First off, the show was rockin'! The venue was kinda cramped, but it was an okay place to see a show. Bobby looked great, like he was really having fun. The rest of the band looked pretty good too, w/ the exception of the sax player; he looked a little under the weather to say the least. The setlist was excelent IMO. The Shakedown opener was kickin', especially when Weir walked up to the mic. after the 2nd verse and rapped "shake it down, shake it down, shake it down now"! That was incredible.... Other first set highlights included Ramble on Rose and Minglewood Blues, both with vocal flubs by Bob. Liberty closed the set with everybody crying FREEDOM! Loose Lucy was also a welcome first set surprise.
The set break was incredibly long; the crew was looking for faulty wiring. Don't know if they ever found it or not. Weir, Karan, and the bass player came on and played a few songs acoustic. El Paso was great; I was really looking forward to hearing it. The crowd helped Bobby out on the high parts! The Wheel and Hell in a Bucket were played really strongly with good vocals by Bob, especially during Bucket. After drums/keys/sax, they did a short spacey jam and went into Knockin' on Heavens Door. It was played really well with good harmonizing. That segued right into Sugar Magnolia, which brought the house down. Everyone was dancing in a frenzy throughout and the energy was incredible. Bob really played to the crowd leaning out over the stage and playing windmill style with his guitar, just like Townshend! Incredible sight. They came out for the predictable encore of OMSN. Nonetheless, the crowd was happy, and everyone left on a high note. The whole band seemed pleased with their performance judging from the smiles on their faces when they bowed. Can't wait till the next time they stop in 'Sconsin.
Ian, Manitowoc, WI
It was nice to finally see Ratdog without the guise of a Further Festival-type entourage in a smaller venue. I went to Meal-Wah-Kay with a friend who is a native of Wisconsin by way of Colorado whom I've seen experienced music with all over the country for the last 10 years or so. We were pretty psyched to get away. The night was cleared and the trip smoove. I appreciated the Shakedown opener and loved the Mission in the Rain. (It rained that night.) We were alerted to a Loose Lucy from a loser/friend of ours named Skillet Head Mike when he couldn't come with us because his job is more important than seeing Bob Wier. I always tingle to Ramble on Rose and have been waiting for a Liberty for a long time. After utilizing my two nine-dollar drink tickets at set break, I was not surprised to hear the first notes of El Paso. The middle of the second set was well struck, with Victim and The Other One being spacey and crafted well enough to keep my focus on the packed, squirming floor surrounding me. I called the Saturday Nite by the time we made it up to the balcony for more refreshments. I wished and was expecting another. Lots of ex-Deadhead guys like me keeping it alive, but drinks and parking were expensive. Thank God for the Green Van....
Paul Zielke, Madison, WI
The show in Milwaukee was rocking all night. Shakedown Street was amazing, and it was a great song to open with. I couldn't take my eyes of the guitars of Weir and Karan. The Sugar Magnolia jam was great, and I couldn't stop dancing the whole night. What a show.
Jason, Sheboygan, WI
The second set was a unique gem; it took Bobby and the boys a little time to get going. They opened the second with a beautiful El Paso, and bobby carried the crowd with an awesome Mission.
Casey, Milwaukee, WI
Excellent show!!!!! It was nice and intimate at the Rave. The sound was great but could have been turned up a few notches. Man, Bobby and the band were tight, just a little off on the encore but we are VERY forgiving!!!!!
Ok, I know today is rainy and it's a Monday, but I just have one little thing that has been bothering me for YEARS. The Grateful Dead/Bob Weir/The Other Ones/The Dead/Ratdog--I have seen all of them a lot in the midwest since '86 and I just don't understand why so many of the same songs are repeated? I love all the songs but am so jealous when I read some of the other set lists. I saw the Dead at Summerfest and heard Loose Lucy, Liberty, El Paso, Hell in a bucket, and Ramble on Rose. Again, all great ones, but when they do soooo many tunes, why so much repetition?
I won't complain anymore; I love to go and let loose and dance and drift off to another level of something in my head, and no other band could EVER make me feel the way I do.... The sax was UNBELIEVABLE, and Mission in the Rain I haven't heard in, well, I forget how long if ever. The balcony was pretty mellow and had plenty of room to dance. Victim was really out there. To sum it up: excellent show, great set list, cool people, and I wish I was able to be young enough again to pick up and go to the next shows. Please come back again soon, Bobby!!!!! We love you!!!
ILuvBobby, Oconomowoc, WI
For the second year in a row, I made it up to the Rave via one helluva mission in the rain only to be totally blown away by Weir and the boys once more. I couldn't believe all the trippity-dippity Deadheads I know who were there, not to mention some chick I ran into at Bonnaroo in June. I'm glad we shifted over to the left, as did keyboardist Jeff Chimenti. Robin did alright replacing Rob on the bass, and I was most impressed when he brought out the big standup for El Paso. Thanks for the WAVE during Knockin, Jeff, and we'll be looking forward to getting down with y'all in West Des Moines next week. Cassidy will be there and he still has yet to go to a show at which you play his song. Oh well, stay on the bus long enough... bound to cover just a little more ground.
Dr. Robert, Clinton, LA