Nightfall Concert Series
Miller Plaza, Chattanooga TN

This was the last show of the season for the Nightfall Concert Series, and it was postponed from September 17th due to Hurricane Ivan. The delay did it well. October 8th was a somewhat unseasonably warm evening in Chattanooga, but not unpleasantly so. The streets were blocked off and there was some kind of motorcycle shindig going on one street over. There were street vendors selling beer and food, and there was a nice easy party atmosphere. Miller Plaza is a small but fairly new outdoor stage venue in a park setting located right in downtown Chattanooga. The stage itself has the feel of an indoor club, but there is a nice park out there in front, trust me. The concert was free, courtesy of the City of Chattanooga.

During the opening act, I met Jason Solieau, Sonny's guitar technician and a nice young man. We had an interesting chat about how Sonny's Stratocasters are set up, among other things. I'd say the crowd was about two or three thousand by the time Sonny, Dave and Kenneth started their set. Sonny has apparently played this particular concert series at least one other time, so I met several local folks who were back because he'd knocked them out there the year before. There were also alot of older and younger folks and whole families, and in general, a crowd typical of this sort of city sponsored event milling about. Of course, as soon as the boys started with the usual opening "Z-Rider", everybody was instantly rocking. The set list, as I recall it, was nearly identical to what has been documented on this website for the Catalyst Club and Grant Street Dance Hall gigs this summer, with the addition of "Back to Bayou Teche" which I always enjoy. I also really liked the new instrumentals "Ioana" and "Pedal to the Metal". Great stuff; can't wait for the new live album. "Gemini Blues", what a great blues tune, and "All About You" both really got the place hopping. All in all a very good show. I have been to maybe six or so Sonny shows and they were all really good; the man simply doesn't have a bad gig in his body. (Well, maybe one time at Fitzgerald's, but rumor is he was suffering from a cold that night.) I spent some time off to the left side of the stage in a nice photo vantage spot, and then when things heated up, I eased my way right down in front where everyone was dancing. A great time was had by all. I didn't mind missing the third debate that night, but then, Bush won anyway so who cares. During the show, some parents were lifting their children and setting them right up on the stage next to the monitors. At one point, several of them were dancing right up there in front of the band, and the volume didn't bother them a bit. What a scene that was. Hats off to Sonny, Dave and Kenneth for treating these young kids to such well played American roots music. I have to believe it blew away whatever they are hearing on the radio.
Jim Krizek
Charlotte, NC

all Chattanooga photos this page © 2004 Jim Krizek
Thanks for sharing your photos and review Jim!

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