Ethel's set was tight and they held the attention of staid Washingtonians throughout the set. It appears that their set was one piece shorter than the performance I saw in Baltimore…. And played in a slightly different order… but I as I was there for a good time, I didn’t wrack my brain too hard trying to note the titles. This was the right crowd to appreciate what this group is doing. Particularly engaging is the Finnish (or was it Icelandic) fiddle tune they played. When they tell you they're going to play some fiddle music, hang on, you're in for a ride.
Set changes were fast and gave just enough time to run to the bar, rest room, or escape the uncomfy seats. Some vestiges of the technical problems that plagued the tour early on were still in evidence to the watchful eye. In-ear monitor levels needed attention, audio levels were fouled up during the all-performer finale, and it appeared that there was a bad connection on the viola's pickup. Ickiest of these was a D or an A string that came loose during Todd's opening number. He said later something to the effect of, "You know, I was just thinking, 'just wait, I'm going to bust a string' and poof, there it was." Something plagued his focus here and there through the show, but the expression was right on. Showstopper? Pretending to Care. The suited and bespectacled Washington crowd was the epitome of white folks at a concert – for the most part sitting politely with hands folded, then erupting into appreciative applause and plenty of o-o-o-vations.
One of our crowd is a Todd fan who hasn't seen a show in 10 years, and she LOVED it. The four of us agreed we would really like to see these guys do a whole show arranged for piano, string quartet, and guitar – the way the finale was done. There's certainly plenty of Todd material that would work in that format! And I already have a list going in my head!
Thanks to my buddy's husband Jim for the Joe Jackson setlist:Hometown Stepping Out Awkward Age Take it Like a Man Be my Number 2 It's Obvious Love at First Light Hello Hello Who's your Lady friend (Joe performs this vintage 1913 pop song in a soon-to-be-released Disney film) Different for Girls Citizen Sane Is She Really Going out With Him
Todd's set for this show:
Love of the Common Man (had to switch guitars in 1st chorus) I Don't Want to Tie You Down I Saw the Light Black and White Viking Song It Wouldn't Have Made Any Difference Hello It's Me Bang the Drum Beloved Infidel Afterlife Lysistrata
Joe Jackson & Ethel: Real Men Todd & Ethel: Pretending to Care
All: While My Guitar Gently Weeps
All: Black Maria