAY up.
On a scale of 1 - 10 compared with other Webb shows that I have seen: 8.5.
Alright already, here's what happened.
The last of the full grown men took the stage at about 11:30 and played straight thru to about 1:05, returning quickly to the stage for an encore that lasted until 1:20. In short, the band was tight & Webb was in good form.
I got a brief chance to talk to Webb and all of the band before the show. I told Webb that Ken Drew is doing a good job for him on the Info. Superhighway and Webb said "yeah, you're right, he is doing a good job". After Webb got some hot tea at the bar, they hit the stage.
They started with Goldfinger, and about the third time thru (and, of couse at the appropriate place), Webb stepped to the mike and said simply "Webb Wilder" (in place of Goldfinger).
They played a lot from Acres, H.Vigor, Doo Dad and Town&Country, playing only one or two songs from 'It Came From Nashville'. In no particular order, I remember that they played Human Cannonball, Tough it Out, Lost in the Shuffle, Loud Music, Nashville Bum, Meet Your New Landlord, Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, Carryin' the news to Mary, Big Time, Hittin' Where it Hurts, Louisiana Hannah and Ruff Rider. I know that they played others. After about the third song, the band really took off. Loud Music was excellent, Human Cannonball also kicked.
The encore was a medley of several songs that included a tune that I remember being done by Rod Stewart & the Faces. I think it's called Cut Across Shorty and it was pretty cool. Excellent musicianship all around. Along with being the rhythm ranger that he usually is, Webb played quite a few good leads.
Webb enlightened us about the continuing saga of the economy with dignity tour. He mentioned that they played in Omaha, Nebraska the night before and drove to Des Moines, Iowa after the gig. Upon wakening, they discovered that some of the guitars were left in Omaha so two of the crew took off across Iowa to retrieve the equipment and then picked up the other two back on their way thru Des Moines again. They had evidently seen a lot of highway in the last few days.
Webb told a few good stories including one that got away from him and he simply ended by saying something like "...and then sometimes the guy on stage just digs a big old hole for himself and then scooping in all the dirt afterwards..." It was funny.
For a Sunday night, the crowd (maybe 200 people?) was good and people got into it. Someone yelled out "Horror Hayride' and Webb said "Horace Hayride?". Webb introduced Carrying the News as a "new cowboy-grunge tune" of theirs.
And yes, as noted in a previous email message, Webb did say "It's difficult to be stylish AND in tune" as he was struggling to get one of his guitars in tune. This was met with a loud round of laughter and applause.
Off all the Webb shows that I have seen, I think that this was one of the better gigs. The current lineup is hitting on all cylinders.
I can't wait until next time.
Urbana, IL Fitzgeralds, Berwyn, IL 12/28/96
Thanks to Robert.Krumm, for the review
On Saturday, Dec. 28, Webb Wilder and the NashVegans roared through a 90-minute set for a packed house at Fitzgeralds in Berwyn, Illinois (Chicago area).
Webb and the band took the stage at about 11:30 and started with Goldfinger. Right from the start, the could tell that Webb was feeling good as he was very animated - flipping his hat, talking with the crowd, and putting on those patented Webb Wilder dance moves that look like a cross between Kung Fu Fighting and late 60's/early 70's psychedelic dance hall a go go.
Webb provided a few tidbits of information for all of the Webb-heads in attendance such as telling us that Ace is the name of the dog on the cover of Hybrid Vigor. He also talked about the fact that Johnny Cash is doing a Soundgarden song, wondered if Soundgarden would return the favor, and then launched into a version of 'I Walk the Line' that poked fun at the grunge scene. At one point, Webb launched into a short song that sounded like an old biscuit company radio jingle - very spontaneous and entertaining.
The band was tight from the get go and the volume was not too sonic, so (at least for me), it was very enjoyable. Without the volume being overbearing, I got a kick out of the fact that you could hear many people in audience sing along to several songs.
I tried to get a copy of the set list, but I got beat to the punch by some other folks with the same idea. I remember that they played the following tunes:
Big Time, Human Cannonball, Elephant Man, Louisiana Hannah, Devil's Right Hand, Sputnik, Loud Music, No Great Shakes, Meet Your New Landlord, Hittin' Where It Hurts, Every Day I Kick Myself, Lost in the Shuffle, Flat Out Get It, Carryin' the News To Mary, My Mind's Eye, and Tough It Out.
I'm sure there were others.
Right at the end of their set, they went into a Bo Diddley beat and played a medley of songs that included Who Do You Love. The encore included an Otis Rush song (sorry, can't remember the name), and one other tune.
Webb basically sang until his voice started to go out. This was the second night in a row for the band at Fitzgeralds.
Although I got a chance to see Webb about two months ago (see the Blind Pig review on the WW home page), I have to say that this was a better performance because Webb was enjoying himself, the band was very tight, and the crowd was in a very festive mood.
If you get a chance to catch Webb at Fitzgeralds, follow the advice of Joe Bob Briggs and check it out.
Happy New Year everybody!
