Tedeschi Trucks Band kicked off their third annual Wheels of Soul Tour last Saturday, rolling into the New Hampshire Pavilion on a stormy summer night. This year’s Wheels Tour includes 21 dates alongside The Wood Brothers and legendary duo Hot Tuna.
Neither torrential downpours nor the threat of a tornado could deter fans from packing the pavilion to see one of the most talented and soulful bands playing today. This leg of TTB’s tour includes their familiar powerhouse horn section, the phenomenal accompanying vocalists of Mike Mattison, Mark Rivers, Elizabeth Lea and Alecia Chakour, as well as the new addition of Carey Frank on keyboards.
Frank is replacing Kofi Burbridge, whom is currently recovering from a heart attack suffered on June 20. Burbidge is a talented, fan favorite multi-instrumentalist that has developed a true chemistry on stage beside Derek Trucks. While his are pretty big shoes to fill, Frank never missed a beat, taking several impressive solos on both the B3 and the melodica. Frank’s contribution on this first night of the tour did not go unnoticed by anyone on or off stage, and it must have been a thrill for the keyboardist to be performing with this iconic band while celebrating his birthday.
The first half of the evening seemed to belong fully to Derek Trucks, whose tremendous guitar prowess showed on songs like the opener, “Keep on Growing,” and the guitarist’s own “Made Up My Mind.” The second half of the evening clearly belonged to Tedeschi, who was particularly soulful and emotional on the closing “I Want More.” Jerry Garcia’s “Sugaree” lead into Billy Taylor’s “Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free” and back again for a particular highlight of the night, with Tedeschi and Mike Mattison exchanging lead vocals.
The band ended the evening with the Allman Brothers’ staple “Statesboro Blues.” The 15-song show of both classic Tedeschi Trucks originals and staple covers was a strong kick off to their summer tour. Seeing band members dancing on the side of the stage as Tedeschi and Trucks delighted the audience confirmed that this was not just another a routine evening for TTB.
The Wheels of Soul Tour rolls on this weekend, as the band takes to Providence tomorrow night, Rochester on Saturday and Simsbury, CT on Sunday.
Article and Photographs by JD Cohen
Tedeschi Trucks Band – 07/01/2017 – New Hampshire Pavilion
Keep On Growing
Made Up Mind
Laugh About It
Bird on the Wire (Leonard Cohen)
Don’t Know What It Means
Midnight in Harlem
Get Out of My Life, Woman
Angel From Montgomery
I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free
I Pity the Fool
Will the Circle Be Unbroken?
Bound for Glory
I Want More