BEST OF 2018: Steve Nover’s Top 50 Concerts

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By Steve Nover
Photograph by Martin Benjamin

Another great year in Greater Nippertown with some great shows for free, too…

50. The Split Squad, The Jagaloons @ River Street Pub, Troy, October 20

49. Super 400 @ the Hangar on the Hudson, Troy, December 8

48. Sonny Landreth, Waterloo Clyde @ Cohoes Music Hall, Cohoes, October 24

47. Chandler Travis Three-O @ Denise & Rich’s backyard, Brunswick, May 25; and w/Ramblin Jug Stompers @ Paul’s backyard, Monterey, June 16

46. Stax: Tribute to Booker T & The MG’s @ Pearl Street Pub, Albany, October 16

45. LarkFest (especially JB & Victory Soul Orchestra, Kimono Dragons & Mirk) @ Lark Street, Albany, September 22

44. Carl Palmer’s ELP Legacy @ Cohoes Music Hall, Cohoes, April 23

43. Steven Wilson @ The Egg’s Hart Theatre, Albany, April 19

42. Robin Trower @ The Egg’s Hart Theatre, Albany, March 28

41. Stefon Harris & Blackout @ The Egg’s Swyer Theate, Albany, December 1

40. John Hiatt & The Goners featuring Sonny Landreth @ The Egg’s Hart Theatre, Albany, August 24

39. The Brad Mehldau Trio @ The Egg’s Swyer Theatre, Albany, April 22

38. Billy Cobham’s Crosswinds Project @ The Egg’s Swyer Theatre, Albany, March 25

37. Little Steven & the Disciples of Soul @ the Palace Theatre, Albany, May 4

36. Al Di Meola @ The Egg’s Hart Theatre, Albany, June 29

35. Dweezil Zappa @ The Egg’s Hart Theatre, Albany, April 24

34. Tommy Castro & Tinsley Ellis @ The Egg’s Hart Theatre, Albany, November 8

33. Neko Case @ The Egg’s Hart Theatre, Albany, January 15

32. The Dixie Dregs @ The Egg’s Hart Theatre, Albany, March 21

31. En Vogue, Wurliday @ Empire State Plaza, Albany, July 11

30. Matisyahu, Mirk at Alive at 5 @ Jennings Landing, Albany, June 21

29. Warren Wolf Quartet at A Place For Jazz @ Unitarian Universalist Society of Schenectady, Schenectady, September 21

28. Sona Jobarteh @ Proctors’ GE Theatre, Schenectady, October 10

27. NRBQ @ the Hangar on the Hudson, Troy, November 15

26. The Ska-talites, Taj Weekes & Adowa @ The Linda, Albany, September 14

25. Edmar Castaneda Trio @ Proctors’ GE Theatre, Schenectady, November 30

24. Bombino, Innov Gnawa @ Music Haven, Schenectady, July 8

23. Gaboche Maroc, Heard @ Music Haven, Schenectady, July 15

22. 3/4 of Kung Fu, Justin Hendricks, Uneven Steven @ Justin’s party, West Sand Lake, July 28

21. Jean-Luc Ponty & the Atlantic Years Band @ The Egg’s Swyer Theater, Albany, August 28

20. Alejandro Escovedo @ Cohoes Music Hall, Cohoes, May 11

19. Toots & The Maytals, Victory @ Empire State Plaza, Albany, July 15

18. Third World, Mixed Roots at Alive at 5 @ Jennings Landing, Albany, July 19

17. Dwayne Dopsie & the Zydeco Hellraisers, New Breed Brass Band @ Music Haven, Schenectady, August 5

16. John Scofield & Combo 66 @ The Egg’s Swyer Theatre, Albany, December 7

15. Sweetheart of the Rodeo 50th Anniversary Tour @ The Egg’s Hart Theatre, Albany, September 18

14. The Wailers, Dr. Jah & the Love Prophets @ Cohoes Music Hall, Cohoes, October 23

13. Celebrating David Bowie @ The Egg’s Hart Theatre, Albany, February 13

12. Todd Rundgren @ The Egg’s Hart Theater, Albany, August 3

11. Dave Mason & Steve Cropper @ The Egg’s Hart Theatre, Albany, August 22

10. JD McPherson @ the Hangar on the Hudson, Troy, July 22

9. Jazz at the Lake (especially Sharel Cassity, Jim Ridl Quartet, Paul McCandless & Charged Particles) @ Shepard Park, Lake George, September 16

