David Byrne – The Paramount – Seattle : May 24th 2018

Very good show last night at the Paramount Theatre in Seattle…it was David Byrne. I wasn’t sure what to expect as I have never seen him solo of with The Talking Heads in the past, but have always liked his music and eclectic and slightly disturbing professional personality. I knew he was a very intense artist, so wasn’t;t sure if the show would be a bunch of experimental new music, a bunch of re-mixed versions of the older Talking Heads, or spoken word…just no idea what to expect. I was absolutely not disappointed! It was a little bit of everything and definitely what I was hoping for from a personality perspective. Definitely more than a musician and much more of a creative artist and performer.

The stage was a simple, large open empty stage with a simple surround of curtain and lights which he integrated into the show with his 11 fellow performers and musicians. The show was as much performing art as it was music with all members of the “band” equally adding to the spectacle.

Of course I was fist and foremost there for the music and was not at all disappointed there either. His voice is as crisp and accurate to his younger days, belting out a range that is not typical of artist with as much history as he has. My favorites of the night were Burning Down the House, Once in a Lifetime, Blind and This Must Be the Place.

I was so happy I made the show and this will be a performance not soon forgotten.

Paul Simon – Key Arena – Seattle : May 18th 2018

Paul Simon always puts on a great show. His voice and sound is still as amazing as it was when I first heard him on that all all time awesome album, Simon & Garfunkel Concert in Central Park.

The crowd at Key Arena was very energetic but yet subdued, which was ideal for just sitting back and listening to some great old classics. He opened up at just after 8:00pm with America followed by 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover. He played his main set and then two encores with his 14 member band and then a third encore with just him and his guitar. My favorites for the night were Kodachrome, The Boxer and of course The Sound of Silence. All in all, he played for just about two and a half hours and played songs spanning his whole career and definitely all the greats.

It is sad to know that this is his last tour and we won’t have the chance to hear him perform all of these songs live again, but he did mention that he wasn’t sure what he was planning in his retirement, and that he loves performing, so who knows…he may put on some live shows sometime in the future, and we can always hope that he and Art Garfunkel decide at one point to have a reunion show or two…we can always hope.

Elton John – Caesar’s Palace – Las Vegas : May 12th 2018

An awesome show last night at Caesars Palace. Elton never disappoints and last night was no exception. He is so energetic and always engaged with the audience. You can definitely tell that he absolutely loves performing for his fans.

Toni and I have seen the “Million Dollar Piano” show before (about 2 years ago) when he was doing the residency back then and wanted to see the show one last time before he hangs it up. This was the end of his current residency and his last Saturday night show, so it was very special. Even his long time writing partner Bernie Taupin was in the audience last night.

The set-list was the standard set opening up with The Bitch is Back (an audience favorite), followed by Bennie and the Jets and then Rocket Man (one of my all time favorites). A great set of awesome classics which I never tire of hearing.

Oh.. I have to apologize for the low quality of the photos… I opted to use my new iPhone X and the camera sucks…sorry.

We were fortunate enough to have seats in row four and were able to get on stage while he was performing Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting! This was an incredible experience. Although we could not get right up close, we were able to get close enough for me to take a little video which I posted to YouTube (see below).

Black Veil Brides – Showbox – Seattle : February 24th 2018

Great night last night at the Showbox SODO in Seattle for an incredible show with Asking Alexandria and Black Veil Brides.

Toni and I tried a new tactic for getting good seats and opted for VIP, reserved seating at the venue. We arrived early and got into the bar for an early dinner of greasy (but tasty) bar food. This was the first time we actually were able to get in early as it was just Toni and I and not the kids, so standing outside for a couple hours in the cold and rain was not happening. The VIP table was awesome…we were able to go down to the table when the doors opened and got seated at our private table with a great, raised view of the stage. This is the way to go when coming to this venue for sure, and the cost was very reasonable.

Crown the Empire opened up for the night and did a great job of getting the crowd geared up and ready for the main events. Asking Alexandria played a great set with 13 songs in the regular set and then 2 encore songs… not too often do bands other than the main headliner play encores, so it was great to have them come back on and play. Black veil Brides put on a fabulous set with 11 songs in their regular set and 3 encore wrapping up with of course In The End. I was able to get Wretched and Devine recorded and uploaded to YouTube with a link below.

Overall, this was a great show and the first time Toni and I have seen them without the kids which was kind of a bummer that they weren’t;t there, but also allowed us to avoid lines and crowds by sitting in the bar prior to the show.

Papa Roach – Fillmore – Denver : December 9 2017

Tonight was a great show at The Fillmore Auditorium in Denver. This was the first time that Toni and I had been to this venue and we were both pretty impressed with it’s size, sound and layout. We had the VIP meet and greet with Papa Roach prior to the show which allowed us to get in early and find one of the best seats in the house…just off of stage right, set above the main floor and two nice comfortable chairs along a railing facing the stage…it was great because the area directly on the other side of the railing was a designated walkway and security would;t allow anyone to stand there, so all night we had an unobstructed view.

The meet and greet was pretty cool…as I mentioned we were able to get into the venue a couple hours before the general public and we were shown a pretty cool short film about the making of the later album “Crooked Teeth”. There were about 30 of us in the M&G and when the video was over, the band came out and sat down with us for about a 20 minute Q&A session…of course Toni and I didn;t have any specific questions to ask, but a lot of folks did and the band was very engaged and shared some really fun and personal stories. Following the Q&A, there was a photo session with the band (which Toni and I did not opt for). This is when we got a couple drinks and scored our choice seat.

Before Papa Roach came on, Falling in Reverse put on a great show, although Ronnie Radke was sick so they could only play about a half dozen songs, which was too bad as we really like them, but we have seen them a bunch of times, so it wasn’t too devastating. A lot of folks came just to see them so it must have been a real bummer to not get a full set. Papa Roach more than made up for it though. This was the first time I had seen them, but Toni had seen them a year or so ago when they opened for Five Finger Death Punch. She always talked about how good they were and that they stole the show and she was right. Tonight they were the headlines and filled the bill quite well. They played like hell and put all of their energy into their performance. Their lead singer Jacoby Shaddix was phenomenal. I didn’t know a lot of their songs, but Toni knew all bu 1 she said. I recognized the songs Scars, Getting Away with Murder, Forever and of course Last Resort. They also did a great tribute to Chester Bennington by playing a rendition of In The End by Linkin Park…very nice.

Great day trip to Denver with my honey and great show at the Fillmore. We will definitely come back for the next awesome show.

Here is a video of Falling in Reverse performing Vampire…sorry the audio quality isn’t the best, but this was on LOUD show. It does show Ronnie doing what Ronnie does best though 🙂

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