Monday, June 28, 2010

I Went Down To The Crossroads....

I spent this past weekend in Chicago, Illinois attending the Eric Clapton Crossroads Guitar Festival. It was the third Crossroads festival. All the musicians play for free because it is a benefit concert to support the Crossroads Rehabilitation Center for recovering addicts. Anyone familiar with Eric Clapton is aware that he had addiction problems in the past and he continues to be a recovering alcoholic. This was the first time I have been able to attend. It was a wonderful day of music although the weather was brutal. It was an outdoor event and the heat index was 105 degrees. My faithful Tilley hat saved me. In the late afternoon, however, I finally had to seek some solace in a shady spot. In spite of the intense heat I missed seeing very little of the music and even when I retreated to the shade I could hear everything coming from the stage. Here are what I consider the musical highlights of the day. There really were no low points although I am not sure why Sheryl Crow keeps getting invited. Of course, she is very hot and looks great in tight jeans.

Robert Randolph jamming with Joe Bonamassa.

ZZ Top's entire set.

The John Mayer Trio playing Jimi Hendrix's "Wait Until Tomorrow". I've seen Jimi Hendrix twice and he never played this song live. John Mayer nailed it.

Buddy Guy, Jonny Lang, and Ron Wood of the Rolling Stones playing an entire set of blues together. Ron Wood was a surprise guest.

Derek Trucks and Warren Haynes with David Hidalgo and Cesar Rojas of Los Lobos backing up Johnny Winter on Jimi Hendrix's classic blues song "Red House".

The entire set of Jeff Beck especially his versions of "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" and Sly and the Family Stone's "I Want To Take You Higher".

Finally, the absolute highlight of the day for me, and what I wanted to see the most, Steve Winwood and Eric Clapton playing together, performing songs from Blind Faith, Traffic, and their solo careers. In addition to these songs they simply smoked and scorched on the Jimi Hendrix song, "Voodoo Chile" from the very famous Hendrix album titled "Electric Ladyland". By the time they played the sun had finally set and it was much cooler. It was a beautiful night and I was in heaven.

A non musical highlight of the day were all the hot, sweaty, and beautiful women walking around. I'm old but I am not dead.

I am back home now, taking one last day off from work so I can rest up and heal a little from all the sunburn I received on Saturday. It was all worth it because seeing so many great musicians playing and jamming with one another is a rare treat.

Ticket to the Crossroads Festival: $100

Round Trip Airfare to Chicago: $200

Two Nights at the Sheraton Hotel: $250

Food, Beer, $5.00 Bottles of Water, etc: $100

Hearing and Seeing 12 Hours of Fabulous Music: Priceless!

1 comment:

techrsr said...

I was in the US at the time and wish I had travelled to the show. The video of Clapton's performamce - Crossroads (Robert Johnson) especially - is stunning. Never heard such a lead in a recent live version. He's kicking ass at 65 years old. Makes me want to jump up and start playing better.