Monday, May 25

Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears opening for Lucero times 3.

Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears opening for Lucero?! When I first heard about this pairing I was little skeptical. I thought the juxtaposition would be a little weird. I was pleasantly surprised at the shows though, the crowd was completely into the lineup.

The Slim's show was packed for the Black Joe Lewis set. I always love to see folks coming out to support the openers. I brought a friend along to the Slim's show who was completely unfamiliar with both Black Joe Lewis and Lucero. He became an instant BJL fan and didn't really care for Lucero, how about that? The crowd was dancing and really enjoying the funk soul vibe of the openers. All pistons were firing for both bands on this night, both sounded great and had the crowd wrapped around their fingers. Thank you to Tristen and Filter for putting me on the list for this show!

The second night's show in Santa Cruz was a little more complicated. The show was initially schedule to be at the El Rio Theatre, but for some reason it got moved to a VERY SMALL restaurant across the street from the El Rio. Perhaps it was moved due to low ticket sales and it being on a Sunday night, I don't know. However, when I say small I really mean small. Picture the size of your average Starbucks, and not the spacious ones ... yeah, super tiny! BJL and his 8 piece band were packed like Sardines into one corner of the place. Quite frankly it looked uncomfortable. The crowd was about a foot away from the band, no one beyond two people deep could see anything. The sound was okay, if not a little loud for the space, but there was no watching the band play at all. I guess I am glad the show did not get cancelled, and it was very nice of The Crepe Place to provide a space so that the show could go on, but not the best show I've seen - mainly because I couldn't see anything! I am still very grateful to Parker and Lost Highway for putting me on the list for this show. There was some confusion about there even being a Lost Highway guest list due to the show being moved and the space being super tiny but we ended up getting in thanks to a nice gentlemen who worked for The Crepe Place.

The third night I bought tickets to see BJL and Lucero in Sacramento at Harlow's night club. Harlow's is one of my top five places to see a show and everything came together beautifully for the third night in this run of shows. BJL once again played a killer opening set, the horn section sounded amazing! Ben from Lucero was out front watching them play for the majority of their set. I really appreciate seeing members of the other bands on the bill coming out front and watching their tour mates' sets, and conversely when Lucero took the stage several members of BJL were front and center watching Lucero. Both bands were very complimentary to each other during their own sets and both bands seemed to be enjoying being on tour with one another. Lucero played a somewhat mellow set at Harlow's and it was weird but nice. Usually Lucero shows are pretty upbeat and rowdy, but this one included more of the slower Lucero songs and it was a perfect way to end a three night run of shows.

I've got more photos from the shows to post and will do so as soon as I get them out of my camera and weed through them. Thanks again Filter & Lost Highway for facilitating me being able to live it up and see three nights of kick ass live music.

Hear Ya has a review and some great pics here as well, check it:

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