The recounting of the NTSIB roadtrip to points south will begin with the end. We are, as regular readers have surely noticed, a little fannish about the Felice Brothers, so when the opportunity presented itself to cap off our roadtrip by seeing the Brothers play Lebowski Fest, we couldn’t pass it up. It was the fourth Felice show for me, the third for Jennifer and our first show together. All very exciting, I assure you. And it was, for me, the most fun of the Felice shows I’ve experienced.
We set off from the hotel a little late and, sadly, missed “The Greatest Show on Earth” (a favorite of mine), but we sang along to “White Limo” as we crossed the parking lot and weaved our way as close to the stage as we could. The Brothers kept it upbeat for the drunken party crowd and Lebowski-ized a couple of songs, transforming “Where’d You Get Your Liquor?” to “Where’d You Get Your Caucasian?” and “Roll On, Arte” to “Roll On, Donny”. Other highlights included a guest spoon-player on “Whiskey in My Whiskey” and a cover of The Big Lebowski end credits tune “Dead Flowers”, which James introduced as a song from the Felice Brothers’ subway days.
It was, by far, the most effusively Felice-loving audience I’ve been in (well, at least the third of the audience that was crowded around the stage), and that certainly contributed to the enjoyment factor. Jennifer and I were even roped into what Jennifer later characterized as “a dude-bro kickline” during “Take This Bread”.
Due to the time constraints of Lebowski Fest, there was no encore, but after the equipment was loaded out and the big screen went up, the Felice Brothers perched atop their Winnebago to watch The Big Lebowski with us. A pretty sweet ending to a wonderful week.
(We failed to connect up with our friend Digger from Take This Bread, but he has promised me he’ll come to Cleveland in the autumn so we can take in a show at the Beachland Ballroom together. You’re all witness to this now so he can’t back out.)