My winter away from baseball took brought me to Charlottesville VA for to see the last two Dave Matthews Band concerts of 2010. The concerts were much anticipated because these would be the last DMB concerts until at least 2012, as the band is taking its first break from touring since its inception in 1991.
It was about a five hour drive but well worth it.
The John Paul Jones Amphitheatre:
Located at the University of Virginia:
Our seats were located in Sec 115 Row N, which was the very first row on the side stage:
Highlights of the concert were the song Spoon (the first time I’ve ever heard that song played live after 48 shows) Warehouse and Jimi Thing.
The next morning, we woke up very early to see the sun rise. It was pretty awesome to see it come up over the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Since it was very early and we were at the top of a summit, the wind coupled with the cold made things very frigid. Here I am battling the double dose of cold and wind
The sun finally showed itself kicking off day two of the Charlottesville trip.
Later on that morning we headed into downtown Charlottesville:
There I found the Jefferson Theater, where Dave Matthews played with Tim Reynolds on 5/27/93 and 12/12/93:
Eventually, we found Miller’s bar, which was the birthplace of the Dave Matthews Band.
I found this on nancies.org to better describe the bar:
Miller's is a bar located on Charlottesville's Downtown Mall on Main Street.
It is located in the old Miller's Drugstore building, and was turned into a
bar after being purchased by Steve Tharpe in 1981. In September of 2001 it
underwent some minor renovations before being sold to Scottie Kaylor. The new
owner alternately suggested that massive renovations were likely and that
everything would be kept the same. By mid-2002, most of the waitstaff had
turned over, pool tables had been added on a new third level, the menu had been
completely overhauled, and it had lost most of its long-time crowd of regulars.
It was at Miller's that the members of Dave Matthews Band first collaborated.
Dave Matthews and Peter Griesar worked at the bar, which has long been a
hotbed for jazz music in Charlottesville. Among the regulars at that time
were Leroi Moore, Carter Beauford, Tim Reynolds, Boyd Tinsley, Greg Howard,
and many others. With the help of musician John D'earth, Matthews was able to
assemble the Miller's regulars and the rest is history. Greg Howard, John
D'earth, Tim Reynolds and countless other Charlottesville jazz performers
performed there regularly for years, although most of them have ended their
tenure there since Miller's was sold.
Due to Miller's position in DMB lore, it has become somewhat of a mecca for
wide-eyed Dave Matthews Band fans."
Me outside the bar:
There was an hour wait for food, so we headed down the street to Christian’s pizza where I stood in line for what seemed like an hour.
After lunch we headed to the Shenandoah mountains and took a few pictures:
After spending a few hours in the mountain it was time to head back to Charlottesville and the concert (night 2).
Our seats were in the upper deck, section 313 row G, but I still had an absolute blast.
The highlights of the concert besides just being there and dancing were:
1) hearing Long Black Veil for the first time since my first DMB concert in 2000. It’s ultra rare nowadays, this just being the second time it’s been played full band since 2003.
2) hearing the Song that Jane Likes
3) hearing Write a Song for the first time.
4) an amazing 5 song encore.
After the concert, we drove home through the night and got back at 5:30 AM. It didn’t help that this had been the longest concert in DMB history.
The next day on 11-21-10 I went to the Consol Energy Center to see the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.
I wasn’t into it.
We actually left early before the concert even ended to go to PPG Square to see the Christmas tree.
Before leaving, I took a moment to demonstrate my severe dislike for the Penguins.
I promise my next entry will have something to do with baseball.
My DMB Statistics:
By the way, I got 10 concert posters for $40 each before they sold out (I had early entrance tickets) which have sold for a nice profit on ebay.
Its been awhile since I’ve written anything on this blog, so I’ve decided to do a few entries now and then to keep folks updated on what I’ve been up to.
Earlier this month I headed to Philadelphia for a Dave Matthews Band concert.
Arriving in Philly hours before the show, there was some time to be killed, so we stopped by Citizen’s Bank Park:
Drove around some seedy Philadelphia streets,
And stopped at a park. It was starting to get a bit cold, but we enjoyed a real Philly Cheesesteak sandwich, and walked around a park for a bit.
