Thursday, August 26, 2004

Nils Lofgren Tribute Concert

Tommy Lofgren and others at rehearsal at Tribute to Nils Lofgren.

Just back from "A Tribute to Nils Lofgren"  at Strathmore in North
Bethesda, Maryland. A perfectly wonderful late summer evening with joyful musicians. This was part of the Washington Musical Timeline Concert Series organised by WAMA. Congratulations to all who put this together.

Poster info: They were selling copies of the the show poster to help pay for the video. So even if you were not able to attend, apparently a video will be available at some point.

I arrive about three hours prior to the show and was able to listen in on several rehearsals and sound checks. The facility is acres of rolling hills just south of very high end shopping mall and nearby million dollar homes. The weather was perfect, in fact surprisingly nice. I couldn't accurately guess how many people were there. My position ended up being on the edge of the Lofgren family patchwork of blankets. Lots of young kids enjoying a late summer evening.

The show started at 7:00 pm with the sun setting behind the stage about 15 minutes after the start. The first two hours were tributes to Nils by many local musicians. Please see the poster for a complete list of performers. I'll try to put together the set list and players. There were so many changes that I'm sure my notes contain several errors.

After a short break and under the hazy stars, Mrs. Lofgren, mother to the four boys introduced each of her sons. The boys played a tune, a few more players join Nils for another. Then the reunited Grin took the stage. The rest of the night was Grin except for "I Came to Dance" encore. I'll try to get this set list up too.

Outdoors is not as intimate as clubs can be, but tonite was a delight. The tributes by various artists were touching and a pleasure. Each player or singer seemed to have personal connections to Nil's songs that came through. Though Nils plays Grin songs during his solo shows, the second part of the show was clearly a Grin performance. For me, this was pleasure to hear the Grin take on the songs. And of course, Nils on guitar.