Be Here Now in Asheville, NC 2/22/97
Thanks to Steve Crump, for the review
I saw Webb this past weekend at Be Here Now in Asheville, NC. There was a bit of confusion about this gig. Our local entertainment paper had listed Webb to play there on 2/15. When I called about tickets, they told me that the date had been moved to 2/22. (During the show Webb referred to the general confusion and said, "Don't blame the guy on the internet, he doesn't know if we don't tell him". Anyway, to add to the confusion, another band was booked after Webb Saturday night, leaving only a 9:30 to 11:00 pm window to play.
My wife and I, along with Kenney and Debbie West, friends of ours who are also friends of Webb, made the two hour drive in time to meet the band, hear the soundcheck, and take the guys to dinner. I really liked the "new" guys in the band. At dinner, I sat next to Steve, the drummer, who was in a Memphis-based band called Human Radio at the turn of the decade. They had a Sony/Columbia record deal, but were subsequently dropped.
I had Webb's permission to tape the show, but things did not go so well on that front. The house sound guy was some loopy character named "Hoppy" who maintained he had just had brain surgery six days ago. The soundboard was in a crow's nest at the rear of the room, and did not leave room for more than one person. Consequently, Hoppy hooked up my analog deck and was to "roll tape" and switch sides upon my cue. Well, although I cued him promptly, the end result was one 45 minute side (of the mid part of the set) that was only recorded in the left channel. What survives sounds OK, but I really hate that the tape didn't turn out better because the show was great.
The set list was as follows: Goldfinger, Big Time, Human Cannonball, Lost In The Shuffle, Wild Honey, Sputnik, Carrying The News To Mary, Meet Your New Landlord, Devil's Right Hand (a cappella version of Dolly Parton's Coat Of Many Colors), The Rest (Will Take Care Of Itself), I'm A Lover Not A Fighter, Hittin' Where It Hurts, Every Day (I Kick Myself), Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, Loud Music, (instrumental Webb billes as Prelude to Pulp- Flat Out Get It, Louisianna Hannah, Tough It Out
Encores: Stay Out Of Those Automobiles, Slow Death
Obviously, a set list built around the rockers in Webb's discography. It was a shame the band had to leave the stage after the second encore song because the crowd wanted more. It was a good sized crowd that kicked away the chairs set up in front of the stage and danced throughout the set.
One last impression I'll leave you with. During the soundcheck and interminable attempts by Hoppy to get Webb's mike right, Webb made a statement that has stuck in my mind ever since. He said, "If we only knew how good it was going to get, we would know when to quit".
Keep up the good work on the "Webb" page,
Live in Mississippi March 14-15, 1997
Thanks to Phillip O'Reilly for this review. This may appear in Mojo Magazine in the future.
Webb Wilder performed live at Hal & Mal's, Jackson, Mississippi on March 14, 1997 and
Blues Alley, Hattiesburg, Mississippi on March 15, 1997
The weekend of March 14-16, 1997 proved to be one of the best of the year for me. With a chance to see Mississippi's own "last of the full grown men", Webb Wilder, perform at Hal & Mal's St. Patrick's Day kickoff in Jackson, and at Blues Alley in Hattiesburg.
I got to Hal & Mal's around 7:30pm to have supper with my brother and his new girlfriend before the evenings festivities began. When I got to my seat and looked around, we were sitting next to the band, what luck. Before the show started, I got a chance to talk to the Webb man himself, after telling what a wonderful job we thought Ken Drew was doing on the Webb Wilder homepage, and telling him that I would be in Hattiesburg for the Sat. night show. I asked him if would be possible for me to take the band out to eat , he thanked me but said that he was going to see his mother, he is originally from the Hub City, and that his day was filling up quickly with other friends wanting to see the man.
Having been a long-time Webb fan, this was a wonderful, and unforgettable experience. This escapade began on Friday night, at Hal & Mal's, the first of two opening bands on the night was $1000 Car from New Orleans, this band had a kind of mixture of college rock with a twinge of zydeco and blues. It was a wonderful band to begin a night of Webb Wilder and the Nashvegans. About halfway through their set an eclectic group of people began filing in with equipment, this group was made up of what this country was founded on, a melting pot of cultures.
After $1000 Car finished there set, this group immediately began setting up the stage. We then found out that this was the second group of the evening, Wild Magnolias, also a Louisiana based group. Words cannot describe the show that they put on that evening. The band began with some straight acoustics, then a man came from the back of the room saying "make room for the Indians." What proceeded to come forth was a parade of artists that could have come straight out of the Krewe Parade. They commenced to funkdify and electrify the audience with some risquŽ versions of zydeco songs. After there set was complete it was pushing 1145.
Webb Wilder and the Nashvegans took the stage at midnight, that alone should have let us know that we were in for a special show. The band proceeded to play for 2 solid hours of pure Webb Wilder.
About halfway through the set a fight broke out at center stage. The band quit playing and proceeded to berate the fools for ruining a good song and a fun night, the crowd agreed completely. Webb Wilder and the Nashvegans proceed to complete the set in rare form, almost like they used the fight to fuel them to an even greater show.
Saturday night would prove to be another Webb night for the record books, playing in front of the hometown crowd helped the band go to that higher level yet again. It seems that no matter where or what kind of group they play in front of , Webb and the Nashvegans always seem to pull out great shows. They played to a packed house at Blues Alley, a new establishment in the Hub City, Robert St. John has a wonderful thing going here. He is pulling in some wonderful acts and there are playing fantastic shows to packed houses.