The Dave Matthews Band show was great. It was Amy’s first ever DMB show and we were in about the 6th row. I snapped this picture with my IPhone:
After the concert, I took Amy to Cape May NJ. She had no idea we were going there, but she had mentioned that it was one of her all time favorite places, so I wanted to surprise her.
We checked out the ocean:
And walked around the town:
We ate in a small mom and pop type place:
At the top of a light tower:
More messing around:
Amy insisted I use this photo:
Anyhow, despite being just a two day adventure, it was a really fun weekend trip.
What are two things that I love? Baseball and the Dave Matthews Band.
I just got word that Dave Matthews Band is likely to play PNC Park on July 10th, 2010. This would break from recent tradition of playing their Pittsburgh Area shows at the Post Gazette Pavilion in Burgettstown.
The last time DMB played a stadium show in Pittsburgh it was at Three Rivers Stadium in July of 2000. I was there, and it was my first DMB show. Rather fitting that 10 years later, almost to the day, they would return and deliver another stadium concert.
It’s not uncommon for DMB to play stadiums, as in the past few years they’ve held concerts at such venues such as Fenway Park and Busch Stadium.
This will not be one of those cheap 70 minute concerts that follow a Pirates game.
No, this will be an actual full length concert that has nothing to do with a promotion to get fans to come to a baseball game to see a free concert and fireworks.
The question is now, will Pirates season ticket holders be able to purchase tickets before the general public?
I spent Friday and Saturday taking in the Dave Matthews Band at the Post Gazette Pavilion in Burgettstown PA, which is about a half hour or so outside of Pittsburgh.
I wish I could follow DMB everywhere. According to my concert attended list, these were my 38th and 39th shows that I’ve been to.
What concerts have I been to? Maybe we’ve been to the same ones:
DMB 2000-07-03 Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh, PA
DMB 2002-04-05 Bryce Jordan Center – Penn State University, University Park, PA
DMB 2002-04-24 Gund Arena, Cleveland, OH
DMB 2002-08-02 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
DMB 2002-08-03 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
DMB 2002-12-22 MCI Center, Washington, D.C.
D&T 2003-03-29 Holmes Center – Appalachian State University, Boone, NC
DMB 2003-06-18 Germain Amphitheater, Columbus, OH
DMB 2003-06-21 Blossom Music Center, Cuyahoga Falls, OH
DMB 2003-06-26 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
DMB 2003-06-27 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
D&F 2003-12-12 Bryce Jordan Center – Penn State University, University Park, PA
DMB 2004-06-24 Germain Amphitheater, Columbus, OH
DMB 2004-06-26 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
DMB 2004-06-27 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
DMB 2004-10-01 Bryce Jordan Center – Penn State University, University Park, PA
DMB 2005-06-04 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
DMB 2005-06-05 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
DMB 2005-06-15 Blossom Music Center, Cuyahoga Falls, OH
DMB 2005-06-25 Hershey Park Stadium, Hershey, PA
DMB 2005-12-06 Bryce Jordan Center – Penn State University, University Park, PA
DMB 2006-06-07 Germain Amphitheater, Columbus, OH
DMB 2006-06-10 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
DMB 2006-06-23 Hershey Park Stadium, Hershey, PA
DMB 2006-08-02 Blossom Music Center, Cuyahoga Falls, OH
DMB 2007-08-07 Tweeter Center at the Waterfront, Camden, NJ
DMB 2007-08-08 Tweeter Center at the Waterfront, Camden, NJ
DMB 2007-08-10 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
DMB 2007-08-20 Blossom Music Center, Cuyahoga Falls, OH
DMB 2008-05-30 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
DMB 2008-05-31 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
DMB 2008-06-17 Darien Lake Performing Arts Center, Darien Center, NY
DMB 2008-06-18 Molson Amphitheatre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
DMB 2008-06-27 Hershey Park Stadium, Hershey, PA
DMB 2008-07-30 Blossom Music Center, Cuyahoga Falls, OH
DMB 2008-08-07 Verizon Wireless Virginia Beach Amphitheater, Virginia Beach, VA
DMB 2009-04-18 John Paul Jones Arena, Charlottesville, VA
DMB 2009-06-19 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
DMB 2009-06-20 Post-Gazette Pavilion at Star Lake, Burgettstown, PA
Anyway, what’s the baseball connection you might ask? Well, I was sitting in Sec 6 Row E, directly behind a former MLB player’s box: (scroll down slowly and see if you can guess who he is) He’s wearing black in the picture:
Can you identify him?
