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February 15, 2018

It's Friday night....

Choctaw Grand Theater, Durant, OK,9/2/18 Review By Dan Pritchett

posted by Mike Walton

On February 9, 2018, I was so very privileged to attend the ROD STEWART concert, in Durant, Oklahoma, just across the state line between Texas, my home, and Oklahoma, the northern adjacent state, about 1 1/2 hours straight on a major highway, north from Dallas, my home....

By way of credentials to be your reporter for the show, this was the nineteenth (19th) time that I have seen our talented knight live. When I lived in Houston, I saw him three times as ROD STEWART AND THE FACES. I've also seen him in Las Vegas, once, front row and center. The rest of his shows have been in Dallas, and now, Oklahoma.

I own every one of his studio recordings. His box set. Four or five live cds. Plus, of course, him with Jeff Beck and all of the FACES recordings with Rod. I've easily 20 plus t shirts with his visage on them, all bought at his concerts. Plus a bunch of caps that say ROD STEWART on them, all bought at his concerts.

My role in reviewing the concert is NOT as a news person or music critic. It's Rod. I'm a fan. I will assume that many of y'all, dear readers, especially those residing in Great Britain have seen our hero before.

Yes, I live in Texas, in Dallas, and it was chilly that eve, as I left my car, after a short drive, and embarked into the Oklahoma theatre. It holds 5,000 folks. Rod knew to refer to the venue as small, but added that he loved to be there.

And by the time Sir Rod hit that stage, Friday eve, the theatre was full to the rafters with very excited fans. Myself included.

A word about Rod's live band.

J'Anna Jacoby is bona fide princess. I'm sure that many of y'all know the years that she has accompanied our Rod on his travels. Yet, what a lovely girl. Always with that gorgeous smile on her face, whether happily shaking her maracas, playing a fiddle or mandolin or singing back up. And Friday night was no exception. Is she a doll? YES! And those spangly dresses and short skirts for Friday night. Well the mind wanders. Mine does. Every concert I shout out, asking her to marry me. Not so far....

Rod's stage guitarists always are an inspiration. Don Kirkpatrick and Emerson Swinford on guitars and Conrad Kitsch on bass. I mean WOW. These guys are GOOD. And they've nailed Rod's vibe. Totally. Of course these guys have also been with Rod for years. I've seen them with him multiple times. I'm sure that being up there, rocking out, alongside Rod is a dream gig for them. It would be for me. Since I play guitar, too.

The other girls singing backup, well were just songbirds, hitting every note, making Rod sound even better than he otherwise would. And matching costumes, on a Friday night. WOW!

By the way, the stage was covered in a checked pattern, including Rod's mike stand, and other details. Lovely.

Finally to the actual performance by the man, himself.


I was seated maybe 100 feet from the stage and Rod's UNMITIGATED JOY in performing shone brightly through. We can only guess at our hero's motivation for continuing to woo and to perform for his fans, yet I'm compelled to suggest that he loves what he does and maybe he loves us. Although at this venue, going close to the stage was prohibited, one usher, upon hearing that I was to write this review, for a short while, allowed me closer.

Friday night, Rod's strong voice approached and then striked every note in every song, just as on his recordings, and I DO NOT exaggerate. He was the master, the singer of songs, the confident entertainer, the charmer. He was the happy minstrel of yore. And we were so very charmed and so very entertained.

There were costume changes. Of course. There were signed soccer balls, sorry, "footballs", to y'all across the pond. I've got one, already, but I was still hoping for one to land in my hands. Not to be.

His ecstatic visage never altered, being the very Rod Stewart whom we've loved and admired through the years. He sang every song with the care of a loving parent, caressing a child. Even the loud ones.

He danced. He smirked. He wiggled. He joked. He cajoled. And he laughed!

I've provided some photos from the evening, which I hope will also convey the absolute magic of the evening. For it was truly magical. I didn't stop grinning ear to ear the entire evening. It was that great.

I'll not be detailed about what he sang. No song listing. Suffice to say, that if you love a particular Rod song, he sang it. Unless your favorite song is DO YA THINK I'M SEXY, because he didn't do that one.

In encouraging friends to go see Rod, through the years, I've always said, that even if you are not a big fan of his music, his concerts are one big party, so go anyway. It has always been true, maybe even more so on Friday night. ONE BIG PARTY! So I departed the adjacent state of Oklahoma, and happily returned to Texas.

Respectfully submitted, your SMILER friend,

Dan Pritchett

Review By Dan Pritchett
Photos By Dan Pritchett
Montage By Tommy Kevitt

© 2019 SMILER Magazine

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