The set list is as follows: Goldfinger, Big Time, Human Cannonball, Lost in the Shuffle, Wild Honey, Sputnik, Carryin the News to Mary, Meet Your New Landlord, Devils Right Hand, The Rest (Will Take Care of Itself), (IÕm A) Lover Not a Fighter, Hittin Where It Hurts, Everyday (I Kick Myself), the Olde Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, Loud Music, Honky Tonk Hell, Louisiana Hannah, Tough It Out. The encore was two songs; Sugar-Coated Love (I have no idea who the artist is), and Stay Out of Automobiles.
After a 1 & 3/4 hour set, the band came back out and talked to all of the 425 fans that wanted to stay and talk. This show was one of the best I have ever seen Webb and the Nashvegans perform. The set list for both night's was very similar if not the same, but believe me the performances were anything but alike. Both shows had there own special qualities because of the atmosphere from the hall and the crowd. This is what makes Webb Wilder one of those artists you can listen to for hours own end and never even think of changing the disc.
By Phillip O'Reilly
Live in Mississippi August 9, 1997
Thanks to Joel for this review.
Webb revisited the grazing land of his youth August 9th in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, and this good ole boy was fortunate enough to spend time after the show alone with the magical minstrel himself, chewing the cud and reminiscing on a loading platform outside Blues Alley, the local watering hole that caters to the fan of live music.
And live it was Saturday night when Webb and His Wonders cranked it up despite monitor problems and an opening act that threatened to blow the club away. The reviewer not only neglected to get a set list, his memory has deteriorated from it's (sad) condition of Saturday night which necessitated a trip to the car for cigarettes just before Webb took the stage and resulted in missing the opening song.
I'm actually not a detail person anyway. Webb's most recent addition to the band must please him immensely. Joe McMahan's guitar work goes from the sublime to the cosmic, and his efforts seem to improve the Webbster's work, believe it or not. (Drums and bass were "fill-ins" who certainly added to the impressive sound, which ranged from blues to country to rock to rythm-ya-gotta-hear, most of it really FUN, and even non-dancers must find themselves tapping their toes and dreaming during this show).
I'm not gonna leave out the other half of the musical picture here, the lyrics. If you don't pay attention, you're not getting your money's worth. Although we all must determine personal meaning ourselves, this reviewer was amazed (again) at how deeply moved I was, at how real and immediate and true Webb's songs were for me. Bobby Field's "Human Cannonball" somehow meant more Saturday than ever, and Webb's ever-changing lyrics and on-stage gab kept me wishing I could be alert to meaning. There's no telling what all I missed, but one thing is certain: if you missed the music at Hattiesburg's Blues Alley Saturday night, you really missed something.
Another review from Mississippi August 9-10, 1997
Thanks to Larry Johnson for this review.
Last night and this morning, August 9-10, Webb was back here in his hometown of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, to perform for us at Blues Alley. We got there early and got a table, which was great since I hate standing up, and the wait was worth it. The crowd could have been bigger but it was thus not obnoxious. Webb's band included Les James on drums, George Bradfute on bass, and this tall guy named McMahan on lead guitar. McMahan was a fine guitar player, though he plays somewhat differently from Bradfute and other leads Webb has had.
The show opened with "Rough Rider" and proceeded through a potpourri of many of Webb's greatest hits, including "Human Cannonball," "The Rest Will Take Care of Itself," and "The Olde Elephant Man," and ended with a strong, rocking version of "Tough It Out." Extended riffs were played on "I'm A Lover Not A Fighter" and the aforementioned "Tough It Out." Encores were "Goldfinger," "Stay Out Of Automobiles," and "Slow Death."
The monitors were giving Webb some trouble during the show but this problem was finally overcome. Webb asked for water once and got more than he bargained for. He wore a blue, shortsleeved shirt, first time I've seen him perform without a coat and tie. Bradfute sported coat and tie, however, and played a mean bass. In short, a great time was had all around and Webb was welcomed back to his hometown with proper fanfare. I've seen him livelier, but this stage is not as large as some others and he couldn't move around too much. It was a good gig, and I hope some of you were there even if we didn't meet.
The Hills Are Alive..... Bluebird Theater, Boulder, CO Sept. 17, 1997
Thanks to Tim for this first review. Please read on for others
With the sound of Wilder! The musical revelations of the NashVegans delivered Denver, at least temporarily, from its Broncos mania. Tube amps were cranked. Lives were changed. I can't sleep yet so I may as well send a quick report. Having not seen Webb before, I can safely say that any of you who have a chance to see him should do so at all costs. There were plenty of Wyoming residents tonight, bless them. If they can drive a long ways to a Webb show, so should all the rest of you. Honestly, I can't recall looking forward to a show for so many years and finall seeing it and being completely fulfilled. No letdowns. Webb even did multiple hat twirls and a rather impressive high kicking bit.
