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MofroFan1

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Reply with quote  #1 

Each year there are folks that say..."I can only get to one of the shows this year. Which one would y'all suggest?" So I was thinking that maybe we could answer that now. Plus it'll be fun to make the comparisons

Between Jax and Ybor I gotta go with Ybor. First of all seeing JJ perform with a bull's skull just 12 feet above his head is, well, weird. More importantly is the place is do damn skinny. At least 75% of people couldn't see Trube. He's stuck in the left corner of a very small stage behind the speakers. He sounds good. Pretty sure it was him. It's just the way the venue is shaped and the small stage it don't work. There's not much room for them up there. I'd venture to say that stage was not made with 7 people in mind.

The venue holds about 1,100 people give or take. But probably 25% or so is the balcony and maybe half of it has good site lines. The others have near none but do have good video screens. I didn't go up there but someone told me the sound was not so good. Because overall the place is a squished size it was very very very packed in. You could go out but coming back in was at your own peril.

I was back by the soundboard and it sounded very good. I heard that near the front it was LOUD.

Bartenders and bar service gets a B+. Bathrooms get a D-. They were clean enough and all to warrant a B- but they had an attendant. Any place that has a bathroom attendant is automatically deducted 2 grades because it's fucking stupid.

Mavericks knows how to keep a line moving (no pun intended with the line dancing which immediately got underway after the show). Someone else will have to chime in on beer selection but I can tell you they have Grey Goose and Smirnoff but no Absolute. Hard to go wrong with the Goose but I think I was overpaying. And mine didn't even come in one of them cool mason jar glasses you get to keep.

Mavericks wins hands down for being in the absolutely most boring location. The Ritz you're in the entertainment center of Tampa...Ybor City. I didn't go to Atlanta but I'm familiar with the area around the Pageant and it's real cool. Downtown Jacksonville and Jacksonville Landing???

Of course these are just MY opinions, your mileage may vary!

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MofroFan1

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Reply with quote  #2 
As far as the shows I liked the Ritz better. The guys seem to really dig playing in Tampa and I think they like the stage and setting and crowds. They played their hearts out. Again I can't compare to Atlanta but between Jax and Tampa I felt like the guys were in perfectly in tune with each other. Also, there are no site line issues there at all. And with a much wider stage/venue it gives the guys, incl JJ, a chance to move it around.

Y'all catch how JJ made Todd come up front with the rest? He do that in Atl? I thought it was great. This is one of the better shows I've been to for sure. There was energy in the crowd and the band that LazyEP described in the Ybor post much better than I can here.

Ritz bar service gets a D. Unusual for them.

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Brighter Day

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Reply with quote  #3 
We went to Mavericks and The Ritz.  First time at Mavericks and I don't
think we will go back.  We were upstairs and I am so thankful for that.....
We had our pick of location (first in line) so we probably had the best seats.
The crowd below got out of hand but it was a hoot watching them because
we are always right up front.  And, the smoke was awful.  I was just thrilled
when Todd came out front like the rest of them. I thought it was a great show,
but yes stage too small, huge speakers on both sides, Trube was hidden and
that darn silly valance...couldn't even see Dennis and Art until they came out
front.  We really enjoyed the Ritz but we were right in front of JJ and couldn't
understand everything he was saying.  Talked to a few people who were back
at the soundboard and they said the sound was great.  Sometimes in certain
venues,I guess it is better to be back some and because the stage is so high, it's
hard to get pics of JJ.  The time it took to get a drink was unacceptable and
the room they herded us into at 7:00 had a two man band that were obnoxiously
too loud.  But, again being first in line with Craven Moore and WhereUat, we
stuck it out for 1 hour so we would be sure to get up front.  ALL IN ALL, it
was ALL good; I mean how can anything be too bad when we are with Our
Boys enjoying every minute of their music.  (P.S.  The floor was bad, but not
as bad as last time we were there.)  So, between those two, our vote is for
The Ritz.

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Brighter Day

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Reply with quote  #4 
Oh, and I think "OUR" welcome when the band came on stage was WAY
LOUDER than Jacksonville.

