Originating in New England in 1971, Max Creek holds old-school jamband cred as being one of the original purveyors of the genre. Over the years the band logged countless shows and continues to host one of the longest running summer jam festivals in the Northeast, dubbed “Camp Creek,” which hopped around a bit before recently landing back in Connecticut. Aside from being a regional standout in the jam music world, the group is also known for giving rise to lead guitarist Scott Murawski, whose affiliation with Bill Kreutzmann of the Grateful Dead and bassists Oteil Burbridge and James “Hutch” Hutchinson was well appreciated in the group BK3.
On 45 & Live, their first release since 2000, the outfit’s primal members John Rider (bass), Mark Mercier (keys), and Scott Murawski get an assist from next-generation players Bill Carbone (drums) and Jamemurrel “Jay” Stanley (percussion), to display their renowned musical fusion on a thirteen-track double disc recorded live during the group’s 45th anniversary tour. Murawski and company dazzle on his song “Emerald Eyes” while the ensemble gels very pleasingly on a few of its other creations, including “Willow Tree,” “Said and Done” and “Devil’s Heart,” as well as on the well-selected covers “I’ll Be Your Baby Tonight,” “I Got My Mojo Workin’,” “After Midnight” and “Midnight Special.” Turn it up and listen to the crowd dig in as the Creek keeps the fire burning. The band is also out and about this year celebrating its 48th “Creekiversary.”