I got to thinking about all the rock and roll stars I’ve been lucky enough to see perform live in my life. Maybe you won’t be impressed by this list, but I kinda was.
Elton John. Billy Joel. The Eagles. Bruce Springsteen. Steely Dan. Rush. Neil Diamond. Stevie Wonder. Dan Fogelberg. Roger Waters. Phil Collins. Cher (with Cyndi Lauper). U2. The Doobie Brothers. Cat Stevens. The Allman Brothers Band, Joe Walsh, and The Marshall Tucker Band (together).
Oh, and N’Sync, with two of my nieces. Shriek!!!
Many of these guys, I’ve seen twice, and in Elton and Billy’s case, four times each.
Then, of course, there are the ones who got away, like Genesis, Wings, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and Stevie Ray Vaughn, to name just a few.
Oh, and Johnny Cash.
Yes, Johnny Cash, my first musical hero. I would have loved to see him live.
I thoroughly enjoyed every concert I attended. (Well, not so much N’Sync, but my nieces loved it.) There’s nothing like the energy at a live rock concert. When it’s good, the performers and the audience feed off each other to make an unforgettable experience.
If you were to ask me what my favorite show was, I’d give you different answers, for different reasons. The easy answer is Elton, because he’s my favorite artist, from a long way back. Billy Joel, because he’s another piano player, like I once was (though nowhere near that caliber).
For professionalism and virtuosity, Steely Dan and Rush take the honors. For the sheer spectacle, I gotta give it to Cher and Roger Waters. Those weren’t just concerts, they were events.
The Eagles were and are my favorite band vocally. Their harmony just shines.
Stevie was just incredible. He is so musically gifted. He’s really one of a kind.
But nobody, and I mean nobody, gives more of himself onstage than The Boss. Bruce Springsteen just lays it all out there every time, and the E Street Band is always equal to the task. It is amazing to watch.
It’s great to see live shows coming back now, after going missing last year. There are still some restrictions in place, though. My sister-in-law and her daughter are going to a concert tonight, but they have to show either proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test result from the last 24 hours. It’s a new world, folks.
But it’s still a chance for fans to go see their favorite artists, sing along jubilantly, and just forget the world for a few hours and be only about the music. And that’s worth something.
Rock on, y’all.