It’s that time of year just before the new years runs where we sit back and reflect on the year. This year to keep it interesting I am only going to choose one show per band so that my choices are not so much of only one band or another. 2018 marked one of my most heavy years of seeing live music and it has been a real pleasure looking back and reliving these amazing shows!
1. Spafford Jacksonville, FL 2/3/2018- The show that didn’t get a Nugs.net release. Sometimes you are just in the right place at the right time. The venue legit felt like someones living room (with leather couches and all) and Spafford played like it didn’t even matter. The best Electric Taco Stand of 2018, The best Backdoor Funk of 2018, and the start of the Spaffnerds seeing just how amazing drummer Cameron Leforest was going to be during segments of Lonely.
2. Trey Anastasio Trio Atlanta, GA 4/29/2018- I don’t think there will ever be a feeling like seeing big red at my favorite Venue in Atlanta with only 600 people. Seeing Trey bawl his eyes out as he’s just destroying solo after solo is a memory i will probably never forget. Thank you so much to Trey and Terminal West for bringing that “Sustain” show to Atlanta.
3. The Disco Biscuits Asheville, NC 5/19/2018- Perfection really isn’t a word that coincides with the Disco Biscuits very often as they are the ultimate high of highs and low of lows band but this day in Asheville Bisco was firing on all Cylinders. Still to this day people talk about the rain lasers during Hot Air Balloon. The whole second set is flawless.
4. Lotus British Columbia, CN 7/27/2018- My first festival outside the United States proved to be a magical time in the mountains of beautiful British Columbia. Seeing Lotus with under 100 people was a dream come true for us die hards and they came out hot with their two first sets of the festival.
5. Snarky Puppy Miami, FL 2/9/2018- If you haven’t put Snarky Puppy’s Ground Up music festival on your radar, please consider it. There is no better way to start the festival season than Miami in February. Micheal League brings every corner of music together for this small (under 2k population) festival and I have walked away 2 years in a row with a new band I’ve never heard of that i love now. The first night set from Snarky was pretty much flawless. It’s probably 2nd favorite Snarky Puppy set ever (Georgia Theater 2016 is my number 1).
6. Papadosio Scranton, PA 7/13/2018- To set this set up a little bit, The Disco Biscuits had just finished their set and a rainstorm was COMING DOWN. This was also the transition time between The Disco Biscuits into Bassnectar on the main stage. So my girlfriend and I have to go through the rain and the oncoming swarm of Nectar fans to get to the stage that Pdose was playing at. Already I feel like we have made an epic journey to get to the set to finally make it to the stage and only see maybe 500 people. The intimate family setting vibes were felt by even the band as Anthony gave us a thanks for sticking with them while everyone else was over at Bassnectar. Unbelievable show though, The Eyes Have Eyes Opener is crazy definitely try to listen on their bandcamp!
7. Tipper Scranton, PA 7/12/2018- I think I’ve finally caught the Tipper bug. This was my fourth time seeing the man and he took us to a whole other plane at Camp Bisco. Unbelievable visuals combined with one of his Uptempo sets had me dancing my ass off. Dude next to me was throwing down so hard it was impossible not to get caught up in the energy. Maybe the downtempo and ambient sets really just are not my thing but I’m certainly excited for my next Tipper experience after this one.
8. Umphrey’s McGee St. Augustine, FL 8/18/2018- Coming hot off two already good shows during their Florida run Umphrey’s came into St. Augustine and dominated. I actually saw the “Where is My Mind?” jam listed in a top jams of the year poll on Reddit. For me though the 2nd set is insane. 20 minute Ocean Billy to start it and then a 19 minute Attachments that gets super crazy highlight the set. Check it out on Nugs or Umphreys streaming service for sure.
9. Ghost-Note and Weedie Braimah’s The Essence of Time New Orleans, LA 5/5/2018- My first Jazzfest was an amazing experience. Primarily I was there to see Spafford’s 2 late night shows but stumbled across this show on Facebook and decided to go. What a decision it was. We were in a old salvage yard turned into music venue called The Music Box. Go check out their website, they have built instruments out of just old scrap metal, wood, anything you could think of. Sput’s drums of Ghost-Note were made out of tire rims, trash cans, and metal sheets.Mono Neon’s bass amp was a old phone booth with megaphones on top, it was an insane experience. To top it all off throughout the crowd were members of Lettuce and other musicians that were down there for Jazzfest. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity that can only happen at Jazzfest.
10. JoJo Mayer/Nerve Miami Fl, 2/10/2018- My friend turns to me before this show and says, “This guy is like the most sampled drum and bass drummer ever,” and I was immediately intrigued. I was not prepared to be totally floored though. JoJo Mayer is on a whole different level of drumming. I could not take my eyes off as he created beats i had only thought possible in electronic music. It was insane. I’m sad I did not get to go to the Aisle 5 show they put on here in Atlanta, but the Funkmayor was there and he said it was probably even better than this one so definitely check the video we have on our Youtube.