Brian Wilson – Santa Barbara CA : May 28th 2017

Finally getting around to posting about the Brian Wilson show I went dow to Santa Barbara to see. Funny thing…I decided to go to this particular show as when it was being advertised, it was being advertised as the last of the Pet Sound shows, so I thought how cool it would be to go and see this iconic artist perform what many believe is one of the top albums of all time in souther California where it all started. Cool huh? Well, turns out that not only was this NOT the last show it was’t even the last show in the US as they added a later date in Hawaii and then planned a whole european tour…fished in again!

Well, didn’t take me long to get over that as soon as the first notes of the sound check started. This was by far one of the best sound checks I have ever seen as I really wasn’t expecting to see Brain Wilson, but not only did he host the entire set, but they must have played for a half an hour. What a treat to see them play for such a small group and in such a informal setting.

The main show was absolutely fabulous. I know beach boys songs are all relatively short, but he and the band played for what was around two an a half hours which turned out to be a total of 38 songs, with the entire Pet Sounds album sandwiched in between a ton of Beach Boys hits. A few of my favorites of the night were Shut Down, Little Deuce Coup, Don’t Worry Baby, Surfer Girl, Wouldn’t it be Nice, Sloop John B, and Sail on Sailor (sung by Blondie Chaplin – Who was a Beach Boy back in the 70’s).

One of the highlights of the day was getting to have a pre-show meet and greet where I was able to meet and have my photo taken Brian Wilson, Al Jardine and Blondie Chapin. Oh and I had a perfect view of him in his big huge leather easy chair off slightly behind the stage and I bought him looking at his watch probably wondering the same thing I was…”when’s the show supposed to start anyway?”

A very memorable trip and show and I hope Brian can continue to perform for years to come.

Surfer Girl shot at the sound check

Arlo Guthrie – Tacoma WA : April 23rd 2017

Another great performance by one of the 60’s iconic folk legends, Arlo Guthrie. Tonight, at the beautiful and historic Pantages Theater in downtown Tacoma was his concert entitled Running Down the Road.

Great set with some of the standard classics including Deportee (Plane Wreck at Los Gatos) by Woody Guthrie, Running Down the Road and my all time favorite Coming Into Los Angeles.

Loved seeing Arlo Guthrie perform. He has a fabulous voice, great folk guitar sound and tells some awesome stories from his childhood and times in the sixties. A true legend!

 

The Zombies – Seattle WA : April 22nd 2017

What an amazing show at the Showbox in Seattle last night with The Zombies performing their entire album Odyssey & Oracle in celebration of it’s 50th anniversary.

The show was split into two sets, the first being a good solid set of their classic hits as well some of their more recent music from their album Still Got That Hunger from 2015. The first set had the current members of the band performing, and the second set reunited all of the surviving members of the band (Colin Blunstone, Rod Argent, Chris White, and Hugh Grundy) to perform Odyssey & Oracle.

This was a wonderful trip through the sixties from the early years with the enchanting melodies  of She’s Not There, Tell Her No and I Want You Back Again, down the hippie, love, flower tripping later years with A Rose For Emily, Beechwood Park and Time of the Season. They even played one of my favorite tunes from Argent called Hold Your Head Up which jammed out to a total of 12 minutes and 22 seconds!

These guys sounded as good as they day they started with Colin Blunstone being able to hit all of the notes spot on and Rod Argent absolutely killing it on the keyboards. It’s great to see a band who has been around for so long who can still perform as they did 50 years ago. Definitely a memorable show.

Experience Hendrix Tour – Seattle Wa : February 19th 2017

I don’t really know where to start with what to say about the Experience Hendrix show last night at the Paramount in Seattle.

The show started pretty close to the scheduled 7:00pm posted time and went past 10:00pm. About three hour of outstanding music.

Billy Cox opened things up with Freedom and Stone Free with Dweezil Zappa on guitar, Chris Layton on drums (from Stevie Ray Vaughn & Double Trouble). Henri Brown came out and sang the next few songs…Henri is actually the first cousin of Jimi Hendrix and a pretty accomplished performer and did an excellent job bringing a ton of energy to the crowd. Throughout the show, the backdrop was an amazing continual visual of psychedelic imaging and classic photos of Jimi’s life and performances….very captivating and mesmerizing.

