Live Show: 8/8/97


Northampton, MA

Reviewed by: Adam Hartfield

The Details

Well. My first "real" Fruvous concert was a total, total, TOTAL blast. It was at the Iron Horse Music Hall in Northampton, Massachusetts, on Friday August 8, 1997. I conned my sister into leaving her husband and daughter at home and coming to the concert with me. Upon arriving at the IH at about 5:45 (the doors opened at 5:30; the show was to start at 7) we discovered that the show was sold out; I was quite happy that I had blown out of work early Wednesday afternoon to go get tickets.

So, Melanie and I found our way to a table in the balcony. Ate a little food, but I was too hyper to do much but babble. There was one group of people who I thought might be the people from this group, but as none of them had buttons on that I could see, I didn't want to embarrass myself by saying "pardon me, but do you have any grey poupon?".

The opening act, The Paperboys, was a Canadian band which played Irish/bluegrass/what-have-you. Guitar, two fiddles, accordion, bass, flutes, drums, etc. They were really great and got the crowd in a good mood. By the end of their set, which lasted about 45 minutes, the first floor of the hall was just about standing-room-only. Melanie and I had by this time migrated down to the dance floor and captured a pretty good spot at the left end of the stage by the wall. The crowd thinned somewhat as the stage was being set up.

Fruvous hit the stage at, I don't know, maybe 8:30 or so. It turns out that the guy who was standing right in front of me was the same guy who I sat right in front of at Falcon Ridge. Bizarre-o. I thought the hill at Falcon Ridge was packed like sardines. The dance floor at the IH gave new meaning to the term SRO. (An aside - even though I've lived in Springfield all my life except college, I'd never been to the Iron Horse before. I was surprised that it is so small - maybe 75' by 150'.) Anyway, I tried to make special note of the songlist and the band's attire, but I failed miserably on the first count, and didn't do too badly on the second. Murray had on some sort of brown/dark red print shirt. Jian, who my sister fell totally in lust with, started out in a black Nields t-shirt before the show, and for the show changed into his orange "I dig your boyfriend shirt" and light-colored bell bottoms. Mike had on a white polka dot shirt with a navy background. Dave had on those black plastic leather (vinyl?) pants and a black shirt with black coat.

As for the songs, I don't remember them all. Let's see:

(See below)

I sang along where I could, and "danced" as much as I could in that confined space. There was one woman at the right end of the stage who knew ALL the words to every song, and had choreographed movements to go along with each. Most impressive. I felt somewhat bad for the shorter members of the audience on the floor - they probably couldn't see much. It was an oven in there. Even the band complained about how hot it was. Somebody tossed a towel on the stage. Somebody told them to take their shirts off - that seemed to amuse the band, but they declined, saying they weren't that kind of band, even though it would be fun.

There was only one downer - some woman of dubious intelligence brought her newly-born infant to the show. This newly-born fan started crying in that way that only newborns can do during the off-mike Gulf War Song. It was quite distracting and annoying. Not only that, but bringing a *baby* to a loud concert?!?!? That poor kid's hearing may have been damaged for life, even though Melanie said she saw cotton stuffed in the baby's ears.

At the end of the concert I got my Frucard. I told Marcus I was at FRFF and he gave me two stamps for that, plus one for that night, so I got the pin. Whatta guy.

Well, work calls. Hope to read other reviews!


The Music

Opened with The Set Closed with Encore 1 Encore 2

Misc. Info

Some other tidbits from the performance include:

Back to the tour dates 1997 page