Thursday, July 24, 2014

Still Able to Rock at 50+

Last night Roger and I attended the Foreigner/Styx concert with Don Felder (The Eagles). From the opening band led by Mr. Felder I could tell we were in for a fun night. I was so impressed with how tight the band was and with the vocals. Don Felder is in his 60's now and he was still rockin' out, well as much as you can on The Eagles' songs. And he was given plenty of time to jam out on the guitar. I love watching rock musicians on stage. They are doing what they love and I don't know if I have seen happier people than musicians who are up there in their element, in front of a screaming audience, making a living doing what they are most passionate about. That positive energy is felt throughout the crowd. 

Then Foreigner came onstage. Holy Cow! So entertaining! Granted Mick Jones is the only original band member still in the current band, but the 'new guys' are still well into their 50's. Many of them were replacements joining the band from the mid-1990's to the mid-2000's. I was particularly impressed with the lead singer, Kelly Hansen, and Thom Gimbel who played everything from rock flute and saxophone to rhythm guitar and keyboards. These guys had so much energy and put on a fantastic show. One of the highlights, hands down, was 'Jukebox Hero'. Unfortunately, Mick Jones was not in attendance but members of our high school choir, Cottonwood High, made an appearance to sing back up on 'I Wanna Know What Love Is'.

Then STYX came out. I was so excited! Tommy Shaw had already made an appearance earlier in the night with Don Felder to play and sing on 'Hotel California' and I stood right up and almost fell down I was so happy to see him. My sister had the Paradise Theater album when I was growing up and I loved to listen to it. And had a bit of a crush on old Tommy Shaw. I turned to Roger and said, "My sisters are going to be so jealous!" I was looking forward to STYX all night, but after the fun energy of Foreigner I have to admit, STYX was a bit of a let down. I mean, they were good and Tommy still has amazing rock vocals, but I missed Dennis DeYoung and seriously how many guitar jam sessions can one band have? Lawrence Gowan who replaced Dennis did a great job and his section of the show where it was just him at the keyboard and the audience singing classic rock tunes was a highlight, but Dennis' unique vocals have been burnt on my brain over the years and it is hard to completely buy into someone who sounds almost like him. 

All in all it was a fun night. I haven't been to too many concerts in my life so it is always an exciting adventure. Overall, Foreigner rocks and Tommy Shaw is still a "babe". (pun intended)

Here are the stars themselves on a Fox News show a few months ago to give you a flavor of what we experienced (sans Mick Jones):

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Recording in the Studio

I went into the recording studio this past week to make a CD for Christmas presents to family and close friends. I don't have much studio experience but I sure enjoy the time spent there and I learn so much. This time was extra special because I got to work in my friend Jay's studio up in Logan. Jay and I have known each other for many, many years (going back to my college days) and is very professional and knows his stuff. We have a great rapport and he is such a talented musician that I trust his judgement and second ear completely.

I am covering songs that have a variety in vocal styling and genres. They all carry the simple theme of "love" in all its' stages and forms. My favorite day was having my husband and kids there to record a duet with my daughter and a group song with all of them. Even my two boys who have nice voices, but don't normally sing for anyone, got involved and I feel so blessed that they conquered any reservations or fears and did this for their mom.

Here are some pics of that day:

 It was a great experience and even though most of my close friends and family know what they are getting for Christmas now, I didn't say what songs so that will still be a surprise. :)