I really like the band Dawes and have seen them in concert a number of times, but I wasn’t going to go see them this time around because their closest concert on this tour was in DC on a Sunday night. I hate going to DC for concerts on school nights because it means I’m getting home well after my bedtime and am always exhausted the next day. However, back in December the radio station WRNR was doing a contest to win tickets to the show. I entered it and won. Luckily they sent me my tickets before their frequency got snatched out from under them and they disappeared. I think they might still be operating as an online only radio station, but I haven’t really investigated since they stopped appearing on my car’s radio. So I’m not 100% sure if that was just in the immediate aftermath or it’s going to be a longterm thing.
Anyway, the result of all that was that I did in fact trek down to DC to see the concert on a Sunday night. Given my experience driving to DC the previous day, we allowed ourselves plenty of time to get there and of course had no traffic issues and got there in a normal amount of time which put us at the venue almost an hour early. Can’t win. This is why I hate driving to DC.
This was my first time at the Warner Theatre. Every other time I’ve seen a show listed there that I would want to see it’s been on a weeknight, and I’ve never felt compelled enough to go to deal with that. It’s a very ornate old historic theatre that’s very beautiful. Our seats were up in the middle of the balcony, so not the greatest, but I could still see really well because unlike the dumb Hippodrome in Baltimore these seats were actually offset from the seats in the row in front so you were looking between people’s heads instead of directly at the back of the person sitting in front of you. So I still had a good view of the stage the whole time.
As Dawes is wont to do, it was an Evening with Dawes show meaning there was no opening act. They played two sets themselves with a short break in the middle. I’ve seen several of their shows that have been that way. I bought tickets to see Mary Chapin Carpenter at Wolf Trap later this year and they added Dawes as the opening act. I’m very perplexed by this combination of artists as even though I really like both of them, I don’t necessarily think that they appeal to the same audience in general. Anyway, I was joking that I’m not sure how they’ll ever play for the short amount of time opening acts get since I’m used to seeing them play for 2 and a half hours at a time as they did last night.
I was actually expecting that one half of the night would be them pretty much playing through their new album, Misadventures of Doomscroller. They actually played far fewer songs from that album than I was anticipating, but happily one of the songs they did play was “It Comes in Waves”, which is my favorite song off that album. They played a good mix of music from across their catalog. They’ve post a couple of the other set lists from previous shows that I’ve seen and it does seem like they’re mixing it up a lot from night to night. Sadly the show before mine they played two of my favorite songs “Roll with the Punches” and “Feed the Fire” that we didn’t get during this show. But even at 2 and a half hours it’s unlikely you’ll get to hear all your favorites, so I was happy with what we got.
I did like that Taylor Goldsmith, the lead singer, started the second half of the show doing a couple of solo acoustic songs, which is something I had never seen before. The first one, “St. Augustine” is sort of an ode to his childhood and then he played a new one that’s not on an album called “Little Ones” that he wrote for his kids that he has with his wife Mandy Moore. Yes, that Mandy Moore.
All in all it was a great night of music, and I’m glad I did wind up getting to see them one final time before their bass player Wylie leaves the band. I’ll be curious to see what the lineup is later this summer when I see them open for Mary Chapin Carpenter.