Allman Brothers Band and Steve Winwood at SPAC, August 27th

There was no better way to spend the end of August in Upstate New York than with The Allman Brothers Band and Steve Winwood at Saratoga Performing Arts Center. The American rock group lineup currently consists of original member keyboardist Gregg Allman , drummer Butch Trucks and Jaimoe, vocalist and lead guitarist Warren Haynes and Derek Trucks, bassist Oteil Burbridge and Marc Quinones on congas and percussion.

The evening started with singer-songwriter Steve Winwood and guitarist Jose Neto, sax player Paul Booth, drummer Richard Bailey, and percussionist Café DeSailva. Winwood’s set consisted of a little bit of everything as he touched base on his solo work to the Spencer Davis Group to Traffic and to Blind Faith. “Light Up or Leave Me Alone” was one of the highlights as it provided everyone with solos and a chance to showcase their individual talents. “Dear Mr. Fantasy” brought the crowd to their feet as the band went straight into “Gimme Some Lovin” as Warren Haynes and Derek Trucks could be seen from off stage with huge smiles on their faces.

Setlist:  Rainmaker, I’m a Man, Can’t Find My Way Home, Had to Cry Today, Low Spark of High Heeled Boys, Light Up or Leave Me Alone, Higher Love, Dear Mr. Fantasy, Gimme Some Lovin’

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The Allman Brothers Band started the evening with Haynes and Trucks blasting a few high noted classic American badass frets. The two guitarists made their own musical language consisting of string sliding and plucking throughout the night that everyone in the audience could understand. The ABB bring a special energy to their shows that you can always channel with an open heart and mind. It’s a timeless sound, southern comfort smooth. “Revival” did just that, bringing a light to the inside audience that glowed over the folks on the lawn and energized everyone with the lighthearted gospel soul with the repeating chorus line, “People, can you feel it? Love is everywhere.”

There was a steady psychedelic kaleidoscope slideshow on the backdrop that suited the spacey jams and relaxed atmosphere. The stage was loaded with vintage amps and instruments that carried the familiar sounds the ABB has been known for. Their lyrics are honest and easily relatable to listeners of all ages as each song holds a story to be told. From far out cosmic jams, ABB went from hard rock to a bluesy jazz “Midnight Rider.” At one point during the night, Marc Quinones nearly broke his bongos delivering a solo full of flavor. “I Found a Love” featured fantastic harmonies as Steve Winwood joined the band onstage for the first time this tour, accompanied by Jay Collins and Rachel Turner during “The Weight”. The evening came to a close with the encore of “One Way Out”, as fans from every decade left filled with feelings of appreciation and admiration.

SetList:  Don’t Want You No More > Not My Cross To Bear, You Don’t Love Me, I Walk on Guilded Splinters, Woman Across the River, Revival, Key to the Highway, Who’s Been Talking*, Midnight Rider, I Found a Love^, The Weight^^, Dreams, The Same Thing%, Black Hearted Woman

Encore: One Way Out
Notes *with Jose Neto, Edson “Café” da Silva & Richard Bailey
^with Steve Winwood
^^with Steve Winwood, Jay Collins and Rachel “Stixx” Turner
%with Paul Booth, Richard Bailey and Ben Stiver

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