Tour Reviews

7.24.12: Madison, WI United States

The Baseball Project (with pinch hitter Mike Mills) made their (hopefully) annual trip to "The Duck Pond" (home of the Northwoods League's Madison Mallards), this time as part of the Northwest League All Star Game. The setting was a bit surreal - the stage was set up between home plate and the stands and they played while a Home Run Derby was going on. A song, a batter introduction, a song, a swing and "it's outta here", a song, well, you get the picture. Fun show and great set list (didn't write it down) with songs from all 3 albums. Loved "The Death of Big Ed Delahanty" and "All Future And No Past" with it's endless early season optimism.

As if that wasn't enough, they played again at High Noon Saloon later in the evening. Steve told me later on it was his first club gig in Madison since the Kerosene Man tour in 1990. The show was billed as TBBP and Minus 5 but the first 80% (from a written set list) were BBP songs. Some were repeats from earlier in the day but there were order changes and some songs they had not played at the "pond" (inc. Harvey Haddix, updated of course with the additional 5 pitchers who are now on the perfect game list). Once the set list was done, they branched out a bit and played a few more BBP songs, some Minus 5 (Aw Shit Man), a great version of "That's What You Always Say" and Mike closed things with "Don't Go Back To Rockville". Pete Rose Way was the first encore and then a blistering version of Amphetamine. A really fun night and here's hoping it's not another 22 years before Steve's next club gig here!!

9.01.11: Arlington, VA United States

While the various hipsters and poseurs lined up on the sidewalks to get into nearby rooftop bars and other exclusive digs, those of us in-the-know (many with AARP cards in tow) knew where the real scene was unfolding: The IOTA Club & Cafe.

After seeing the BBP in Atlanta at the Earl in September '09, I get to see them on my home turf. Accompanied (and abetted) by best friend/designated driver/angel/better half Rachelle, we hook up with son Moose sporting his replica #42 Mariano Rivera jersey. (The genuine Mo would later on that night, just as the BBP closed out their game, shut down the Red Sox at Fenway, freezing (alleged MVP candidate) Adrian Gonzalez with the bases loaded who watched strike three sail by.)

The ironies and parallels abounded on the evening. In August 2003, Moose (all of 16 years old then) attended a soundcheck at IOTA (a 21 & over club) at Steve and Linda's invitation. Back then his head all but exploded when Steve dropped his Tele in Moose's mitts and urged him to try it out. Tonight, he's legal.

Tonight, Stephen Strasburg, Washington Nats phenom and subject of Steve's "Phenom," is in the process of pitching six shutout one hit innings in Harrisburg, PA for the Harrisburg Senators in his final rehab start (following "Tommy John" surgery) before rejoining the Nats next week. The BBP's final show of the current run is in Harrisburg at the ballpark next week.

Moderate, yet vocally appreciative, crowd inside the IOTA. The guys and gal did two sets. Sal Maida, picked up on waivers from Cracker, pinch hit for Peter Buck (on injured reserve).

Highlights (for me): Impromptu renditions of the Shocking Blue's "Venus," prompted by Steve's intro to "Fernando" and the Who's "The Kids Are Alright," which erupted prior to "Past Time." A cover of The Flamin' Groovies' "Shake Some Action" was the high point for me. Worked out during the soundcheck and played for the first time, the BBP started off tentatively, then locked into a joyous, raucous groove. Scott and Linda were grinning from ear to ear and one couldn't help but be sucked in.

The setlist below reflects what I think I heard. In no particular order...

2.12.11: Milano Italy

Third Steve show @ Bloom for me, after 30.4.1994 and 25.10.1997... always good times when Steve plays, a grand total of 18 shows with this one :)

Loved the acoustic part with Rodrigo, have to thank Afterhours for bringing some rock on stage... yum !

Thanks Steve - catch you sometime down the road, hope to be able to stop and chat a bit !
See That My Grave Is Kept Clean
The Side I'll Never Show
Medicine Show
Bring The Magic
Punching Holes In The Sky
Wait Until You Get To Know Me
Tears Won't Help
Resolution [*]
Manhattan Fault Line [*]
Boston [*]

When You Smile
There Will Come A Day
The Days Of Wine And Roses [*]

Tell Me When It's Over

[*] with Afterhours

5.01.11: Hoboken, NJ United States

This is a review for the Baseball Project at Live at Drew's on 4/30/11:

I arrived at the Lakefront cabin that is Live at Drew's at 5:15 for the 6:00 show. The Baseball Project members were mingling with fans, munching on the apps that attendees brought and were having an altogether good time, which is what the Baseball Project seems to do. The show began at 6:15, though at 6pm Mr. Buck waited patiently by the panoramic windows for his mates to join him, and this was an erstwhile moment, subtle and eye-catching. After host Drew introduced the band (miffing on Mr. McCaughey as Steve McCaughey), the BP played two sets of poppy, catchy rock that shifted in band origin and guitar sound. Set one included several BP songs along with songs by Dream Syndicate (with Buck on a 12-string Stratocaster, I believe, which sounded great) and by the Minus 5. after a 15 minute break, Set Two got the audience more into the music as the sun set on the lake. Buck and McCaughey switched bass and guitar parts on several occasions and Linda Pitmon rocked her kit as she always does. She even offered a harmonica part near the set's end. Steve Wynn was in a congenial mood throughout and his and Scott's banter between songs complemented this show's even offering. For the encore Wynn and McCaughey led the audience in the National Anthem. Afterward, I tried to get the only setlist to post it, but because I was standing behind three rows of folding metal chairs, some other fan nabbed it. The band was gracious in signing merchandise and it seems like fans purchased a nice cache of cds. Overall, an enjoyable experience, but the venue doesn't quite allow for an intense vibe, but its intimacy makes up for it. I hope to catch the BP on the next leg of their tour.

9.02.11: Freehold, NJ United States

Great show! Great band! I hope you had as much fun as I did. Thanks for sharing.
The Baseball Project

11.04.11: Rome Italy

i write about steve before this gig; a review in advance, but after 30 gigs in Big Mama. Steve got soul, eyes, charisma, voice, heart, imagination, love, reality, sweat, blood, professionality, smiles, tears, songs, shoes, and anything else you can ask to a man, not just a musician. I'm proud to have the opportunity, year by year, to listen, live him. So, this gig has been great as usual. See you in Rome, Steve. Fabio

4.22.12: Sydney Australia

This was really great Steve - looking forward to the blog piece. I remenber The Fleshtones from late 70`s and 80`s.

4.22.12: Sydney Australia

This was fantastic Steve - long time - long distance - I remenber the Fleshtones from late 70`s. Exciting mixture.

4.13.12: New York, NY United States

I'm certainly coming to see you guys perform. What time will the performance at the Met Museum take place?

4.22.12: Sydney Australia

Very exciting! I haven't been to Australia in 25 years. I'll definitely write a blog piece about it as it gets closer and document while I'm there. The band will be me, Linda and special guests Keith Streng and Ken Fox from the Fleshtones.