live music: RICH ROBINSON x BOWERY BALLROOM x 3.19.12

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.

Bowery Ballroom, NYC 3.20.12 – For those that know me, you know I’m a HUGE Black Crowes fan. That’s my all-time absolute favorite band in the land. The anniversary of my first show just passed…March 22, 1995 at the Beacon Theater. And that’s when it all began…the countless shows I’ve seen all across the country, the many great friends I’ve made as well as the endless memories I’ve collected. That band has taken me to some great highs and gotten me through some low points in my life.

The Black Crowes perform at the Fillmore in San Francisco, CA. Photo by Joe Russo.
The Black Crowes perform at The Fillmore in San Francisco, CA. December 18, 2010.

Since then, the band has gone on hiatus twice…as they currently are now. Most of the members are playing in a side project of some sort. Chris Robinson is writing his own material and playing more guitar with his Chris Robinson Brotherhood band [with keyboardist Adam MacDougall from the Crowes]. Guitarist Luther Dickinson is back playing with his brother Cody in the North Mississippi All-Stars. Steve Gorman, the drummer, just recently played with a Bobby Keys side project called The Suffering Bastards as well as another project with Joan Osbourne, Jackie Greene, ex-Black Crowes guitarist Audley Freed and Nick Govrik called Trigger Hippy. And lastly, Rich Robinson has culled together a new side project and has just come back from a European tour.

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.

It’s been a few months since Rich and the band have played in NYC. They did 2 amazing sets…an early/late show at City Winery. Fast foward…And so on this night, Rich and his band concluded their tour at the Bowery Ballroom in support of his latest solo cd entitled “Through a Crooked Sun”. Rich’s new band consists of bassist Brian Allen, keyboardist Steve Molitz [Particle], drummer Joe Magistro [who has played on/with the Crowes and Rich Robinson in the past] and just for one night only; guitarist, Adam Widoff [Lenny Kravitz].

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.
Steve Molitz.

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.
Guest guitarist, Adam Widoff.

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.
Brian Allen.

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.
Joe Magistro.

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.
Rich Robinson with Steve Molitz.

Rich and the band hit the stage and emphatically jumped into “Fire Around” off the new record. Rich is known for his crunchy riffs and solid fretsmanship…and tonight was no different. He’s about as solid of a guitar player as there is out there. The show rocked along as the band sprinkled in 3 cover tunes by Neil Young, as well as songs by the Velvet Underground, Fleetwood Mac, the Stones, Agitation Free and even a Crowes song.

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.

As time goes on, Rich’s singing has grown by leaps and bounds. I think he’s at most comfortable with it now as I can remember. He has a knack for writing and playing songs to his strengths. It’s pure bliss for me personally listening to him sing and watching/hearing him play guitar. [You should see his vintage guitar collection].

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.

There’s one thing I can say about [most] Black Crowes fans is that they are the most loyal, generous and supportive fans I know. And the band members remember that. They recognize the familiar faces that are always in the front row at the shows; singing and dancing all night. This show was no different.

Rich Robinson plays the Bowery Ballroom in NYC. Photo by Joe Russo.

Setlist:
1. Fire Around
2. It’s Not Easy
3. Lost and Found
4. Station Man (Fleetwood Mac Cover)
5. By The Light of the Sunset Moon
6. Look Through My Window
7. Winter (Rolling Stones Cover)
8. Laila II (Agitation Free Cover)
9. Standing on the Surface of the Sun
10. Falling Again
11. All Along the Way
12. Bye Bye Baby
13. What is Home (Black Crowes Song)
14. Gone Away
15. Everybody Knows This is Nowhere (Neil Young Cover)
16. Down By the River (Neil Young Cover)
17. Cinnamon Girl (Neil Young Cover)
18. Oh Sweet Nuthin’ (The Velvet Underground Cover)

You can see the rest of the photoset here.

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