We are privileged to receive invites to “free” private concerts at Mohegan Sun as Momentum members. The latest concert we thoroughly enjoyed was Peter Frampton on Sunday June 12th.
This was my third time seeing Peter Frampton in concert in 41 years. I always liked the Humble Pie Rockin the Fillmore live recording. I interviewed Peter backstage at Staples High School in 1975. He was promoting the Frampton studio album that started his meterotic rise the following year with Frampton Comes Alive. I found him gracious to grant an hour of his time while he tuned his guitar. I got a private concert before the rest of the audience that night 😉
(I scanned my past article from The Entertainer music newspaper that I wrote for in the mid-70s. I also sold ads for them, making 40% per ad in those days. Sorry it is grainy and has my ink edits.) —> Peter Frampton
I next saw Frampton with my son at the Sixth Annual Jammy Awards in 2006 at the Theatre at Madison Square Garden. Peter Frampton joined Guster and worked on material from Guster’s new album Ganging up the Sun. Martin Sexton also joined them for a version of Frampton’s “Do You Feel Like We Do.”
Considering that the June 12 show was free I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. He didn’t disappoint as Peter Frampton and his band played strong for 90 minutes plus a three song encore. His guitar playing has reached another dimension of excellence. He played a cover version of Black Hole Sun by Soundgarden that knocked me out.
I was quite impressed with the instrumental songs he played from the Fingerprints album, which was awarded a Grammy Award in 2007. Frampton was on the mark. He’s a true professional as was his stellar band.
The last time I saw Santana live was during their co-headliner tour with the Allman Bros. in July of 2012. The band’s trend of co-headlining East Coast concerts continues this year with Santana teaming up with Rod Stewart.
I go way back in concert with each of these legendary artists. I first caught Rod Stewart as lead vocalist with the Jeff Beck Group at the Fillmore East on July 3, 1969. I then saw Santana for the first time live the following year, November 14, 1970 at the Capitol Theatre in Portchester, New York. What’s interesting about both artists is that there was a significant gap in time before I saw either of them again. I re engaged with Santana in August of 2002 (a 32 year gap). I have since seen Santana perform live an extra 19 times (21 Santana concerts in 44 years, 20 of those shows in the past 12 years). I had not seen Rod Stewart perform in 45 years. So let’s do the time warp again 😉
The concert was billed as The Voice, The Guitar and The Songs, Rod Stewart, Santana. The Santana band was the opening act. It’s important to note that this is not the Santana Corazon Tour. If you look at the Santana.com Website you will notice that the Santana Tour dates reflect two different tours, the dates with Rod Stewart and the Corazon Tour.
Santana got things started in vigorous fashion. They began their set with “Toussaint L’Overture”an instrumental that really pops fromSantana III. Once they had us up and dancing the band segued into “Hope You’re Feeling Better” followed by the classic, “Black Magic Woman”.
Santana continued to mine Abraxas with “Oye Como Va” (Tito Puente). I was disappointed that the video screen above the band did not display the full video that accompanies this song. That video is a concert favorite as it shows many of the Santana album covers interspersed with Santana historic moments. The video is well sequenced and greatly enhances the popular Latin standard.
I watched with keen interest the new members of the Santana Band. Conquero Raul Rekow (since 1978) has been replaced by a powerful conga player in his own right, Paoli Mejias. He played with intensity and precision. Here is a video image of Paoli from the Sunday night concert along with an enhanced photograph of his congas.
“Corazon Espinado” from Supernatural featured Cindy Blackman Santana on drums, where she performed a tasteful drum solo.
My favorite part of the set followed next as “Jingo” got us in that tribal mood. The next choice, “Sacalo” featured our good friend Mr. Bill Ortiz on trumpet. “Sacalo” is the Spanish version of “Chill Out”, which Carlos recorded with John Lee Hooker in the 90’s. I loved hearing a Spanish extended blues number. It set the stage for the next song trilogy, “Saja/Right On/Umi Says” which comes from the Milagro album which is dedicated to the late Miles Davis and Bill Graham who we lost in 1991. Bill Ortiz really got down with his horn playing and to my ear channeled Miles Davis. The 90 minute set ended with “Smooth/Dame Tu Amor” and yes Santana Made It Real 😉
Rod Stewart followed next in sharp contrast with a 12 piece band of young male and female musicians. It was very much the Las Vegas act where Rod Stewart performed his hits against an interactive graphic backdrop.
Carlos Santana joined Rod Stewart for one number, the Etta James classic, “I’d Rather Go Blind”. My earlier thoughts about Bill Ortiz channeling Miles were validated by Carlos Santana who wore a T-Shirt that stated, “Listen to Miles Davis”. I found this meaningful when I learned the very next day was Miles 88th birthday. So I listened in-depth to Miles on his day out of respect.
Here is a taste of that song and other hits from Rod and his band.
Rod Stewart also featured an acoustic section of the show and he performed my favorite song of his written by Tim Hardin (who I saw many years ago at Staples High School in Westport), “Reason to Believe”. He also kicked and threw into the audience two dozen signed soccer balls. I found Rod Stewart to be the dandy who came across charming and genuine as a person.
Santana Set List:
GALAXY DANCE INTRO
1. TOUSSAINT L’OUVERTURE
2. HOPE YOUR FEELING BETTER
3. BLACK MAGIC WOMAN / GYPSY QUEEN
4. OYE COMO VA
5. MARIA MARIA
6. FOO FOO
7. *CORAZON ESPINADO-(CINDY & BENNY SOLO)
10. SAJA/ RIGHT ON/ UMI SAYS
11. SMOOTH/ DAME TU AMOR
*W/ CINDY BLACKMAN-SANTANA
We have seen Ringo Starr and his All Starr Band three times live at Mohegan Sun Casino Arena. It’s always a fun evening as the All Starrs’ perform their hits with Ringo Starr as the centerpiece artist.
