The Fremont Street Experience Summer Concert Series closes out a busy August with rock band The Wallflowers for a Friday night free show.
The free concerts on Fremont Street keep going providing an eclectic line-up this summer and this Friday night the fans have arrived to see The Wallflowers. Like all shows this summer, the crowd is large and they are eagerly awaiting the start. The Wallflowers came into the music scene in the early nineties and continued until 2006 when they took a brief hiatus before reforming in 2010. Fronted by Jakob Dylan, son of the legendary Bob Dylan, this band has a sound that is unique to them blending elements of rock and folk. Everyone in the crowd is familiar with “One Headlight” but this band is about to show there is more to them than just one or two hits. The set consists of songs from their six studio albums as well as a few covers that fit in perfectly with who the band is.
The band calmly walks to the stage setting the tone for the performance. They open with “Three Marlenas,” “Everything I Need” and “The Letter” which is a Box Tops cover. The overall mood of the show is casual and fun, the crowd is swaying along with the music and the parents who brought their kids lift them onto their shoulders to see better. It is a nice feel. “6th Avenue Heartache” is up next and this is probably the first song that the casual fan is aware of so the crowd starts to sing along at this point. The set continues with another cover and more Wallflowers songs including “How Good It Can Get” and “God Don’t Make Lonely Girls.”
Dylan stops at a few points to talk to the crowd. Once to comment on how they like being in “old Vegas” and that they don’t get down there often and another time to joke with the kids in the crowd about how long they have been fans for. The kids love it and so do their parents.
This is a more mellow performance than some that have been here recently but it is still very enjoyable and the crowd is loving it. The rock and folk sound is unique and lends itself to the low key party atmosphere that is going on. Just when you think this is the way the set is going to go at the end of the fifteen songs the band really amps up the intensity and the rock vibe with “One Headlight” and “The Difference.” Not only are these two of the most well-known songs, but they are really solid rock songs. The crowd is excited at this point for the encore. The band doesn’t disappoint here, returning for three songs consisting of “Shy of the Moon,” “It Won’t Be Long (Till We’re Not Wrong Anymore)” and a cover of the Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers classic “The Waiting.” A cover is a unique way to end a show but this one seems to end this set perfectly. Not only is this a way to pay tribute to Tom Petty but it fits in seamlessly with The Wallflowers’ sound.
For a busy August filled with Rock, Pop and even some legends, The Wallflowers fit in perfect. That is one of the things people like about these free shows, the diversity of the performances. There are a few more unique shows left this season but the fans are already wondering what they will be treated to next year.
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