REVIEWS: 17 MARCH 2005: JACKSONVILLE, FL

Been to a Vai show? Review it here. Please post in the appropriate thread for each show!
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Moderator777
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Did you attend this St. Patrick's show at Freebird Live? We would love to hear your comments! Please post here.

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Moderator777
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Jonathan Brock
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After you've played in some of the largest venues in the world one might forget what it was like to just 'hangout and jam'. That was the vibe for this show, Vai could see clearly the faces of his adoring fans as if we were all at a big party having fun.
Playing was first rate throughout the evening. I personally enjoyed singling out some of Vai's earlier work as he would incorperate bits and pieces of familar melody over new or just different rthymic landscapes. The acoustic set was absolutly fabulous as some my personal favorite matieral was treated with a guise primal purity. To see Mr. Vai become one with the roots of the instrument, the attack of a steel string on a hollow body, the sound appearring to resonate the man himself, was something I had never expected. "Call It Sleep" held my my very being in rapture as I digested every note, from the attack to the last moment of decay. Steve is a guitar player with flash and finess, mind and heart, heart and soul.
The solo efforts of the band aswel as thier obvious loyalty to the music they play together were simply astounding. Truly these gentlemen are the 'players' players', each one an impecable musician and all with distinct personalities both musicaly and personably. The gratitude expressed by these world class players to thier fans is quite refreshing I must say and I left the show with Steve, Tony, and Billy's autograph on the guitar that I grew up playing on, 57 Strat neck on a white Tele body.
To convey each moment of the show would be impossible as every phrase and measure seemed to have a purpose, none out of place, all working together keeping each moment interesting whether you were a musician or not. I wouldn't have missed this show for anything and was left with the impression the band enjoyed it as much as I did!

Jonathan Brock
P.S. Sorry for the spelling
bytorsnow
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1st off congrats on the autographs on your strat,you sound like you might be a writer of sorts.cant wait to see them.glad you had a great time ( hey its my 100 post 8)
srvmcm
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Hey where did you meet Steve to get his autograph? Inside or outside? Near his bus or something? Do you know what his bus looks like? I'd love to get mine signed coming up in NJ 03/30. Thanks!
EMtheVAIFAN
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CAN SOMEONE PLEASE TYPE IN A (AS ACCURATE AS POSSIBLE) SETLIST FOR THIS SHOW??? THANKS.
Local H
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sorry no setlist. too many to name. encore was liberty, my guitar wants to kill your mama w/ sardinas and ftlog.

jeremy might cause another Congressional hearing. Drummers on Steroids!! this guy is sick. it was a great show in a very small place.
droopy
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Hello !!! Can anyone tell me wich songs is Steve playing at this moment on tour.
Thank you !!!
sakya
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I'd just like to say that I've waited nearly 15 years to see Steve Vai so I may be a little biased in my review... Briefly, this was a concert I'll remember forever. I've only seeing two other guitarists live (Michael Hedges and SRV) who conveyed such a level of such maturity, skill, grace, and total mastery of their craft. Vai comes across as someone who has spent much time not only refining his musical/artistic skill but also as one who pursues personal growth as well, yet, doesn't seem arrogant about it; quite the opposite. He really made everyone feel welcome, joked with the audience, and sincerely thanked us numerous times for coming out. Like another reviewer said, he really pays attention to each note...there is no wasted space. There were a few moments (e.g. Lotus Feet) where I got this impression/feeling that he was giving birth to the notes he was playing. No, I won't go Terrance McKenna on you all but I don't know how else to describe it...plus that was an uncensored feeling that I had at the show. I won't get into specific songs in the set as others have already covered that (it's similar to the Orlando and Miami concerts). I just wanted to encourage others to get out and see this extraordinary performer. On a personal note, I want to thank Vai for being a positive force in contemporary music. His interview with GP magazine supporting Passion and Warfare sparked a creative/spiritual quest which has changed my life. Thank you.

