1/22/09 Kentucky Theatre, Lexington, KY

Way Back When, Beauty Within, Ring of Fire, If You Only Could, Garden of Eden, I Don't Need a Riddle, Biggie K, Silverlined, Blue Sky, Funky Side, Temporary Misery, Tomorrow Still Knows, You're Breaking My Heart, Wood and Stone, Conscious Evolution, Locket and Key, Family Picture, Positive Friction, Broken Record, Forty Days and Forty Nights Encore: In Another World (Tara and Jeb only), Revolution, Hot Tamale Baby

*No Jay Sanders; Craig Aspen (the Believers) played bass

By Matt Preston

Upon receiving notification of DtB's impending show in Lexington (Lex) by my brother Bryan some 30 days prior, I instantly became elated. For the past nine years I have thoroughly enjoyed what DtB does for my soul. I am one who uses music for its emotionality. I enjoy how it can literally and figuratively move me. Thus a perfect match, DTB and Me--let love move me--and how!

It was only recently that I was able to truly grasp that this reality is why I have spent vast hours on the road heading to Wilkesboro, Live Oak, Key West, and numerous other cities in between. However, this time I got to stay right in the town I love. As the weeks pasted and I worked with Hannah from Sugar Hill Records to spread the herd, I began to contemplate the changes DtB has and continues to undergo. Boy, children change lives (I have an 11-year-old daughter, Marley, and 6-month-old twin girls, Harper and Kennedy :) Good thing they haven't adversely affected the ability of DtB to hit the groove!

Just as Jeb told Scott Preston (no relation) in an interview for Cincy Groove Magazine the day before the show, "We are lucky enough to have a good musical chemistry, especially with the changes over the years. Somehow the band has maintained a certain spirit and personality that lets people plug into what we are doing. We definitely have good, solid support (fans). The audience really helps us keep that musical spirit especially when there are changes in the band or if we are going through rough times. We have been very lucky to have the fans that we do have." With that sentiment, I am more than happy to continue doing my part maintaining that musical spirit--long live the herd!

On the day of the show I was scheduled to begin a home renovation job, yet found it very difficult not to take the day off and start the festivities early. Reality hit (3 daughters) and I quickly regained focus and found myself at the work site. A few hours in, while listening to my favorite DtB that I have ever attended (11-23-02 Variety Playhouse, Atlanta), I decided it was at least time to have a beer! Upon getting into my truck and turning on WUKY, the timing of my trip to meld DtB Day and work could not have been better. Jeb and Tara sat in studio with host Mike Graves for a few songs (Tomorrow Still Knows with Tara's mood-shaping fiddling and the contemplative Beauty Within) and some friendly banter, including Jeb inaccurately stating that it was their first time in Lex (10-17-00 Lynagh's) and Tara giving some props to our city as being "a cool town!" Listen the entire segment at Needless to say, I was immediately cast into full DtB mode and headed home for pre-game.

After a great sweet chili pizza at Natasha's Bistro we walked across the street to the historic Kentucky Theatre. A place Jeb called "the nicest place we've ever been in a city we've never been to when it turns out we've actually been here." Upon arrival, we met Jordy at the door who had our names from Hannah for the guest list. After visiting with him a few, it was off for a ceremonial Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale (from local brewery Lexington Brewing Company). Now that is good beer!

Although I did my best to get the word out about the show, I was a bit apprehensive regarding attendance for the night and fully expected a high percentage of newcomers. The numbers started low but by Johnny Cash's Ring of Fire it was obvious that the aisles were full of happy feet. Prior to this shift in Herd induction, the set started out with the frequent opening of Way Back When, quite true to form. Shortly thereafter, I once again found myself earnestly attempting to accurately sing along to a spirited Garden of Eden, again to no avail.

Then, the wonderful surprise so far of the night for me--that rug-cutting riff that starts Biggie K. A song that was for Jonas, who was born the same date as my mom and one that my wife Laurie grew even fonder of while in the hospital with our twin girls.

After Tara further induced Herdism with the majority of the crowd singing along to the chorus of Blue Sky, the band launched into Funky Side only to see Jeb break the A string on his trusty Fender. Fear not, for a magic sound remained!

Then perhaps the most poignant moment of the night came with Temporary Misery. Laurie had spoken with Jordy again prior to the show and the events of late 2004 came up. The reality of those times for the band were in direct contrast to those for Laurie and I, as we honeymooned in Key West for the 01-05 shows. Life is strange! (I also miss Kathy's back-up vocals on this one).

No time for melancholia (even with McCracken's keys in full tilt.) Next came You're Breaking My Heart, which found me at the lip of the stage, eyes closed grooving away--love that one! As requests continued to waft to the stage, Jeb noted that now that we have a new administration some songs are less applicable. Enter Conscious Evolution. Though not the jam that I have heard before, signs of further Herd conversion were noticeable. This was even more palpable with the onset of an old faithful, "Positive Friction."

The show closed on a perfect note with a Tara and Jeb duet of In Another World, into Revolution and closing with Hot Tamale. What a wonderful way to set the hook for the good amount of newbies in the crowd--socially conscious lyrics slowly eased into classic DtB zydeco--beautiful!

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