First off an apology as due to a tech glitch, some folks were unable to view this piece for a short while
The scads of you out there waiting with breathless anticipation to discover, just what went down at Bonnaroo will have to wait another month (alas, and I apologize for calling you scads). Such is the case because Marc Brownstein drove me to my cellar. No not literally (and trust me it would be quite the abbreviated ride) but rather Mike Greenhaus’ interview with Marc led me to seek out an item, the likes of which I hadn’t seen for some time, our Jambands.com Tour T-Shirt.
Now, while I do hold a Ph.D. in history I rarely allow myself the luxury of musing on my personal past (perhaps that’s because of my academic training but any rate I find myself far less compelling than say Roscoe Fatty Arbuckle, whose life and work I studied for quite a few years while completing my dissertation). Still Marc’s comment on performing on the same bill with Sound Tribe Sector 9 on the Jambands.com Tour led me to seek out the T.
For those you who may not recall (or perhaps, more likely, may not even realize) back in June of 1999, I put together a 7 date Jambands.com tour. It was something I later hoped to replicate and expand but when the Summer of 2000 rolled around, Mr. Peter Shapiro and myself were deeply entrenched in the Jammys, so somehow we let it go.
Initially my aim with the Jambands.com tour was to put together a handful of bands, package them together and with the mighty grassroots force of Jambands.com, bring them to larger venues than they would otherwise play (the HORDE model writ a bit smaller). So in the early spring of 1999, I began speaking with the four groups that I thought could travel together on this jaunt: The Disco Biscuits, The Slip, Deep Banana Blackout and Percy Hill.
As you look at that line-up from the vantage point of 2007, it may seem unworkable for the few reasons. One concern might well be that the fanbases of these bands just seem so disparate and perhaps unlikely to play together nicely. Frankly, in 1999 that was less of an issue as these groups were still defining those bases (and were being defined by them to some degree) and at any rate, then as now, I am all for exposure to something a bit less comfortable or familiar (particularly, in case of live music when the players carry the same spirit).
However, I was naive about two issues that never were resolved: What would the order of performers be and how much time would each be allotted? I had hoped for equity on both these counts. However, in talking with the four managers and booking agents, each of them was up for it in theory but only if I could somehow balance out all the issues related to the relative popularity of each artist in a given market. Then, Gamelan’s Andrew Stahl somehow convinced me that all would not be right with the world unless I added Jiggle The Handle to the bill. I consented and it all imploded.
The idea remained, it just mophed a bit (and Dusseldorphed too now that I think about it). What it utimately yielded, though, was something all the more engaging and true to the vision of the site.
So stay tuned and next time learn the true origins of Camp Bisco, hear the heroic tale of Butch Trucks, share my shame at swapping T-shirts with a band member and read about how I was brow-beaten into changing venues only so a promoter could totally stiff me (something I had blocked out until now) and share my wonder at the question, Just what happened to the Jambands.com Tour disc?
Later days and peace,