-Pax

"Love is the key-note, Joy is the music, Power is the strain, Knowledge is the performer, the infinite All is the composer AND audience. We know only the preliminary discords which are as fierce as the harmony shall be great; but we shall arrive surely at the fugue of the divine beautitudes."
-Aurobindo
junkdk
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As my ears are still ringing, I must tell you how wonderful the "Steve Vai Ear Trip Experience" was. To play such a small venue tells you he's a fan's man. I was 20 feet from him! Amazing! I could go on and on but the one thing sticks out. Steve mentioned the family atmosphere and we relished that.

I saw Steve and Billy play with David Lee Roth at the Philly Spectrum in 1985' ish. They were a great team then as they are now. Billy Sheehan is frankly the best on the go bass player I have ever seen. His playing equals Steves... maybe better? If I had a choice of a bass player thats steady, ready, and possibly stand alone I would pick Billy. Ha! I would be honored.

Tony McAlpine. Man how do you score this line up? I kept screaming "Tony" during the show. This man is awesome without anyone else. So much talent only 20 feet away! Amazing! It's worth saying it twice.

If you are a Vai fan in Jacksonville and didn't go you missed a great show. I bought two tickets for myself but next time I am buying five. It was like being at a guitar workshop with Steve Vai. Think about it.

God bless the Vai tour,

Junkdk :guitar


P.S. I would love to tell you the song list but I won't. Ha! Buy a ticket, its worth it. Oh, Eric Sardinas was a great opener.
Lucky
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Well, this was my second Vai show. I saw him at the N.O. House of Blues on his '99 Ultra Zone tour. *That* show will probably always be my favorite, as it was the first time I saw Steve live.

Now, as far as the band's performance is concerned. Who could ask for more? Wow, these guys are unbelievable....This is my first time seeing Billy and Tony live and they are truly awesome! It was great seeing the new reflective JEM top onstage and hearing Steve play through some of the new tunes. I also loved the acoustic set, I just wish some of the crowd would shut the hell up when he gets to this point in the show.

Really, my only complaint is with the venue itself. They made it General Admission and I'd had my tickets for months. This meant you had to stand in line forever to get a good position in the place. Not so at the HOB show I attended. This wouldn't have been such a huge deal if the stage height at the Freebird (my first time here) wasn't so low! Shorter people were stretching on thier tiptoes just to see Steve's head. I'm 6'1" so fortunately, I could still see from his torso and up most of the time. However, my wife is quite short so the sound people were good enough to let her sit at the back of the room which was elevated. She spoke with Pia who mentioned that they were very disappointed with the view, themselves! Next time though, I'll make the 1.5 hr drive to Orlando if it's on the tour schedule.

Anyway, rant over and all-in-all a great show. Thank you Steve and company for yet another solid year's worth of inspiration! :D
courierpigeon
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This is the first time I have seen Steve Vai live. It all started when my boyfriend bought the Astoria DVD. I remember thinking "oh God, another music video I am going to have to suffer through." I have to admit once it started playing...I dared him to turn it off or even step in front of the television!!

I found the music to be so pure and full of emotion that I was completely relaxed and transfixed on the screen. Whispering A Prayer is my absolute favorite. It is so soothing and yet has sad undertones at the same time.

Everyone on stage at this show was "tight". They are all not only fine musicians individually, but they have managed to perfectly blend themselves with eachother. The result is a musical treat and a show you can never forget.

