Thursday, July 27, 2017

The Wolf Also Rises

So, no -- Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers DIDN'T do "Kings Highway" at last night's concert at Forest Hills Stadium. But it was a great night out anyway, with the band in spectacular form, musically, and a nice cross section of material selected from throughout their 40 years together. The set list, not surprisingly, was heavy on the stuff from Full Moon Fever ("I Won't Back Down" sounded particularly good). There was also a long mini-set of stuff from the unappreciated (by me) Wildflowers album, but that worked out fine because it gave me a chance to go the bathroom. In any event, a wonderful show.

I should add, however, that I saw exactly one African-American in the audience of 14,000, which gives one pause, even if it really has no larger significance.

I should also add that, perhaps inexplicably, two attendees came dressed as members of the Teletubbies.


And I would be remiss if I didn't note that opening act Peter Wolf -- with the help of a brilliant band -- came perilously close to stealing the show; both his voice and manic stage moves are totally undimmed by time since the J. Geils days.

Of course, he didn't do my favorite of his solo stuff...



...but he did do this more recent tune, and absolutely killed.



All in all, as I said, a great night out.

10 comments:

buzzbabyjesus said...

Reminds me how much fun it was hearing The J Geils Band on AM radio.

Blue Ash Fan said...

Saw Petty in an outdoor shed in '87. The Del Fuegos and The Georgia Satellites opened, and the Satellites damn near stole the show. But, clearly Tom wasn't going to let that happen. The show was transcendent. He did a cover of "For What It's Worth" that was so jaw-droppingly amazing that had he done that one song and walked off, you'd have felt you got your money's worth. He even did "Should I Stay Or Should I Go?" Of course, his original tunes didn't exactly suck, either.

I would take Wildflowers over Full Moon Fever any day. I never got all the praise thrown the latter's way. I blame Jeff Lynne. I mean, I really blame Jeff Lynne.

Billy B said...

The Woofa Goofa!!!! J. Geils Band was one of my favorites way back when. Always thought they were vastly underrated even though the group had a couple of minor hits (pre "Centerfold"). And when they finally did break through with "Freeze Frame" is was all over.

It's funny seeing Wolf play the harmonica given the fact that Magic Dick's prowess in their former band.

buzzbabyjesus said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
buzzbabyjesus said...

I was thinking pre "Freeze Frame". "Looking For A Love" comes to mind.

steve simels said...

I used to sing "Cruising for a Love" in a bad early 70s bar band.

Billy B said...

Wow. My earlier post needed a bit of editing prior to hitting the "go" button.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I could easily see PW giving pothead Petty a run for the money. The Geils band was mostly great till they went to EMI and sold the fuck out. Their latter day shit left such a bad taste in my mouth, that I backed off Peter's solo records, which heavily populated the cheapie bins.

J. Geils was/is essential for "dancin' by the pool" parties. At the Wildcat, I used to interpret "So Sharp" quite effectively. It was probably the best three minutes of a few lonely fuckers' lives:-)

Since I'm from the west coast, the first I heard the Geils Band was when Tom Gamache, who went by the name of "T", played a shitload of their tracks on KMET the week of the debut's release. That's all it took. A few months later I found out what monsters they were live. Went to three of their shows on the initial Whisky run.

Regarding Petty, did he do a one or two song encore? Did he do You Wreck Me?

Steve, disagree with your assessment of Wildflowers and also with the Blue Ash assessment of Full Moon Fever. I think these are some of Petty's better post-1985 albums. As good as the records are, the songs improve in the live setting. It's Good To Be King, in particular, is terrific. As is Runnin' Down a Dream. Maybe if you weren't pissin' or looking for black people you might have found out:-)

Blue Ash: Yeah I saw Petty in 1987 too. The Rock 'N' Roll Caravan Tour with the Del Fuegos and Georgia Satellites. Damn! I saw Petty five times in six days on that tour. What can I say, we had too much fuckin' yeyo money. But Blue Ash, you neglected to mention other songs Petty covered in the set. Ballad of Easy Rider was played most nights, as were For What It's Worth, Should I Stay Or Should I Go and Bye Bye Johnny. Also, over the run I saw, he played You Can't Judge a Book, Conway Twitty's Image Of Me, The DC5's Any Way You Want It, Route 66, I Fought the Law, and Johnny B. Goode. I didn't much care for the Let Me Up LP they were touring behind. It only had one side's worth of decent stuff IMO. But the tour was totally bitchen.

The Heartbreakers are a great live band. I've never seen a bad show since they opened for Blondie at the Whisky. So yeah, I'm biased as hell.

Those assholes better free up the setlist before they hit Los Angeles. I got tix to all three nights at the Bowl and I'm expecting variety. We know the guy who landscapes the sound man's yard and have an in. His wife hates us. Sometimes he let's us do multiple stage mics. But the Bowl's a kinda fucked up place to deal with. Most likely we'll just have him spin us off the board. So I'm demanding Tom gives the hometown crowd some real treats on the run. None of this New York and the rest of the country bullshit.

Lucinda's opening, so that's a whole other trip than Peter Wolf. Don't expect much variety or dancin' in her sets:-) She's a small venue act. It won''t work at the Bowl.

VR

Anonymous said...

VR - seriously, could you be any further up your own ass?

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