As I was looking at my Smiler calendar I had to “smile” when I saw that my pictures of Rod were in the month of June - the very month I was going to see Rod in Vegas since last August. How cool was that?!
The first show on June 12th was also the new backup singer Amanda Miller’s first show with Rod. The show started out with the familiar opening with the band singing Soul Finger and introducing Sir Rod Stewart. We super fans always love something a little different and In A Broken Dream was one of those songs performed five songs in. At Rod’s introduction of the night he said they were going to play some different songs and asked if there were any British people in the audience saying he had a surprise they were going to love at the end.
Near the beginning of the show, Rod’s shoe lace had come undone and he pointed to it and had a lady in the audience tie it for him. Shortly thereafter it came undone again. He sat down on the steps in the back calling out for wardrobe saying he needed help with his f-ing shoe lace, lol! The wardrobe lady came out and helped him with it.
There was a lady in the audience he gave his handkerchief to near the beginning of the show and the same lady he invited to sit with him on the steps for Downtown Train. She was up there for quite awhile, he put his arm around her and the very best part was that no one came up there during her special time. The last time I was in Vegas, too many people came up and Rod actually stopped the song saying one or two was OK but any more than that was too much. I was glad that didn’t make him not want to do it anymore and he still gives it a try at the shows.
Rod was funny when he was introducing the band and had a momentary lapse in forgetting David Palmer’s name! He was laughing as he was trying to get the words out, it was cute! He then introduced the new backing singer Amanda Miller and actually had her come up to the microphone to introduce herself. Then a little something different, he had each of the ladies step up to the microphone and say their name and where they were from.
Three songs in during the acoustic set, Rod introduced a new song on his new album Blood Red Roses coming out in September. Oh how I get so excited when I hear of something new getting ready to be played! He explained the meaning of the song Grace and then began singing this beautiful but sad song. I kept thinking how great his band is during this song, just superb!
After Do You Think I’m Sexy was over and the curtain came down, I’m thinking the show is over, forgetting what Rod said earlier in the show about a surprise the British fans were going to love, until the curtain rose again and Sailing started! OMG, what a show this has turned out to be! Magical! My camera was flashing low battery by then and completely died as the curtain came down!
The Friday night show on June 15th had a notably livelier audience on their feet most of the night! In Rod’s intro he said it was the 137th appearance on this stage and that he would be playing two brand new songs on his album coming out on September 28th called Blood Red Roses. After Tonight’s the Night, he thanked us for coming out to the ‘ole Caesar’s Salad and then introduced the first of the new songs. He said to give it a good applause afterwards. It’s called Hole In My Heart, an upbeat song. Loved his dance moves during the song!
Some differences at this show and the show on the 12th, at this show Rod went out into the audience with the band during Maggie May, which usually performed more at the end of the show, has been moved up into the middle before the acoustic set. During his walkabout he acquired a flag which he draped around J’Anna once they returned to the stage to finish the song. At this show Rod stayed on the stage during Downtown Train rather than coming down to sit on the steps as he did on the 12th.
During the acoustic set he again introduced the beautiful but sad song Grace, and giving it’s history, saying he obviously didn’t write the song and afterwards said it was one of the most beautiful songs he’s had the privilege of singing. The ladies introduced themselves individually going up to the microphone as last night. Rod got some pretty “Blood Red Roses” from Jill which he held onto for awhile, then took backstage.
Sailing was again the last song after Sexy. So nice to be “on the map” with this song!
After being introduced at the Saturday night show on June 15th, Rod entered from the stage by Section 2 rather than backstage, to Infatuation. Afterwards, he said he messed up the lyrics singing “congratulations”. Funny! He said he had to be quick, they tell him he’s taking too long. More singing and less talking. They want us out there gambling! It was exciting when he mentioned the two new songs to be sung again tonight. It’s A Heartache was a different song tonight not played at the other two shows. He praised Caesar’s Palace saying it was the best venue, great seats and he loves it.
He went out into the audience again at this show during Maggie May. At the start of Downtown Train, he sat down on the steps at the back of the stage, saying he was getting old. The ladies introduced themselves individually again, this time including Julia Thornton. After the ladies finished, Rod stepped up to the microphone saying he is Rod Stewart from North London. Funny! But he forgot the “Sir”! Ha ha!
Rod came out in a new sparkly teal suit for the acoustic set, showing it off to the audience as they applauded. He told the ladies to keep their legs crossed as they sat down in the chairs, demonstrating how NOT to do it! Hilarious! During You’re In My Heart, Rod got a Double Treble Winner Celtic scarf, which he draped around the little mic stand. Before singing Grace, he took out a paper to read about the history of the song, saying he hadn’t been able to explain it properly at the other shows. He said he was dedicating the song to his wife because it was their anniversary today. Afterwards he said how beautiful the song was and that this next one is pretty good, too, which was Have I Told You Lately.
The new backing singer Amanda not only does a wonderful job singing but also tap dancing! The stage hand came out to remove the platform after she was finished, nearly colliding into Rod with it!
Hot Legs was played while he kicked the footballs out to the audience, rather than Stay With Me. Rod was happy when he successfully scored a ball up to the second level balcony! One cute move was when this man had his hands out for a ball and instead of Rod handing it directly to him, Rod turned around and threw it to him backwards! The guy probably thought he wasn’t going to get the ball, but - surprise! :)
It was funny when one of those huge balloons wound up with Dave Palmer back in the enclosed drum area during Sexy! We again got Sailing as the final song of the night. Fantastic that this song Rod never, or rarely plays in the US is on the map in Vegas! If it’s due to the many British fans who come over to see his shows, I say a big “Thank you” to them!! A big “Thank you” also to Rod and band for three wonderful Vegas shows!
Review by Karen Chande
Photos by Karen Chande
Montage by Tommy Kevitt