Saturday, February 20, 2010

Concert Review: John Mayer Comes Home To Mohegan Sun

Thirteen years ago, John Mayer left Connecticut to pursue a career in music. Friday night the Mohegan Sun audience saw a full display of the talents of this Fairfield native. With a new album to promote, Mayer returned to his home state after an 18 month hiatus.

The evening began with an hour long performance by Michael Franti & Spearhead immediately getting the audience on their feet and dancing right from the first notes of “A Little Bit A Riddim”. Franti was very interactive with the audience performing “Yell Fire” and “Hey, Hey Hey” from out in the seats. The arena was at full capacity for the band’s Top 20 hit “Say Hey (I Love You).” Franti invited the younger members of the audience onstage to dance along to the reggae pop hit.

The white nylon curtain displayed images of John Mayer to the delight of his female fans, but as the curtain opened to reveal the real thing, the screams reached an all-time high. He wasted no time diving into his new songs beginning with “Heartbreak Warfare” and a cover of Robert Johnson’s, “Crossroads.” Mayer was very talkative with his audience, especially shouting out names of Connecticut towns to receive a roar from the audience. Showing off his knowledge of music, Mayer would tease parts of classic songs into his own songs, performing a tease of Simon & Garfunkel’s “Homeward Bound” before “Bigger Than My Body” and adding lines of Fleetwood Mac’s ”Dreams” during “Half Of My Heart.”

Mayer’s solo performances of Jim Hendrix’s “Wait Til Tomorrow” and “Who Did You Think I Was” showcased his talents as Mayer took every opportunity to rip into an extended guitar solo. John Mayer Trio and current drummer Steve Jordan took the spotlight for a moment with a solo of his own with all eyes focused on him. Mayer would go on to say how great Connecticut was dedicating the song “Waiting On The World To Change” to his fans at home. “Say” began with the introduction of famed session guitarist Robbie McIntosh on the dobro as Mayer explains the song’s origin written for the movie “The Bucket List”. His set ended with the 2007 single “Gravity” which he dedicated to his Connecticut family as well as his touring band family.

With the curtain drawn, Mayer returned for the encore performing an acoustic performance of “Who Says” with the audience singing duet along with John Mayer. The curtain opened for an epic performance of Mayer’s “Friends, Lovers or Nothing” which sent the sell-out crowd home with a smile on their faces.

Michael Franti & Spearhead Set List
A Little Bit A Riddim
Nobody Right Nobody Wrong
Rude Boys Back In Town
Shake It
Sound Of Sunshine
Everybody Ona Move (Billie Jean tease)
Yell Fire
Hey, Hey, Hey
I’ll Be Waiting For You
I Got Love For Ya
Say Hey (I Love You)

John Mayer Set List
Heartbreak Warfare
Bigger Than My Body (Homeward Bound tease)
Perfectly Lonely
Assassin (Message in a Bottle tease)
Wait Til Tomorrow
Who Did You Think I Was
Waiting on the World to Change
Half of My Heart (Dreams tease)
Why Georgia
Who Says
Friends, Lovers or Nothing

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