by Annie Chapman
A Night with Dave Mason
Singer/songwriter/guitarist Dave Mason rocked the Wolf Den at Mohegan Sun on Sunday, November 31st, and I had a front row seat! Nothing was missing from my experience listening to Dave Mason perform “Good 2 U,” a sure to be hit off of his recently released album “26 Letters – 12 Notes.” Whoever that song was written for, I want it to be me. That song, the words and the guitar are soulful and sexy. “Good 2 U,” with many other of Dave’s songs, are now permanently on my iPod to get me through my five-mile run.
If you didn’t already know, Dave is the co-founder of the legendary rock band Traffic. Born in May of 1944 in Worcester, England. Dave’s musical career dates back to the 1960s. He’s played with Traffic, Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, George Harrison, Fleetwood Mac, and many others.
On Sunday night, I chair, or should I say banquette, danced and sang my way through great classics like “We Just Disagree,” Dave’s solo hit, written by Jim Kruger back in 1977, and a staple on radio play lists. “Are Your Legs Tired Yet” a fun country swing beat on his new album has such life, it definitely gives one the urge to dance.
Dave told us he was 22 years old when he wrote, “Should Have Taken More Than You Gave” an old classic. He said, “It’s probably more appropriate now.” I wonder what that meant? Another one on my hit list is “Only You Know and I Know” which was off his first album “Alone Together” released in 1970.
For that one true love you just can’t forget, “One Day” is the song that brings him/her to mind. I felt like I already knew the strum of each guitar string and the next word Dave was about to sing. Track 3 on “26 Letters-12 Notes.”
Of course the fans were not going to leave without an encore. Thank goodness, because I was not ready for it to end. The band returned to sing “How Do I Get to Heaven” a song on “26 Letters – 12 Notes.” I have to say, I hung on its every word for personal reasons when previewing the new album. It gave me goose bumps. I learned Sunday night it was written in bits and pieces and left behind by an old and dear friend Jim Capaldi who was finding his way to heaven. Jim passed on, but I know that every time his good friend Dave sings that song, Jim can hear it up there in heaven.
He and his band ended the night with “Feeling Alright” which was written when he was 18 on an island off of Greece. “Feeling Alright” recorded with Traffic in 1968, is one of Dave’s best known songs and has been recorded by over some 40 artists like Joe Crocker, Three Dog Night, and Gladys Knight and the Pips. As the song began, fans moved from their seats to the floor in front of the stage to dance and sing with Rock & Roll Hall of Fame artist Dave Mason. Dave Mason and band finished the night to their second standing ovation and well-deserved. It was a fabulous show.
The good news is the band may have played their last song, but the night wasn’t over for me. About half way through the show, I was joined by my new friend, Ted, who invited me backstage to get up close and personal with Dave Mason. Teddy, as I call him, introduced me to all the band members… and soon I was making dinner reservations at Jasper White’s Summer Shack for Dave Mason, myself, yes, read that again, myself, Ted, John, Jennifer and David. Can you stand it? Jennifer, David and I went to Jasper White’s Summer Shack and eagerly awaited the rest of our party. Dave stayed behind to sign autographs and greet fans.
When Dave and friends arrived, Dave sat right next to me and was quietly pleased to see smelts on the blackboard specials. He ordered enough for all of us to try. Everyone loved the smelts. I suggested a delicious beaujolais to Dave. He liked my choice of wine. I’m not sure how long our dinner lasted, as time flew by like we were all old friends, laughing and sharing stories from everyone’s past. I found Dave Mason to be humble and easy to be around, and of course, loved his British humor. Teddy, Dave and I hit the casino floor and they actually won on the slots! It was a great night all around. I do have one question still unanswered from my time with Dave, “What’s in the bag, Dave?”
If Jasper White’s motto is “Food is Love,” then Dave’s might be “Music is Love.” After all his years of composing and performing, Dave’s admittedly long time coming new album “26 Letters – 12 Notes” is here. However you purchase your music these days, iTunes, Amazon.com, or better yet your local business owner, get this album for yourself and one to give this holiday season. And feel the LOVE.
For more information on Dave Mason and his talented band members visit www.dave-mason.com.