One of the great traditions that have come along with the ever growing Jazz Fest is the post fest show. Weekend one had several events spread all across the city. There were two shows that stood out Saturday and Sunday night; Lafayette native GIVERS at the Publiq House with NOLA duo Caddywhompus on Saturday night and jam band super group The Word hitting the Joy Theater on Sunday night.
To say these two show were polar opposites would be a massive understatement and yet they were almost equally enjoyable, with the GIVERS show taking the edge due to the fact that there was a secret set after theirs by DJ Windows 98 (aka Win Butler of Arcade Fire). GIVERS and Caddywhompus put it all out on the floor and the audience loved every minute of it and took the crazy power outages at the end of the GIVERS set in stride. After their set Win Butler quietly slid onto the floor and played a set of random classic tuned and African inspired beats and was subsequently joined by members of the GIVERS with live procession. Always funny to hear “Wally Word” and even more outlandish when mixed live.
The Word consists of brothers Cody and Luther Dickinson, and Chris Chew of the North Mississippi Allstars as well as John Medeski of Medeski Martin & Wood, and gospel pedal steel great Robert Randolph. Sunday night’s show also featured a special guest appearance by New Orleans very own Sam Williams of Big Sam’s Funky Nation. The jam band has been in formation for well over ten years now, but has finally recorded an album and will be hitting the festival circuit this summer. The tunes stretched on and combined into each other flawlessly. The only real way you knew a new song was playing was by the lights changing. The moving lights were abundant too, and synched perfectly to the beats all night long. At the end of the first set, drummer Cody Dickinson strapped on a washboard plugged it into some guitar effects pedals, creating a distorted wall of noise unlike any other washboard solo ever heard. You can see more shots of both sets here: http://stevenlhatley.jalbum.net/