Concert Review: Black Jacket Symphony Does Pink Floyd

Last Saturday night, I went to see The Black Jacket Symphony perform Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon with my parents and cousin. The BJS has made a name for itself by recreating entire albums as exact as possible. Their past performances include Prince’s Purple Rain and Led Zeppelin’s IV.

The musicians in The Black Jacket Symphony rotate; that is to say, the band is not always made up of the same group of artists. For this performance, the band included Huntsville’s own Dave Anderson (guitar/vocals), as well as Aaron Branson on bass, Allen Barlow on guitar, Blair Breitreiter handling both keyboards and saxophone, Brad Wolfe on guitar, Mark Lanter on drums, Jackie Roche on vocals, and Peyton Grant on keys and backing vocals.

The Black Jacket Symphony did not disappoint. Pink Floyd is one of my all-time favorite bands, so believe me when I say I held them to a high standard. The musicians were superb, but it was the vocal talent on that stage that blew me away. Jackie Roche absolutely nailed “The Great Gig in the Sky” (see below). She received a much deserved standing ovation.

After the conclusion of Dark Side of the Moon, there was an intermission then the band returned to play a few of Pink Floyd’s greatest hits. They started with “Shine On You Crazy Diamond” and ended with “Comfortably Numb.” There were the obvious ones, such as “Another Brick in the Wall Pt. II” and “Wish You Were Here.” I was surprised and very pleased when they included both “Empty Spaces” and “Young Lust.”

It was a spectacular night, filled with so much talent and an enthusiastic audience who clearly appreciated that talent. I would highly recommend attending a Black Jacket Symphony show if the chance ever presents itself.

“The Great Gig in the Sky”

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Me with Dave Anderson and Jackie Roche

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Music Memories: Sevendust

Music Memories: Sevendust

Last May, I saw Sevendust at a club in Huntsville, Alabama. Their opening acts were Longreef and Almost Kings. (In my opinion, it was worth going just for Almost Kings.) Long story short, the show was absolutely fantastic. I had never seen Sevendust before, but I will definitely be seeing them again whenever possible.

At the end of the night, I was waiting to say goodbye to Almost Kings and Sevendust front man Lajon Witherspoon came out. He went to the bus first. When he re-emerged and saw me standing there, he said “Hey, baby.” I ran forward and hugged him. He told me exactly where I had been during the show–front row, on the right–and was more than happy to pose for this picture (taken by one of Almost Kings’ crew). It’s always nice to discover that members of the bands you love are actually kind people.