Woodstock '94, Part Three

Arrested Development - WOMAD - Allman Brothers - Traffic

August 13-14, 1994

First Appeared in The Music Box, February 1995, Volume 2, #2

Written by John Metzger

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Sunday morning began with the hippie rap/hip-hop/soul/blues sound of Arrested Development. The group's Woodstock performance wasn't quite as polished as its studio works, and at times it was uninspired. Still, it was entertaining and provided quite a contrast to some of the other acts that performed at the festival.

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WOMAD (World of Music and Dance), Peter Gabriel's hodge-podge of world talent, also performed throughout the day on Sunday. For those who have never had the opportunity to catch this festival as it passes through the country each summer, it's quite an entertaining and culturally enriching event that is sure to thrill anyone with an open mind who is looking for a mellow place to hang out and dance.

Back on the main North stage, the Allman Brothers Band opened its set with a solid Statesboro Blues that seemed to ignite the group and send it spinning into orbit. The intensity built further in yet another stellar version of Blue Sky followed by the a rendition of The Same Thing, which included Duane Betts, Dickey's son, on guitar. The intensity continued throughout its trimmed down set, which closely matched the band's other summer 1994 performances. Other highlights included a rip-roaring Back Where It All Begins, which, once again, featured some excellent jamming from Dickey Betts and Warren Haynes, and a set closing version of Whipping Post that smoked.

Traffic was next on the agenda, and the group quickly blasted through Pearly Queen and Medicated Goo before hitting its stride with a killer jam during Rock & Roll Stew. Steve Winwood and company sounded better than ever, following a work-out on the Grateful Dead's summer tour. While the ensemble's set list was predictable, every note of every song was extremely well played, and plenty of improvisation took place. The highlight of the 90-minute set was a jazzy version of Low Spark of High-Heeled Boys, which was perfect for driftin' and dreamin'. Throughout the set, Winwood more than proved that he hadn't lost his gift of banging out melodic piano and guitar solos, something that has been missing from his solo work.

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Copyright 1995 The Music Box