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Best Way to Ring in the New Year with a Rock Legend New York 2008 - Patti Smith GroupÂ’s Bowery Ballroom NYE Shows

Instead of freezing your ass off in Times Square, a saner annual tradition has sprung up to ring in the new year?the Patti Smith Group?s Bowery Ballroom NYE Shows, a two- or three-night tradition since 1998. Most any show with Smith and her band?including longtime collaborators guitarist Lenny Kaye and drummer Jay Dee Daughtery?is an event, but what makes these shows special is that Smith herself is celebrating her own birthday (December 30), as well as the fact that they?re hometown gigs (yes, she?s a New Yorker again). For these performances, they have guests sit in like Michael Stipe, Michael Imperioli (The Sopranos), Kim Gordon, Tom Verlaine, Steve Earle, and Joan Osborne, and the band digs through its catalog, sometimes reviving albums like Easter or Dream of Life, other times pulling out covers of Led Zeppelin (?Kashmir?), Christine Aguilera (?Beautiful?), and James Brown (?Living in America?).

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