11/18/2008 Setlist, Photos, and Reviews


Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Ruth Eckerd Hall
Clearwater, FL


great show, worst venue ever! took at least 3 songs to get over the bad parking lot vibe!! will never go there again.

tdog, tampa
Got the scene late but heard the parking lot was bad. Exact oppisite of last year. show was great, To see salt Lake City and art. flowers was unreal. He's Gone was killer as was ramblin rose. I thought the sound was ok up close but got worse as you went back. Jannis Landing is still the best St Pete site. but as long as bobby does his pre thanksgiving shows, or any shows, we'll be there

Dave, Philly
very solid show... band gets better every tour. standard opening sequence really, but played exceptionally well. as well as the rest of the opening set. nice second set for all the faithful. again the band played with extreme vigor i thought. great finish with foolish heart. really can't beat attics as the encore. great harmonies. the venue was nice. staff polite. great sound. aloha.

chuckieboy, kona, hi

It was a chilly 55 degrees or less as we pulled into the parking lot of Ruth Eckerd Hall. We were late. It was about 6pm. Traffic slowed us up.
As for Shakedown, well the Clearwater Police decided there would be no Shakedown at this show and drove up and down shutting down vendors-this continued on after the show of course. Not as though it was warm or a great place to even have such an event, but still they did a great job of ruining an American tradition.
I actually spoke to a cop in front of the place and told him, "We came early to get our yearly $1 parking lot grilled cheese and you shut them all down!" He replied "we are here for every event, we had to work the buggles (or the skittles, whatever, the giggles? the kid thing with the four petophile guys dressed up.)
Wiggles! That's it. Whatever, he was lying. I did'nt see one cop at Steely Dan a couple months back.
So we went inside and straight to this stand that sold pizza that tasted like, well good pizza on top, but the crust was like a cracker. For 2 bucks it was'nt bad.
The crowd was the same. Mostly us leftover 80's heads that ended with Jerry. And I like that. I saw a couple folks I knew from town.
I was really expecting an Obama victory party, and it was there. Obama rally shirts, Obama shirts, a lot of happy people. Funny how we claim he is ours, we do.
"This meant a lot to our people! Not the blacks, not the Democrats, the DeadHeads!!! he is ours!" And you could see this everywhere.
Our seats were great, 7 rows back just right of center.
The entire bass drum head was an Obama Change logo.
And Bobby played as though it was the victory tour.
Shakedown Street-"Don't tell me this town aint got no heart" as if he was saying, this town, this Blue town, county, further blue state. The state and venues he has come to enjoy the last years actually swung Democrat and I think that was conveyed tonight.
Catering to our need for a Dylan fix, and yen for the 80's a strong emotional version of Queen Jane Approximately paid off my entrance ticket, Loser, Ramble on Rose, Might as Well-I then forgot about the Clearwater Police shutting down Shakedown.

Eyes- Standing on the Moon- Foolish Heart- total 80's Jerry set. Bobby really played to us, to him. It was definitely a Florida victory concert to me. I kept thinking back to the first time I saw RatDog after Jerry passed and Bobby struggling to sing anything remotely associated with the last Dead boom. And seeing him tonight I have moreso than ever truly emphasize with him. I hope he thinks what I do, that Jerry would be so giddy over the outcome of the Presidential Election. He would. He was that kind of optimist, and realist the same.

Nobody, and I mean nobody, (and we tried) would have guess a vocal-only Attics of My Life encore. It was touching. Although I would have liked them to rip an electric Not Fade Away to cap this one off, it was unexpected and delightful, and what will separate this show apart.

All in All a great night. On the way out the door a private group handed out flyers for thier Obama homegrown shirts. One showed Obama riding the cartoon Harley from the Grateful Dead movie.
Far Out.

The freakers came out tonight. Thier old, but hell they have heart. As the youth goes to Wide Spread Panic or waits for the return of Phish, I still will line up backwards, in line, on my head to reminice with the true masters of the jam.

Ron, St. Pete
Ron,St Pete.
Do you know the definition of a "Review"???
It's not the long winded Gibber-jabber nonsense displayed here.
Show was GREAT. Strong playing all around. Band was tight.
Keep on Rocken' Bobbie' we love ya.

