Rockwood Music Hall Stage 2 - New York City, NY
July 18, 2012
Big Fat Funky Booty
Nice Talking To Me
Some Other Man Instead*
Scotch & Water Blues
About A Train
Little Miss Canīt Be Wrong -->
What Time Is It?
Benīs Looking Out The Window Blues**
Jimmy Olsenīs Blues
If The River Was Whiskey*
What My Love
Two Princes -->
free late night show (started 10.30 pm), billed as "Chris Barron, Aaron Comess, Mark White, Eric Schenkman"
Band was in Aaronīs studio to record some of their original blues material this day and the days before. At this show, they performed their blues songs old and new, some of it for the first time in a very long time, some for the first time ever.
* - first time played
** - first time played since the very early days of the band (and some mid-90s Fun Bunnies shows)
Download this show here:
or here (24bit version): archive.org/details/spindoctors2012-07-18.tlm170.flac24
Show notes / review (by Scott Bernstein:
This was a special night for Spin Doctors fans (yes, the few, the proud, the mighty that are left) as the band was playing in a tiny tiny venue and made it known that they were going to be focusing on stuff from their newly-recorded album. For those of us "in the know", we already knew that their new album was going to be focusing primarily on a lot of the material that they had written in their very early years in a blues vein.
If you give this show a listen, youīll hear Chris Barron talk about how in their very early years, they had lots of original material -- but to get the high paying gigs around town, they had to play the (no longer existing) blues clubs like Mondo Cane and Mondo Perso which wanted blues bands. So (as Chris tells the story) the band wrote a bunch of blues tunes to fake it and get the gigs, but by the 3rd set theyīd start slipping in their own non-blues tunes.
Most of these songs were rarely played nuggets throughout most of their career (including their Wetlands days), but every once in a while theyīd slip one in. Of course as time passed and the bandīs set lists became more calcified towards the album tunes, many of them were forgotten.
Fast forward to last summer when the band did a "20th Anniversary of Pocket Full Of Kryptonite" tour of England, and uber-fans David Landsberger and Daniel Heinz accompanied the band on their tour and started bugging them for some of the forgotten tunes. This got the band thinking, and sure enough they decided to record an album of their blues originals -- which brings us to this gig in tiny Rockwood, which took place 2 days after they finished recording the album and wanted to play the tunes out in front of people!
Opening with the classic "Big Fat Funky Booty", the band kicks off the dirt and then goes right into their single from their last album "Nice Talking To Me". OK....Then the pull out a newly-written blues tune from the album "Some Other Man" followed by one of my favorite oldie blues originals "Scotch & Water Blues" that is a smoker. They follow that up with another favorite older bluesy tune (that actually made it onto their album Turn It Upside Down), "About A Train". Leaving the blues-themed material for a moment, they drop into great segue between PFOK tunes "Little Miss Canīt Be Wrong" and "What Time Is It?" before returning to the DEEP cuts like "The Drop" ("īcause itīs not the fall that kills you mama, but that sudden stop!") and a very very old song Iīm not even aware of The Spin Doctors having played before (though I have heard Chris Barron play it solo and with his childhood buddy Ben in their duo called The Fun Bunnies) called "Benīs Looking Out The Window Blues", juxtaposed with their hit "Jimmy Olsenīs Blues". The newly-written title track from their album, "If The River Was Whiskey" follows, as does a little nugget from the old days "What My Love" -- this song contains the classic lyric "4 walls, 5 beers, a burp and 1 TV, thatīs all you left of my happy home and me". :) Next up is another really deep cut -- "So Bad". This is one that apparently sparked their blues revival when David & Daniel requested. Beyond the title I couldnīt even remember how it went -- but Chris tells us at this show it was written for the "bad guy" in the movie "Raising Arizona" who apparently "salts his tequila with the wife of Lot." -- now thatīs a bad guy. And then the did into one so deep that Iīd never even heard of before (and there are few Spin Doctors tunes Iīve never heard) called "Sweetest Portion" in which Chris coins the funny phrase: "when the bread that youīve been eating is crumb-gone" -- "Crumb-gone?" Nice. They wrap up the "new" old stuff with a high energy "Traction Blues" in which the hapless narrator recounts his bad luck at falling in love and into traction.
At this point itīs just wrapping up with some more well-known tunes -- "House" which was always a Spin Doctors staple in which Chris makes up the lyrics each time they play it (you can tell he was a little rusty on this version, though); and then they encore with "Two Princes" and "Lady Kerosene". While "Lady Kerosene" could easily have been a throwaway, we get *2* mini drum and bass solos in it, and the band was on fire. This was the first time all night that I let my feet take over and get dancing (instead of listening intently to the new tunes).
This is an amazing sounding recording -- possibly my best Spin Doctors recording ever -- as I spent a bit of time working with Eliot Byron to find the optimal placement for my mics before the band came out....perfectly-placed mics in a killer sounding tiny room makes for a nice recording.
Give this show a listen and hear what an alternate-reality Spin Doctors might have sounded like.