Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings Played an Empty Fillmore, Thousands Missed Best Show Ever

Categories: Last Night
Photo by Marta Xochilt Perez
See the full 30-photo Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings slideshow.

Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings
The Fillmore Miami Beach
Sunday, March 20, 2011

Better Than: Anything that's ever happened to me.

Despite the fact I previewed this show with a music feature in last week's New Times, you'll find more words in this recap than there were people at last night's Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings set. Dismal turnout aside, however, Ms. Jones, the nine-piece Dap-Kings, and two incredibly gifted backup singers collectively known as the Dapettes, managed to transform the Fillmore from an overwhelmingly empty theater into an intimate, Soul Train-like dance party, complete with the funky chicken, camel walk, and boogaloo.

But before Daptone Records' biggest name took to the stage, the evening kicked off win an opening set by Bobby Lee Rodgers, a Miami-based rock 'n' roller with an uncanny ability to captivate an audience -- large or small -- with his brilliant, solo guitar act. After wrapping a 45-minute set with an eight-minute long blues-infused original, Rogers walked off stage and DJ Le Spam of Spam Allstars provided a funky soundtrack of 1960s soul before the Dap-Kings took the stage.

Photo by Marta Xochilt Perez

By the time Le Spam cleared the stage, a crowd of about 350 had rose from the seats and filled in the first three pits of the Fillmore's floor. Shortly after nine, the curtains raised to reveal the Dap-Kings. The nine-piece ensemble immediately broke into a medley of soul, displaying their stellar musicianship. Binky Griptite, the group's rhythm guitarist, welcomed everyone to the Daptone Super Soul Revue.

"Good evening, ladies and gentlemen! How y'all doing tonight?" he asked, repeating his words to raise the crowd's energy. "I said, good evening, ladies and gentlemen! How y'all doing tonight?"

Serving as the night's emcee, Griptite went on to introduce two incredibly talented individuals, Starr Duncan, and Saundra Williams, Sharon Jones' backup singers. Both were given the opportunity to showcase their talents individually at center stage.

Duncan and Williams could tour the world headlining shows as full-fledged soul divas. If Jones is the Queen of Soul, her two Dapette sisters are equally capable of holding the throne. Until the day Duncan and Williams earn top billing, however, the world's lucky to have Sharon Jones.

Photo by Marta Xochilt Perez

At 54 years old, Sharon Jones has the energy of a young Aretha Franklin high off James Brown. Opening with "If You Call," Jones' intoxicating sound immediately hooked the crowd, and soon everyone was dancing. During "Without a Heart," she pulled a dude on stage to sing to, and dance with. We later learned his name was Rob.

And Jones pulled several other people on stage throughout the night. At one point, she had eight women dancing alongside her and the Dap-Kings. But the absolute highlight of the evening was the encore when she channeled the ghost of James Brown and passionately delivered "It's a man's world," reminding everyone that " wouldn't be nothing, nothing without a woman or a girl."

Photo by Marta Xochilt Perez

Critics Notebook

Personal Bias: Sharon Jones sang to me on the phone the other day; I fell in love.

The Crowd: Divorcee girls' night out, a handful of gays, and about 40 hipsters in a dismal turnout for the greatest show Miami's ever hosted.

Overheard in the Crowd: "I'm sure you get this all the time. But are you Christopher Walken?" The guy looked just like him.

Partial Set List: 
-"If You Call" 
-"Without a Heart" 
-"Give it Back"
-"When I Come Home" 
-"The Game Gets Old" 
-"Window Shopping" 
-"She Ain't a Child No More" 
-"Learned the Hard Way" 
-"Mama Don't Like My Man" 
-"Better Things" 
-"New Shoes" 
-"How do I let a Good Man Down?" 
-"100 Days, 100 Nights" 
-"It's a Man's World" (cover)

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Location Info


The Fillmore Miami Beach

1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, FL

Category: Music

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Stone Groove
Stone Groove

This was the best show I ever went to in my life... and there were ALOT of people there.... I don't know what the writer was talking about. The crowd was dancing the entire show I will never forget it.

big wang willie
big wang willie

it is good to see live nation lose $. but if this keeps happening, no good shows for miami.


Blame LiveNation for a f'ing asinine booking!!! They put her in a huge PAC when she should have been booked at Revolution... They did the same thing with Yeasayer and it was embarrassing. Plus ticket prices were outrageous and they never offered any deals once they screwed up the whole booking.... bunch of morons working over there. Book bands in the right venues so we can stop pissing off artists who come down here to empty arenas


Too bad more people did not attend. Their loss for sure. I saw her in Tampa the night before and they were incredible. One of the best concerts I have ever seen.


yet another proof that Miami may not know what good music can be....


Finally (48 hours) time limit to buy.

LV Muffler $ 5.99LV Bags $ 19.9 LV Wallet $ 6.55Armani Glasses $ 5.99LV Belt $ 6.9

Buy addresses---- tntn.usTips (48 hours after the special product is invalid)

Jeffrey in Orlando
Jeffrey in Orlando

In Orlando the ticket price is $25. Sure, the band will be amazing but I'd predict the same turnout as Miami.


How much were they charging? I seem to remember well north of $30. Also, Sunday night doesn't help...


What an amazing show, so simple yet sooo energetic. I could not stop moving and singing along.


oh we do, but who the hell is going to drive down to Miami on a Sunday night from north Broward and WPB? No one.... Concert should have been more centrally located if they wanted to pull a larger audience on a Sunday night

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