Franklintower, Bronx NY
Totally agree . . . the show rocked, set list kicked butt, and the venue was not that great. Last year at Mahaffey was way more chill.

ali, st pete
Hey Ron, glad your happy about the election. btw, did a band play last night. See you in orlando, oh, see you in San Fran "Freakin" Cisco!!!!!!
Big Mac

Big Mac, Macclenny, FL
awesome show. gdts too did a great job with excellent seats and the setlist was great. awesome ramble on rose and he's gone. Atticks was a cool encore but would have rather had something a little more upbeat. will definitely go again next year.

Richard, Washington, DC
wasnt expecting a tailgating scene, but agree those cops were over the top.

im going to see em in jamaica and after the summer tour (didnt go to any but just followed it on this site), was a tad worried.

then this tour started and the reviews have been great.

so come in with slightly high expectations that were, im happily to say surpassed.

the first set was very solid. first salt lake city for me, and well done too. great sing along for Ramble and might as well.

blackbird was fun, but not expected. the artificial and el paso were unexpected and just silly fun. standing, foolish, attics, YOWZA.

wanting more badly!

try to go to orlando tonite, but definitely going to jamaica.

a couple of lyrical flubs, but nother major. we were 20 rows back in the middle, it was a little too loud, imo. but other than those 2 minor complaints, this bad was on tonight. they were strong. it was great to see mark back and healthy.



mark, tampa
This was probably the loudest show I have ever attended---any band. My ears are still ringing this morning. While loud, the sound was very clear---Ruth Eckerd is great from Row X in the middle.

Easy Answers is not a favorite song of mine, but a strong version that definitley got me grooving. The show really took off with Loser. The Karan jam was outstanding---I loved everry bit of the volume then. Ramble on Rose also was extremely strong with another Karan jam that hit heights that I've never heard from Jerry.

All the Jerry songs played created a real strong-special vibe me. At times it felt like Bobby was actually performing/singing it just as Jerry would---driving the same peak in Foolish Heart, the "Be with you" peak in Standing on the Moon come to mind. Both songs are favorties from Dead shows and these versions did not morph into Bobby style too much---they were very much like the Dead played them and absolutely did NOT disappoint---excellent.

The overall power of the show was exceptional. The sax solo/jam on the second jam in Eyes was also worthy of praise. I think Jeff has really found his niche with Ratdog. He looked confident and he was very strong at the right times.

I still enjoy it when Boby gets into the jams so much that he forgets the words or when he suposed to sing. It seemed to me that he missed his vocal queue several times, but didn't matter---I just like it. Maybe they'll play Truckin' soon and he will really screw it up. It's great when the music overtakes him.

It was a very soulful ending to the show to hear the guys sound as good as they did and sing as strong as they did with reasonably goood harmony with such a great song.

Thanks for the fun Bobby and crew. I will keep showing up for the jams and great times.

Jim, Tampa
Haven't seen Bobby and the boys since the Frontier Ranch show in '02. Man alive, they've blossomed. Really dug the jamming. Was a bit surprised to see Bobby walk off the stage right after pointing to his guitar, but the ensuing jam was amazing. Not too much later, on walks Bobby jamming along with it all. It was over the top. Dug the drum jam as well.

I don't go for the Shakedowns and haven't done so for years, so my pre-show experience wasn't tarnished at all. Used to sell tickets at Ruth Eckerd Hall, and it was nice to see them put on such a decent show.

Sound was good, lighting was good, though I'm always wishing for more of a Fillmore type light show.

Really dug the Ramblin Rose and Might as Well. He's gone was amazing. Standing on the Moon, Loser, El Paso and the amazing Attics.

Thanks Bobby et al!

tourning, Dunedin
After leaving at 5:30am yesterday morning from Buffalo airport and getting into town at 4pm I didn't care what the band would play, I came 3000klms to see them play and play they did. I read all of the reviews of shows I attend and I always hear people complain and don't really understand that? but EH I am Canadian and the only thing to complain about is that Rat Dog doesn't come to Canada often enough. Thanks to GDSTOO we had front row center and had the best concert of my life, except for all the drunk people screaming lyric's they don't know and a few other things that must send the band running the other way in their heads. From start to finish it was an amazing night, my highlights were Salt Lake City, Playin, Playin reprise, Foolish Heart and the Attics encore. Bobby, you are an awesome soul, I have seen your music for over 18 year's now and I know you give it your all each and every night, that's why I come as much as I can and from as far as I can. What a Long Strange Trip It's Been, Is and Going To Be...

