Tuesday, May 4, 2010

My Morning Jacket

Lauren, Jay (her brother), and I went to see My Morning Jacket on April 30 at the Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary, N.C. They were joined by Preservation Hall Jazz Band and Jim James sat in on a couple of songs, singing through a megaphone. I have to admit, I'd love to be the front man of a band. You get to sing through a megaphone, wear holsters with cap pistols, own a cape and pretty much act like a lunatic and people love it. If I in my everyday life did any combination of these things, all of which Jim James did, people would say "That guy's crazy." I bet they say that about Jim James (whose name, by the way, is Yim Yames now, but I refuse to type it), but they add the caveat "But he's a rock star."

First let me say that the Koka Booth Amphitheatre is an awesome venue. Beautiful, well manicured lawn that's flat enough for chairs and blankets but steep enough so you can see over the guy in front of you. Cool, modern architecture. Great sound. They served a bunch of North Carolina craft-brewed beer. It's one of the best venues I've been to since I moved to N.C. and is definitely the best outdoor venue I've been to in a long time.

[caption id="attachment_262" align="alignnone" width="300" caption="Koka Booth Ampitheatre in Cary, NC."][/caption]

Preservation Hall Jazz Band brought classic New Orleans Jazz to the stage and was a nice contrast to the manic performance of My Morning Jacket. Jim James joined them on a couple of songs, as did Johnny Quiad and Two-Tone Tommy. When Preservation Hall left the stage, they picked up their instruments and marched into the crowd, continuing to play in the middle of the audience for another ten minutes.

[caption id="attachment_263" align="alignnone" width="300" caption="Jim James with the Preservation Hall Jazz Band."][/caption]

As dusk fell, My Morning Jacket took the stage and gave one of the best performances I've seen out of an act this size. Sure, R.E.M. and U2 have great stage shows, you expect them to, they've been around for 30 years, but MMJ's stage presence was fun and odd and, for me, a little surprising. This being my first MMJ show, I didn't know what to expect and I was really pleased when they managed to sound as crisp as they do on their albums but still found time to explore their songs and jam a little. In a strange way, they reminded me of Tool but without the crazy movies running in the background.

Anyway, on to the pictures.

[caption id="attachment_266" align="alignnone" width="300" caption="Sometimes Jim James wears a cape and assumes the identity The Caped Croonsader. I want a cape. "]

[caption id="attachment_269" align="alignnone" width="300" caption="Go to the light Jim James."][/caption]


  1. Cool Post. MMJ is great. We went and saw the show on 5/1 in MD. We did a nice write up about it on our site with some pics. Like your website!

  2. Great article Frye. Love me some MMJ.