This is where the summer flies by at a manic pace, a blur really. I ended up after Vibes with a touch of pneumonia and was not at my best for a couple weeks. Granby In the Park at Salmon Brook Park was down the road about 2 miles from the house so the closest show of the summer by far. It was an amazing night of easy-ups and lawn chairs; ice cream and Frisbees. The troops were out in force for this one, Dan, Dan and Eve, Krista and Paris, Dancelovin and his crew, The Girl who Can’t Smell and a couple hundred others. Jeff put the whole night into perspective by saying, ‘In front of the stage, crazy dance party, out in the lawn….old lady picnic.” Wonderful set, a nice reprise of the “Land Down Under from Vibes and for everyone who stayed after the show, a piece of 2nd birthday cake and some more special memories.
A week later and it’s a trip up to Mill Pond in Canton for another Jeff homecoming. The parks and recreation folk had said that these Thursday night concerts usually draw less than 50 people, but within a few minutes of the shows start, the crowd has easily grown to around 500. Another well attended show from the faithful followers, Kyle Mullins, who was instrumental in putting on the Canton High school concert was there, Mike Donagher from Vibes, Joe Neckbone, Tommy Bavarro, Sara from New York, Dancelovin, Krista and Paris and a cast of hundreds. The show saw The Groove Smugglers play twice with the band, the debut of “Whip It!” with the flower pot hats, and the live debut of “Good Catch” featuring the elusive Jeff Howard vocal. Greg h and Bryan did a fantastic job of manning the merch table for the late-arriving Deb Ott and another McLovins dance party works its way into the late summer darkness.
I missed the next weekend which was the whirlwind return to Burlington for back to back performances at the Maritime Festival and Nectar’s. Elizabeth and Dave Bayne represented the Connecticut ragers at the waterfront show. I did manage to catch the Nectar’s show streaming live on UStream, as I tried to moderate the chatroom from the comfort of my deathbed, the respiratory troubles still hanging on... Half-way through the second set, I could see the door behind the stage open and Grace Potter and The Nocturnals walked in, fresh from their performance at the Maritime Festival. Nectar’s has been very good to the guys and they always come bringing their “A” game.
So the next Friday it’s a day off from work as we trek back up the Mass pike to New York and hit the Bella Terra festival. Dan Bennett is cruising down the pike and we wave on the way by, on our way to an afternoon performance. There was a nice turnout, a quick set followed by some interview time and a meeting with Barefoot Truth. BT had played up at the Keene Solar Fest where this summer had started, and we tagged their amazing band trailer with the classic McLovins bumper sticker. The new purple skull stickers had just come in so one had to find its way onto their trailer. Barefoot Truth is one of the best bands that the guys have played with this summer, self-assured and professional, doing the work and getting it done.
We’ve winnowed the summer away, and are now down to just a handful of dates, and looks like summer is scheduled to end right on time.