The Jammy Awards, Roseland Ballroom, NYC- 10/3
I saw about thirty-five concerts in 2002- more than some, less than many. While Bonnaroo stands out in terms of the full scope of an event, the musical moment that really knocked me on my ass took place at the Jammys.
I've been to the Jammys each of the three years and in every instance the show has felt like a culmination but year was really on another level. There were cool moments throughout the night. Some smaller ones like Trey Anastasio singing his acceptance speech. Some larger ones like the surprise appearance of the Allman Brothers Band for "Desdemona" or Trey, Derek Trucks and Gregg Allman joining Gov't Mule for "Soulshine." But there was one moment that will always stick with me, it was during the massive, climactic dual-stage jam that ensued at 2:30 in the morning completing seven hours of rather intense music. Things had started out slowly, with Bob Weir leading RatDog into "Lovelight." But then the pace picked up as people started walking out onto that stage: Warren Haynes, John Popper, Trey Anastasio, Bob Weir, Al Schnier. They started to dig in but wait, just when we all had it figured out, the second stage came alive with Mike Gordon, Robert Randolph, Mystic Bowie from the Tom Tom Club, Jessica Lurie, Hope Clayburn, Fuzz and more. People were playing back and forth across the space, and then somehow miraculously we ended up in "Gloria," with audience members spontaneously pumping their hands in the air. And it was right around this time, just as the action picked up on both stages at once, with my body contorting that I heard myself sigh. It was surreal, I had given in and lost myself to the music in a way that I can't even describe. The bottom line: there was so music happening on those two stages and I just didn't know where to place my body, I didn't know where to put my head.