G. Love & Special Sauce at The TLA

We’re always thrilled when we hear that G. Love & Special Sauce will be returning to Philly. Garrett Dutton, best known by his stage name ‘G. Love’, has been making us groove for well over two decades. We’ve seen him play shows in numerous cities but there is something special about catching him right here in his hometown.

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A little over two years ago we spoke with him regarding playing shows in Philly and a variety of other topics. You can revisit that interview right here.

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This time around, G. Love & Special Sauce (touring in support of their latest album, 2014’s “Sugar”) had back-to-back gigs at The TLA, and we caught the first of the two shows on Friday, February 13th. There was an opening set by Matt Costa but we admittedly missed it because we were glued to the TV, watching Villanova’s thrilling two point victory over Providence in the Big East tournament. We did however, arrive in plenty of time to catch the entirety of G. Love’s performance.

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G. Love is a wizard on the guitar and harmonica, Jeffrey Clemens a maestro on drums, and Jim Prescott sets the tone, stoically playing the standing bass.

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The trio has an extensive catalog of songs so we are always excited to see which of our favorites we’ll get to hear (and which ones we wish we had). During their 90 minute performance they rocked out many of the classics like “Shooting Hoops”, “Baby’s Got Sauce”, “Cold Beverage”, “Booty Call”, and an updated version of “I-76” which even included a reference to Joel Embiid (“Joel Embiid, yes indeed”) in addition to Charles Barkley, Allen Iverson, Mo Cheeks, Moses Malone, and Dr. J.

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G. Love & Special Sauce always attracts an older, more sophisticated crowd than some of the other shows we cover and we really appreciate the vibe. It’s nearly impossible to sit through one of their performances without grooving out a bit and getting down to the hip-hop infused, funk fueled, blues based sound.

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We wish we were able to return on Saturday to catch the follow up performance but alas, you can’t always get what you want. However, with G. Love & Special Sauce, we always get what we need.

[Photo credit: D. Jacob Miller Photography]

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