Review: 2017-09-09 Canyon Jam @ Mishawaka- Bellvue, Co



  • Setlist, Recordings, and Attendance from 9/9/2017 - Canyon Jam @ Mishawaka - Bellvue, CO

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    The word on Spafford must be out, officially I mean. I spent the better part of Friday and Saturday meeting new nerds who were in town for their first show. It sort of felt like one for me as well as I was seeing the band in a new amazing venue and it had been since April that I was treated to a show. I’ll add my observations to this review but do yourself a favor and listen to it without any distractions, then listen to it again. This was one of those performances where I walked out and thought to myself, Spafford will never get to play this venue again because they killed it and now that the word is out, they will have to start booking bigger venues.

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    Let me say this right off the bat, the venue was amazing. I came up with some fellow Phoenix Nerds on an early shuttle and was able to take the scenery in the daylight. Temperate climate, a calm stream behind and off to the right of the stage with just a few drops of rain to start the day.

    It was while I was handing out stickers, that people were telling me how excited they were for their first Spafford show, I met Nerds from coast to coast and it was really cool to hear how pumped everyone was for the show, with most preparing with Nugs or Archive recordings.

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    After Midnight by JJ Cale got the party started and I was blown away! (I’ll admit I had look this up because I feel I’m only familiar with the Clapton Version). I feel that they paid their homage to the Clapton version before making it their own.

    Walls settled everyone into a comfortable groove and as I stood in the back of the venue I noticed everyone was getting into the show, no chompers. The dance party was just starting and everyone was under the Spell of the Spafford.

    All My Friends got the crowd whipped into a dancing groove and it was the first time that I realized that the drums were a little more intense since the last time I heard it, possibly pushing Red on keys, or Brian on guitar or even Jordon on the 5 String Bass to bring it just a little bit harder. ( I did get a look at the amps, all were turned up to 10 and not 11 like I had anticipated).

    When the Band launched into Electric Taco Stand, I don’t think there was a stationary body in the venue. I do have to admit that this is one, if not my favorite songs that they do. It was my introduction to them and is still the first song I play anyone who wants to listen to what I would recommend as an introduction to Spafford. ETS was the bread to the peanut butter and JAM Alternate Ending , I was getting ready to jump out of my skin when they led back into ETS. At this point I don’t think there was anyone in the crowd who was not losing their mind, neither new nor existing Nerds.
    Sweet, as I was told was one of those songs that they had written back in their Prescott days and I found myself doing a little slow dance with my girlfriend. There were some epic moments from everyone on this track, Brian gave us a nice Solo and Red treated us to some epic keys while Jordan and Cameron kept us (at least me and my girlfriend) in that kind of slow dance that is reminiscent of a Junior High dance. Don’t judge, we’ve all been there.
    During Windmill I had ventured to the back of the venue to hang with some newly minted Nerds and it turns out there is a Windmill Dance that I was not aware of, I’ll teach you all next time I see you. Mind you I cannot dance but that is neither here nor there.
    The last song I wanted to mention was the closer, Galisteo Way. For me it has always been one of those songs that, like ETS, defines the sound, experience, and vibe that you get when you see Spafford. Be it your first or 20+ show, Galisteo Way has a way of bonding the crowd, everyone is jumping up and down shouting lyrics (some better than others) and embracing the band and the moment.
    The experiences with everyone at Spafford for the inaugural Canyon Jam were not enough (is a singular Spafford show ever enough? No). For those of you that were lucky enough to be there, I was super happy to meet all of you and hang for our limited time. Those of you that missed it, there are some stellar recordings out there of this show. Can’t wait to rage again with all of you and I just wanted to say, this was not my favorite Spafford show, the next one will be and the one after that etc. Keep #killingit Nerds can’t wait to see you at the next show.