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Bad Habit

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Reply with quote  #5 
For lots of reasons (details to come later) the Atlanta show was BY FAR my favorite!!!  Most everyone else seemed to enjoy the Ybor show the best, but I ended up deciding it would be "fun" to just hang out in the back and not have to be in "my" designated spot up front.  Wow, what a huge mistake!  It ended up being so bad that I didn't even stay for the whole show.  Yes, I left in the middle of a Mofro show!!!  Even I have a hard time believing it  But I have to say the impromptu "after party" more than made up for it - absolutely loved hanging out with everyone (including Batman) until the wee hours of the morning!!!

To give you an idea here is the view from my "normal" spot up front (taken at the Jax show):
IMG_4693

And here is my view from the Ybor show (taken by holding my camera up in the air since I couldn't see the guys at all):
IMG_4769


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harmonicasp20

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Reply with quote  #6 
The Atlanta show was the best for me. I mean how couldn't I vote for the place where I got to bring in the New Year with JJ and the boys. Alot bigger stage than the Maverick. Since alot of other reasons where already mentioned about the Maverick I won't go into them. 
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skotdee

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Reply with quote  #7 
Totally agree with you on the snoozefest that is Jacksonville Landing. They have been trying to revitalize downtown Jax for years but it just has never happened. The one time a year that place is hoppin' is the Florida/Georgia game. Although, and maybe its a hometown bias, but I still kinda relish in the Freakshow that is Jacksonville and the crazy things that seem to happen here. Kinda like people watching at a Super Walmart or the flea market. Wasn't there something we talked about after show that involved a naked or semi-naked person on the boardwalk in front of Hooters? When we both looked at each other and said at the same time "Jacksonville"

So I fully agree with you venue wise, Tampa all the way... I haven't been to ybor in years and that place is NUTS! It was like friggin mardi gras on the streets after the show. Remember when some dude got pulled over by the horse cops for his rediculously loud boomin system, and the crowd erupted in applause! Classic.

I have to say though I thought music wise it was pretty close. I still thought they brought the heat in Jacksonville, as well as Tampa. I will say the crowd in Tampa definitely brought it harder than us in Jax. I have said for years Tampa "out-hometowns" Jacksonville. That crowd was rowdy and READY. In jax we just have a bunch of wasted people all trying to out do each other on who knows JJ more and the local places he's talking about more than the next. "Heee ssaaaid chafeee roooaaad duuuuude.....Orrraaangedaaaale". Although, being from jax I must say I do enjoy the extra element of local references he drops for our shows. Or, my favorite, we always have the obligatory drunk make out couple in the crowd just goin AT it right in front of everyone. We had the pleasure this year of being right behind that couple, and having to keep them from falling into the mic stand for the entire show. (Thanks again for blocking harmonicasp20, man I owe ya one) I swear they almost seemed offended that I was recording by them and seemed to intentionally TRY to fall on my shit.

Song wise again I thought it was pretty even. We got a whitehouse bust out in Jax, and turpentine in Tampa, and classics all around at both. For sound I thought both venues sounded great, but then I usually find the sweet spot for recording so I realize it may not sound as good for ya'll in other spots. I went upstairs in Mavericks during the opener and it sounded noticably worse up there.

Sooo, if ya twist my arm and make me pick one I have to say Tampa (didn't make atlanta so I can't comment on that one). Its a shame whatever happened for them not to play Freebird anymore. Not that that venue is the end all be all by any means, it certainly has its own issues, but for a jax show it sure beats Mavericks and at least the night life is a bit more lively out at the beach.
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Craven Moore

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Reply with quote  #8 
Since I was one of those that made it to all 3, I'll chime in.  Loved 'em all, but Ybor Ritz was by far my favorite.  One of the most energizing smaller venue shows I've seen by any band.  Sound up front was better at that venue.  Maybe just a coincidence, but I've noticed on wider stages, there is a little more sound separation from JJ's monitors.  Mavericks was indeed LOUD up front.  I know setlists are a personal preference, but I enjoyed Ybor the most, as much for the sequence as the selections themselves.  Middle of that show absolutely killed (for me at least), from Tuppentine through Six Ways.  But the Stagger Lee audible at VP was quite the treat.  Band seemed to kick it up at least a notch for the Ybor and 'Lanta shows.

Honey Island's presence for Ybor and 'Lanta shows was also a plus.  Seemed to rock a little more in Ybor, but both nights were quite good.  As for Yankee Slickers in Jax, they were OK, but I remember making an observation to Bad Habit, Cool Breeze and Brighter Day, that if the opener is a Jacksonville bar band, there is a 90% probability that they will a) try to look like Lynyrd Skynyrd, b) try to play like the Allman Bros, and c), fail miserably on both accounts.  But you gotta love the guitarist's maroon trousers.  Haven't seen bells like that since Sly and the Family Stone in '73.