I’ll give you a hint, 3 time All Star first baseman. Played for the Indians, Reds, Pirates, Tigers and Red Sox. C’mon….
When he walked by, I tapped him on the shoulder, “Sean, what’s up man! Great to see you!”
He acted like he knew me. “No way man, what’s up dude, how’ve you been.” Then he asked my name.
I told him I was a big fan when he played for the Pirates in 2006.
Throughout the night, I proceeded to get 5 more unsolicited high fives or handshakes from Casey. No wonder they call him the mayor and he was voted by fellow players as the “friendliest player in baseball,” in a Sports Illustrated poll.
No one else around me knew who Sean Casey was. Not even the security guard in the yellow recognized him. He checked his ticket at least 3 times when Casey was coming and going.
Another baseball connection? Guitarist Tim Reynolds wore a Pirates hat.
Check this review:
The June 20 at Star Lake outside Pittsburgh, PA was certainly one for the ages. On paper, it looks like the best show in 10 years. Yes, 10 years. But concerts aren’t played on paper, they’re played in venues, and in front of people watching the setlist on AntsLive!. Fans at the show seem to justify the reaction by those watching the setlist as it appeared. Fan reaction from those at the show justifies it as one of the best shows in a while. Reports of the band sounding sharp, energetic, and having a lot of fun are common themes in describing the show. Our own Joe M, who has now officially seen more DMB shows than Dave Matthews himself in 2009, put it at the top of his list of shows for this year a scant few seconds after Halloween ended the show. And it’s no coincidence that there were no Everyday or Stand Up songs either. If you go back to the Hartford show, Night 2, up to the June 21 show, you’ll be hard pressed to find a better run by this band in over 12 years. Really.
If given the choice of attending a DMB concert or going to a baseball game, I’d pick DMB. Sorry, but I would.
Today was the Mets’ second of four games in Pittsburgh, and my second attempt at getting a commemorative ball.
I got to the gates a little after 4 PM and was second in line. When the gates opened, I jogged into the bleachers and was the first one there. I saw a ball as I entered one of the sections. I quickly ran down and grabbed ball #1, as other ballhawks were right behind me. Much to my surprise…
it was a Shea Stadium commemorative ball from last year. Nice! I still would’ve rather had a Citi Field ball, but I’ll take it.
Moments later as I moved towards the foul pole, I found ball #2. Finding two Easter eggs is an awesome start, usually there aren’t any.
Ball #3 came from Tony Beasley. He made sure that all of the regular ballhawks got a ball today. What a good guy.
When the Mets came out to hit, there weren’t many pitchers shagging in the outfield. A ball was hit to the 410 sign in center field. It was very glove “trickable.” I started to make my way over to get the ball. Just as I got to the bullpen, a deep ball was hit right at me. Mike Pelfrey ran back and made the snag. I thought, “Great. He’s going to pick up that ball too.” Luckily, Pelfrey didn’t see it, and walked back to center field. Moments later, I reeled up ball #4.
I went back towards the foul pole when a fellow ballhawk and PNC Park regular, Dan, pointed out another ball to me. It must have rolled to the 410 sign when I was walking back to my spot. I went over and reeled in ball #5 after one failed attempt. I think I will need a new rubber band soon. The one I have might be getting to stretched out.
In the middle of the Mets batting practice, Gary Sheffield launched a deep home run to my left. I could tell it was a bomb, so rather than positioning myself in line with the ball, I ran back to the cross aisle that seperates the lower bleachers from the upper deck bleachers. The ball hit in the cross aisle and rolled partly under the overhang of the upper level bleachers. I reached down and gloved ball #6.
