Wrapping up an incredible tour featuring masters of guitar, bass and talent from Berklee College of Music, Jimmy Herring and Victor Wooten brought their respective bands to The Egg for a fantastic final show. Herring’s band featured a four-piece lineup that focused on jazz and blues channeled through Herring’s guitar-work, while Wooten’s band was an ensemble of four bassists and two drummers, giving a new twist to the night’s musical selections.
Herring, the lead guitarist for Widespread Panic and formerly of Aquarium Rescue Unit, Frogwings, Jazz is Dead and Project Z, took his position at stage right in his usual Captain Morgan ‘one foot forward, leg slightly bent’ stance. Bandmates Jeff Sipe (drums), Matt Slocum (keys) and Neal Fountain (bass) were incredibly tight sounding after this 12-show tour. Slocum’s keys added pizzazz to each song, while Herring gave a clinic on the interweaving of jazz and blues through his Stratocaster. Highlights of the instrumental set included “Rainbow”, covers of The Beatles “A Day in the Life” and “Within You Without You” and a phenomenal and scortching version of Led Zeppelin’s “Since I’ve Been Loving You” with Derico Watson and J.D. Blair on drums – three drummers for one incredible song. The 80 minute set kept the audience on their toes, with the direction of the music constantly changing. Herring’s new album Subject to Change without Notice is now out, check it out and experience his incredible guitar skills.
Setlist: Matts Funk, Gospel 6/8, Duke and Cookie*, Ballad^, Rainbow, Miss Poopie, Since I’ve Been Loving You**, Heads Up, A Day in the Life, Bilgewater Blues, Within You Without You
* with Victor Wooten on bass // ^ with Steve Bailey on bass // ** with Derico Watson and J.D. Blair on drums
With a thundering bass intro, Victor Wooten and his seven-piece band arrived on stage. Taking out a bow and sitting down with a small upright bass, the show began with “A.W.S.” as the crowd gazed upon the lineup – four, count em FOUR bassists in ONE band, plus two drummers and the angelic voice of Krystal Peterson on vocals. “Brooklyn”, played for the makers of Wooten’s bass had a brief segue into “Tell me Something Good” inside before moving back into “Brooklyn”. Derico Watson blew it up on drums as “My Life” ended, featuring Wooten on vocals. “The House that Jack Built”, an Aretha Franklin rarity was dedicated to Jack at the soundboard and featured Matt Slocum on keys, continuing the collaboration between the two bands.
Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition” brought out with Jeff Sipe on drums and Neal Fountain on baritone guitar for a rousing rendition, with Wooten introducing the band, notably hyping up (Professor) Steve Bailey of Berklee College who plays a six-string fretless bass, leaving even the masterful Wooten in awe. More Steview followed with “Overjoyed” before the band left the stage, leaving Victor on the stage solo for a few minutes of bass noodling before bringing out Jimmy Herring for a duet of pure improvisation, capped off by a play on “Amazing Grace”. The two bands combined forces for the encore, bringing out all 11 musicians and two crew members to sing “I Shall Miss Your Smiling Face”, with a brief “Billie Jean” vocal jam from J.D. Blair in between, giving a wonderful ode to the audience and The Egg on their final night of the tour. With two masters of their craft and instrument, this was one for the ages.
Setlist: A.W.S., Brooklyn, My Life, The House that Jack Built*, Superstition^, Overjoyed, Victor and Jimmy Improv duet
Encore: I Shall Miss Your Smiling Face**
* with Matt Slocum on keys // ^ with Jeff Sipe on drums and Neal Fountain on baritone guitar // ** with all members of both bands on stage
Watch a playlist of two songs from Jimmy Herring Band and three from Victor Wooten Band, including the huge encore.