8. Joey Alexander Trio @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, Troy, January 27

7. Pearlpalooza (especially Caroline Rose, Kitten, Good Fiction, El Modernist) @ North Pearl Street, Albany, September 15

6. Richard Thompson Electric Trio, Rory Block & Cindy Cashdollar @ The Egg’s Hart Theatre, Albany, November 17

5. Riverfront Jazz Festival featuring Mike Stern, Maurice “Mobetta” Brown, the Brighton Beat, Jeff “Siege” Siegel Sextet, Dylan Perillo Orchestra @ Jennings Landing, Albany, September 8

4. The Fab Faux @ The Egg’s Hart Theater, Albany, April 28

3. David Byrne @ the Palace Theater, Albany, September 9

2. Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival (especially Jon Batiste & the Dap-Kings, Mavis Staples, TEN-Terri Lyne Carrington, Esperanza Spalding & Nicholas Payton, Gregory Porter, the Jazz Passengers, Mark Whitfield, Ben Allison & Billy Drummond) @ Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Saratoga Springs, June 24

1. Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival (especially Herbie Hancock, Joey Alexander Trio, Anat Cohen Tentet, Chris Botti, Jose James, Alfredo Rodriguez & Pedrito Martinez, New Orleans @ 300, the Christian Sands Trio) @ Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Saratoga Springs, June 23

MORE BEST OF THE YEAR LISTS
J Hunter’s Top Women in Jazz Albums
Fred Rudofsky’s Top 21 Concerts
J Hunter’s Jazz2K Awards
Ed Conway’s Top Concerts
Stanley A. Johnson’s Top 10 Concerts (And More)
Michael Eck’s Eastern Liberal Elite Best of the Year
J Hunter’s Top 10 Jazz2K Discs
Mike Stampalia’s Top 10 Concerts
Rudy Lu’s Top 12 Concerts, Honorable Mentions Plus Two More
Fred Rudofsky’s Top 31 Albums
Bokonon’s Top 10 Greater Nippertown Concerts in the English Language
Rick Sleeper’s Top 10 Musical Performances at the Cock ‘n Bull

7 Comments
  1. Bill says

    Wow great list.You only missed 2 I’d put on there. I’d rank Steve Wilson a lot higher though!
    Brand X – 5/10 Cohoes Music Hall
    Empire Jazz Orchestra: 7/10 Central Park Schenectady

  2. Margo singer says

    Happy to have enjoyed some of these shows too!
    I would add:
    Jason Isbell at The Palace
    Amy Helm residency at the Hollow
    Mary Gauthier at The Linda
    john fogerty at SPAC

  3. steve nover says

    saving ticket stubs usually helps me make the list; a show I miss is usually one w/out a ticket, that I didn’t write down. Going to Franklin Alley Social Club in Troy last night I realized 1 I missed; on July 20, they threw a party in the alley w/ 3 Surf bands Canadian The Men In Grey Suits, New Jersey’s Black Flamingos & local The Jagaloons. This weekend is their 1 year Anniversary & playing at 8pm tonight is Mixed Roots (who opened for my # 18 concert; Third World) doing Reggae/African music in the basement of this club w/ a lot of atmosphere

  4. Stanley Johnson says

    Steve, please rank the following: Eat, Drink, Sleep, Concerts (although I think I already know what holds the top position.)

  5. steve nover says

    lmao……I think you left out a thing or two

  6. wanda callagy says

    Wow! and did you dance your way through??

  7. Rosemary Brennan says

    You have a generous entertainment budget! Good for you! Missed All but one and thankfully, it was free. I thought it was also one of the best Jazz Fests in Albany in a while!

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