CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- In something of a departure from regular Clay Center decorum, Rob Rosano, director of theater and sales, told the crowd it was ok to dance, shoot pictures and even record the Saturday night show -- provided it wasn't for professional use.
A lot of people took him up on that when southern rock/jam band Gov't Mule took the stage to a mostly full house. The cameras (with flashes, another taboo) and cell phones came out. Probably, somewhere in the audience, somebody was taping the show.
Bandleader Warren Haynes is very much OK with fans recording Gov't Mule's performances and swapping them.
And plenty of people got down; they danced, they swayed and they bounced ecstatically as the band powered through roughly three hours of nearly nonstop music.
It was occasionally dizzying.
Haynes, like Allman Brothers Band-mate Derek Trucks, who performed last year on the same stage, didn't say an awful lot. He managed to get out a little more than the taciturn Trucks with a couple of "How are ya's" and "How ya' doings?" but he barely went beyond that.
After seeing both Haynes and Trucks, you might wonder if the reason the two of them don't have a lot to say is because both of them have gotten used to Gregg Allman doing most of the talking. They just never got around to developing much stage patter.