david hickey, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
a lot different from last year's show in some negative ways, but let's accentuate the positive. bobby was on fire, the band was tight and energetic (and loud), the song list was for the most part superb. wonderful renditions of shakedown, ramble, loser (WOW), el paso, he's gone/eyes (what a sax solo), playin, and of course attics. and what a tribute to the spirit of the dead that the show was a sellout even though there are four shows in florida. long live the grateful dead! see you next year i hope!

Bruce, Sarasota, FL
A total waste of time! They were worse than last year in St Pete. GO SEE PHIL & FRIENDS! THEY ARE THE REAL DEAL!!

Wayne, Bradenton, FL
Bring back Janus Landing! I'll go anywhere but, Ruth was exactly as I expected it would be. Great sound, but on a lock-down.

Great show!

Some people sell their wares to make enough money to travel to the next show. Some people now are eating beeny weenies because they didn't sell a thing. It's not all about drugs, they sell art, clothes, jewelry, food. and at a fair price!

See ya at Janus! Bobby won't do it there again.

Randy, Tampa/Chicago
Great show, though somebody needs to pay better attention to the dynamics of the venue, sound was louder then needed to be. Queen Jane, EOW, He's Gone, Attics - oh so good!
I hope Fri in Ft. Myers is as great without the ear piercing volume - loudest show I've ever been to in 37 years!

Grateful Ed, Venice
probably the 200th show of the dead family that i have seen and this was the most unwelcomed i have ever felt from any venue
if they dont want the fans then dont book the band
go back to jannus

mike, safety harbor
I loved the show and being with all the heads. I thought the crowd was very cool. I know I'm getting older, and my ears are probably worse for the wear from all the shows I've been to, but we were in row BB Center and the sound was awful! Had a hard time catching Bobby's vocals. The Attics was amazing as was the sax on Eyes. That was smokin'! I wish I could catch more on this tour. Peace all!

grateful m, Tampa, Fl
drove over early for the show ,, had a great time ,, nice to see the band play ,, they put a smile on my face ,, lookin forward to fort meyers and then BOCA baby ,,,,

denden5, port saint lucie
Clearwater Set One. I arrived from Ft. Lauderdale close to show time so went right in. Been to a lot of Ratdog shows, but this was the first that was not General Admission so I had to adjust and roamed a bit and talked to fans and did the first set up top, next to the soundboard. Shakedown was total bopping fun and it did feel immediately like a post-election party. Easy Answers stayed on the party them and Queen Jane was beautiful. Loser is always a winner and I am not familiar with Salt Lake City but Ramble on Rose was perfect, just what this RamblonRoze wanted and I was set for the night. Mark Karan guitar solos in Loser and Ramble on Rose were other worldly along with the honky tonk piano and saxophone on Ramble, my computer keyboard is rattling as I type this and listen to the soundboard CDís. Playin was sweet and familiar but I had to step out during the jam for water and a break and the bathroom stalls were vibrating, thatís how good the sound is at Eckerd Hall and when I returned for a frenetic Might As Well I had to agree, ďNever had such a good timeÖĒ Have to go to work, more laterÖ

RamblonRoze, Cooper City, FL
First "real" show for my 7 year old daughter. Crowd made it great for her by coralling balloons her way and giving her necklasses to make her first show unforgettable. Thanks.

As with many of the posters here, I agree. Loudest show I have been to...period.

A phenomenal Queen Jane, one of her favorites, made her night and mine!

Jonathan, St. Pete
Arrived 30 mins. prior to show, so no concerns of shakedown street or it's previous comments of problems.
Seats were in front row and dead center, met some cool people ( Hi Phillis) and ran into a few old freinds. Needless to say front row seats we were pretty stoked on this show without even the first notes being played.
First set was very well payed plenty of solos going around, Mark played exceptionally well on the lead, and ran with each song every chance he had.
Kenny took the spotlight also in this show showing us his lung capacity and his endourence. I think he breaths through his ears at times.
Highlites for me were Queen Jane, Loser and Playing>Might as Well.

