Patti Smith & Her Band at The Fillmore, by Ria Burman
Patti Smith (photo: Ria Burman)

Patti Smith and Her Band began their two-night, sold-out stint at the Fillmore Friday night. Dedicating "Pissing In A River" to Sam Shepard, reading an excerpt from her autobiographical kickass book, Just Kids, in memory and early anniversary of the passing of photographer great Robert Mapplethorpe and performing "Because The Night" in honor of her late husband, Fred Sonic Smith of MC5 grooviness (check out his beautiful guitar wails on Patti's album, Dream of Life, for sonic-sweet melts), the evening exploded art, love, and activism upon the auditorium.

Patti Smith performed poetry about the state of the human condition, regarding the mess created in the beautiful National Parks since the government shutdown. Remembering how it feels to live paycheck to paycheck, she empathized with government workers before covering Bob Dylan's "A Hard Rain's A Gonna Fall." She invited her daughter Jesse Paris Smith on the stage to spread awareness of her and Rebecca Foon's nonprofit, Pathway To Paris, and ended with "People Have The Power," forever the motivational feel-good anthem to help inspire activism and change in the individual and the cause. Use your voice, Patti's ending mantra, remains echoing.