COMBINED REPORTS - McCabe's Guitar Shop, Santa Monica CA, May 13 2000

Subject: [hix] Dan Hicks at McCabe's
Date: Sun, 14 May 2000 09:53:19 EDT
From: Cynthia Andrews

The concert last night was fantastic!! Now ya'all have to remember this is my first live Dan Hicks concert... I laughed so hard... my stomach still hurts!!

The concert started late.. I guess that's normal huh? While waiting for it to start I was talkin with the guitar players lady and she was telling me the reason the crowd was so small down at Java Joes 2 nights ago was Java Joes forgot to advertise. 

Ok so it was big Dan center stage... a killer lead guitar player, young guy didn't catch any names sorry... and a guy that I couldn't figure out if he was young or old playin the fiddle, mandolin etc. It was strange, he was rather short, wore big dark rimmed glasses and a hat (sorta like a fisherman's hat) and my friend and I just couldn't decide if he was young or old. Anyway, he was good!! Behind Dan was the bass player. He was really good but on a couple licks seemed like he forgot the rhythm of the song, other times he was awesome. Then on the other side of Dan were 2 young ladies. One was a blonde real bouncy gal that played alot of little percussion-y type instruments and sang back up, the other was a tall slender young lady that sang back up, played the fiddle a couple times (didn't seem real sure of what it was she was playing) and also played a couple percussion-y type things..

Ok, now to the set... forgive my spelling ok?
1. Chattanooga Shoe Shine Boy
2. Where is the Money (gawd the comedy antics in this were great!)
3. News from up the street
4. Hell I'll go (the Martian song)... too funny!
5. An Instrumental... Gypsy Jazz with Topsy Swing 42
6. Comes Love (Dan put on dark glasses and played the snare drum for this... really funny
7. Strike it while it's hot (note this will be on his new album "Beatin the Heat" which will be out in August)
8. I scare myself
9. I've got a capo on my brain (this one was my favorite... I think I laughed through the whole thing!!)
10. I got Mine
11. Fo-Fi Time (Bob Will and the Texas Playboys did this one)
12. Buzzard was a friend
and then for Encore he did
13. Milk Shakin Momma

At one point someone from the crowd yelled out a song request and Dan said He and the band were takin care of things and anyway he sold that song to Willie Nelson and so he would never sing that song again <grin>

We ran into Dan on our way out and I'm sure I gushed something stupid about loving his music and everyone on the internet was right etc

So that's all from Southern California

Subject: [hix] McCabe's Second Show May 13, 2000 (169K File attached)
Date: Sun, 14 May 2000 18:23:07 EDT
From: Kevin Cloud Brechner

DAN HICKS at McCabes Guitar Shop, Santa Monica California May 13, 2000 9:30 Show.

Well, suddenly Mr. Dan Hicks is Mr. Hot. I got over to McCabes in Santa Monica about 9 pm, to find a big line at the door waiting to get in. The last two times I have gone you probably could have gone at 9:20 and still got a seat in the first four rows. Big crowd this time. And the crowd was decidedly younger this time, not just a bunch of aging baby boomers. Anyway, the show started late, at 9:50. Dan came out and said the first show was for the "uptight crowd", but this show was for "the people." (Sorry Cynthia, I'm sure he wasn't referring to you!) And since it was for "the people" we wouldn't mind if they made some mistakes. In fact we should just treat it as a rehearsal.He looked at the clock next to the stage and said, "Check our watches. It is 5 to 10. We will play until 11:10.....and you can count on that." And off they went into the concert:

Instrumental: "Cherokee"
"Where's The Money?"
"Payday Blues" (twin violins, with the dark haired groovette [Anabell?]  Played kinda slow. Almost too slow, but a nice change-up from the regular rhythm of it.
"The Buzzard Was Their Friend"
Dan puts down the guitar for a Snare Drum solo: "Entrance of the Gladiators", then plays drums and sings on a Jon Hendricks' [formerly of Lambert, Hendricks, & Ross] tune, "Somebody Tell Me The Truth"
[Dan switches back to guitar]
"Strike it While It's Hot"

Announcement of band (All spellings and names are suspect as Dan said them real fast, I don't know the regulars all that well)
Groovettes: Anabell Cruise and Susan Williams (? not sure of these names)
Bass: Richard Sanders
Mandolin/violin: Brian Godchaux
Guitar: Paul Robinson

"I Scared Myself" Dan said, "I Scared Myself: An Anthem for a generation. A lonely guy was sitting at a table in a cafe in Haight Ashbury in the 1960's, and he wrote on a napkin, "I Scared Myself", and those words became an Anthem for a Generation." Now my theory on this song is that for it to be done right, the soloists MUST scare themselves during their performance, by stretching their talent to slightly beyond their max. Tonight that was definitely done, with an awesome guitar solo by Paul Robinson where in the middle of the solo he detuned the low E string several steps and continued playing, then tuned it back up to E for the end of the solo. That inspired the fiddler Brian Godchaux to likewise stretch the rubberband to edge. The bass solo was not as inspiring, but okay, and he definitely redeemed himself in a later solo.

