While everyone was dancing around in the trendiest boho threads in the Californian sunshine at Coachella on April 12-13 weekend, I was doing some East Coast dancing of my own at Madison Square Garden. I don’t understand why this quasi-festival didn’t get more press, other than the pathetic pbandjams post I hopelessly wrote months ago.
Eric Clapton’s (epic) annual Crossroads Festival featured more than thirty legen…dary guitarists whose celebrity spans decades. The creator himself says, “the Crossroads Festival is the realization of a dream for me, to gather a group of amazingly talented musicians to perform on one stage…the crossroads performers are all musicians I admire and respect.”
Friday, April 12, the first night of the two-day “festival,” had a line-up that included: Eric Clapton himself, who performed some favorites including “Lay Down Sally” and “You Look Wonderful Tonight,” Any Fairweather, Booker T, Vince Gill, Matt Murphy, Albert Lee, Steve Cropper, Blake Mills, Keb’ Mo’, Robert Cray, who was joined on stage by good (87 year) old B.B. King and Jimmie Vaughan. The last three performed with a lot of life, “Everyday I Have the Blues.” The night continued with Doyle Bramhall II, Citizen Cope, who played “Bullet and a Target” and “Son’s Gonna Rise” with Gary Clark, Jr. I was part of the minority who was standing during this set…
Between sets, there were performers who played small sets on side stages. Some of these performers were Philip Sayce who let real loose and absolutely destroyed his solo, Gary Clark Jr., who impressed the hell out of me by simultaneously sang and played the drums and guitar, and Los Lobos. John Mayer, who I admit has reaaaaally grown on me, was outstanding on stage with Keith Urban when they played “Don’t Let Me Down” by the Beatles. Although Mayer was close second, Buddy Guy had the best performance of the night in my book. He was joined on stage by a 14-year old prodigy Quinn Sullivan and the supa fly Robert Randolph. The night didn’t wind down but the show had to end. The Allman Brothers, Taj Mahal and Clapton teamed up on stage to “Why Does Love Got to Be So Sad?”.
Love and my ears were certainly not sad as I skipped down the halls of MSG to the Allman Brothers’s “Whipping Post.” I can’t say anything more about Crossroads than what I already have. This may not have been the best concert I’ve been to, but it was/is by far, the best music I have ever heard. TY.