Article was written by Debbie Irene Ide
If you’re already a DAVE MATTHEWS BAND fan and you missed the show at Dos Equis Pavilion in Dallas Saturday night May 20th, I don’t have to tell you… you already know, you missed a great show!
I was ecstatic to find out that I was reviewing DMB because I am already a fan. I’ve only been to about 30 shows, which is really not a lot, compared to others in the DMB family.
I was first invited to see DAVE MATTHEWS BAND in 1999. Immediately, I was struck by the fact that it was a standing room only show. I have seen many shows at that venue and had never seen it so packed. As a matter of fact, not only was the venue a sea of people, but everyone pretty much danced and sang throughout the entire performance. Everyone in the audience was singing the lyrics to every song, songs I had never even heard before in my life.
As a singer myself, this had a huge impact on me. I had no idea that this group was so well known by the masses because I had only heard one or two songs on the radio. Another thing that impacted me that night, was the fact that all of the musicians on stage were absolutely extraordinary at their craft. I knew in my heart that I was in the presence of greatness!
The song that stood out to me during that show and basically rocked my world forever was called “Two Step”. That turned out to be my first favorite DMB
song. Little did I know that many others would follow.
The next year my friend Victoria invited me to go to the show. I hadn’t planned on going because I rarely go see an act two years in a row, or maybe not even twice, ever. I remembered how extraordinary the show was and the feeling of being in the presence of greatness, so I was happy to join her. Even though Victoria and I had a great time that night, the following year I figured I would skip it since I had seen the show two years in a row. Vic and I ended up at another show the night before and it was somewhat disappointing for me personally. There was so much negative energy that I called Victoria the next day and told her not to pick up her son because we were going to see DMB at Texas Stadium. From then on I have shared this amazing band with as many people as I could, even taking my mother to her 15th show for her 80th birthday.
In 2005 I was gifted with tickets to see the show in Red Rocks Colorado. I had several extra tickets to gift others with as well. Such a blessing! It was heaven on earth! I got to see DMB at The Gorge in Washington when I flew up there to meet up with Victoria in 2006.
The band’s notoriety comes from its ever evolving yet consistent style. Call it a fusion of folk, rock, jazz jam, and campfire acoustic. An improv visional feel combined with an exquisitely tight knit sound.
Saturday night I had a little bit of a parking conundrum that delayed me just a bit but I finally made it into Dos Equis Pavilion during the opening song “One Sweet World” from their 1993 release Remember Two Things. I was getting a little antsy because I could hear the audience already losing their minds with excitement and screaming at the top of their lungs before I ever entered the venue. By the time I went to the bathroom and headed to my seat Dave was playing “Sweet” on the ukulele. A song, he reminded us, that he wrote while he was supposed to be teaching his son how to swim. That seemed to level the energy out just a little bit but I could tell everyone was very excited to be there.
Fan favorite “Granny” followed shortly after, which ramped up the energy once again.
I know the band loves playing this song because the audience gets so excited screaming the words “LOVE!” and “BABY!”, the signature catchwords that make that song so memorable.
Dave took a moment to tell us that the band had written some songs recently. He said they put all the songs in a “little basket” and decided to name the basket after the song that followed, “Walk Around the Moon”. Released on May 19th, the day before the Dallas concert, Walk Around the Moon is DAVE MATTHEWS BANDs 10th studio album and is the first release since 2018. Another song from the album “Madman’s Eyes” led us into “Busted Stuff”, the title track from DMBs 5th studio album from 2002.
I was grateful to hear some of my favorites like “Crush” from the 1998 release Before These Crowded Streets, “So Right” from the 2001 release “Everyday and Die Trying” from Stand Up released in 2005. I would say that a third of the magic of DAVE MATTHEWS BAND is the actual band, a third of DMB magic is the production, giving credit to the crew/ sound and lighting engineers who always create an over the top experience, And a third of the magic is the audience.
The people who love Dave Matthews Band are like a family. I became friends with Christopher, Tim and PJ who sat near me during the show. Like myself, Christopher had seen around 30 shows whereas PJ I believe was working on almost 130. I was stunned to see that some of the fans already knew all the lyrics to the most recent songs from
Walk Around the Moon. DMB fans never cease to amaze me.
Throughout a DMB show, Dave will occasionally talk to the audience and we call it Dave Speak. During this performance, his Dave Speak took on a little bit of a Dr Seuss feel. Andy Mendoza was kind enough to scour his footage to find me an actual quote. “I don’t even know how this goes, this song, I don’t even know how it goes. That’s how this one goes, I
don’t know. None of us do, that’s how this one goes, none of us knows, and so… here goes.”.
Every year he jokes with us about the Ferris wheel at Fair Park not turning. It’s like he’s fixated on the Ferris wheel and how every time he comes it’s never running. Some of these things seem like inside jokes I guess, you had to be there I suppose.
The songs that I noticed the audience really enjoying were “Louisiana Bayou”, “Ants Marching” from 1994s Under the Table and Dreaming, and the big finish encore “Why I Am” from Big Whiskey & the GrooGrux King released in 2009 that pays tribute to LeRoi Moore former saxophonist who passed away and is dearly missed.
The common thread throughout all of Dave Matthews Band’s music when he’s not talking about making love, is that life is for living. We are all going to die that is for sure, so dance and sing and live life like you mean it!