    One last shout out to Live for Live Music for putting this on. Mishawaka for hosting 2 nights of stellar music and all the bands that made the experience memorable. It dawned on me that the people who were having the most fun this weekend were not the fans, rather all the bands seemed to be having a better time than everyone else in the place. Brian, Jordan, Cameron and Red seemed to be smiling brighter and having more fun than anyone in the place when looked out and saw everyone having a fucking blast getting down with their music.

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    -Martin McCue



  • @mccuem thank you for the review. I'm kind of bummed I didn't go. I had a ton of friends there but we were in Denver last weekend for Phish and couldn't do both. :(

    I'm listening to the show right now. The Space Fish's recording is top notch. Almost soundboard quality. It's available on the show page.



  • Great review @mccuem! Can't wait to take a listen to this one.



  • Where's the upvote/downvote feature for the site. Great review, Marty! Had family obligations in OH or I would have been there. :(



  • @ElGranJustino Look in the bottom right of the post and you'll see up/down arrows. Hit up!



  • Great write up man. It was so good to see you and your lovely. Just a bit about Sweet, it was created by Gary Ukera of the Cheektones. Brian used to play with them back home in Prescott and Don Cheek has been one of his influential musician friends.



  • @SonrisaSmiles said in Review: 2017-09-09 Canyon Jam @ Mishawaka- Bellvue, Co:

    Great write up man. It was so good to see you and your lovely. Just a bit about Sweet, it was created by Gary Ukera of the Cheektones. Brian used to play with them back home in Prescott and Don Cheek has been one of his influential musician friends.

    Related note: check out these old articles from the Prescott Daily Courier if you're interested in some SpaffHistory

    https://www.dcourier.com/news/2010/oct/14/out-with-the-old-spafford-and-in-with-the-new/

    https://www.dcourier.com/news/2011/aug/25/the-hot-spot-spafford/

    https://www.dcourier.com/news/2013/may/09/growing-by-funks-and-jams-spafford-is-on-the-rise/

    https://www.dcourier.com/news/2014/mar/21/prescott-based-band-spafford-making-a-name-for-th/



  • @Cody-Soule We should really make a section for press clippings.


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    Great review man! Thanks for taking the time to write this up!



  • Great write up Martin! Thanks for sharing your experience with all of us...wish I could have been there!



  • @ElGranJustino Thanks! The show was Epic! The supporting acts were top notch as well. Listen to all the sets. Cycles Bassist had more fun than anyone else the whole weekend.



  • @SonrisaSmiles Great to meet you as well! It was such an epic weekend!



  • @VillaReality Thanks for the read! It was such an awesome show!



  • @603Brett Brett it was such a fun time! I had a blast writing this and thanks to @damian for letting me do it. I commented to him that I thought it was cool that he would allow fan reviews, then he said I could do one. Can't wait for the next show!



  • @Lopez it was defiantly #lopezaf!



  • @mccuem just for clarity, I didn't let you write this or allow fans to write reviews. This is a fan site. It belongs to this community and is only as good as we make it. I'm just a fan like the rest of you guys. I think this band is awesome, it's going places, and I want to make sure the community has a place to grow and support them. I am beyond grateful that you took time to think about and share your experience seeing the show. Truly, thank you!

    There's no site without you. You all... We all... Make this into whatever it becomes.


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    Good meeting you 2 nerds. Great weekend, awesome venue. The VIP seating worked out great as did the bus rides. Noteable mention to Mungion, great songs and playing from those guys.

    Hopefully 2018 sees Spafford return to the Mish outside of a festival set.

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    @Cody-Soule thanks for these press clippings ... really cool history! I love this quote from the last article, sums up the whole experience perfectly for me:

    "There's a certain organic excitement that is very attractive to people joining the Spafford community," Smith said. "It's more than just liking the songs they write or liking how well Brian plays guitar. They like how the music makes them feel. They like the inspiration the band brings to their lives. They like that their music motivates them to be creative, unique, and artistic. That's a truly wonderful gift that many bands don't provide."

    True that homie


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