Gammons, Epstein deliver great time at Hot Stove

A review of Hot Stove, Cool Music at the Paradise Rock Club on January 15, 2011

, Managing Editor

Hot Stove, Cool Music may be the only charity event where one can be mocked while making a donation. That may sound cruel but it’s actually all in good fun and basically what people have come to expect with the show now in its 11th year. The event, a joint-venture between Theo Epstein and Peter Gammons, returned to the Paradise Rock Club on Saturday night for another entertaining evening of music, baseball and laughs before a sold-out crowd.

Epstein and Gammons have made some great friends through HSCM, which benefits Epstein’s Foundation To Be Named Later, with many familiar faces appearing on Saturday. The event frequently draws the likes of Kay Hanley, Buffalo Tom amongst other local talent with New Hamshire-bred comedian Mike O’Malley serving as the emcee. The show constantly boasts a lineup of some of the Boston area’s best, yet somehow this year’s headliners, Evan Dando’s Lemonheads, were making their first ever Hot Stove appearance.

Special guests often make for some interesting collaborations at Hot Stove and this year was no different. It’s always fun to see Epstein and Gammons play rock star, and former Red Sox pitcher Bronson Arroyo was once again a big hit (especially with the ladies as he auctioned off his shirt), but it was the duo of Evan Dando and re-acquired pitcher Lenny DiNardo which made for the most interesting collaboration of the evening. The two joined forces on the pretty “The Outdoor Type” to start The Lemonheads set. After DiNardo’s departure the trio rocked a short but sweet set of mostly older material like “Style” and “It’s A Shame About Ray”, while many of the performers huddled on the stage side to watch. The show ended in grand fashion as Peter Gammons’ Hot Stove All Stars returned for a couple of roaring covers including Neil Young’s “Powderfinger” and The Rolling Stones “Gimme Shelter”, the latter which was highlighted by Jenny Dee and Hanley’s powerful vocals and Bill Janovitz’s goofy (but dead-on) Jagger impression.

Janovitz was a big part of the entertainment as he and The Figg’s Mike Gent shared much of the vocal duties for the All Stars before his band Buffalo Tom played a set of their own. They previewed their forthcoming album, Skins, due next month with a new song and wrapped things up with the help of Hanley, Dee, and Epstein on guitar for “Tree House”.

Other highlights included American Hi-Fi’s sing-along-spawning set, Bronson Arroyo disrobing after performing some Pearl Jam covers, and O’Malley and Kevin Youkilis playfully pointing out the irony of a man drinking a PBR making a $1900 bid with a few clever jabs.

The night kicked off with sets from local soul favorites Jenny Dee and the Deelinquents and New York’s The Candles

Leave a Reply