From: Kathy & Ken
Date: Wed, 03 Nov 1999 17:43:37 -0800
Subject: Dan at Sweetwater 10/28

The trees in Mill Valley are taking on their bright autumn colors now, and there is a decided nip in the air.  The sweet smell of woodsmoke wafted through the village as we meandered from shop to shop, waiting for showtime at Sweetwater.

And quite a wait it was.  The show was originally scheduled to start at 9pm, which is pretty late for us old people on a weeknight, but then it was moved to 9:30 - an hour which usually finds us drowsy in couchland.  We had driven up to Mill Valley in mid-afternoon in order to beat the traffic, and so had more-than-ample time to eat Chinese food and browse the galleries and shops.  After a bracing evening shot of coffee, it was finally time to head over to Sweetwater.

We settled into our chairs just in time to catch Dan and crew doing their soundcheck.  ("Those of you who’ve bought tickets for the show may look at the stage.")  It was a real education as Dan, the band, and the sound-man very cordially worked out just the right balance.  The warm-up tunes included a laid-back rendition of "Driftin’", which was a pleasant surprise.

Personnel: Paul Robinson, Richard Saunders, Yehudit, and Groovettes Susan Rabin and Sheila Glover.  We got a chance to talk to Paul briefly before the show, and he mentioned that his solo CD "Sweet", which will be released early next year, is just about completed.

Owing to the late weeknight hour, the crowd was a small but enthusiastic one, comprised of the faithful.  After the first set intro of "Honeysuckle Rose", the band played:

*Chattanoogie Shoeshine Boy
*Wild About My Loving
*Caravan/Four Brothers
(At this point, Dan mentioned that the evening’s show was being recorded for a live CD on "Barfbag Records".)
*Up! Up! Up!
*I’ve Got a Capo On My Brain" - which, Dan said, would be included on his upcoming CD, "Songs For The Forehead" (which became, during the course of the show, "Songs For My Forehead", or "Songs For Your Forehead")
*Milk-Shakin’ Momma
*Driftin’/Strike It While It’s Hot - the first of three false starts for "Driftin’", with Dan "forgetting" the words
*Payday Blues
*Driftin’/Canned Music
("During the break, we’re going to go out into the audience and settle some scores.  Then we’ll be back")

At the start of the second set, Dan allowed that the low turnout might have something to do with Bruce Springsteen’s appearance in Oakland.  "Bruce fights for the East Coast working man -- I fight for the West Coast hippie."  This was met with applause.  Then Dan suggested that maybe we should go down to the 2AM Club on Miller Avenue and bring some people back to Sweetwater.

*Four or Five Times
*Somebody Tell Me the Truth
*Topsy/Swing 42
*Hell, I’d Go
(Dan acknowledged the passing of Hoyt Axton, and said "We just might do a chorus of ‘Greenback Dollar’.  I don’t give a FUCK about a greenback dollar.") 
*I Scare Myself
*He Don’t Care
*The Cello Song
encore - The Buzzard Was Their Friend

It was now almost 12:45 am.  We had a chilly walk back to our pickup truck, which we cleverly parked on a sidestreet in order to avoid the zealous parking enforcement of Mill Valley’s Finest.  Then, after wiping the condensation from the windows, we cranked up the heater and began our drive back to the workaday world of the South Bay.

Maybe Springsteen is famous for playing all night, but Dan REALLY played all night, because as we passed the Oakland Coliseum on our way home, even Bruce had loaded out.

Kathy & Ken