RECAP: Spafford at The Haunt in Ithaca, NY
Fresh off two sold out shows in Baltimore and the release of a new 5 song EP, The Gaff Tapes, the red hot Arizona-based jam quartet Spafford brought their Fall Into Place tour to Ithaca Saturday night, playing their final New York date of 2019.
After taking the legendary stage of The Haunt around 8:15 to the tune of the Vanilla Ice classic “Ice Ice Baby,” Spafford quickly kicked things into high gear, opening with a cover of John Hiatt’s Memphis in the Meantime, which seamlessly segued into Gold Glittered Hat, marking only the second time the unreleased song has been played live. From there, the band really started to settle in, opening things up for the first real improvisation of the night, the Andrew “Red” Johnson led My Road (My Road). After a brief pause to wipe the sweat off, guitarist Brian Moss kept the show rolling with the familiar opening riff of Fuel, followed by the set closing one-two punch of Doghouse>Part II, featuring the soothing and underrated vocals of bassist Jordan Fairless.
After a brief intermission, Spafford returned to the stage to the tune of Y.M.C.A, resulting in some humorous audience interaction with the band before business picked back up with a bluesy Shake You Loose second set opener. From then on, it was vintage Spafford, as the next forty plus minutes rewarded the “Spaffnerds” in the crowd with a coveted All My Friends>Bee Jam>Walls trifecta, easily the high point of the night. Next came a Van Morrison cover of Cleaning Windows, followed by a set closing stand alone version of Weasel, one of the bands most popular songs. After a thunderous applause, Spafford returned to the stage for a one song encore, the seldom played Levilan Shores. The Fall Into Place tour now moves to the midwest, with a focal point on their hometown Halloween show in Phoenix.
Set 1: Memphis In The Meantime* > Gold Glittered Hat, My Road (My Road), Fuel, Doghouse > Part ii
Set 2: Shake You Loose, All My Friends > Bee Jam > Walls, Cleaning Windows^, Weasel
Encore: Levilan Shores
* John Hiatt
^ Van Morrison