Itwas pitch black and dead silent. The opening band, Graham Colton, had plowedthrough their nine-song, hour-long set which felt like an eternity. Everyone wasanxiously awaiting The Counting Crows, who are touring to promote “HardCandy.”
Suddenly, the lights went up and the band ran onstage: AdamDuritz, Charlie Gillingham, Ben Mize, Dan Vickrey, David Bryson, Immy (DavidImmergluck), and finally Matt Malley. Picking up their instruments, they hit thefirst note of the exhilarating “Mrs. Potter’s Lullaby.” The crowd wentwild. It was like there were 700 back-up singers.
The Crows played alltheir radio hits, including “Round Here,” “Mr. Jones,””Hangin’ Around” and “American Girls” (the first single from”Hard Candy”). They also played songs from all four albums and everyone was full of emotion and energy, whether it was the hardcore electric”Have You Seen Me Lately?” or the intimate, stripped-down versions of”Round Here” and “Goodnight L.A.,” which Adam performed soloon the piano.
Some critics describe the Crows as unique because of theirfocus on improvisation. Although each member is extremely talented on theirinstruments, they don’t improvise; instead, Adam improvises with lyrics in almostevery song.
Some of the crowd favorites were the piano-based”Holiday in Spain,” the new single, a cover of Joni Mitchell’s”Big Yellow Taxi” and “Miami.” During “Miami” palmtrees and a beach were projected on a screen, providing a tropical atmosphere.
The Counting Crows put on a great show the first night of theirthree-show run in New York City. They will be touring the U.S. and Europe for therest of the year, and if you have a chance to see them, I highly recommend doingso. Not only will you be mesmerized, you’ll be anxiously waiting for them to comeagain next year.