Instrumental medley- Duke Ellington's "Caravan" and "Four Brothers"
"How Come My Cello Don't Play For You?"
"Long Come a Viper" Dan challenged the audience to sing along.
"Canned Music"

And the band retreated up the stairs on the edge of the black stage to the upstairs dressing room. 11:05 pm. Hoots and hollers from the crowd, then back for the finale.
Dan in sunglasses now and back to the snare drum
A jazz number: "A Little Too Much"
"How Can I Miss You When You Won't Go?"
And they were done at 11:20. We got a ten minute bonus from Dan's predicted exit.

Attached is a 169 K TIFF file of a drawing of Dan done in the darkness of McCabes. If you have a slow computer you might not want to download the attached file. Last time I sent a drawing there were complaints about download time. I hope I did it in a way so those with slow computers can avoid a long download. If not, my apologies in advance.
Kevin Cloud Brechner

Kevin's sketch of Dan

Name: Randy Stone
Date:  29 Jul 2000 
Subject:  Dan at McCabes, May 2000

Hi Folks: As long promised I want to pass along my experiences at McCabe's in Santa Monica: 

The night was cool; I was near the shore. I was at the head of the line -- as usual -- but without my wife, which I would come to regret soon enough. After several false starts and a look at the 'One and Only' who was between shows I finally scooted in; it was a close shave with another Hickster but I was the faster...I sat right down -- front row center, as usual.

McCabe's is small and cozy, about 150 seats...not too warm and never too cool...if you have a cute lady nearby it is most appreciated, thank you. She will usually like it too -- that's the way Santa Monica can be. It seemed longer but soon enough Dan and Company stepped down the stairs and went into action: four men and two very attractive ladies. Dan's usual banter greeted an enthusiastic audience; there was a great deal of whistling, clapping and hooting. This continued throughout the evening; everyone seemed very loose. As a very friendly crowd, some folks knew who they were cheering; some vaguely mentioned songs they had heard, such as 'Evening Breeze,' and others wondered who this MAN really was.

The gig began with a very enthusiastic "Where's the Money?" A great deal of whistling and carrying on followed and then the band segued right into "Payday Blues." Of course, Dan introduced the band...and I want you to know I first heard here the name of Susan Rabin. For those of you yet to experience this Siren of Song, I warn you: prepare to be floored! This woman brings so much animation to Dan's music it is difficult to overstate her contributions. "The Buzzard was their Friend" followed with a very languid "Someone Tell Me the Truth." 

Dan had an easy, congenial crowd; there were many suggestions ("We have our own ideas on what to play," HE responded). The sound was good -- at least up front; I heard no complaints, no scuffling and the band had the full, complete and courteous attention of the crowd. A new song (for me) came to the fore, "Strike It While It's Hot," and a glance at the clock found us well into the set. It seemed as though we had just begun. 

With a wall draped in guitars for sale and the room full of beautiful women, most of whom -- unfortunately -- were quite near just as many men, Dan introduced us to an anthem: "I Scare Myself." I believe he treated us to nearly eight minutes of hypnotic and alternating solos and haunting vocals; the women on stage were earning their keep tonight, indeed as on all the songs. As had been shown previously, Susan and her female cohort tinged the offering with a stunning display of support. I can not quite describe the effect her smile and her moves had on me but one word which comes to mind is mesmerizing. Marachas and sanding blocks were in abundance and I have to say the backup vocals were second to none. I can not tell you where I went during "I Scare Myself" but I have to say it must have been quite a distance... I missed that beautiful woman I sometimes call my wife enormously during this song... there is no way to adequately describe the bass, guitar, violin and Dan instrumentals...but it was heavenly, to be sure.  When it all ended the audience erupted into enormous applause which easily drowned that which had greeted the end of each solo.  What an should have been there! 

Following this masterpiece came "A Caravan and Four Brothers," a quiet and welcome respite from what had preceeded. "How Come My Cello Don't Play for You?" brought us a humorous interlude and was quickly trailed by "Long Come a Viper." This very popular tune elicited a spirited response from the audience. 

A friendlier and happier group of folks could not be found for the MAN this night. And who would know better than at this time but to bring "Canned Music" to our ears. I do believe the folks began to sway to the rhythm; by now everyone knew where the MAN was from and where he was going to. And the 'Lickettes' continued to work their magic; there is NO substitute for female harmonies. I swear it must have been a seance. With this the band left the podium and exited upstairs to the hooting and hollering of a full house. What a show! I can not do justice to the atmosphere we enjoyed. 

It seemed to be an hour, but minutes later Dan and Company returned to perform their encore. Can you believe it? I can not say what the first song was but there was no doubt as to the final song: "How Can I Miss You When You Won't Go Away?" It all seemed to click; the harmonies, the guitars, the support: the audience cheered this final song. We all waited for another encore but it was not to be. 

Soon the aura began to fade but not the memories; I heard not a single complaint over anything. All hoped for more but were satisfied with the 70 or so minutes we shared. Afterward, Susan Rabin put in an appearance near the base of the stairs in the front of the McCabe's.  She was humble, most gracious and quite stunning; I thanked her for her efforts. While Dan had mentioned an after show appearance it didn't pan out. Susan more than made up for it; what a show! 

My recommendation: do not miss a show by Dan regardless of circumstance. As I mentioned to my wife we must make every show from now on. I paid $23.00 for some 70 minutes; the two of us could have seen two shows for $92.00. Boy, what a night that would have been!