Woah…now THAT was a show!
When Philly-born funk rocker G. Love decided to mash up his signature special sauce with surf-rock maestro Donavon Frankenreiter, I’m sure even the two of them didn’t quite know what to expect. That being said, the musicians hit the road anyway and made their first stop of the Flying Embers Tour along the Mississippi River in eastern Missouri, more specifically at The Pageant in St Louis on January 12th for a sold-out show that was full of excitement, energy, love and plenty of free-flowing creativity.
The opener for the evening was a gentleman named Nat Myers, a singer/songwriter who comes straight out of the hills of Kentucky, slangin’ accent, neon orange hunters hat and all. The only thing missing was a Basset Hound by his foot and a piece of straw hanging out of his mouth, although that might have gotten in the way of his incredibly traditional, true-to-form, country/blues style of playing. With just him and his acoustic “gee-tar”, he started the show off with a sound that fits right into G. Love’s style. It was good to get things going with some traditional blues sounds before G. Love & Donavon Frankenreiter came out playing their smooth southern funk.
I had seen G. Love once before, the last time he was in town at a place called the Duck Room, but I had never seen Mr. Frankenreiter prior to Thursday night.
However, after putting them together for a once-in-a-lifetime collaboration, I was beyond blown away to see just how well the two played off of one another’s music as well as each other’s personal style.
The two artists complement each other quite well, which made the blending of the two bands that much more spot-on. Bringing some of their own band members to perform together ushered in a night of music that was exciting, upbeat, and entertaining, while also being unique and individualized all at the same time.
The addition of Devon Allman on guest guitar, St Louis’ own River Kittens on backing vocals, David Gomez on sax, and John Lum stepping in for Chuck Treece on drums for a track or two led to G. Love and Donavon’s guitars sparking some epically spontaneous jamming by everyone involved that lasted the whole night long. It was nice to have a little break from the normal concert setting where the artist is just up on stage jamming out on his own. It felt more like a jam session without any boundaries between the artist and the audience.
If you feel up to enjoying some damn good music that ranges from southern blues classics to rockin’ jams to some funky R&B grooves that will for sure leave you dancing your ass off, then be sure to catch G. Love & Donavon Frankenreiter on the Flying Embers Tour, rolling across the country now with plenty of dates left.