Mike McCready has long been a Hendrix nut: as a boy, he listened to his dad’s copy of Band of Gypsys,* and Jeff Ament used to bump into him at Seattle parties, pre-Pearl Jam, playing Hendrix (and Stevie Ray Vaughan) riffs aplenty. More recently, he’s often slipped some of ‘Little Wing’ into the middle of ‘Yellow Ledbetter’ at the end of Pearl Jam sets.
So it’s no great surprise to see McCready’s UFO tribute act, Flight to Mars, sneaking in a cover of ‘All Along the Watchtower’ as part of this year’s annual benefit show on 16 May at the Showbox in Seattle; all proceeds went to the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America‘s (CCFA) Camp Oasis (for kids with Crohn’s) and the Jennifer Jaff Center (a patient advocacy group).
Lovely solo by Jeff Fielder. McCready is lurking at the back of the stage on the left; he even gets the chance to dust off his Flying V and try out some Michael Schenker licks. For UFO fans, here’s the setlist:
Doctor Doctor,** Lights Out, Mother Mary, Cherry, Too Hot To Handle, Love to Love, Natural Thing, Out on the Streets, This Kids, Only You Can Rock Me, I’m a Loser, Shoot Shoot, Rock Bottom, Sweet Leaf, Riff Raff, Tuesday’s Gone
* My dad had things like Richard Clayderman. Sometimes life is just too cruel for words.
** As far as I know, Bruce Dickinson didn’t rush on stage at the end of song to a flurry of metal riffs. Scream for me, Seattle!