The Independent, San Francisco, CA
I didn’t even know they were still around let alone playing shows and I couldn’t believe when I saw them on the Independent’s list of upcoming shows. I’d never had the chance to see them so I snapped up a ticket as soon as they went on sale which was lucky because they sold out quite quickly as this was one of only two shows in the US.
For the most part, it’s the original band with the only change being Jimmy Rip now playing guitar. Tom Verlaine’s voice has held up well though he’s lost some of his distinctive nasally tone.
The highlight for me, by far, was a scorching jam in 1880. Jimmy Rip started out with a beautifully textured solo. When Verlaine turned his guitar backed up Rip began to weave the melody in and out of Tom’s rhythm lines which morphed into a breakdown with them the passing the “lead” back-and-forth. I’d love to hear that again but I didn’t see anyone taping and no bootlegs have surfaced yet.
There are some videos of the show on YouTube.
1880 or So
Little Johnny Jewel
No idea because I left ‘cuz I had an early morning meeting.
Tom Verlaine – vocals, guitar
Fred Smith – bass
Billy Ficca – drums
Jimmy Rip – guitar