Here's the set list:
Goldfinger, How Long Can She Last (with I Walk the Line in the middle!), Human Cannonball, Lost in the Shuffle, One Taste of the Bait ("Here's something from the...Old Testament"), segueing into Sputnik, Meet Your New Landlord, Carryin' the News to Mary, The Rest (Will Take Care of Itself), Lover not a Fighter/Who Do You Love, Hittin' Where It Hurts, Everyday (I Kick Myself), King of the Hill, The Olde Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, Loud Music, Sugar Coated Love, Flat Out Get It, Tough It Out
Encore: Stay Out of Automobiles, Slow Death
Webb came out to talk with us afterwards. He was the epitome of charm and graciousness, he really seemed glad to talk with fans. He told us about the time he and the Ionizer saw Mott the Hoople in New Orleans when he and Bobby were seventeen. Other items that may be of interest (don't read if you're not into trivia):
* The purple suit on the Town and Country cover "was always a tight fit, especially through the arms. I can't wear it anymore."
* The ES-335 Webb plays on the same album cover was a reissue that Webb didn't like too much and eventually sold. He has a sunburst model that he has kept.
* Stephen Mims has a new film called The Naughty Ones that features Webb and the boys palying Flat Out Get It in a scene. It may not be released yet, anyone hear of this? Mims is currently in France doing a biographic film of some famous opera singer.
* Webb is eager to do more voiceover work because "it pays so well" and also had another acting opportunity that he had to sacrifice for the current tour (I'm glad he decided to do the tour!). He looks forward to more acting, but it's tough to balance it with recording and touring.
* Webb does a terrific impression of Jerry Lee Lewis speaking. He did this for us while recounting opening for the Killer years ago. He also told of seeing the Killer on a bad night ("he doesn't just get through 11 songs and get off the stage...he rather wallows in it. Saw him try to play guitar one night, which was pretty bad--he just doesn't play guitar, obviously.")
* Webb confirmed that he'll be trying to get licensing for the Doo Dad album and the Corn Flicks video so he can sell them (they're both out of print).
There was more but I find it already melding into a wondrous haze. I've never met a "celebrity" who was so pleasantly interested in chatting after a gig. The sincerity of the man's music comes through in his personality, at least on first impression.
I better get some sleep.
MORE REVIEWS FROM COLORADO BELOW:
Thanks to Gus for this review from the Wyoming Contingent.
REVIEW #2: Bluebird Theater, Boulder, CO Sept. 17, 1997
We (myself, fellow list-member Fred Yates, and a couple of friends) made the long and perilous journey down from Cheyenne, Wyoming. We didn't know how hard it might be to find the Blue Bird or how bad the traffic might be. When we heard there was going to be a preseason hockey game we started to worry.
We got there at right about 7p.m. I went in to find when the will-call ticket booth opened. As I went in Web came out. I swear the man has grown and inch or three taller. I used to be taller than him. Then again I might just be a complete fan-boy and idolizing him in my idle youth.
Fred recognized him first and struck up a conversation. (The long perilous trek from Wyoming meant we had to leave after the show. Didn't get home till 3 a.m. but as Webb sang last night, one taste of the bait is worth the pain of the hook.)
He told us about touring this time out. This time its just a stretch van. The uhaul has been given up as an unnessary luxery. Webb as we speak is on the road to his next gig, Mississippi I believe. He's taking the scenic route though. On the way to Denver he drove down through Cheyenne so at least he's seeing the sights.
Before the show we wandered to the cafe across the street. Webb and the band sat in the back eating dinner. He came by the table and got roped into another conversation. Just talking basicly. We had a good time and realized we ought to let Webb get back to his dinner.
The show was better than the last time I saw him, and I couldn't imagine it being any better than that time! But....
The show started with "some guy" (not his actual name but...???) who reminded us all of Elvis Costello with a darker side (can you imagine that??). Most of the audience couldn't tell if he was serious and just bizzarre or if he was trying to have some fun. His best song was a folk narative featuring the memorable line of "I saw guy with a tatoo of Jesus being concieved in the back seat of a car."
Bambi Savage was next. With a name like Bambi Savage we wernt sure if we should sit too close to the stage. She turned out to be a country singer. Pretty, nice voice, decent guitar skills, so so song writer. The crowd was pretty ready for Webb by this point, and we all had the feeling she was more used to singing in bars. That and the fact that she giggled between each song didn't lend too much to her credibility.
10:45pm rolled around and Webb took the stage. Its was good size crowd. A very good size considering it was Wednesday night. Webb brought the house down. The theatre was mostly made up small tables set up in a raked up-to-back fashion. Normally you get a theatre like that and everyone just sits and watches. Webb had people singing along, dancing in the isles, dancing in the front "mosh" pit, or at least dancing in their seats.
Our highlight?? When Webb recognised the Wyoming contingent and dedicated "Carrying the news to Mary"to us. (We were the loud cheering table in the front left of the house.) Webb had a lot of nice things to say about Wyoming. Enough so that we'll walk over to the Govenor's house and ask him to make "Mary" the state song. He probably will.
Webb seemed a little tired when he first started up. With the schedule they have him on it doesnt surprise me. By the middle of the second song he was in full form and I think he enjoyed himself.
We sure did.
Webb said he's going to put another album out but he's not sure when, and he hinted it might be a while before he came out this way again. Another 2-5 year wait???... sigh (note from Ken: it shouldn't be that long!)
Welp thats my take on it. As soon as Fred can get into work I'm sure you'll here his report.
still needing to sleep hard after playing a little too hard. And as much as I need my glasses.. I don't think they're helping much.
