The Train Wrecks, with an all-star lineup of Savannah musicians, paid tribute to Tom Petty at Southbound Brewing Co. on Jan. 13. That is a loaded sentence. In fact, that was enough of a headline to get me out on a cold night. Apparently, it was enough for the other 359 people as well.
It wasn’t until about half way through the concert I realized that this was a charity event. (Yeah, I know, I should pay more attention to things.) The Coastal Conservation Association of Georgia was the beneficiary of the show. The CCAGA helps protect our coastal marine resources. I personally love to fish and enjoy pretty much any food from the sea, especially locally caught. Icing on the cake.
The Train Wrecks opened the night with Running Down A Dream, and it was tight. So much so, it kind of set me back a bit. Then, I looked around on the stage, and slowly the cognitive connections were made. When you piece together the hardest-gigging band in Savannah with Phillip Reynolds Price (COEDS, An Albatross, and other awesome things) on keys, and Kevin Rose (Elevated Basement) on guitar, there’s a 99 percent chance it will rock.
The ramped up version of The Train Wrecks played through eight tunes, before Matt Eckstine, Jim Reed, and original Train Wrecks bassist Eric Dunn jumped on stage. Current Train Wrecks bassist Colin Motlagh handed off his bass to Dunn, and with Eckstine the newly formed lineup delivered a killer rendition of You Don’t Know How It Feels. Then the stage shrank to just Eckstine, Price, and Dunn for a heartfelt version of Wildflowers.
Through all the lineup changes, Price was the only musician to play the entire show, well over 20 songs. Rock star.
The Train Wrecks reassembled for four more tunes before taking a break. Magic Rocks came in and continued the night with a handful of great songs.
Act two of The Train Wrecks included former American Hologram singer Eric Britt for my favorite portion of the show, which included Breakdown, Refuge, and a punk-speed version of American Girl. Then everyone came on stage for arguably the best three Tom Petty songs, Free Fallin’, Mary Jane’s Last Dance and Swingin’.
As Bible closed out Swingin, he changed up the lyrics, singing “And he went down swinging, like Tom Petty,” to close out the tribute properly.
Tom cool guy Cartmel got some photos — 3 here, with more after the jump: