There is real potential to see something you have never seen before at a baseball game. It could be a statistical anomaly that has not occurred since 1908. Saturday’s game was my first Phillies postgame concert at Citizens Bank Park. It was also my first Avett Brothers gig. A new-ish regular promotion, the gigs are a fun and relaxed way to spend a Saturday.
The Phillies notched a 4-1 win before the show. The victory was the first complete game for starter Nick Pivetta and their fourth-straight win. It is impossible to not notice how quickly Jay Bruce became a fan favorite. Yes, a hot bat helps. The fact that Philly fans have cheered for Bruuuuce Springsteen for decades helps the left fielder get a warm reception every time he steps to the plate… so far.
The Avett Brothers At Citizens Bank Park
After Nick Pivetta induced a groundout to end the game, it took approximately 30 minutes to set up the stage. The Phillies cordoned off the infield and allowed fans onto the basepaths for the infield stage. Roughly one-fourth of the 44,357 who came for the game stayed for the concert.
The Avett Brothers rewarded fans who stuck around. Their 16–song set covered different parts of their two-decade career. The amorphous Americana band flipped between folk, rock, and country during an hour-plus of stage time. Not forgotten: the group’s use of kazoos as they entered the stadium.
After kicking off with “The D Bag Rag,” the soothing “Live and Die” was another early highlight. Some of the best reactions from the crowd came when the band launched into their country-leaning songs. “Paranoia In B Flat Major,” in particular, sent the crowd corralled in the infield and behind the dugouts into a frenzy.
As the show neared an end, Scott and Seth Avett took turns running around the edge of the infield and wading through the crowd during “Ain’t Your Man.” The band closed the main set with “No Hard Feelings.” After a brief pause, they returned for the one-song encore of “The Clearness Is Gone.”
The entertaining concert was the third at Citizens Bank Park this season. Billy Joel and The Who played shows over Memorial Day Weekend.
Phillies Postgame Concerts
The sound of the show was not great. Some of this is due to the makeshift stage setup. The unusual dynamics of a big ballpark, a medium-sized crowd, and a small stage are not concert-optimal. The only way that the stage behind could reach fans lined up around the infield was to jack up the volume.
It is wasn’t the first time this happened at the ballpark. The sound of The Who show (which involved an orchestra) was also lackluster. Stadium acoustics are an unfortunate negative to concerts at Citizens Bank Park. The otherwise perfect atmosphere is built for sights, not sounds.
The Avett Brothers show is the first Phillies postgame concert of the season. Brett Eldredge has a show on June 22. Diplo is on the docket for a Thursday night show on August 15. I am not sure if I would go to a weeknight postgame concert unless I was familiar with the band. 4:00 PM on a Saturday, however, is a perfect time for a game/show. It is not often you catch a great band and a ballgame in the same day and be home before 9:00 PM.