What did you do on Valentine’s Day? Go out to a nice dinner? See a movie with a hot date? Or did you just sit in front of your television with a few bottles of wine and the cast of Parks and Rec to keep you company? While all of these scenarios sound fantastic, I’m fairly positive none of them beat Valentine’s Day at the Music Farm. Grace Potter and The Nocturnals threw a party for a few hundred people with support from Futurebirds, and instead of giving us chocolates they gave us a Valentine’s night that the Holy City won’t forget for a while.
Futurebirds kicked off the night, eager to please the crowd. They’re a big band with a knack for making sweet, My Morning Jacket-esque harmony. They got the audience excited for the headliners but held their own onstage, exciting their fans and making new ones as they played. They played a great batch of tunes of the beach house folk variety, including “Johnny Utah,” and “APO.” They sound very different live than they do on their recordings, but are still amazing.
Grace Potter far surpassed the bar set by the Futurebirds as soon as she and her band The Nocturnals started playing the first notes of “The Lion, The Beast, The Beat.” As soon as she walked out from behind her piano and started strumming her signature Gibson Flying V, I’m pretty sure everyone in the room fell in love with her just a bit more. She danced around sans guitar for a few songs like “Sweet Hands” and “One Short Night.” She covered Dolly Parton’s legendary song “Jolene,” bringing grittiness into the melancholy. She and her guitarist covered “You and Tequila” by Kenny Chesney, having Scott Tournet sing in place of Chesney.
After dedicating “One Heart Missing” to all of the single people in the crowd, they began playing “The Divide,” which is arguably my favorite song off of their new record. The song itself is incredible, but seeing Grace Potter practically act out the lyrics on stage was incredible. She then brought out her steel guitar slide and started in on her old blues style two-part track “Nothing But the Water.” I felt like I had walked in during the middle of O Brother, Where Art Thou, but in a good way. The main set ended with “Medicine,” obviously getting us even more amped for the encore.
The encore started out with “Stop the Bus” from their 2007 record This Is Somewhere. She then played “Stars,” one of the most devastatingly romantic songs I have ever had the painful pleasure to hear. The night ended perfectly with a cover of The Beatles’ “All You Need Is Love” in honor of Valentine’s Day. Futurebirds joined The Nocturnals onstage while Grace took her place at her wooden piano, and then they gave us the best Valentine’s gift anyone could ask for. They fired confetti cannons. Confetti. Cannons. Even though many of us in the audience were single on V-Day, we most certainly weren’t lonely. Grace Potter kept us company, and as is customary for the best Valentine ever, made us all feel loved.