Sister Hazel was an awesome experience.
They didn’t play “My Heart”, but I loved it all the same.
The evening started out downtown right off the Capital Square at The Old Fashioned. We ate and drank and had a ball and when we were ready to go from there it was only like 6:30! WAY too early. We wandered down to be close and I got my obligatory marquee picture in daylight.
Also one of Deb and Bret out front.
We headed to Madison’s a few doors away from the Majestic and whiled away some time there.
There was a big tour bus parked in back of the Majestic that we could see the back of from our table at Madison’s. At one point a guy came around the back of the bus and was making a call on his cell on the sidewalk outside our window. I commented on how I didn’t know what the guys in Sister Hazel looked like, they could be sitting in the bar with us and I would never know it. The guy on the street was dressed in cuffed jeans and looked stage ready. I considered taking a picture of him, but he could see me and I didn’t want to be creepy.
Turns out, he was one of the Sister Hazel guitarists. Ah well.
We hit the Majestic about 8:20 and the place was already plenty full. There were reserved signs on tables and there were no chairs in the balcony left spot where Dalton and I sat for The English Beat. So we ended up sitting on the balcony benches.
They are comfortable indeed, but I wish we could have gotten a table. I think that is my go to spot from now on, but there are almost no bad places to be in the Majestic.
Cindy and I (self-portrait)
The first band came on and we had no idea who they were (later found out they were 89 Mojo) and unfortunately the sound was all messed up. The snare was crushingly loud and the vocals were buried. It was a bad start to the night, but the band was good and the sound got smoothed out. My phone was on half battery already and I only took one blurry shot of the band.
During their set, I scouted for one of the show posters and couldn’t find one in the lower hallway or bathroom. I was bummed. As it turned out, there were only a couple in the entrance hallway and taped to the door. My polite requests to grab one were met with the usual “after the show”. Sigh.
The second band to hit the stage was Joe Bachman (though again I didn’t know it at the time). He was a stout strong voiced singer and played more countrified music that Cindy liked. The sound was off a bit, but was quickly corrected.
Cindy liked it so much in fact, she sent me after his CD from the merch table. I was told he would be AT the merch table after his set, so I waited.
They played a good set and then the stage switched over to Sister Hazel’s equipment.
I did get that CD. In fact, Joe was near the merch table and I shook hands with him and told him I liked his set and asked if I could buy his CD. He thanked me and grabbed a CD and tore it open and asked if I wanted him to sign it (which he did for Cindy), then shook my hand again with another big thank you.
Then Sister Hazel hit the stage. Again the sound was off a bit, but was smoothed out.
From our perch in the balcony benches I got one decent picture.
After a couple of songs Bret suggested we go down to the floor. We made our way down and ended up against the wall on the left as you face the stage. The sound was better down there. Pictures were better too!
Sister Hazel was great. They played a lot of songs from their new album that I wasn’t familiar with, but were good all the same. They sounded tight and looked like they were having fun. The guitarist we saw on the street by the tour bus was the lead guitar and the bald guy was the rhythm guitar. His is the voice I know as Sister Hazel. They played hard. At one point the bass player strapped a video camera to his head and recorded the crowd during the song. I thought that was awesome. I wonder if that is posted somewhere?
It was a good solid performance. “Mandolin Moon” was the first song I recognized. It’s on the “11411” sampler. It was great. Then there was a mighty roar from the crowd when they launched into “All For You” and of course it turned into a sing-along. We went hoarse singing that one.
At one point they started playing “Your Love”, an Outfield song. The place went crazy, but they were only teasing. They quit partway into the song.
Cindy and Deb diggin’ it.
At encore 1 band member came out and started a song on the keyboard, it was a slow ballad and it was nice. I believe the name of the song was “This Kind Of Love”, then the others came out slowly and joined. Then they played “Purple Rain”. At first my mind couldn’t process the opening notes, then when I realized what it was I went crazy like everyone else. People were rhythmically swaying and singing and it was a cool moment. It was awesome.
After a couple of songs more… the show was done.
Bret had managed to get me a poster at some point. Thanks Bret!
It was an amazing night.