Thanks to Gus P. for the following review #3 from Boulder!!
A little note: I went to the show at the Bluebird Theater in Denver, Wed., Sept. 17. The Full-Grown Man and his Nashvegans were devastating! Webb and the boys absolutely rocked the place in what was a religious experience for me. Twas the best show this boy's ever seen! I've been a fan ever since I saw the cover for HYBRID VIGOR. Being a mutt myself, I checked it out, and I've never looked back.
Thanks again for the great job you do on the page. Thanks for your cooperation.
Sincerely, Gus Peth
ANOTHER REVIEW FROM BOULDER!!!
Thanks to Scott for the following review #4 from Boulder!!
WebbWilder- Live Bluebird Theater- 9/17/97 Denver, CO
My My dreams came true!!!!!! Webb Wilder actually made it finally to Denver. I found out about it a few weeks ago... I arrived about 2 hours early (they announced the show would be at 8:00 pm but you know when they say "With Special Guests", it usually means around 10:30). The opener was a member of Slim Cessna's Auto Club, a local Denver favorite, Frsnk Hauser Jr.. He was ok... kinda humerous as a one man show with his guitar and his accordian..Kinda like a cross between "They Might Be Giants" and Mojo Nixon.
The second act was a female Jewel wanna be. She didnt fit in with the music format.
Then came Webb. A small but loud crowd saw the man in all his finest. I didnt recognize the new version of the Nashvegans but I will say thay did a great job. Webb made a few comments about the state of Wyoming being a cool place, then he was fiddling with his guitar (which he was having trouble staying in tune. "Probably due to the Rocky Mountain air" said Webb).
I believe the set list went like this (excuse me if they arent in exact order), Goldfinger, How Long Can She Last, One taste of the Bait, Lost in the Shuffle, Meet your new Landlord, King of the Hill, Ye Olde Elephant Man, Flat out get it, Lover Not a Fighter, Everyday (I kick myself), The Rest Will Take Care of Itself, Tough It out> the encores included, Stay Out of Automobiles and Slow Death.
All in all it was a great show. By the crowd response and the familiarity of his material (everyone knew and sang all the words), I would have to say that we may see Webb back here again I hope.
Keep rockin', Scott
Fitzgeralds, outside Chicago- Jan. 2, 1998
Thanks to Ken Kroack for the following review that he posted to the WW E-mail list!
Friday, January 2, 1998, Webb & Co. played at Fitzgerald's in Berwyn, Illinois (outside Chicago). They sounded great, as usual, Webb was very animated & into the show, here's the setlist:
Goldfinger, How Long Can She Last, Human Cannonball, One Taste Of The Bait, Sputnik. Honky Tonk Hell, Carryin' the News To Mary, Meet Your New Landlord, Devil's Right Hand, The Rest , Lover Not a Fighter -> Psychotic Reaction -> Who Do You Love, Hittin' Where It Hurts, Every Day, Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, Loud Music, Flat Out Get It ,Tough It Out
Encore: Stay Out Of Those Automobiles, Slow Death: somewhere along the line he also played We're Havin' a Party & Sugar Coated Love
Kevin Gordon opened, played a nice set, anybody into WW should check him out. Joe played guitar for his set, so it was a double treat to hear Joe the entire night. The sax player from KG's band sat in with Webb for a few songs.
I'll be at the show tonight (Jan. 3, 1998), Webb promised some different songs for tonight. Two nights of Webb in one weekend, that's what I call a great weekend!!
Frankie's Patio in Tampa- Sat. Jan. 24, 1998
Thanks to Al & Steve for this fine (unedited) review.
Jan. 24, 1998- A Saturday night at Frankie's Patio, Tampa, Florida
Thanks for all your work on the Webb Page. It is much appreciated by us, the dedicated Webbheads, who find it almost impossible to get information about a much under -appreciated artist otherwise. Anyway, I thought you might be interested in a review of the show on 1/24/98 in Tampa. The review is a joint effort by me, Alan Denison, and another Webb fanatic, Steve Kurtz. It is as follows:
The week started out to be a huge disappointment when Webb's Orlando booking was changed from Thurs. 1/22 to Wed. 1/21 without any notification to the people who had made previous reservations. (Thanks Sapphire Club!) We found out by calling ahead on Thursday but we could only imagine the crowd that showed up and found out at the door, in person! Webb usually packs the Orlando venue! (When we later asked Tom Comet what they did Thursday, he told us they went to watch the Space Shuttle launch.)
In order to get our Webb fix, the reviewers made the 90 mile trek to Frankie's Patio in Tampa on Sat. 1/24. As many Webb fans already know, it was well worth it. What could be better than a Webb Wilder show? I'll tell you...a FREE Webb Wilder show. For some reason they didn't charge any cover at the door, even though the paper advertised one that day. The resulting crowd was a mix of loyal Webb fans and lucky patrons who wandered in from the diverse Ybor City club scene outside. What they witnessed was a loose, relaxed and ROCKIN Webb Wilder, who also seemed to be enjoying himself. The band was WW (of course); Joe McMahan-gtr,vocals; Tom Comet-bass,vocals; and Steve Ebe-drums.
