Monday, June 22, 2015

Paul McCartney: The Out There Tour 2015

June 21st: The Wachovia Center, Philadelphia, Pa

June 21st is officially the first day of summer and the arrival of the summer solstice, the longest day of the year. Yes, Sir Paul McCartney would need all the extra minutes! RoCKING out a 39-song playlist in just over 2 hours including a seven song encore, should have been no easy feat for a 43 year old, never-mind a 73 year old, but the icon proved us wrong. Well into his sixth decade of rock dominance both in pop culture and Live' performance, Paul McCartney showed us why he is the master of the musical universe.

Kicking off the night with a Beatles classic Eight Days A Week and alternating a meaty playlist of Fab Four and Wings songs, Sir Paul engaged us with storytelling and keen musicianship. He rocked a guitar, a mandolin and piano to woo the crowd. He spoke of sharing the stage with a young Jimi Hendrix during a 1960's Beatles concert in London.. He spoke of loving thoughts he wanted to share with his former songwriting partner in late 1980, but never got the chance due to his untimely death. He spoke of riding the school bus as a youngster with a future band mate, George Harrison. George would first introduce the mandolin instrument to young Paul and they would jam regularly.
Storytelling and stage presence: A+ 

Setlist: Sir Paul demonstrated how 73 is the new 33 as he sealed us all in the time machine for a memorable journey. Songs we remember and have emotional ties to our youth were brought to life, one after another, Sir Paul showed us the power of music. The power of his music. A standing room crowd from 17-70 became one, with no generational divide.  From Blackbird from the White Album to 1974's multi million seller Band On The Run, McCartney provided the sizzle for all. Pyrotechnics included multiple flame torch explosions front and back of stage while Sir Paul tickled the Ivories and held his ears during Live And Let Die!  It way my personal treat of the night!
Song rotation: A++

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

The WHO celebrates 50!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The WHO hits 50! Concert Review:

The WHO hits 50! 5/22/15 Atlantic City, NJ

Venue: Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City, NJ

Opening Act: Joan Jett & The Blackhearts

Let's start with openers! Joan Jett & The Blackhearts displayed ageless presence and awesome power with a rockin' eleven song set. Joan played her heart out with forty years worth of her own material dating back to her 1975 debut as a teen in the Runaways. After opening her song Bad Reputation, she launched into Cherry Bomb, my second all time favorite Jett song. My number one all time favorite, Do Ya Wanna Touch followed to my heart's delight. Joan showed total cool featuring her hits including I Love Rock And Roll, her top chart hit (1981). Playing from the heart and with accomplished players behind her, she was the perfect compliment to The WHO. Her new album release is called: Unvarnished. She showcased Soulmates to Stangers off the new disc. My personal faves are Fragile and Bad As We Can Be! Joan Jett also delighted a small group of us backstage before the show with a bright and friendly personality. I give this Rock N Roll Hall Of Famer an A+ in show and "person!"   

The WHO:

Pete Townshend hit 70 on May 19th and The Who showed a sold out boardwalk Hall crowd why they are still going strong after 50 years, Hit after hit after hit had the crowd aged 17-70 rockin out!

A rockin' 22-song set list, The WHO kicked it off with I Can't Explain followed up by staples' likeThe Seeker and The Kids Are Alright. The 1975 hit Squeeze Box and I Can See For Miles had me frozen in time to a better time and stellar performances from 1971's Who's Next, Behind Blue EyesWon't Get Fooled Again and Baba O'Riley made the hairs stand up! My personal all time WHO fave, Love Reign O'er Me featuring accomplished keyboardist John Corey. Pete's brother Simon Townshend is also in this touring band and Ringo's kid Zak Starkey on drums! WOW!  Performance and Showmanship: A+

Stage Effects: GREAT use of jumbotron screens for seeing our heroes up close and storyboard themes and retro artist photos of the band to match the song selection. The widescreen lighted rain was fantastic during Love Reign O'er Me! Pete Townshend's celebrated "windmill" shredding was apparent throughout and Roger Daltrey's vocal prowess was high octane for this performance. These men, all these men can still "bring it" and I would want to believe they will be back for years to come.  A

Audience: Generational, from teens to 70 somethings. It's what legendary players attract. That's why I say, despite comments made by Pete Townshend to retire from touring, he has to understand new generations are discovering this great catalog of songs.  The crowd was vocalBUT a polite, sitting crowd, standing only for periods toward the end of the show.  NO bad behavior evident. B

Overall Grade: A

Unvarnished By Joan Jett & The Blackhearts available>

Saturday, February 14, 2015

2/13/15: GET THE LED OUT!


Just when you thought a dead of February, bone-chilling 11 degree night in the less than bustling metropolis of Vineland, New Jersey couldn't get any lonelier..A RoCK N Roll band of great skill and familiar repertoire rode into town: GET THE LED OUT!

A band of traveling gypsies from nearby Philadelphia, normal guys actually who just love the music of Led Zeppelin and possessing great skill performing it, GTLO rocked a packed house at the newly opened Landis Theater in Vineland.

From the opening statement of The Immigrant Song to great renditions of classic staples like Going To California, Kashmir and All Of My Love, the band sounded nothing short of a breathtaking time warp to 1975!

"Led" by the high powered vocal prowess of front man Paul Sinclair who resembled more a young, bad boy Jim Morrison, the band brought intense emotion to a filled auditorium and to all our delight. Paul's stage presence was very convincing and powerful as we watched in awe of songs that have been heard for 40 plus years and given a present day flair! A++

Songs that I have favored and heard on the radio for decades brought new chills. Favorites like In The Evening, In My Time Of Dying and When The Levee Breaks were dead-on performances! A++

Moby Dick: Talk about a mesmerized sold out audience! Drummer Adam Ferraioli had jaws dropping for his "jet engine power" and natural beat in this infamous John Bonzo Bonham work of art solo. Ferraioli, a veteran player with previous success in Philly based rockers, "Britney Fox" and "Tangier" brought the original power of Bonzo' to life one more time. There is nothing like hearing Moby Dick live performed by a top notch player! WOW! A++++

The Players:  Paul Sinclair, Andrew Lipke, Jimmy Marchiano, Adam Ferraioli, Billy Childs, Paul Hammond
The real deal. Passionate, Prideful, Powerful. Truth be told, while surviving Led Zeppelin originals have resisted a revival and reunion, fans may prefer the early youthful Led Zeppelin as heard in their prime. 
GET THE LED OUT does this. They hit every note and brought it home, making all of us feel as youthful as our days with the albums. A+++

ENCORE: TOP notch. When The Levee Breaks, Stairway To Heaven and a RoCKIN' close with A Whole Lotta Love! A minor snafu during Stairway' was an in house fire alarm which brought the authorities to the house. An apparent stage effect or smoke machine had set off the sensors but the band did not miss a beat. As some audience members were instructed to exit the auditorium, the band did not miss a beat. Stairway To Heaven sounded better than the original recording. A+   

AUDIENCE: Fans from 17 to 70, wearing various threads from Get The Led Out to the original quartet, enjoyed a great night in the time machine! An appreciative crowd, knowledgeable of the songs and history were captivated.  The players delivered. A crowd always buys into the passion. The passion drove my time machine at warp speed! The Good news: The band will be back live on stage in South Jersey soon!

April 10th-11th: The Scottish Rite Auditorium in Collingswood