I made a huge mistake by heading over to center field for the last group. The final group taking batting practice was predominently left handed, so I figured I’d have a better shot. There was only one right handed batter.
Check out how empty batting practice was. There aren’t many people in the left field bleachers.
Within minutes, he was surrounded by security guards. A man in a suit came out with a clipboard and the negotiating began. It lasted about an inning. I’m not sure what the kid asked for, but there were about 4 things written down on the sheet of paper on the clip board.
It got me thinking what I would ask for if I had caught the home run. I decided that I’d ask for a game ball signed by Jaramillo, the chance to deliver the ball to him in person, and his word that he’d toss me 1 ball at any batting practice I attended (if he was in the outfield and I asked for one.)
Later in the game, I was getting
thirsty. I decided to go fill up my water bottle. As I was passing this Nacho Express stand, something caught my eye.
Yes, you guessed it. Another Easter Egg.
I had to almost lay on the ground to get that picture. I had to reach around the side of the stand to get ball #8. People probably thought I was a big weirdo for laying on the ground and reaching under a Nacho Express stand, but when they saw I pulled a ball out, I saw a few surprised faces.
I went back to center field in the ninth inning to try and get Nate’s warm up ball. His throw hit some guys arm, richoted right in front of me, but I wasn’t ready and misplayed it. Some one picked the ball up 2 rows ahead of me.
I then headed to the dugout. I had to run half of the way there, because Matt Capps got 3 quick outs. I just barely made it to the dugout as umpire Ted Barrett was coming off the field, but was in a terrible spot, off to the side of the tunnel. He gave two balls away, but not to me.
That was it for today.
When I arrived home I had this waiting for me:
I had been waiting all day for it, since I was off work today, but it didn’t arrive until after I left for the Pirate game. It was my Super Deluxe copy of Big Whiskey and the Groogrux King, Dave Matthews Band’s new album.
The CD was released today, and I had ordered it off of the Warehouse (fan club) so I could get some bonus items.
I spent the rest of my night looking through the booklets and watching the DVD. I didn’t listen to the CD the whole way through until the next day because I wanted to blast it, and it was too late to do that. I’d reccommend picking it up at Target or Best Buy for $9.99 this week. It’s their best album since 1998. Seriously.
The sweet spots:
Game: 8 Balls (4 hit, 2 thrown, 2 device)
Season: 151 Balls (67 hit, 62 thrown, 22 device)
Games: 30 Games (26 with BP/4 without)
Average: 5.03 Balls Per Game
Career: 317 Balls
I could only attend batting practice at today’s game because I had Dave Matthews Band tickets for later tonight.
Since today’s game was to begin at 12:35, I feared that there would be no batting practice. Usually on day games after night games, there is no batting practice. However, when I was walking to the Center field gate, I could see this.
I got to the gates at 9:45 AM, 15 minutes early, and was third in line. There were two non-ballhawks in front of me, so I felt pretty confident about being the first person into batting practice and claiming any Easter eggs.
I was the first one to the early entrance point, but the season ticket scanner wasn’t there. A few other security guards came and said we had to wait until the scanner showed up. I showed them I had season tickets and I even flashed my season ticket card. They said no one could enter until the scanner showed up. In the mean time, there were three fans with visitor passes in the bleachers.
Ryan Doumit crushed a homerun that landed in the bleachers. All I could do is stand helplessly and watch one of the visitor fans walk over and pick it up. One missed opportunity. Doumit hit another ball that hit near the bullpen. It bounced off a bleacher and rolled down to the front row. Luckily, the visitors didn’t see this one. When the employee who scans the early entrance finally showed up 6 minutes late, I ran in and claimed the Doumit HR ball. It was ball #1.
Game: 6 Balls (3 hit, 3 device)
Season: 26 Balls (12 hit, 9 thrown, 5 device)
Games: 6 Games (5 with BP/ 1 without)
Average: 4.33 Balls per Game
Career: 192 Balls