Here is the promotional tour video for this year’s North America events. The Connecticut stop is the Toyota Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford on June 14, 2014.
We are invited to a private show featuring the O’Jays at the Mohegan Sun Casino Arena later this month. We are excited to witness live the Philadelphia Soul sounds classically forged by the O’Jays and Gamble and Huff, an American songwriting and record production team who have written and produced over 170 gold and platinum records!
Can’t wait to join hands and board the Love Train.
My wife and I were fortunate to see the inception of The Rascals BioConcert at the rock hall we’ve always loved, The Capitol Theatre in Portchester, NY on December 15, 2012. It was an incredible night to see our heroes performing together. Off to our left was Steven Van Zandt absorbed in watching the production. He is the ultimate fan and his influence with the four Rascals was instrumental in their reformation.
We are excited to have a second opportunity to see The Rascals in Once Upon A Dream for free by invitation at Mohegan Sun Casino Arena. It is a rewarding feeling to receive this honor especially when Mohegan Sun is our number one concert venue. We have seen more concerts at Mohegan Sun than anywhere else. The Capitol Theatre is our second most attended venue and where our love affair with rock music took root 😉
The free music weekend continues. Today we are invited to attend a private event for free at Mohegan Sun Casino Arena to see Dion, a true legend. I’m excited to hear what selections he will perform. We’ve never seen him live before so this should be a real treat. 🙂
Thank you Mohegan Sun management for extending us this wonderful concert opportunity.
Last night we ventured up the interstate to Mohegan Sun Casino to commune with our favorite rock and roller, Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band. Bob never disappoints us. This was our fourth Bob Seger concert in 17 years. I have been a Bob Seger fan since 1968 ;). Inside the music of our heart that translates to 45 years of wonderful music. Amazingly he showed no signs of stopping last night but it is imminent that he will retire in a few years.
My favorite moment of the night was when Bob said, “Okay, We go back to Live Bullet“, one of the best live rock albums of all time, bar none. He dug down deep transporting us back to Cobo Hall in Detroit Michigan, 1975. Bob and the Silver Bullet performed the connected songs, “Travelin Man” and “Beautiful Loser”. It was better than the original live recording. I became transfixed by the timeless passion he raised through these two songs.
He showcased two new songs from his forthcoming studio album that he projects will release August-September 2013, “All the Roads” and “California Stars”. Bob performed them seated at center stage with an acoustic guitar. When can I place my pre-order Capitol Records? C’mon. c’mon, c’mon 😉
I especially liked the song, “California Stars”, with lyrics by Woody Guthrie. I urge the reader of this blog post to have a listen on Spotify to and then read up on the Nora Guthrie project, Mermaid Avenue. Bob Seger has been majorly influenced by Billy Bragg, Wilco and the memory of Woody Guthrie. I find Bob Seger’s country songs are perhaps his most heartfelt musical moments, as he shares his deep love for country music.
Bob Seger commented to the fans holding up “Happy Birthday Bob” birthday signs that his birthday was on Monday May 6th. He thanked them for recognizing the event ahead of time. He then stated, “I’m going to be 68 and I feel good.” Intuitively he followed those remarks with “Rock and Roll Never Forgets”, the last song of the night.
We left the arena feeling great about the legend, the person, Bob Seger. There were couples dancing in the hallway as we walked out with the night moves.
Long Twin Silver Line
Tryin’ to Live My Life Without You
(Written by Eugene Williams and Originally performed by soul singer, Otis Clay )
The concert portfolio for 2013 begins to materialize as ticket sales for artist tours gets seriously underway. There are two hot May Rock concerts happening the same week in Connecticut. Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band on Saturday May 4th at Mohegan Sun Casino Arena and ZZ Top at Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford on Wednesday May 8th.
My close friends know how much of a concert slut I am 😉 I have attended on average the past 11 years 20+ concerts a year. I am getting close to the 400 concerts milestone with 44 years of live performances attended. I added these two concerts to that illustrious list of live shows.
1) ZZ Top – La Futura Tour
Its hard to believe that after 40 years we have never seen ZZ Top Live in concert. I knew I had to fix that. That Lil Ol Band From Texas that I first heard and played on college FM radio has a special place in the music of our heart. In 1973 even though we were a college radio station we had a playlist we had to choose and play music from every time we were on the air. I never argued about playing ZZ Top’s Tres Hombresfrom that list.
Be it “Beer Drinkers & Hell Raisers” or “La Grange” or “Jesus Just Left Chicago” those songs just snap, crackled and popped. I love a power trio group. First there was the super group Cream, followed by the American band Grand Funk Railroad, then ZZ Top. Three musicians creating a crescendo of sound.
They have released 15 studio albums, 8 compilation albums, and 42 singles. ZZ Top has sold over 25 million albums in the US with additional sales internationally. I thought they had sold more product than that but 25 million is very respectable.
I will have to buy some earplugs because we are dead center in the eight row, psyche!
2) Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band
I am a stone cold Seger fan. I have loved the Bob Seger sound ever since Ramblin Gamblin in 1968.
We have seen Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band several times in concert in 17 years. He is tops in our books. The last Connecticut concert date was our first Bob Seger concert, the Hartford Civic Center in 1996. We next saw Bob Seger in 2007 at Madison Square Garden. The last time we caught Bob Seger and company was in Atlantic City, NJ in April of 2011. The Mohegan Sun Show in May will be our 4th Seger concert, that’s how much we love him and his music.
What can you say about one of the best singer/songwriters of our generation. He is Motor City Rock and Roll and so much more.
Now about that new studio album Bob? I’m sure we’ll love it when its time for you to release it.
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