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murlough23

Ghost in the Moon
Registered:
Posts: 2,109
Reply with quote  #1 
So, I actually didn't know that the Jarchives board had gone dark for several months last year (I tend to be most active here when they have a new album out or when I've just seen them live). Consequently, I was quite disappointed after catching the band on the Sing & Tell tour last fall - easily one of their most diverse and surprising performances - and having nowhere convenient to compare notes with fellow fans. (I went to the concert with fellow fans, but we're talking folks who know the first album and some scattered radio hits. So they thought Jars did a good job, but didn't have the emotional connection with so many of the songs that I did.) Now that the board's open again, I figure I'd share what I wrote about the show on another message board at the time, and get the lowdown on how other stops on the tour were different, assuming someone else here managed to catch a Sing & Tell show.

Quote:
Jars of Clay played an acoustic set as part of their Sing & Tell tour at a church in my hometown of Pasadena, CA tonight. As much as I love Jars and I keep going to their shows year after year, there's been this growing dissatisfaction with their setlists over the years, as the expected radio hits and crowd-pleasers often show up but some of their deepest, most heartfelt songs (and even full albums) tend to get lost in the shuffle. This tour seems like it was explicitly designed for oddball fans like me who persisted in asking them annoying questions about why they never played certain long-lost album tracks. They managed to build a set that, at times, sounded what you might get if you told my iPod to play Jars of Clay songs on shuffle, though it did contain a few of their hits and was pretty well thought-out in general. Oh, and it was all acoustic, save for the occasional electric guitar ambiance from Steve or one song where Dan used a synthesizer. They had a cellist on stage and Dan sometimes played percussion, but aside from that it was just the gorgeousness of acoustic guitars, ukulele, keyboards, accordion, cello, and stronger harmony vocals than most of Jars' rock-oriented shows really have the time to showcase.
 
I'm too tired to gush about every song, but I will say that this longtime Jars fan was shocked in the best possible way to hear "River Constantine", "Eyes Wide Open", "Jealous Kind", "Scarlet", and "Water Under the Bridge" all for the first time live, as well as a few long-lost tracks that I'd heard live when they were new, but had quickly been forgotten since then. The setlist hit of least one song from all of their studio albums, save for Redemption Songs and Christmas Songs, which to be fair are mostly comprised of material written by others anyway. The intent was to focus on songs they had written that still meant something to them and to curious fans who had asked about them. But shoot, even the hits sounded reinvented and reinvigorated in acoustic form (except perhaps for "Flood" and "Liquid", which instead sounded closer to the album versions since there was a cello onstage to cover the string parts, but I hadn't heard them sounded like that in ages, so that's cool). I could probably still come up with a list of songs a mile long that I wish they'd played, but I can't think of the last concert by Jars or by any band I've seen live more than once where the setlist was constantly surprising and thoroughly unpredictable.
 
Humor was also a big part of the evening, too. Opening acts Dave Barnes and Andrew Ripp had vocal chops and fast fingerwork, but it was their witty quips that really had the audience eating out of the palms of their hands in between songs - or during, in the case of Andrew Ripp somehow managing to work covers of The Guess Who's "American Woman" and Eminem's "Lose Yourself" (yeah seriously, covering Eminem in a church, who'd have thought?) into a medley with one of his original songs. At times I was convinced that Dave Barnes could have been a stand-up comedian who happened to have written a few songs on the side. As for Jars, I've long enjoyed Dan's deadpan remarks in between songs on stage, which are often riddled with awkward pauses and weird asides from the other band members that couldn't have been rehearsed. It's a reminder that they don't take themselves too seriously, even when discussing the history of a song that means a lot to them and to the audience.
 
(Also, full disclosure: I teared up quite a bit during "Safe to Land". I've always loved the song, but it's gained new depths for me this year.)