The only complaint I have with this show is the venue itself. This was general admission. It was a two story building with a railing in the upstairs area where you could look down and see the stage. I estimate around 100 people were able to fit around the rail and the rest could not see a thing! The lower level, around the stage itself, had brick columns that obscured your vision from many angles.
They served no food and would not let you order in or leave and return even though there was a pizza place within eyesight of the front doors. I wanted an Irish Coffee and they had no coffee at all! If you got a spot where you could see the stage then you had better hang on to it. I know there are people that went home never seeing the show and I am sure there were alot of people that wouldn't even leave their spot to go to the bathroom for fear of never getting it back again.
I, myself, spent most of the night moving around just trying desperately to get a glimpse of the musicians I came to see. I was very fortunate to end up with good photos...thank God! I estimate that all together I saw about 20 minutes of the actual show.
I would not recommend this venue if general admission applies. It is much better suited for seated shows.
Steve.......next time perhaps you could play at the Florida Theater. It also provides a personal feel but is designed so everyone can see the stage.
The only way I would attend another general admission event at this venue is if I purchased all 700 tickets myself and took just a handful of friends!!
Last edited by courierpigeon on Sun Mar 20, 2005 9:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
tonysoprano
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I don't know, I've been to the Freebird several times and I 've never had a problem with it. If you people want your beloved Steve to play the Florida Theater, maybe he should sell more tickets next time. Vai fan's have got to be some of the whiniest, most annoying people I've ever been around. Not all of you, but definitely some. Nothing is going to be perfect and please everyone at a SOLD OUT show.

I went expecting to hear some good guitar playing, but all I heard was the sound of my own ears being crushed to death by music that was entirely too loud and there's was way too much smoke in that building. Lay off the smoke machine, dude... this isn't 1987, even though Steve seems to think it is. Steve seems really arrogant to me and his road crew are a bunch of assholes.

I'm not trying to stir up shit, but I'm just being honest. If you didn't know that the Freebird was G.A., then you should have checked your ticket stub and gotten there early. But I'm sure everyone will keep whining about the venue, even if it is the only place in Jacksonville that is consistently bringing in good bands. Go to Florida Theather for all I care... that place is lame. You have to sit next to some smelly dude wearing way too much Old Spice or Stetson cologne in seats that are entirely too small and you can't even drink water in the theater itself if I remember correctly, nonetheless alcohol.

Tony MacAlpine is cool as hell and very good, but Billy Sheehan is so cheesed out with his skin tight red vinyl pants. He looked like he should be on Queer Eye dressed liked that. So what if you can play 700 million notes, how about playing a song. That was my general sentiment for the whole night.

Did anyone else think that the drummer was way out of place? He had skills, but he would have fit in better in a hard rock band or a punk band. I think I saw Tony giving him "that look" a couple of times like he wasn't playing right.

Good band, but with no soul whatsoever. Didn't shred-fests go out like 15 years ago? I like Steve's music that's much more in the Zappa vibe like "Answers."

To the dude that said he should have just bought all the tickets himself, maybe he should buy twice as many tickets so Steve can play the Florida Theather, because he's too washed up to play anywhere else. And what was up with the goofy ass illuminated headset that he was wearing. Talk about cheese. Bottom line, Steve's a good guitarist, but he's way too full of himself and his show is beyond hokey and way too loud. 2 out of 10 stars.
bbkane
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talk about an idiot
jes8405
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Awesome show! I've seen vai four times and this was my favorite show. I won the backstage passes(thanks a million for that) and Steve was as nice as could be. He signed my Jem and talked to me about the setup of the guitar. I couldn't believe it, the man himself, giving me advice on the setup! The guitar is now in my guitar shrine with a photo a Steve signing it. I told Steve I loved the new album and he really appreciated it. I can't wait to see him again. The Breed rules! Thanks for everything!
courierpigeon
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If you don't want to sit next to someone smelly at the Florida Theater... leave your girlfriend at home dude. Talking about being whiny. it looks like you have cornered that market. Seems to me you may have some jealousy issues to deal with. Let me know where you will be playing and maybe I will come and see how much talent your extensive experience has produced. Yes, I knew it was general admission, I just did not expect that we would be packed in like sardines with no view at all. I don't care if you can drink in the Florida Theater...I usually don't attend musical venues with the intent of drinking myself into oblivion, but at least if I decide to go and have a drink, I know I will have my place when I return. There were many people looking to purchase tickets so I am sure he could have played the Florida Theater....this venue was sold out remember? Have a great day...jerkoff!!
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