Sunday Morning Music,The Late Edition – Toad The Wet Sprocket… Sometimes Fear Is Good

Last night’s concert was glorious.  Then again, it always is when the boys from Venice play… especially with high school kids.

They show the world how utterly important and powerful music is, and how much of a place it actually DOES deserve in our schools.

Music is part of civilization.  So are the arts… a vital part… and the sooner the good people with the power over the budgets realize that, the better off our educational system and society will be!

Jackson Browne sounded great… and had Taylor Goldsmith (I still think we are related… at least I hope so… ) from the remarkable band Dawes join him on stage for a few songs… Glen Philips from Toad the Wet Sprocket, who still looks like he is 16, was also great.  His song “Rise Up” from the album and band he put together called WPA (Works Progress Administration) was a show stopper… The audience sat mesmerized and hushed.  Stunning.

They all were on stage for the Levon Helm tribute and did a fun version of “The Weight”.  Jackson talked about the Midnight Ramble, which made me a bit sad… knowing I will now never be able to attend one… Sigh…

Lesson five hundred and thirty-six… do what you say you are going to do as soon as you can, for life is short and dreams, like people, can pass away.

We saw the amazing character actor David Paymer after the show and it was a pleasure to talk with him… So nice and kind and genuinely happy we approached him… City Slickers and Quiz Show will always be two of my favorite movies!

The show was a lot of fun and seeing musicians play for the love of a song is so damn powerful and uplifting… Speaking of which, I CANNOT WAIT to see the Marley Doc… Hear it is amazing and must be seen in a theatre with great sound!!!

Sadly though, I will obviously need to publish my long gestating book on concert and live music etiquette.  Even at a benefit concert, people do not know how to behave themselves as mad obvious by the strange collection of folks sitting in front of us… They were in the first row on f the balcony, had no one sitting in front of us, yet feel the need to lean forward and block our entire view of the concert.

To her credit, the woman in front of me did sit back when I asked, but the woman in front of my friend Alan said, and I quote, “I’m gonna do what I want to do.”

Toad The Wet Sprocket – Fear

For some odd reason I did not remember the band was named after a Monty Python sketch until Cynthia Fox from KLOS told a great story about Eric Idle.  Apparently hearing the band on the radio and the DJ announcing the name had him almost drive off the road in laughter and surprise…

“Toad the Wet Sprocket took its name from a Monty Python comedy sketch called “Rock Notes” (performed by Eric Idle on Monty Python’s Contractual Obligation Album), in which a journalist delivers a nonsensical music news report:

Rex Stardust, lead electric triangle with Toad the Wet Sprocket, has had to have an elbow removed following their recent successful worldwide tour of Finland. Flamboyant ambidextrous Rex apparently fell off the back of a motorcycle.”

The band was formed in 1986 and consists of four guys from just outside of Santa Barbara, CA.  They are “vocalist and guitarist Glen Phillips, guitarist Todd Nichols, bassist Dean Dinning, and drummer Randy Guss.”

This is their third album and the one that brought them fame and massive radio play thanks to the hits “Walk On The Ocean” and “All I Want”.  It came out in 1991 and cemented their place as one of alt. rock’s super bands of the ’90s.  Both of these albums are worth having, as I just love that folksy, alternative rock that has The Byrds and R.E.M. all over it.

The band broke up in 1998, but apparently have a new album and tour coming up in 2012.  Based on seeing him last night, Glen seems like such a humble, genuine and classy guy and I would gladly see him and the band again!

Rock n’ Roll, baby!!!  It makes the world go ’round.

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