I knew it was going to be a good day. The local “CBS Early News” played a bit of “When You Gonna Wake Up” after announcing AmercanaramA was coming to the Comcast Center that night.
On the way to the show, I stopped at a used record store and picked up some bargains, then got a great parking space (front, end of row) when I got to venue, which may have saved me hours of waiting after the show. (One time it took me longer to exit this parking lot than to hear Bob Dylan’s entire set.)
I wanted to get to Mansfield early to see Ryan Bingham of “Crazy Heart” fame. This was the first time, after buying a ticket on line with my phone, I was forced to use my credit card to enter a concert. It went smoothly, with a little paper ticket emerging mysteriously from the ticket taker’s electronic gadget attached at her hip. I went to check out where I was sitting, which was even closer that I had thought: Seventh row on the side, behind the pit, about five rows from the stage. Luckily, I arrived just in time.
Bingham went on early, just before 5:15. The place is almost empty, but Bingham put on a rocking show. His band was a melting pot: blues guitar, country jazz fiddle, funky bass, and rock drums. Bingham easily goes from country rock to folk ballads, from a slow burn blues to the galloping finale. And he didn’t even have to play his Academy Award winning, Best Original Song for the theme from “Crazy Heart,” “The Weary Kind,” to win the growing crowd over.
Below is last night’s set list, courtesy of Mr. Bingham himself:
- Beg for Broken Legs
- Southside of Heaven
- Too Deep To Fill
My Morning Jacket took the stage just after 6 p.m., with many enthusiastic fans in tow. When interviewed on CBS’s Sunday morning news program recently, they said they were influenced by Roy Orbison and the Muppets. However, their set ran the gamut from a “Funhouse”-Stooges saxophone frenzy to a spacy, Crazy Horse type jam, to an almost – dare I say it? – heavy metal/prog rock finale. The highlight was Bingham joining in near the end of the set with a blazing cover of The Band’s arrangement of Marvin Gaye’s “Baby, Don’t You Do It” (a.k.a. “Don’t Do It.”)
Below is last night’s set list, courtesy the My Morning Jacket Forum:
- The Dark
- First Light
- It Beats 4 U
- Slow Slow Tune
- Victory Dance
- (End of) Run Thru
- Workless Chorus
- Don’t Do It (Marvin Gaye/The Band cover w/Ryan Bingham)
For whatever reason, I’ve never “gotten” Wilco. I even saw them open for Neil Young a few years back, yet it didn’t do anything for me. However, I had not given up. I noticed they appear to be having a lot of fun on stage these days, starting with last month’s Solid Sound bonanza at the Mass MOCA in North Adams, and continuing that spirit throughout their recent AmericanaramA slots. Wilco even called Massachusetts their “home away from home state” near the end of their set.
This was a much more enjoyable experience than in 2008. Wilco played a largely acoustic first half, with some sonic experimentation sprinkled later in the set. They even dug back to their early material, and played a couple of songs from their debut album. The highlight had to be the cacophonous finale with My Morning Jacket, an eleven man assault on the Beatles’ psychedelic classic, “Tomorrow Never Knows.”
Below is Wilco’s set list as posted on Facebook. Notice they still call the venue “Great Woods”! (See the slide show.)
WILCO: July 20, 2013: Great Woods, Mansfield, MA
- Airline to Heaven
- Remember the Mountain Bed
- Muzzle of Bees
- Should’ve Been in Love
- Impossible Germany
- Less Than You Think
- Art of Almost
- Via Chicago
- Whole Love
- Box Full of Letters
- Dawned on Me
- I Got You (At the End of the Century)
- Born Alone
- Tomorrow Never Knows – The Beatles cover*
* with My Morning Jacket
Review part 2: Practice makes perfect as Dylan plays AmericanaramA in Mansfield
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