Here's the setlist. Starred songs are the ones I'd never heard the band play live before (which, for me, is one of the main reasons I keep going to Jars concerts after all these years).
  1. Liquid
  2. Work
  3. Something Beautiful
  4. River Constantine *
  5. Closer
  6. Safe to Land
  7. Eyes Wide Open *
  8. No One Loves Me Like You
  9. Jealous Kind *
  10. I Need You
  11. Scarlet *
  12. Mirrors & Smoke
  13. Flood
  14. Dead Man (Carry Me)
  15. Water Under the Bridge *
  16. Frail
  17. All My Tears
  18. Worlds Apart

__________________
DISCLAIMER: The preceding post was a statement of opinion, and does not reflect the views of the members of Jars of Clay, the moderators of Jarchives, or any member of the Holy Trinity. In fact, it is only my opinion that this is my opinion. In my opinion, you may choose to believe that my opinion is fact, if in fact you are of the opinion that you are allowed to choose what you believe, which presupposes the opinion that you do in fact exist in the first place - in my humble opinion, of course. It is my opinion that all of my opinions are humble opinions, but this does not indicate a bias on my part against opinions which are, in my opinion, proud opinions.
murlough23

Ghost in the Moon
Registered:
Posts: 2,109
Reply with quote  #2 
Quote:
Originally Posted by murlough23
So, I actually didn't know that the Jarchives board had gone dark for several months last year (I tend to be most active here when they have a new album out or when I've just seen them live). Consequently, I was quite disappointed after catching the band on the Sing & Tell tour last fall - easily one of their most diverse and surprising performances - and having nowhere convenient to compare notes with fellow fans. (I went to the concert with fellow fans, but we're talking folks who know the first album and some scattered radio hits. So they thought Jars did a good job, but didn't have the emotional connection with so many of the songs that I did.) Now that the board's open again, I figure I'd share what I wrote about the show on another message board at the time, and get the lowdown on how other stops on the tour were different, assuming someone else here managed to catch a Sing & Tell show.

Quote:
Jars of Clay played an acoustic set as part of their Sing & Tell tour at a church in my hometown of Pasadena, CA tonight. As much as I love Jars and I keep going to their shows year after year, there's been this growing dissatisfaction with their setlists over the years, as the expected radio hits and crowd-pleasers often show up but some of their deepest, most heartfelt songs (and even full albums) tend to get lost in the shuffle. This tour seems like it was explicitly designed for oddball fans like me who persisted in asking them annoying questions about why they never played certain long-lost album tracks. They managed to build a set that, at times, sounded what you might get if you told my iPod to play Jars of Clay songs on shuffle, though it did contain a few of their hits and was pretty well thought-out in general. Oh, and it was all acoustic, save for the occasional electric guitar ambiance from Steve or one song where Dan used a synthesizer. They had a cellist on stage and Dan sometimes played percussion, but aside from that it was just the gorgeousness of acoustic guitars, ukulele, keyboards, accordion, cello, and stronger harmony vocals than most of Jars' rock-oriented shows really have the time to showcase.
 
I'm too tired to gush about every song, but I will say that this longtime Jars fan was shocked in the best possible way to hear "River Constantine", "Eyes Wide Open", "Jealous Kind", "Scarlet", and "Water Under the Bridge" all for the first time live, as well as a few long-lost tracks that I'd heard live when they were new, but had quickly been forgotten since then. The setlist hit of least one song from all of their studio albums, save for Redemption Songs and Christmas Songs, which to be fair are mostly comprised of material written by others anyway. The intent was to focus on songs they had written that still meant something to them and to curious fans who had asked about them. But shoot, even the hits sounded reinvented and reinvigorated in acoustic form (except perhaps for "Flood" and "Liquid", which instead sounded closer to the album versions since there was a cello onstage to cover the string parts, but I hadn't heard them sounded like that in ages, so that's cool). I could probably still come up with a list of songs a mile long that I wish they'd played, but I can't think of the last concert by Jars or by any band I've seen live more than once where the setlist was constantly surprising and thoroughly unpredictable.
 
