Blues Traveler Hits Culture Room Twice

After enjoying more mainstream success than most of their fellow jam-bad revival acts of the '90s, with hits like "Run Around" — Dorothy drops acid with the Cowardly Lion in the popular MTV video — Blues Traveler had to make it through some pretty rocky conditions as it transitioned into the new millennium. It lost founding bassist Bobby Sheehan to a drug overdose, frontman John Popper's struggle with obesity became increasingly problematic, and the band was dropped by major label A&M. Rather than call it quits, the band emerged from the turbulence recharged and reconnected to the joy of playing.

The past decade has seen Blues Traveler, led by a majorly slenderized Popper, play some of the country's biggest music festivals and release seven albums. The latest, 2008's North Hollywood Shootout, features a classic Blues Traveler sound — with the exception of a guest appearance by Bruce Willis. Its catchy blues-rock songs lend themselves well to extended live jamming. The band's faithful fan base will no doubt be out in force with Birkenstocks and tape recorders in Fort Lauderdale to soak up the band's only scheduled two-night run of 2010.

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Travis Newbill