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September 13, 2007

9/8: Tea Leaf Green at Blender Theatre at Gramercy, NYC

As if a 3 night run in NYC wasn’t enough, Tea Leaf Green topped off their third and final show at The Blender Theatre at Gramercy by giving their east coast fans a double dose of their California-based folk infused rock. How can you not love (and respect) a band that opens for itself!?!? Saturday night’s show treated all in attendance to Coffee Bean Brown, TLG’s mellower, acoustic twin brother. Before hitting us with 2 full sets of high energy rock n’ jam, the guys warmed us up with about an hour of their more folk inspired, west coast sounding harmonies and tunes. A sucker for an unplugged guitar, this was one of those rare occasions where I might have enjoyed the opening act just a bit more than the headliner….though I suspect there’s not too much competition between these two alter-egos as to which one steals the show. Ain’t no room for a 50 Cent vs. Kanye West smack down on this stage!


Set List:

Coffee Bean Brown opener: Dreaming Without Sleeping, Rattlin’, I’m Not Fit, Barnacle B, Honey Bee, Biscuits, Packing Up, Carter Hotel, Cowboy’s Lullaby, Slip Away, Cops Took My Weed, For Every Lonely Lady, Harvest Time


Once TLG’s electric set started, it was obvious that for the rest of the screaming and dancing hardcore fans in attendance, CBB was merely a delicious, wet-your-palate appetizer…an extra sweet treat. These people were here to see and rock out to TLG (many I presume for the 3rd night in a row). This was only the second time I’ve seen TLG and I’ll admit, I didn’t remember them being as much of a rock band as they proved themselves to be Saturday night. When I caught one of their shows a few years ago at Irving Plaza (or whatever those concert promoters are calling it now) the guys had more of an easy, hippie-jam thing going on. Not this time! As the band hit us immediately with an incredible version of “Garden Part III,” one of my favorites off the album Taught to be Proud, the crowd went absolutely nuts! The floor beneath me was literally shaking (especially on faster tunes like “Morning Sun”) from all the jumping up and down and my ears were ringing not from my close proximity to the speakers, but from the deafening “yeahs” coming from the fist-pumping guy next to me who flew in from Cali “to see TLG on the east coast.” 


Josh Clark is 100% a rock n’ roll guitar lord. When he tears it up with electric solos and riffs, there’s no doubting his enormous talents and ability to steal the show. Absolutely killing it with never ending guitar jams on tunes like “Kali-Yuga” and "Tequila,” as well as many others, it’s easy to forget that keyboardist Trevor Garrod is the actual singer and primary songwriter of the band.



That being said, Garrod's smooth, almost relaxing to listen to voice is the perfect compliment to Clark’s raging guitar sounds. “Faced With Love” and “If It Wasn’t For The Money” were definitely two of my favorites that really showed off Garrod’s vocals, not to mention his talents as a prolific storyteller/lyricist.


Another random highlight of the night was an impromptu rhythm heavy jam c/o Ben Chambers towards the end of the first set while Clark fixed his amp.


TLG is definitely a band that you have to see and hear live in order to fully appreciate. Their discs are great, but they come to life on stage with totally rockin’ jams that breed more edge and substance into their tunes, turning already great songs into amazing, more developed versions of themselves. Though they definitely have secured a sound and following all their own, Saturday night’s show, with the help of stellar lighting I must add, made me think that TLG might be the younger, more rock n’ roll heavy cousin of Phish.

Set Lists:

Tea Leaf Green Set I: Garden Part III, Papa’s In The Backroom, Kali-Yuga, Devil’s Pay, Faced With Love, Morning Sun, Las Vegas, Dragonfly, Drink of Streams

TLG Set II: If It Wasn’t For The Money, Franz Hanzerbeak, The Invasion, Stormcloud (w/ Trevor on flute), Deep River, Tequila (w/Also Sprach Zarathustra teases), Planet of Green Love, Don’t Do It > Can You Guess It?

Encore: Professor’s Blues

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Great show, great vibe, and a very cool venue. I must see them again.

franz hanzerbeak

Coffee Bean Brown my friend, no worries though...and yes they are sick sick sick to death!!!


Enjoyed your post, got some chuckles imagining the might and the dynamic from the CBB to the TLG. Personally, I have a taste for the rare Coffee Bean Brown myself, and would happily enjoy a complete 3 sets of them in rapt silence and gentle dance. But if it's time to rage, sure, TLG is all one needs.


Lara A

great post


Leslie, how did you know....ever since I saw Tea Leaf Green in a small pub in Saratoga called O'Dwyers a few years back, I have been loving them ever since!!! Hopefully you are hooked now as well! I look forward to seeing them again!!


Leslie, how did you know....ever since I saw Tea Leaf Green in a small pub in Saratoga called O'Dwyers a few years back, I have been loving them ever since!!! Hopefully you are hooked now as well! I look forward to seeing them again!!

Rich Lieberman

Great review Leslie! Felt like I was right there with you. I went on Thursday Night after the Mule in Central Park show. TLG is making itself into a band to be reckoned with. I so agree with your words. great Job!


Great review!

Jeanette Coppola

Cool blog!!! I think your pictures rock! Thanks for the review!

Wendy Wecksell

great blog!


Sounds like fun and you got some great pics with that phone!


ahh...hell yah...i love tea leaf green!


This sounds like an interesting band. I'll have to check them out ;)

Lauren Ainsworth

I have not heard these guys, but they sound awesome - thanks again!


I am really excited about the hype building behind the massive aural flood known as TEA LEAF GREEN. Been to over 25 shows; I keep comin' back and getting awe-struck each and every time!!! Check 'em out....


Beee AAA UUUU tiiiifuullll pix Leslie !!! ...and to think, you are actually using the camera/phone they gave you to use!! Speaks well of its capabilities...and YOURS !!!


I've never heard of this band, but feel inspired by your review to check them out - yet another great account of your evening out...your episodes of the soap will wait !
Keep them coming , and thanks!


Very nice review! This was my 35th show and definitely in the Top 3 shows I've seen.


Great pics once again, and sounds like another great show. Thanks for the review and keep them coming.


Another Great review, Leslie!


Keep it up, Leslie. Good Luck!


saw them myself a few years ago...definitely a cool band that more people on the east coast need to hear.


I love the name of the band! I am glad that you liked the show so much...

Jody W

Sounds cool! Sure will miss reading your reviews!


Sounds like fun and great pics!

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