Set 2 was just as fun. Bobbys vocals seem to be sounding very well this late into the tour, over the years we have heard it much weaker by the time he gets to Florida, He must be drinking his honey and tea this year. You go Bobby!
Nice accoustic selection, did not expect artificial flowers at all, He's Gone is always a crowd favorite, Funky assed Eyes with Alot of jams and taking us into some far away places, slowed us down a bit with SOTM and finished with some 80's sound with foolish heart.
Lined up for the encore with no instruments, sure they were to sing bid you goodnight, and the broke out a beautiful attics! WOW this really made my night.
Overall a few missed lyrics and few missed played notes and being so close to the front some of the music was behind us We sill loved this show and had a grate time.
Keep it up Guys, and thank you again.
See ya in O town.
Tim, Stuart

Tim, Stuart, Fla
Came all the way from Odessa for the show. Ok, just a few miles north. Received an email the day before the show announcing the lockdown. I thought, well why book the band? Then, when I got there, they were charging for parking. Sometimes they do but mostly they don't. I thought that was unfair.
Man did they rock with energy. This was my first Ratdog show. I was startled at how good the show turned out - it just kept getting deeper and richer and more complex. I agree Bob really evoked Jerry's vocals, particularly on one song - I really thought he had practiced that quite a bit.
I emailed a request for Loser so maybe blame me for the lyrics lapse!
Wanted to hear Cassidy and Here Comes the Rain and Broken Down Palace, but loved every minute of the show, the strong solos and the jazz rhythms. These guys really played with energy and delight. One of the best shows I have ever seen, going all the way back to my first concert of The Who in 1971.

Nick from Odessa, Odessa
Blackbird to open set two was sweet and the piles of CDís that fall down next to my stereo, the tallest most shuffled stacks, are The Dead /Ratdog, Dylan and The Beatles and I get some of those songs at every Dog show so thanks Bob and even though Artificial Flowers seemed strange and out of tune Iíll take it, and El Paso is always right. Since I saw my Uncle in Clearwater right before the show I was hoping for Me and My Uncle but thereís still Ft. Myers and Boca (I boycott Disney). Heís Gone will always be a favorite since I saw it at my first Dead show, front and center, and I love it, but Bobby, if you play it any slower it will disintegrate. Doesnít a steam locomotive go fast? But I was a happy camper, I went to the middle seats of the venue for the second set and it was loud, really loud, just the way I like it. I caught one of the giant balloons that was bopping up and down and it shook and pinged in my hands and I wondered what kind of magic was inside and then I knew, sound waves, a lot of bass, Robin Sylvester rattling the walls. Eyes of the World is a showcase for the Kenny Brooks and it felt more than fine. The drum solo was inhuman, Jay Lane is a stick of dynamite behind the percussion kit. Standing on the Moon and Foolish Heart were good for old timeís sake, and Jeff Chimenti especially shined in Foolish Heart, but these are new times and I was happy to be one of the first to get my show CDís and head into the Florida cold, a November night in Clearwater. By the time I lost and found my car and the motel, my ears could only hear white noise and I was blissed, live hot off the burner CDís just waiting to play. This morning I plastered my new Ratdog stickers to the bumper, so look for my purple Dodge Caravan in Ft. Myers.

RamblonRoze, Cooper City, FL
First and formost this show was epic. Simply epic.
As fas as Shakedown, it was a bit of a bummer. McHaffey the year before was better, 'cept the fools ran out of beer before the set break!!
Usually I try to get right up front, but with the seating arangment, I was in the middle, way back in row "DD", (which I thought was a bra size!)
The music was not unreasonably loud, but what was heard was a high end screach every time Bobby hit a chord. After watching for a while, it was only present when he played his envelope follower in the 'down' position.(quack not wah)
Otherwise a perfect show for me - my needs do vary :-)
Got some Dylan, some sing alongs Ramble on Rose, great jams and some exceptional passionate playing. Eyes went way out to a place that I had not heard before.

Attics - there was/is nothing more to say.


Rick, Bradenton
Scene Sucked
but......that got all of us a SHAKEDOWN opener!! thanks Ratdog you guys rocked Florida

PS bring it back to Jannus Landing!!

Joel, Naples, Fl