Monday, November 21st, 2005

Still Recovering From Hurricane Meters

“That felt good yall! Come on, guys, just 1 more song!”

Now this is the kind of hurricane you love to have.

The Meters played about 3 hours on Friday night and I’m still recovering. In fact, they were having such a good time on stage that Art didn’t want to leave. He coaxed two encores more after two blistering 75 minute sets by just sitting at his keyboard and playing stuff–“All On A Mardi Gras Day” or “Big Chief” until the other guys—-all of them about a decade his junior–came back.

At the end, when even the house folks were urging him out of his keyboard seat, he sat and did the “Sesame Street” theme. Then he smiled and got on his cane and was escorted out, but not before he got a ton of love from the audience.

It was easily one of the best concerts I’ve ever seen. I mean the singing was loose, the jams went on, and the cues weren’t air-tight, but the joy of them playing together again really came through. Whoever gets to see them this week in NYC I’m sure will get a show.

Too many highlights to recount. Each of the songs became an extended jam–and the old songs especially got some wild new changes added in. The goosebump moment was their refashioning of “Africa” into a new version where the chorus became “Take me back–to New Orleans!”

It was Zig’s night. All the bandmembers were generous in giving him the spotlight, and he gave an amazing performance. Spoke briefly to Zig the next day–a few hours before the Saturday show sound check and all he could say was, “Man, I’m tired!”

Here’s Joel Selvin’s review and my best recollection of the set list:

Set 1:

Little Old Moneymaker
Cissy Strut
He Bite Me (The Dragon)
Fiyo On The Bayou
Doodle Oop (The World Is A Bit Under The Weather)
You’ve Got To Change (You’ve Got To Reform)
–dedication to soldiers and New Orleans–
Keep On Marching (Art adds in Neil Young’s ‘Ohio’)
People Say

Set 2:

Medley: Funky Miracle/Cardova/Get Out Of My Life Woman/Look-Ka Py-Py/Hand Clapping Song
Africa (New Orleans) featuring monster Zig solo
Funky cover tune I didn’t recognize Folks call this one “Chug-A-Lug”
It Ain’t No Use

Encore 1:
Medley: All On A Mardi Gras Day/Hey Pocky A-Way

Encore 2:
Medley: Big Chief/Go See The Mardi Gras
Sesame Street

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