Comments: Sonic Solutions DSM-6-> Mod-2 D7.
Geetarz Review: EC and band put on a fantastic show last night at the Nationwide Arena here in Columbus. Eric said how happy he was to play in his "adopted hometown", and with his family in attendance he had a great cheerleading section up in front. These guys came out of the box swinging and didn't let up for two hours. Highlights? Chris was all over the place in "Let it Rain". As one might expect, "I Want a Little Girl" took on a special meaning and was really heartfelt. "I Shot the Sheriff", it was not only EC's night but the band's, Nathan was all over the place with fills, runs, slides up and down the neck.
"Got to Get Better" came and I don't know that it could have Got Better, EC went into The Zone, eyes closed, holding his breath, and finally ending bar after bar of solos standing on his tippy toes, finally finishing with a wide eyed look and head shake as if to say "wow...I did that?". "Have You Ever" was incredible as always, but EC really dug into the opening pretty hard, where he usually saves the best for last, but again as in Cleveland, it was Doyle who really gets the praise for this one, his solo started off in a different direction with a comped-chord riff, built into a crescendo, not a flurry of riffs but instead sweet, massive bends. He got a standing ovation from the crowd, and EC seemed the happiest person there, laughing and shaking his head at Doyle.
Billy Preston seemed to feel better last night, really letting fly during "Badge", EC did an unusually torrid solo on this one and then Billy finished what he started. Awesome.
And then the show closer ... "Layla" was as good as I've ever seen it, I'd hate to say what the 'best' performance ever has been, but that band was simply in step. The real highlight wasn't the main section but instead the coda, which took on a beautiful melodic feel. Sharon and Michelle were great to start with but are really carrying the harmony a long way. For "Cocaine" ... Steve Gadd better check his food, I think they're spiking his food with something, he attacked those drums like a wild man, I was waiting for one of 'em to go flying, Keith Moon style. A herd of elephants could have charged across the stage and Steve wouldn't have noticed, he was IN THE ZONE and IT WAS GOOD. And then EC's solo ... nudge nudge, wink wink, say no more. Double stops, bends, fast runs, wah wah, on and on. I'm amazed he *didn't* break a string on this one last night.
"Sunshine" was the usual encore ... Sharon and Michelle added percussion which was a nice touch, should do this on all the numbers (I miss Ray Cooper!). The big kick is seeing Nate do the "Sunshine Shuffle" - as he plays his butt off, incredible stuff. EC had some sort of amp problem as "Sunshine" began, with a loud pop, so Lee ran out and fiddled with the amps as they played, so when the house brought EC's amp back into the mix with a quick fade-up, it was really up front and loud - always a good thing in my book. So EC's solo break on Sunshine really pushed out like a physical thing. Robert Randolph as usual came out and dueled on "Sunshine" and "Mojo Working". Great stuff, we were hoping for something extra at this special show, but alas.
The highlight of the night for me? Robert Lockwood, Jr. was sitting at the end of our row! I didn't spot him until after the show, but isn't it funny that all these people who were cheering the Robert Johnson set were streaming out, not knowing who this gentleman and his wife were. I spoke to him for a while asking "were you at the Cleveland show?" (he hails from Cleveland) and he said he had been in the hospital for the last few days, and had just gotten out that morning! He said the doctors had "given him a good working over" and when I asked what was wrong he said "not a damn thing but old age". What a guy! A great time after the show, too.