LIVE: The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, 9/27/12

October 17th, 2012, 2:00 pm by Greg
The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

Review by Greg Haymes
Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band didn’t dip all the way back to the jug band music of their ’60s albums, but they never-the-less covered quite a wide swath across the landscape of Americana music during the inaugural concert of the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall’s new fall season.

Led by guitarist-vocalist Jeff Hanna, the Dirt Band slid into the evening’s festivities with an easy-going rendition of Bob Dylan’s “You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere,” and they took off from there, covering lots of musical ground. With “An American Dream,” they eased through sun-baked, Jimmy Buffett-like territory. They fired up Louisiana bayou sounds with the back-to-back Cajun swamp-stompers “Bayou Jubilee” and Hank Williams’ “Jambalaya.” They took a more mainstream country-pop approach with the twang-fueled romp “Fishin’ in the Dark,” as well as the ballad “Bless the Broken Road” (the Rascal Flatt smash hit which Hanna co-authored, but keyboardist Bob Carpenter sang in a perfectly pared-back rendition).

With drummer-harmonica man Jimmie Fadden taking over the lead vocals, they boogied through the old Canned Heat blues, “Goin’ Up the Country.” They blazed their way through a bit of bluegrass with Jimmy Martin’s “My Walkin’ Shoes Don’t Fit Me Anymore.” And they ventured into the Grateful Dead’s jam-happy turf with “Ripplin’ Waters,” highlighted by muscular, climactic, extended instrumental interplay.

And of course, they trotted out their biggest hit, the sublime “Mr. Bojangles,” which still sounded surprisingly fresh after all these years. It was clear that NGDB weren’t just phoning it in at the Music Hall.

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John McEuen, What Was the First Album You Ever Bought?

September 25th, 2012, 10:10 am by Greg
John McEuen

John McEuen

“Well, I know that the first record I bought was by Lou Christie. It was the single, ‘Lightning Strikes.’

I think that the first albums that I bought, however, were probably by people like Bill Keith and the Dillards. Those were the albums that got me into bluegrass.

But at the same time I was also listening to Lightnin’ Hopkins, so it was not only bluegrass, but also the blues.”

John McEuen straps on his banjo (and probably a few other instruments, too) to join his longtime bandmates in the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band in concert at the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall in Troy at 8pm on Thursday (September 27). Sharing the bill will be nine-time Grammy Award-winning kings of western swing Asleep at the Wheel. Tix are $25, $34 & $42.

BUT WAIT… we’re giving away a pair of FREE TIX to a lucky Nippertown reader! To enter the contest, just go here and post a comment… The winner will be selected at random and notified on Thursday morning. Good luck!

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