Skotdee, I got to experience the Mavericks humphounds also.  The woman behind me had her back to the stage, giving her "other" a standing lap dance for at least half an hour.  Ended up with permanent tattoos of her 2 hams on my own backside, since there was no space to move to. 

As far as preshow socializing, Atlanta seemed to have much more meeting and re-uniting amongst the Forumhood.  Enjoyed meeting so many.  Post-show, absolutely, positively Ybor City, with no close second.  From the street scene, to James Joyce's pub with the house busker doing Piano Man on guitar followed by Dropkick Murph's, to freaky pizza, with the best parade of restaurant patrons I've ever seen!  Darth Vader even briefly de-helmeted to toss down a slice.

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kingcracker

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Reply with quote  #9 
Most most most definantly the ATL show was my favorite. It was our 10th show and it was by far the best. We were also at Mavericks but way too damn crowded and the stage was way too damn small. They would have been better off playing in the lobby. At least there would gave been more room.
The guys really rocked the ATL show. Nice meetin sunshine in line and also down on the front row. Stagger Lee was awesome and whoever was complainin about it might as well go find another band in my opinion. Hope to see y'all again in St. Augustine. I would upload some pics but too stupid to figure it put I guess. It says for me to hit the browse button but I must not have one of them.
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gracyjj

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Reply with quote  #10 
The two shows I caught were Tampa (of course, b/c I live there) & Atlanta (only made possible b/c TW is the greatest person on earth!!-she drove us there & back). 

Tampa was great! My roomie came with me for her first ever show! She absolutely loved it! I've seen the guys play the Ritz before, so I kinda new what to expect walking in, but damn that place was PACKED!! The bar service SUCKED!!!! We got drinks when we first got there, mingled around (almost got kicked out!), but then when we tried to get drinks before the guys started the show it took fooooooooooooooreeeeeeever. We eventually said F-it! if we stand here any longer we'll miss the beginning of the show! so we literally elbowed our way through the crowd, tried to get as close as possible, then we hit what I commonly encounter in a large tampa crowd... crowd-itude. Whatever crowd jerks! You ain't gonna stop us from a good time!! Towards the middle/end of show we did get front row, right in front of Trube. All in all we had a good time. But the place was TRASHED afterwards, you could lose your life if you stepped wrong walking out of there!!

My first time to Atlanta, and I have to say this was the best place ever!!! Hands down my favorite of the NYE run, Set list was awesome- freakin LOVED Whitehouse!!! but what really made it the best were the people there!! TW & I got there right before the doors opened (perfect timing), but from that moment on everyone I met or talked to was so awesome! The first girl I talked to (she was a local), I had mentioned this was my first time in ATL & was so excited to see the show, she gave me a big hug and welcomed me to her town! The crowd down front was absolutely awesome!! Everytime someone wanted to leave (go to the bathroom, get some beers, etc) you were guaranteed to get your spot back when you returned (bringing back a few extra beers never hurt the cause either). I met a lot of people on and off the boards too!  & it was so awesome to hang out with sunshine, BH, Blossom, & thefollower afterwards too ('til after 4am!!)... hehe I'll never forget the secret password!!

I absolutely love the band, but it's the icing on the cake to meet & party with such great people along the way. Whether it's the first or last time I see ya, I at least know we had the best time ever!! I hope to meet up with yall again soon, hopefully sooner than later!! 

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Sunshine

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Reply with quote  #11 

I had an incredible time hanging with you guys too!! I got back to my room at 4:40am.  I didn't want to over stay my welcome, lol. and yes, the "icing on the cake" was awesome!!!  I still find it hard to believe that I think I met up with everyone on the Roll Call list! 

 

I can't compare, as I was only at the Atlanta show, but I have not one complaint, oh wait yes I dew ..... I regret I did not go to the bus after the show, I hear everyone but Farrell was out there, which means I could have gotten my Mofro jeans signed by Todd, completing the set, and my Harmonica Tee signed by Dennis, completing the set.

Next time .....

 

Hey, when is it time to go to the dentist??!! 

 

 


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