Van Halen – Auburn WA : July 5 2015

Toni and I made it to the Van Halen show tonight at the White River Amphitheater in Auburn Washington. This was the kick-off of the 2015 NA tour and we were a little apprehensive in that there has been some bad press about the band and with David Lee Roth, but it’s Van Halen, and we had to go.

We had VIP tickets and entry which got us in to the venue about an hour and a half early and enabled us to see the band doing their sound check. I always love sound checks as you really get to see the band just jamming and being themselves. They aren’t performing and you can imagine this is how they play when they are all just by themselves. David Lee Roth didn’t show up for the sound check, but the other guys did some great jams like Romeo Delight, Drop Dead Legs, I’ll Wait and China Town. Eddie, Wolfgang and Alex sounded great! Eddie was engaging with the small group of us asking what we wanted to hear…how cool is that? We would have been happy ending the night at this point, but fortunately we had the whole show in front of us.

The show was opened byKenny Wayne Shepherd and his band. They really tore it up and played some incredible blues songs…He is such a great guitar player and when he did his rendition of Jimi Hendrix’ Voodoo Child the crowd really went wild…especially when he played his guitar behind his neck…just like Jimi.

Van Halen came on at about 8:45 and although Dave was rough and could’t really hit all the notes he used to, the background vocals with Eddie and Wolfgang were good at covering the rough spots…You got to hand it to Diamond Dave though…He gave it all he had and did a great job performing for the crowd. He always had a smile on his face. They played all their hits, and they sounded great with Eddie and Alex crunching that old Van Helen vibe.

We unfortunately didn’t stick it out for the whole show, leaving about 10:00 and right after Hot for Teacher. We had a great time, but have to say that this is probably the last Van Halen show we see..

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