They hit the stage at 9:25 (the opening act played second for some reason...no compaints here!) with King Of The Hill. Webb was playing his black Gibson ES 335 (pictured on the cover of Acres Of Suede) and Joe had a Les Paul (for those that care). I mention this because it seems like the "twangier" songs are played with the Gibson. Next was How Long Can She Last (Going That Fast), then immediately into Human Cannonball.
By now Webb was starting to interact with the crowd, and vise versa. Next was a fun instrumental of Goldfinger, in which Webb inserted "Webb Wilder" into one verse where "Goldfinger" would have gone. Next was an energized Honkey Tonk Hell. At that point you could tell the newbies were wondering "just what kind of band is this anyway?". That question was answered with a short mention of Sonny Landreth, Hattiesburg Miss., Memphis, Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, and Elvis Presley in one 30 second span. Then it was into Meet Your New Landlord with some nice slide guitar work by Joe (now playing his Strat.) Next was Carryin' The News To Mary which featured Webb's first guitar solo of the night as well as some otherworldly feedback initiated by Webb at the end. This ain't no country band!
The Rest (Will Take Care Of Itself) was next, a beautiful song on cd but slightly different on stage, due to all electric guitars and no keyboards. Still a nice song, put in as a change of pace, no doubt. Webb then provided the uninformed with the world famous Webb Wilder Creedo and added "make love, not war" at the end. Which led into Lover Not A Fighter from "Town And Country" as well as one verse each from Who Do You Love and Psychotic Reaction worked into the middle. Then Webb brought out the workhorse Fender Telecaster, for a ROCKIN Hittin Where It Hurts and Everyday I Kick Myself. The latter showed how strong Steve is on drums and how much he has improved since this time last year when he was just learning the material. The Olde Elephant Man was next and then a strange request from the uninformed in the crowd. Someone asked Webb to play a Queen song for cryin out loud! At which point Webb launched into a solo version of "We aren't the champions" and then yelled "Get a clue!" (very funny, we thought).
Next was No Great Shakes which also was a showcase for Steve. He's very good. Sputnik followed and then a rockin Loud Music. Next was a strange interlude in which we think Little Richard was mentioned (you never know with Webb) and then they played Bring It On Home. You know the one; "If you ever change your mind, about leaving me behind....". It seemed like an odd song to cover, but then we couldn't quite make out what was said beforehand. Then the band TORE into Flat Out Get It and Tough It Out to end the show at 90 + minutes.
This reviewer left a note on Webb's monitor for a song request; one of my favorites. When they came back out for the encore Webb looked at it and immediately went over and said something to Joe. Then they launched into Wild Honey and last but not least, my request, the all-time best show-ending song ever, done in Webb Wilder fashion...Baby Please Don't Go. And they really tore the place down, as no one was sitting and many had crowded to the stage front to dance and soak it in
. Thanks Webb, for another rockin good time!
Some other notes from the show:1)We met some very nice Webb fans from Tampa - Hi Mark and Donna! 2) One guy came up to me and asked me what I was writing. I told him it was a song list to which he replied "Do you know these guys?". When I told him it was Webb Wilder he said that he had always heard his music on a local eclectic FM station (WMNF FM 89.5 -a great station. One of the very few stations in this area with enough taste to play Webb on a semi-regular basis) and he had just wandered in. He couldn't believe there was NO cover for a band this big! (Ching...chalk up another fan!) 3) One guy asked Steve if this was a local band (I'm assuming because Webb played first) to which Steve replied that it was Webb Wilder. The guy then said "These guys are good. These guys are REALLY good!" . (Ching...another fan is hooked).
Well that's it from Tampa/Orlando. Support Webb and Work Hard, Rock Hard Eat.... well you know the rest.
Al & Steve
Off Broadway in St. Louis- Feb 12, 1998
Thanks to Lois for this great review. She has a vested interest.....
Well, First let me tell you. I'm still recovering from the GREAT show last night at "Off Broadway" in St. Louis! I'm not a regular club goer but am a Big Fan of Webb Wilder and the band! My son is Joe McMahan, the lead guitar player for Webb so forgive me if I'm a little bit proud:-)! The club was packed (and it was only a Thursday). We waited for them to come on and finally at about ten minutes after ten they arrived on stage to a cheering crowd, (some of which I must admit were friends and family of Joe, who grew up in the area). Webb cracked a few jokes, thanked everyone for coming and started in playing to the cheers and joy of all of us there! What a GREAT sound to hear and feel the whole place Rockin!
The song list went as follows: (In Webb's own writing it's jotted down so I may not get them just exactly right).
Goldfinger, How Long Can She Last, Human Cannonball, Honky Tonk Hell, Sputnik, One Taste Of The Bait, Meet Your New Landlord, Carryin' The News To Mary, The Rest, Lover Not A Fighter, Hittin' Were It Hurts, Every Day (I Kick Myself), Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, Loud Music, Flat Out Get It, Tough It Out
There wasn't a lot of space between the songs so the show moved so fast that it seemed to be over way too soon. Webb is so witty and quick and cracks a few jokes in between and the band seems to be enjoying it almost as much as the crowd.
Beatle Bob was there for the whole set! (what can I say)?
