Joe Jackson @ Roseland

  • Wednesday 13 August 2003 16:52
  • 3 minute read

Damn. What a great show last night.

One may notice that I usually give a “thumbs-up” to the concerts I attend. Well, since the majority of the time, I’m going to shows that I want to see, it’s no big surprise. Barring major suckage, these reviews should be graded on the “various levels of good” scale.

Last night’s Joe Jackson show at Roseland scored higher on the Good-O-Meter® than any concert has in a long time. This was actually the “Joe Jackson Band” - the same people who played on his first three albums twenty five years ago (I recall those albums being released - eek!).

They have regrouped and recorded a new album: Volume 4. So, in addition to supporting a new release, this was an opportunity to re-visit the “old tunes” in a big way. They did not disappoint.

It’s funny: given the graying of rock and roll (JJ turned 49 on Monday), it is so good to see that age has nothing to do with energy filled rock shows. Hell, the damn guitar player had a broken foot, and played sitting on one of those pneumatic drafting chairs with wheels. He was zipping around the stage on it like he had two good feet.

The new songs were great. The old songs rocked. And, in addition to the four albums they all had in common, there was a smattering of other tunes, many of which from Night and Day. Many of those JJ played unacompanied; just the piano and him.

Before he played Real Men in such a manner, he told the audience:

Tori Amos covered a song of mine… But she changed some of the lyrics (Ed. note: Funny, they look the same to me. Whatever). I guess she had some agenda. But, that’s OK. I’m still terribly flattered. I’d like to play her version of my song. This is dedicated to Donald Rumsfeld.

He also covered a Beatles tune: Girl.

This was a much older crowd than Lollapalooza, so I was smack in the middle of this bell curve. And, I had my own reminder that I’m not as young as I once was: Let us just say, it is disconcerting when your back goes out as you are bopping along with the music. Man, do I need to get back in shape. But, other than a slipped disk, I enjoyed the hell out of the concert.

As they closed the show with I’m the Man, it brought me back to a party I threw in the early nineties. A few of us had been playing cards for shots, and downed a whole bottle of Mezcal (And ate the worm too. I never said we were smart). After that, we pogo’ed in the living room to that song, over and over again, for at least an hour. Ah, memories.