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John K., JGB w/ Melvin Seals at The Capitol Theater- Port Chester, NY

John K. twice in 8 days. The billing was him opening for JGB (Jerry Garcia Band) with Melvin Seals on keys. Surprisingly, we walked into John playing with a full band including Jay Lane on drums who plays with the Golden Gate Wingmen (previously with Primus, and Further). On the setlist were some originals, classic dead of course and wonderful George Harrison track Rising Sun. John always plays with smiles and true humility. My longest conversation with him was a “thank you” as he cleaned up his pedalboard after a show. He was so grateful and all smiles as everyone on the rail reached a hand.

One downside to the Capitol Theater is the terrific Mexican food nearby. It’s tasty and all and the taco place across the street plays good tunes but halfway through the show, all those beans kick in. Somewhat of a downer at a particularly full, indoor show. This may have been the most full I’ve seen the Cap yet tickets were still available at the door. I bought a ticket early after my friend Yoga (we’re still on the pseudonym kick if this if your first read) mentioned she and her man Ball Cap were going. The upside to tickets at the door was my other friend who came with. He happened to be in town during his adventures (from Cuba and on his way to… somewhere) and decided to come along. Shows at the Cap are great as there are so many others I see whom I know. Also, I managed to introduce myself to someone who I’ve been seeing at shows for a while. Hooray for a new friend! So lovely this huge family!

Down to the rail for the main event. Two sets of JGB classics (AKA classic covers mostly) and in the second set we got what many expected, John K. came out to play too. Highlights include… well it’s hard to pick a stand out when everything was amazing. There is something palpable in the performances of seasoned musicians. Go back and listen to early shows or albums from bands you love and you’ll hear what I mean. Not just in the music either; You’ll hear more stage banter, jokes, noodling around between songs, etc.

The night ended as a love fest. Smiles galore with friends new and old. People I knew were there but hadn’t seen yet materialized. People I know by sight who will officially meet at a future show share a smile and random hug. No visit to the Cap is complete without a visit to Scott’s box. Tucked away behind the bar of Garcia’s is a wooden box shaped like Jerry’s hand made by my friend Scott. He once gave one to Phil as well at some point. Definitely take a look at his work.

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