At One AM they said goodnight and thanked us for coming but the crowd just wouldn't have it! They cheered, stomped, and chantted until Webb came back out and played a couple more encores,one of which was "Stay Out of Automobiles" and the rest I can't remember because I was dancing so hard and enjoying the beat so much! It was absolutely fabulous entertainment and I certainly hope they play in this area again soon. Everyone had a great time and there were LOTS of "real" Webb fans there from the screams I heard in the crowd. I have a lot of Webb's CD's but nothing can beat the experience of seeing them "live"! What a GREAT show!
Webb Fan & Joe's Mom
Off Broadway in St. Louis- Feb 12, 1998 - TAKE TWO
Thanks to Fred P. for this great review.
Webb Wilder made a long overdue St. Louis appearance at the Off Broadway nightclub. This Thursday night appearance was a surprise to me. I hadn't checked the Internet for a couple of weeks and was planning to drive to the gig in Champaign, IL, the following evening (which wasn't there, more on that in the "Webb Interview" below).
I started my trek from the suburbs early since I didn't know where Off Broadway was or what parking was available. The full moon broke through the clouds over the Mississippi as the Arch came in view. Ah, it was going to be a great concert, I thought as took the downtown exit marked "Last Missouri Exit". (Webb could probably come up with a good song using that as a title.)
Just five blocks south of "the Brewery" on Broadway, Off Broadway lives up to its name. I made the turn off Broadway and parked practically in front of the place. I paid my dues and walked inside. A couple of guys were talking to each other near the entrance, they were wearing WW baseball caps. Good I thought, the fans are going to show up. I was somewhat embarrassed when the bartender yelled at one of the guys and he answered to the name "Webb"! Oh well, he was incognito without the usual hat and in a windbreaker jacket.
Eight o'clock, and no crowd yet ("music starts at nine" the Off Broadway telephone recording said). This is a small club, and with my early arrival I got one of the remaining front row tables. Wow, just a dance floor between me and the band. Needless to say I had lots of time to anticipate the show. It had been a few years since I went to small club to hear a band. It was Man or Astroman?, also southern boys from Alpha Centuri by way of Auburn, AL.
By 10:30, Webb and the guys made their way on stage and launched into their grinding rendition of Goldfinger. It was worth the wait. How Long Can She Last? followed, also flawlessly performed. We were treated to a little banter from Webb, who launched into a few bars of I Walk the Line (Johnny Cash) before introducing the next song as "sort of explosive". Was it ever! Human Cannonball was fantastic, a real crowd pleaser. Even though Webb probably feels compelled to play this every performance, they played it with an energy and enthusiasm as strong as if it was put on the play list last week. Honkey Tonk Hell was next.
The spacey feedback sounds heralded the start of Sputnik, the double lead part was great. Webb and the guys took great care to keep instruments in tune. At least six different guitars were used in the concert (I lost count, it was hard enough to remember to keep writing down the song titles). The vocal mixing wasn't perfect, but that's the only minor flaw I found. New Landlord then preceded Carrying the News To Mary.
I had been trying to figure out Mary since the Acres of Suede album came out. Webb gave a few clues about the song. He said it was about a fellow killed on a cattle ride, and is told from his horse's perspective. It seems the horse will miss the guy. Whatever it is about, it was played with the same driving energy that forced Webb to remove his jacket to cool down.
In speaking of the album Doo Dad, Webb said there were efforts being made to get it back in print. Things slowed up a bit on the great ballad from Doo Dad, The Rest, Will Take Care of Itself. Lover Not a Fighter was followed by some more chat from Webb, with a few bars of Psychotic Reaction (The Count Five) and Who Do You Love? (The Woolies) thrown in for good measure.
The place was really rocking, a real St. Louis scene, completed by the appearance of "Beatle Bob". Bob is a guy with a "Beatle" haircut, who frequents St. Louis concerts. He saw over 250 concerts last year alone. Bob did a solo dance in front of stage right for the entire concert.
The next songs were Everyday I Kick Myself, Ole Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, and Loud Music. A little Sam Cooke medley followed which included Chain Gang and Having a Party. Flat Out Get It was next, and to close the set what else but Tough It Out !
It was a very intense ninety minutes of music, and the crowd wouldn't be satisfied without a little more. The cries of "Webb, Webb" brought the guys back on stage for two more numbers, Young Girls, Stay out of Those Automobiles, and Slow Death. What a performance, I'm already planning my next trip to see Webb again (Memphis in April).
As I looked over the T-shirts for sale, I noticed Webb was sitting by the table (he still had his hat on, he didn't escape me this time). I shook his hand and told him what a great concert it was. I also said that I was glad to catch him here in town, that the club in Champaign had disavowed any knowledge of a concert the following night. Webb asked if I got the info from his new www.webbwilder.com site.I had not known about this site, and I had called the place first anyway. Webb said that everyone should call before making a trip, whichever site they get the info from. He said they have the info on the web to try to make things easier for folks, but things aren't perfect yet.
"Work hard, rock hard, eat hard, sleep hard, grow big, wear glasses if you need 'em, and call before you drive!"
The Arcade Diner, Memphis on 3/27/98
Thanks to Tom K. for another live review.
I finally got to see Webb live last Friday (3/27). He played the Arcade Diner in Memphis just a few blocks off of Beale Street. The stage was originally set up outside, but because of high winds had to be moved indoors into a tiny backroom. Webb did not let it phase him at all. The crowd packed in shoulder to shoulder (we stood on chairs) and got up close and personal with the 'Last Of The Full Grown Men'.
