Wednesday, June 18, 2008


One of my favorite lyrics is from The Traveling Wilburys' "End Of The Line": "Well it's all right/Even if you're old and grey/Well it's all right/You've still got something to say." I liked it when I was in college, and it means more to me now that I'm leaving my 30s

And I was really psyched that Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers did that song last night. In recent years, they've been doing "Handle With Care," which is great, but I was happy to hear a different Wilburys tune. 

Anyway, the show was incredible. Lots of hits, but it didn't feel like a retro thing to me. I only wish Tom did some songs from the new Mudcrutch album.  It's like, if the Heartbreakers can do a Wilburys song, why not a Mudcrutch song (considering 3/5 of Mudcrutch are in the Heartbreakers). Aside from the hits, they did a pretty rocking song - "Mystic Eyes" by Them (thanks to some friends to clueing me in to that) and a song called "Sweet William" that they did for a European EP ten years ago. I have to track that one down! Plus, opening act Steve Winwood joined them for Blind Faith's "Can't Find My Way Back Home" and The Spencer Davis Group's "Gimme Some Lovin.'" Even the latter song, which is so overdone, really came to life on stage. It really showed just how great of a band they are. 

Some of the songs have probably showed up in every Tom Petty show for a decade: "Mary Jane's Last Dance," "You Wreck Me," "Free Fallin'," "I Won't Back Down," "American Girl," "Runnin' Down A Dream," etc. But they attack them with such energy and enthusiasm that it never feels rote or forced. They are truly one of the best bands in the world at the moment. 

Winwood was pretty good, but he lacks any kind of connection with the crowd. He's a better singer than Petty and probably a better musician than any of the Heartbreakers, but opening with "Different LIght" from his very good last album, (2002's About Time) and following that with three new tunes... bad idea. When he played Blind Faith's "Had To Cry Today," followed by Traffic's "Dear Mr. Fantasy," it was awesome. When he played "Higher Love" it wasn't, and most of his newer songs just weren't working .  I saw him a few times on the About Time tour, and he was great, but he was doing more balanced setlists.  His band is funky and great, but they should keep away from "Higher Love." 

But overall, an incredible show, and one that is definitely worth the money (although I got my tickets for free, I would have paid if I had to).  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

any luck ever finding a recording of sweet william. i saw their show in LA and thought that song was great, but haven't been able to find it anywhere.