Dave Matthews Band Celebrates 25 Years of Music in Connecticut

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DAVE MATTHEWS BAND – June 11, 2016 – Xfinity Theatre – Hartford, CT

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Dave Matthews Band took to the Xfinity Theatre stage in Hartford, Connecticut this past Saturday night to celebrate twenty five years of turning themselves into one of the biggest touring acts on the face of the planet.  This night, per usual in New England, the show was sold out.  And one of the best things about this DMB crowd was that there were people of all ages, from teenagers to people in their 60s.  And that is a testament to who they have become as a touring act as they have not changed their jam band sound along the way, and it appeals to generations abound.

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Each and every setlist at a Dave Matthews Band show is different and full of surprises. I have been to approximately seven of their shows dating back to my first in 1999 and I’ve always appreciated the diversity of songs from all eras of their career chosen to be part of their shows.  To me, this shows true showmanship and musicianship in a live act.  Nothing is worse than the artist who goes out and performs the same practiced setlist night in and night out, with no surprises or nothing to keep their fans guessing.  And this night was no different.

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Right off the bat, DMB sunk their teeth into Pig and Proudest Monkey, followed by one of their most commercially accepted songs, Crash Into Me, all from their earliest albums.  But then the song selections jumped from their newer albums like Seven back to Grey Street, with “commercial” songs sandwiched between, like the nostalgic The Space Between.  And as the night went on, the jam outs and guitar solo’s became longer and more intense.  I was overjoyed to hear two of my personal favorite songs live in Rapunzel and Why I Am, while some of the die hards seemed to sing louder to If Only and Belly Belly Nice.

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Dave Matthews, himself, is an unique lead man.  He seems to be a bit reserved with an odd sense of humor.  However, he was full of smiles and jokes throughout the night and even traded his acoustic guitar for a piano on two songs.  His talented band members seemed to sit back a lot more than in shows past, as they were happy to let their lead man get most of the limelight.  Either way, their musicianship surely shined bright during the band’s jam outs.  And, at no time did that shine brighter, than during the encore when the band ripped into a cover of Bob Dylan’s legendary All Along The Watchtower.  I was surprised that it was only an one song encore, but it was a great show nonetheless.  I hear that DMB is taking off next year from touring to create a new album, but I foresee many, many more touring years in this great American band.

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  1. Pig
  2. Proudest Monkey
  3. Crash Into Me
  4. Seven
  5. Seek Up
  6. The Space Between
  7. Grey Street
  8. Out of My Hands
  9. Minarets
  10. Samurai Cop
  11. Pantala Naga Pampa
  12. Rapunzel
  13. If Only
  14. Why I Am
  15. Bob Law
  16. Typical Situation
  17. Belly Belly Nice
  18. Digging a Ditch
  19. You Might Die Trying
  20. All Along the Watchtower (ENCORE)

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