Humor was also a big part of the evening, too. Opening acts Dave Barnes and Andrew Ripp had vocal chops and fast fingerwork, but it was their witty quips that really had the audience eating out of the palms of their hands in between songs - or during, in the case of Andrew Ripp somehow managing to work covers of The Guess Who's "American Woman" and Eminem's "Lose Yourself" (yeah seriously, covering Eminem in a church, who'd have thought?) into a medley with one of his original songs. At times I was convinced that Dave Barnes could have been a stand-up comedian who happened to have written a few songs on the side. As for Jars, I've long enjoyed Dan's deadpan remarks in between songs on stage, which are often riddled with awkward pauses and weird asides from the other band members that couldn't have been rehearsed. It's a reminder that they don't take themselves too seriously, even when discussing the history of a song that means a lot to them and to the audience.
 
(Also, full disclosure: I teared up quite a bit during "Safe to Land". I've always loved the song, but it's gained new depths for me this year.)


Here's the setlist. Starred songs are the ones I'd never heard the band play live before (which, for me, is one of the main reasons I keep going to Jars concerts after all these years).
  1. Liquid
  2. Work
  3. Something Beautiful
  4. River Constantine *
  5. Closer
  6. Safe to Land
  7. Eyes Wide Open *
  8. No One Loves Me Like You (YouTubeage)
  9. Jealous Kind *
  10. I Need You
  11. Scarlet *
  12. Mirrors & Smoke
  13. Flood
  14. Dead Man (Carry Me)
  15. Water Under the Bridge *
  16. Frail
  17. All My Tears
  18. Worlds Apart

__________________
DISCLAIMER: The preceding post was a statement of opinion, and does not reflect the views of the members of Jars of Clay, the moderators of Jarchives, or any member of the Holy Trinity. In fact, it is only my opinion that this is my opinion. In my opinion, you may choose to believe that my opinion is fact, if in fact you are of the opinion that you are allowed to choose what you believe, which presupposes the opinion that you do in fact exist in the first place - in my humble opinion, of course. It is my opinion that all of my opinions are humble opinions, but this does not indicate a bias on my part against opinions which are, in my opinion, proud opinions.
badmonster24

Newbie Like a Child
Registered:
Posts: 8
Reply with quote  #3 
Thanks for sharing this Murlough. I have not seen a Jars show since 2009, which is far too long. I last saw them in Redlands, which I remember you attended. They have not made many appearances in SoCal and when they do it's at random churches where I find out after the fact. Hope to see them again soon. 

Jeremy
murlough23

Ghost in the Moon
Registered:
Posts: 2,109
Reply with quote  #4 
Quote:
Originally Posted by badmonster24
Hope to see them again soon.


Usually when they do a major tour for a regular album release, the greater Los Angeles area will be somewhere on their schedule. They might have done a smaller tour for The Shelter... that's probably the only major album release of theirs whose tour I didn't manage to catch. I'm pretty sure the new one this year will lead to a nationwide tour.

I just realized that with Charlie Lowell missing at the show in '09, and the show in '11 being more stripped down and acoustic, I haven't really seen them do a "full band" show (meaning with drummer and bassist) since '06. Though I may actually enjoy the acoustic vibe more when it comes to their live shows... I haven't really decided.

__________________
DISCLAIMER: The preceding post was a statement of opinion, and does not reflect the views of the members of Jars of Clay, the moderators of Jarchives, or any member of the Holy Trinity. In fact, it is only my opinion that this is my opinion. In my opinion, you may choose to believe that my opinion is fact, if in fact you are of the opinion that you are allowed to choose what you believe, which presupposes the opinion that you do in fact exist in the first place - in my humble opinion, of course. It is my opinion that all of my opinions are humble opinions, but this does not indicate a bias on my part against opinions which are, in my opinion, proud opinions.
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