New Riders Of The Purple Sage, 12/31/07, The Silo, Reading, PA
With Donna Jean and the Zen Tricksters
With the year coming to an end, it must mean itís time for another NRPS NYE show. Last year was at the Mexicali Blues Cafť in Teaneck, NJ, this year it would be at the Silo in Reading, PA. Ė a new venue for me.
Most of the NRPS shows I saw this year were with one or both of my brothers. This year my brother Chris made the journey. Itís cool to be able to share these experiences with him. We get along great, and have big time fun together. Hopefully next time my other brother can make it.
My brother worked a half-day and then we got on the road with a cooler full of beer and other such essentials for a party! Smooth sailing with no problems/traffic Ė just the way I like it. We got a room at the Hotel, which shared a parking lot with the venue. Perfect - no driving, just a short stagger to the Silo and then a more pronounced stagger back to the hotel. It was nice to go back to the room after the Tricksters set for a slice of pizza.
My housemate and his girlfriend stopped by for a few beers and then we headed over to the show. About three minutes door to door!
The Silo is a big building, with guess what? A short silo! Guess thatís where they came up with the name. When we walked in there was a small entry room where you got your tickets. No searches for me, but it looked like they were taking a quick look through backpacks. Waking straight in you could see the stage. The middle of the floor in the back had a big rectangular bar. There was also a bar on the right side. In front of the bar was an area to dance with some tables and chairs and the soundboard booth. The floor up front for dancing was sunken a bit with a wood rail fence around the edge. Stage left and right extended back a bit with more tables and chairs. Buddyís side was a great place to dance. Each side had a pretty impressive stack of speakers.
Then there was upstairs which was really nice. Another rectangular bar, though smaller took up the center of the big room. The Silo kind of reminded me of a big ski lodge Ė there was lots of wood and rock. There was another stage upstairs and tables and chairs, couches and such. On the right side there was a balcony for the folks that got the VIP combo. One had to have a lounge ticket to get upstairs. They had the NRPS Turkey Trot DVD playing on the TVís upstairs Ėa nice touch before the show started.
I found the staff at the Silo to be great. I counted maybe a half dozen folks with security shirts on - maybe a few more. I drank beer all night but my brother said the mixed drinks were really strong. Something that I didnít expect was that you could smoke in this place. It has been a long time since I sat at a bar and was able to have a cigarette. Itís been so long it kind of felt weird for a while. The staff upstairs was hands off, which created a real kind atmosphere. A perfect venue I would say, as I canít really think of any negatives about this place. I would go back again.
Donna Jean and the Tricksters started off the evening with a great set. Donna was singing great all night, dancing up a storm. She just looks like she is having so much fun. The Tricksters really got the place hoping. Mission In The Rain was my favorite. It was great to hear Mookie playing the keys. All in all it was a great start to the evening. I donít have the setlist for this, but they did play Let Me Sing Your Blues Away, Till The Morning Comes (which was also great) and songs that I assume are theirs.
We zipped over to the hotel for a slice of pizza and a beer and then headed in for the NRPS. They came out and Mookie was sitting in with them. I was hoping that would happen.
Here is what they played:
Dead Flowers, Sliding Delta, Absolutely Sweet Marie, Whatcha Gonna Do,
Lonesome LA Cowboy, Sutter's Mill, 15 Days Under The Hood, Olivia Rose,
Henry, Franklin's Tower
Happy New Year, Minglewood Blues, I Don't Know You, Any Naked Eye,
Louisiana Lady, Peggy-O, Willie And The Hand Jive, Panama Red,
Take A Letter Maria, * Goin' Down The Road Feeling Bad * Glendale Train
Oh yeah! The NRPS once again kicked some ass. They were on from the get go and really got going during the Sweet Marie, never looking back, going forward with the madness. My brother really wanted to hear a 15 Days Under The Hood and they delivered a good one. Donna Jean and Jeff Mattson sat in for the set ending Franklinís Tower. A nice first set, next stop is midnight.
Toast did the countdown and then some Auld Lang Syne right into Minglewood Blues. 2008 NRPS! As per usual the Any Naked Eye was nice and long and jammed out good. They really took it down to a quiet spot and then brought it back home. I think that Donna, Jeff and Dave Diamond were out from Peggy-O to the end, but I canít quite remember. Did I mention that they had Guinness at the downstairs bar? So good. The bartender even held the last one for me as they ran out. Perfect. Mookie played some accordian Ė I think on Louisiana Lady and Peggy-O. He was a great sit-in Ė thanks Mookie! Der Amanap Ė I love looking at folks expressions that are hearing this for the first time. Laughs all around. The set ending Take A Letter Maria had Donna singing with Ronnie. Rock N Roll!
They then announced that they would be back soon for the end of the night jam. Call it a third set or encore, no matter it was rippin!
The stage had everyone from both bands. Goin Down The Road Feeling Bad and Glendale Train Ėand then it was 2:00 and the curfew was in place.
Another year of NRPS music in the books.
This was the 200th show of the NRPS renaissance. I can only hope we have the opportunity to hear another 200 shows.
Thanks NRPS, see you on the road. Happy New Year!
Great review John.Its hard to be two places at one time.Barry and the buds was awsome.
Outstanding review, John!!
You really have a way of making the reader feel like they were actually at the show. Thanks!!
I have to say the Silo was VERY COOL fo sho!
Heinken is the top shelf Beer?!?!?!?
Get some Sierra Nevada at least PLEASE!
The Smoking free for all was BITCHIN, Weird cause I'm not used to it but Bitchin none the less! It let's ya do all sorts of things...
Also the Building Itself is a wierd wierd place, it LOOKS like they took 7 buildings tore a chunk off each one then superglued 'em all together
The Dinner, Hotel, Show, was just fantastic and I'll be doing it agin next year for sure!
I started drinking upstairs and I had number 9's as that was all he really had. they are not my favorite, but I put them back. when I got downstairs I ordered one more and was dancing by the bar and there was a sign for Guinness so I went with what I wanted upstairs. Guinness only downstairs, and they were gone by the end of the night. The bartender kept the last two for me!
Good observation on the building. It would be cool someday to have something like that on a big chuck of land out in the country for private NRPS parties!