Fat Freddy’s Drop – Interview / Show Review (Berlin, 23.11.15)


FFD – The Show At Columbiahalle (see below, for the interview)

On november 23rd, Fat Freddy’s Drop returned, yet again, to Berlin. The gig was the first chance for the Berlin audience to hear the tracks from the recently released album “Bays” being performed live on stage. The show was sold out months in advance and the venue was filled nearly too properly with respect to not having the place to dance. But when you know Columbiahalle, you’re kind of used to that.

They started with some of the new tracks, the first being “Slings & Arrows” and “10 Feet Tall”. After the first few tracks the sprinkled some of the earlier tunes from “Dr. Boondigga And The Big BW” slowly digressing into a quite long jam session that involved some of the faster tracks from “Bays”. At that point I had the feeling, that the audience was not quite ready for the new songs. You had the feeling that the people wanted Fat Freddy’s old tunes and were getting the new and most recent Fat Freddy’s … and did not quite know how to cope with that. The main dancing action took place during the more well known songs and the reggae pieces from “Bays”. Then, suddenly there was one – and I don’t bloat it – brilliant interpretation of a Bob Marley track (though the actual name of the track totally escapes me right now – edit: somebody helped me out, it was “Waiting in vain”). It was very touching, though.

One of the things that you won’t miss in a Fat Freddy’s Drop show ever, is Joe “Hopepa” Lindsay dancing like mad on the stage and shoving his belly from the left to the right of the stage while playing his trombone, this time even a tuba, as tight as it can ever get. Of course he did it again this time, with the added bonus of him dressing in a golden Superman-like cape with a golden safari hat on his head. Ridiculous a bit, yeah maybe, but hell of a lot of fun to look at.

In the end, it was a good show played by brilliant musicians, but it left the feeling of a concert that was pretty good in musical terms, but overall may have been too slick. It was missing the edges, the wild improvising that we’ve seen over the years. Scott Towers told me in the interview, that this album has completely been written in the studio and is now performed the first time in front of the audience. With that in mind, I think we will see the new material being transformed by that process of playing live and getting feedback from the audience.

The Interview

Before the show I was able to conduct an interview with Scott “Chopper Reeds” Towers. He seemed pretty relaxed and took his time to answer some questions about the recent record “Bays” and other topics. Enjoy! Maybe you also want to compare it to the interview Irie Ites did ten years ago: listen to the interview with Dobie Blaze, DJ Fitchie and Jetlag Johnson from way back then!

Thomas Dalichow


About TwizzyDizzy

I'm a loose lily floating down an amber river. Author and Webmaster for Irie Ites.