Last night Jack Johnson opened his “To The Sea” Tour in Hartford, CT at the Comcast Theatre. This was my first “Ultimate Access Pass” show. We got to the venue around 5pm and watched the lines grow. Since it was so hot out (92*, by my cars thermometer) we decided to wait until the doors had opened to go get in line. It drizzled a bit while we waited but it wasn’t enough to cool anything down. (The clouds looked much scarier than they turned out to be!)
When we got inside we were given a “passport”. We had to get 3 of the 9 items on the back stamped and then would be entered to watch the show from the stage! In order to get your passport stamped you had to visit the non profit tents. We learned that for Jack’s tour they had set up areas where you could refill your bottles with water (filtered by Brita) for FREE! We had left our water in the car and were kicking ourselves at this point because we could have stayed hydrated for free, the green way! We also learned about a local organization, Solar Youth and our final stamp we got for donating $5 to BioDiesel for a raffle and a chance to win signed CDs.
We then made our way to the lawn, where we first rented chairs. It was $10 per chair, but you got $5 back if you returned it with a ticket at the end of the night. We were surprised to see a new handicapped section (I haven’t been on the lawn in 10 years) and made our way in there to claim a spot. We couldn’t really see the stage without standing up, but at least we wouldn’t be knocked around if the lawn got out of hand.
The first opening band was ALO, who went on at 8. For some reason all of their songs reminded me of Hanson songs… But I really enjoyed their set. It was also around this time I noticed we were joined by an itsy bitsy spider and I was watching it build its web through the opening acts sets! You can find more about ALO at their website: http://alomusic.com/
G-Love was the second opener. He said he was from Philly, but I felt like his songs had a real southern vibe to them. He also plays a mean harmonica! He also mentioned that he doesn’t usually perform solo, but he started off solo. Usually he is backed by his band. If he was nervous at all it didn’t show and he played a strong set. You can check out G Love at his website, http://www.philadelphonic.com/
Jack Johnson and his band took the stage at about 10pm. I knew it was going to be a late night when I saw the show didn’t start until 8 (I guess I am used to going to the shows with teeniebopper crowds who would end up awake far past their bed time if shows started at 8) but I never expected that Jack would have played nearly 2 hours! He forgot the words a couple of times – the first time he said that he asked one of his band members what the next line was and they told him the wrong line. The second time he started the song with the second verse. I would have had no idea if he just kept going with it – but nearly everyone else in the crowd recognized songs by just the first couple of notes and probably could have helped him out if he asked with the lyrics! Near the end of the show he apologized for having his eyes closed a lot while he was singing, but said it was to help him from forgetting any more words. He sounded great though.
For a couple of songs he was joined by his friend Paula Fuga, from Hawaii. The crowd behind us were raving about her voice after he had announced her as coming to the stage, and they were right, she has a phenomenal voice and I wish she would have sang more than just a couple of songs!
He was also joined by one of the members of ALO for a couple of songs and G Love came back out to play harmonica on a few songs as well. I liked that all the acts on the tour got involved in the main event. It really brought everything full circle.
The only negatives were that the fans in the pavilion were standing on their chairs (Or Jack just has quite a following of 10ft tall people) Security didn’t seem to do much, so even when those of us in the handicapped section stood up, we couldn’t really see over their heads.
The other downside was that the screens didn’t show anything from the stage until near the end of G Love’s set. Fortunately no one was standing on their chairs until Jack so if you wanted to take a peak you could, but it would have been nice to just relax and take it all in while watching the screens to see what was going on.
I think Lauren managed to get a couple of photos of the stage, so if anything is worth posting I will make a picture post a little bit later, but for now – setlist is under the cut!
You and Your Heart
If I Had Eyes
Sitting, Waiting, Wishing
To The Sea
From The Clouds
My Little Girl
Country Road (w/ Paula Fuga)
Turn Your Love (w/ Paula Fuga and Dan Lebowitz)
Breakdown (w/ Dan Lebowitz)
Flake (w/ Dan Lebowitz)
Rodeo Clowns (w/ G. Love)
Red Wine, Mistakes, Mythology (w/ G.Love)
Staple It Together
At Or With Me
Do You Remember