March 2, 2009

Review: Greyboy and The Kreutzmann Trio

The Crystal Ballroom in downtown Portland is a wonderful place to spend an evening getting lost in good music. All the history the building holds aside (Little Richard firing Jimi Hendrix on stage in the ’60s for example) this is simply a great hall in which to see a show. There’s the balcony way upstairs. With comfortable seating and its own bar, high above the often moshing crowd, it allows for a more civilized concert experience.

Downstairs has the infamous “Floating Dance Floor”. Through some antique architectural procedure that is nothing short of amazing, dare I say challenging at times, the entire floor rocks under the gyrating weight of the hundreds of concert goers. But, for me, the place to be on the floating floor is the front row. Just high enough so that you don’t have to crane your neck to see the band and just low enough that the main speakers for you are the stage monitors. If you play your cards right, there’ll be a spot to stash your coat, bottle of water or whatever. Another added benefit to the front row, you meet the nicest people there.

Tonight’s front row soiree was a two barreled jam band attack of rock, soul, jazz and blues from the Bill Kreutzmann Trio and the Greyboy Allstars. Yes, tonight’s show was part of the two week long Portland Jazz Festival, and no, Joe Lovano didn’t come out and jam with either of the bands.

READ ON for AJ’s thoughts on GBA and the Kreutzmann band in Portland…

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