Webb started off with "King of the Hill" and rocked the house for two hours. It was a fabulous show. He played all of my favorites "Human Cannonball", "Olde Elephant Man", and "The Devil's Right Hand". The band sounded great together, and Webb entertained with ramblings about "K-Mart for sinners" and the "bald infidel".
Can someone please explain to me why this guy has not been picked up on by the mainstream? Webb rocks harder than anybody that you hear these days on the radio. And why is there not better advertising for his shows? If it had not been for this website I would have never known about his show in Memphis. I do not get it. If MTV would play Webb's videos like they play the current crop of moaning losers that is on now, Webb would be numero uno!!!!!
Gypsy Tea Room- Dallas, TX @ 4/04/98
Thanks to Tyler W. for this live review.
Webb and Co. rocked the house in Dallas last Saturday. It was a medium-sized crowd in a club that is just opening this month. The band had Joe McMahan on gtr, and the drummer from Wilco (not LJ Lester [NOTE FROM KEN- The drummer was Ken Coomer from WILCO). Didn't get who the bass player was [NOTE FROM KEN- Tom Comet]. Great show from start to finish, as usual.
Goldfinger, How Long Can She Last?, Human Cannonball, Honky Tonk Hell, One Taste of the Bait, Sputnik, Meet Your New Landlord, Carrying the News to Mary, The Rest Will Take Care of Itself, Lover, Not a Fighter, Hittin Where It Hurts, Every Day I Kick Myself, Elephant Man, No Great Shakes, Loud Music, Flat Out Get It ,Tough It Out; ENCORE: Devil's Right Hand, Stay Out of Automobiles, Sugar Coated Love, one more I don't know)
Ellington Fellowship Playhouse in Lynchburg, VA on 7/19/97
Thanks to Martin J. for this new "old" live review.
Thanks a ton for keeping things moving along with the web site and all. I see WW is planning another trip to Lynchburg. We went last summer and it was a blast! Try to make it if you can - the Ellington is apparently a special venue for him - why I don't know. Seem to recall a request for reviews a while back. Here's one from the Ellington last yr.
A hot July evening turned into a scorching Sat. night when Webb and the Nash Vegans took the stage at the sold-out Ellington Fellowship Playhouse in Lynchburg, VA on 7/19/97. By shows end, 200 lucky folks were wrung out, and the band had surely added a few more names to the ever-growing list of followers.
The humor element started early, as the unofficial MC (a gentleman on the board of directors for the non-profit organization that runs the Ellington) came on stage with the band. After about 10 minutes of various announcements, including introduction of the all-volunteer staff, he exclaimed "OK, lets get on with the show" and walked off. Webb's response before kicking off RuffRider - "that was without question the longest introduction we've ever received - to have not been introduced". When the same guy came up to say a few more words before the 2nd set started, he finished with "and now, for an artist that needs no introduction....."
The band was in real fine shape, their tightness usually punctuated at the last crashing note of each song. Webb's voice never sounded better; the new drummer fills Les James' shoes nicely. And they played all night! This show ranks way up there on my list.
The Band: Joe McMahan (guitars/vocs), Steve Ebe (drums), Tom Comet (bass/vocs)
The setlist: RuffRider, Big Time, Lost in the Shuffle, The Rest Will Take Care of Itself, Wild Honey, Sputnik, Tip Top Grill ditty (?-sounded sorta like a serenade, maybe for a couple in the audience), Stay Out of Autos, Slow Death, Nashville Bum, Sugar Coated Love, Another Sat. Night (Webb's reggae chops -> Sam Cooke), One Taste (my favorite - he appeared to stumble on the lyrics?), Human Cannonball, King of the Hill, How Long Can She Last, Goldfinger, Meet Your New Landlord, Carryin' the News to Mary, Lover not a Fighter>Jam>Who do You Love?>Lover (ferocious!), Hittin' Where it Hurts, Every Day I Kick Myself, Olde Elephant Man, No Great Shakes ,Loud Music ("Won't get Fooled Again" ending) ,Havin' a Party (-> Cooke), Flat Out Get It, (unknown instrumental, possibly in the spy movie category), La. Hannah, Insurance Blues (?-not sure of the title - I think this is a Jimmy Reed, number) ,Tough it Out
Encore (Joe wears an "I Love Math" tee shirt), (?-unknown blues number, possibly Otis Rush or another Jimmy Reed song), Poolside
I must apologize for my lack of musical knowledge. I can usually pick out the covers but the blues numbers go back a ways. And the guys were playing some kickass T-birds/Omar-style rockin' blues.
After the show the band came out and mingled. Webb, commenting on the heat (the AC couldn't keep up!!), sat down to do some autographs.
The venue is an old theatre with sort of an art-deco twist. Big stage. High ceiling, tile floors, and block walls. So the acoustics were not the best. But there was a vibe that the band obviously dug, and Webb commented on this. One of the local folks told us the usual fare is jazz/blues, but this was the band's third visit. And the beverage prices were quite reasonable, I'm sure, compared to a joint that would regularly feature name acts (which are apparently scarce in the hill city). The only thing that really matters is that we can get Webb to come back a couple times a year.