Over the past 10 years as I really started travelling and seeing a lot of live music Lexington, KY really stands out as a town that has been steadily growing in the jam scene. I’ve had a number of friends from there over the year’s and as time goes by it’s very exciting to me that I’m getting more and more excuses to make it back to Lexington. So this was a great chance to meet up with some old friends, check out some awesome music and find out what I had in store for me when these two groups come through Urbana and play the Canopy Club here in a few weeks.
This trip gave me the opportunity to check out the new Buster’s. Overall it’s a great venue where you can really get right up next to the artists. Located in the old Lexington Distillery District, a neighborhood that is really growing itself, Buster’s has a great atmosphere inside and out. The great neighborhood really contributes to the whole scene.
The Travelin’ McCoury’s
The whole crew except Del of course. I thought they were the perfect opener to get me in the mood for Yonder. The set was maybe a little too laid back for my taste, a lotta slow stuff, but that was probably just me being pumped and more in the mood for some kickin’ bluegrass. The show is definitely worth a listen though, I found a great recording of both these guys opening and Yonder on Archive.org. Thanks a ton to guys like this that do such an awesome job taping and sharing! Live recording by Brian Porter
Setlist (I missed a few): Intro – ??? - Deeper Shade Of Blue - (You’re The) Devil In Disguise – ??? - Sally Goodin - It’s A Lonesome Feeling - Rosa Lee McFall - Limehouse Blues - Evangelina - The Kentucky Waltz - Lonesome, On’ry And Mean - I’m Going Back To Old Kentucky
Yonder Mountain String Band
Awesome show! Minus Jeff Austin, but plus Ronnie McCoury on mandolin and Jason Carter on fiddle this really was a great show! I can’t recommend that you listen to the recording below when you get a chance. Two great sets with covers tucked in perfectly. I added a video of part of the all acoustic encore at the bottom. I can’t wait until the come through Urbana in few weeks!
Set 1: Fastbal l > Things You’re Selling, High On A Hilltop, Hey Bulldog, Freeborn Man> Wheel Hoss > Freeborn Man, Deep Pockets, Pain In My Heart, Funtime > Boatman
Set 2: Blue Collar Blues, Don’t Worry Happy Birthday, Troubled Mind > 20 Eyes > Troubled Mind, Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere, Dark Hollow, Sidewalk Stars > My Gal, You’re No Good, Goodle Days, Stumped, Finally Saw The Light, Years With Rose > Pretty Daughter E: Ooh La La, Dominated Love Slave
Another great recording! Full show recorded by Brian Porter
It’s no secret that I dig what Keller Williams does. From his early loop filled days playing small clubs to his latter band based projects performing in front of massive festival crowds one thing remains true, Keller is fun. Summer Camp has always stood behind K-Dub, in fact he has performed in one incarnation or another every year at Summer Camp except two. It’s safe to say that he and the festival itself are pretty intertwined. His most recent endeavor is as a front man for the Travelin’ McCourys. His acoustic chops fit in nicely with the bluegrass powerhouse from Appalachia. Obviously he is not trying to replace Del McCoury, no on could do that, but is simply looking to play with a full string lineup. What better string band could he possible find other than the Travelin’ McCourys? There was no opening group, so Keller and the McCourys took the stage just before 10 PM. They started the night with an entertaining “Mullet Cut,” here if the rest of the setlist.
SET I: Mullet Cut, Gallivanting, The Graveyard Shift, The Hobo Song, Pepper, Road is Rocky, My Mine Never Closes, Foggy Mountain Breakdown, American Car, Corn Liquor, All In My Mind, Blame It On The Lonesome Wind, Ain’t About The Money, Sweet Mountain Soul
SET II: My Something Else, Freeker By The Speaker, Heads Will Turn, Friend Of The Devil, Loser, Evangelina, Kidney In A Cooler> Deep Elum Blues> Kidney In A Cooler, Forty Years To Life, Port-o-Potty, I’m A Man, Franklin’s Tower
ENCORE: My Grass Is Blue
Thanks to eman for posting the recording on Archive.
The first set was a mix of the traditional and the innovative. Some great versions of classics like The Old And In The Way’s “Hobo Song” and Earl Scruggs’ “Foggy Mountain Breakdown.” However they got a little crazy on some covers like the Butthole Surfers’ “Pepper” and Mike Doughty’s “American Car.” It was certainly an interesting mix with Keller taking the vocal duties much of the time. They passed around solos nicely proving that the McCourys have truly learned from the best. Ronnie McCoury, was simply astonishing but the MVP may have been Jason Carter on fiddle. His playing cut through the whole crowd, giving a real flair and authenticity to the overall sound.
The second set seemed more freeform and centered around classic Keller. Freeker got everyone excited and ignited an all out dance party at the Aggie. I will say that while the show did not appear to be sold out there was definitely a good crowd in the room. We got a much-anticipated Dead interlude with “Friend Of The Devil” and “Loser.” However the real highlight of the show may have been the Kidney In A Cooler into Deep Elum Blues into Kidney In A Cooler. Port-o-Potty got everyone dancing again and the set closing Franklin’s Tower was a nice touch. They encored with a quick My Grass is Blue. The show was great, and it’s nice to see Keller really stretching out with his musical chops. He could easily have stuck with his classic shtick, but he wants to grow and expand his capability on stage. It is apparent that he is always evolving and looking for new ways to entertain. Check out Keller at this year’s Summer Camp, you won’t be disappointed.