The show was an absolutely incredible tribute to the sounds and sights of the unbelievable art of Jimi Hendrix. The mastery of his guitar work was creatively displayed by so many artists last night from Zakk Wylde, Johnny Lang, Kenny Wayne Shepherd,  Keb’ Mo’ and Buddy Guy. The two artists who most impressed and awed me were Mato Nanji and The Slide Brothers….what the Slide Brothers could do on their slide guitars was nothing short of amazing and Mato seemed to channel the spirt of Jimi himself as he mastered through many of the classics.

One of the most memorable moments for me last night was when Zakk Wylde walked in front of me while jamming to Purple Haze…He toured the crowd twice last night playing extended solos of Purple haze and Little Wing (scroll down and click the link below to see a little bit of Little Wing).

This is a must see show for anyone who loves great guitar work and especially for the Jimi Hendrix fan. I chalk this up as one of the best shows I have seen.

METALLICA – Hong Kong : January 20th 2017

It was a dream come true in Hong Kong tonight.

So, I am out of town on business, ending a long week and just for grins, I thought I would check one more time to see if there was even a chance of getting a ticket for the Metallica show at the AsiaWorld Expo. I knew they were on their Asia tour and that they were going to be in Hong Kong (apparently, their first time ever playing Hong Kong), but when I tried for tickets over the past several weeks, it had appeared to be sold out, and why wouldn’t be…right? Well, I took a chance and called the venue directly to see if by chance they may had released some obstructed view, or nose-bleed seats but to my amazement, they had some real good seats available and I scored one in the lower bowl, second section from the stage and four rows from the front! It was a miracle!

It was a little dicey with logistics, as I first had to come in from China and with Chinese New Year, traffic at the boarder was horrible, fortunately I did give myself plenty of time. Then I had to find one of the local ticket sales outlet to get a printed copy of my ticket.. this took me about an hour of roaming the back streets of Kowloon, but I finally found it and had my ticket in hand. I then had to decide what time I should get a cab to take me to the venue… with the level of traffic I had been in just a couple hours earlier, I decided I would give myself plenty of time and I left at 5:00 and this took about an hour on a trip that is normally just a half an hour. I got to the venue, which was actually right adjacent to the airport and in hindsight I could have stayed at a hotel at the airport and been much better off. Oh well, next time. The AsiaWorld Expo is absolutely HUGE! Besides the Metallica show, I think there were at least three other major events happening at the same time in other areas of the facility. Strange to see a bunch of metal heads along with conventioneers roaming the same halls.

The doors opened about 7:00 and I quickly found my seat. Metallica came on just about 8:30pm and opened up with one of their new songs.. a very hard song called Hardwired (one of my favorites off their new album). They followed up with Atlas, Rise! and then For Whom the Bell Tolls. I am not sure which song I enjoyed the most, but it was probably a toss up between Sad But True, Fade to Black and Seek & Destroy.. They played a total of 15 songs in their regular set and 3 in their encore, which consisted of Battery, Nothing Else Matters and finally Enter Sandman.

Getting out of the venue and back to the hotel was another adventure fighting a ton of people all trying to do the same thing as me….get out. After standing in the wrong taxi queue for about 30 minutes, I was finally able to locate the “correct” taxi queue which happened to be the most popular of course and proceed to wait another 45+ minutes before taking the hour long ride back to my hotel, but all in all, it wasn’t the worst after concert rush I have experienced and I got back to my hotel safely around 12:15.

By far, this will be one of the most memorable concerts I have ever been to, not only because it was an absolutely phenomenal show, but it was by luck that I was able to make it.

Set List

  • Hardwired
  • Atlas, Rise!
  • For Whom the Bell Tolls
  • Creeping Death
  • The Unforgiven
  • Now That We’re Dead
  • Moth Into Flame
  • Wherever I May Roam
  • Confusion
  • Halo on Fire
  • Sad But True
  • One
  • Master of Puppets
  • Fade to Black
  • Seek & Destroy

Encore:

  • Battery
  • Nothing Else Matters
  • Enter Sandman
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