October 6, 2009

Live Review: Mark Sandman Memorial Concert

The Middle East Downstairs // Cambridge, MA // Sept. 27, 2009

Elastic Waste Band

Not even Mother Nature could put a damper on the festivities that were the Mark Sandman Memorial Concert. Moved to The Middle East Downstairs due to the rain, the concert, which consisted of performances by legendary Boston music heavy-hitters, was everything but ordinary. The mood was quite celebratory, as onlookers (some with their children on their shoulders) danced and sung along as they paid tribute to the late Mark Sandman.

Elastic Waste Band

Sandman, a Boston native and creative genius whose band Morphine took Massachusetts, and later the country, by storm, frequented the Middle East as a performer – so it seemed only fitting that the show take place there. Artists like The Elastic Waste Band and Orchestra Morphine paid great homage to Sandman, but Treat Her Right – Sandman's pre-Morphine project – overwhelmed the crowd with their energy, fast paced rhythms and overall feel good vibe. The highlight of their set had to be “I Think She Likes Me,” a classic soulful tune that just jumped to life onstage.

Treat Her Right

Throughout the sets, musicians reminded the crowd of the reason why they were there – to recognize and pay respect to the man who paved the way for so many wonderful and talented artists right here in Boston. Not only was he a musician, he was a writer, a promoter and a pillar in the Boston music scene. And at the memorial concert, one thing was made beautifully clear: that his work and spirit still lives on in not only former friends and bandmates, but in the community he inspired as well.

-Words and photos by Candace McDuffie

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