New Riders Of The Purple Sage, 12/30/06 and 12/31/06
End of the year blowout at Mexicali Blues Café, Teaneck, NJ
I knew nothing about this place before going to these shows. I had heard of the name, but that was all. The place rocks! The folks that work there really care that you are visiting their establishment. They allow you to have the kindest time possible and provide a class venue to do it in. I can’t say enough positive words about this place, I really liked it. Their beers were cold and delicious also! There were benches and tables running both sides of the floor and then a bar in the back. Upstairs had a loft with some tables. Laid out nice I thought. Sitting room, dancing room, bar room – a little something for everybody. And then the music started…
with Commander Cody opening. What a gas! Too Much Fun, Riot In Cell Block #9, Boogie Man Boogie, Looking At The World Through A Windshield, Oh Mamma Mamma, Don’t Let Go, House Of Blues Lights, Smoke That Cigarette, Hot Rod Lincoln (with a rap about kilos of weapons of mass destruction in the trunk of the Lincoln!), Down To Seeds and Stems Again Blues, Lost In The Ozone were some of the songs they played. There were some more, but I can’t remember them all right now. This was good fun music. Commander Cody has quite the stage presence, and he still plays the ivories real good. Two Thumbs up! The beers were flowing for the Commander and also my brother and I. Folks were dancing, having a ball! A perfect opener for the New Riders…
who played the following:
I: I Don’t Know You, Contract, Lonesome LA Cowboy, Whatcha Gonna Do, Sutters Mill, Diamond Joe, Higher, 15 Days Under The Hood, Henry, Instant Armadillo Blues^, Truck Drivin’ Man^, Dead Flowers^
^w/ Commander Cody on piano
II: Dirty Business, Sing Me A Rainbow, Last Lonely Eagle*, Louisiana Lady, Whiskey, Peggy-O, Panama Red, Groupie *w/ Bob Mathews on bass
( when I got back to the hotel after the show I wrote down all the songs I could remember them playing. I got the list above at the New Riders website, posted by the soundman and I was only forgetting one song: Sutters Mill. I also had some of the songs out of order, but did pretty well. Good shows I don’t have much trouble remembering later on in the evening, so that tells you something….
It was a real good show. They have gotten better since I first saw them in May. Diamond Joe was a treat to my ears and the last three songs with the Commander were off the charts, each song getting plenty of solos that were stretching the seams. They had the place rockin! This band plays with such suppleness and rockiness at the same time, with a sweet tone to match. Adding Commander Cody to the mix elevated in that much more. Three rockers in a row, young and older getting down crazy. Live music can do that to you.
The second set was played real well also. The Dirty Business was jammed out long and the Last Lonely Eagle with Bob Mathews was deliciously good. The tone of Bob’s bass was one I had never heard before, and it was excellent. Nelson sang the Peggy-O real nice also and the Groupie rocked out to the end the night. It sounded like they were tuning up for Let It Bleed, but Nelson said they only had a little bit of time left. It was around 2:45 am if I remember right. One night down, one more to go…
It took me most of the day to recover for NYE. Due to rest and recovery I didn’t hear any of the opening band, getting there about a half hour before the Riders started. Tonight wasn’t as crowded as the night before, with more room to walk around the place and shorter stops at the bar to refuel. I like shows when they aren’t sold out, more room to dance. Those that came to the show were treated to quite a ride. They played four sets of music, ending the night around 4:15! I thought the house sound was better this night, and Nelson really put a lot into his singing – it seemed to have something extra special to it this night. And his guitar playing was ass kicking! The whole band was on the money I thought. A special evening.
Here are some of the songs that they played. I am sure I am missing some as it was a long night, but this was what I wrote down around 5:30 as I was sipping one last beer. Dead Flowers, Sutter’s Mill, Garden Of Eden>The Last Time verse>Garden Of Eden, I Don’t Know You, Louisiana Lady, Groupie, Instant Armadillo Blues, Whatcha Gonna Do, Panama Red, Dirty Business (with Bob Mathews on bass and a female vocalist who I didn’t know), Higher (with same female), Absolutely Sweet Marie, Rocky Road Blues, Slidin’ Delta, 15 Days Under The Hood, Contract, Let It Bleed, Ripple (last song of the night with both Ron Penque and Bob Mathews playing bass), Olivia Rose, Long Black Veil, Willie and the Handjive, Take A Letter Maria, Friend Of The Devil (with Scrow on guitar and vocals, I think that is his name – he also sang some songs between one of the breaks. He is real good.), Any Naked Eye, and I think they also did Diamond Joe, Sing Me A Rainbow, Peggy-O and Lochnivar, but I might be wrong on a few of them. I think I am also missing a few as the night went on.
A lot of songs. Any Naked Eye was my favorite of both nights. It was spectacular. Maybe the best one I have heard. I can’t wait to hear it again. A great song. The Last Time verse in between Garden Of Eden fit great, the female vocalist did well, and Bob Mathews jammed out on Dirty Business, Olivia Rose was a treat also (I think it’s a new song?), Rocky Road Blues rocked out, the Long Black Veil was the surprise of the night for me and it was sweetly sung. It was just a great night of music. I hope the recordings they made came out real nice and that they release the complete show. (Bob Mathews and Betty Cantor were taping it for release.) It will be worth hearing again.
All together it was two nights of my life that I will remember fondly. That is a good thing. Live Music is a good thing. The NRPS are a good thing.
I could type much more about this show, but I am still tired from back to back nights of NRPS. It’s a good tired though.
So, many, many thanks to the NRPS and Mexicali Blues Cafe for two fun filled nights. You done good! Here’s to seeing more Riders in 2007. Rock N Roll!
very nice stuff man!
Yeah NRPS!! Thanks for filling us in!
Olivia Rose is a new song, written by the bass player, I believe.
Bob Matthews has been out with the New Riders quite a bit recently! He played the Nor-Cal shows as well...that bass he was playing is special, it's aluminum! A Travis Bean (If I'm remembering my gear lesson from Frank_Sinatra correctly.)
I can't wait to hear the tapes!
Garden of Eden >
The Last Time >
Garden of Eden
I Don’t Know You
Whatcha Gonna Do
Auld Lang Syne >
Absolutely Sweet Marie
Instant Armadillo Blues
Rocky Road Blues
Lonesome La Cowboy
Dirty Business #
Willie & the Hand Jive
Friend of the Devil W/ Scarekrow
15 Days under the Hood
Long Black Veil
Let it Bleed
* w/ Joanne Lediger
^ w/ Bob Mathews on 2nd Bass Guitar
# w/ Bob Mathews & Joanne Lediger
thanks for the correct setlists, though there was a Any Naked Eye in there somewhere and it was off the charts!
Hopfully the CD relase happens soon.
John, many thanks for the very complete, detailed review that allows us West Coast homebodies to vicariously experience the NRPS NYE run. Kudos!!!
For the record, Any Naked Eye has become my favorite Nelson song -- the hooks, the great lyrics, the room to jam and stretch out -- simply awesome!!
I'm with you on that one Gary! I can't get enough of that tune!
The female singer was Joanne Lediger. She's awesome! She sings with Stir Fried and with many others. She's a great friend of mine. She sang at Bearsville too and then she came over and jammed with my friends until 6am!
She's the greatest-
The Any Naked Eye Followed Panama Red. Sorry About That