This segment of a night on the town took us to what looked like another another sell out at the Verizon Center in Washington DC on Tuesday, August 19. It was the second to last show Rod will do with Santana with the final show tomorrow night at Jones Beach in New York. Rod is scheduled for two additional shows-Atlantic City and Youngstown-but Santana is not on the billing.
The audience was very involved with Santana---there was a lot of energy when we arrived half way thru his set--I see why some folks don't understand how we see so many of the same shows. It is difficult to sit thru the same show of someone of which you are not necessarily a fan-even my husband Dave who like Santana's music did not want to sit thru another whole set.
Once the smell of Santana's incense subsided and Rod graced the stage, the audience welcomed him with open arms. They stood, they danced, they clapped, they sang. Rod commented on what a great response he was receiving and said the audience had good vocals. Rod was in a great mood-smiling, laughing and joking the entire evening. It was your typical Saturday night show on a Tuesday.
When Santana came back out to join Rod on "I'd Rather Go Blind", the crowd went crazy. Rod paid him a wonderful compliment in saying that every time he does that song with him, the guitar is so good, it inspires him to sing the song differently every night.
He opened with "Infatuation" and continued with the same set list. The surprises of the night didn't come in the song choices but rather from Rod's antics. He dropped a couple of F-bombs-one being funnier than the next. At the start of "You Wear it Well" there're was a problem with Don's guitar and it was obvious that Don needed to go to the side of the stage to have it corrected. Rod said "we have a fucked guitar--talk amongst yourselves". Then he decided to tell a joke. He said he had gone shopping that afternoon in Washington and bought himself a coffee table. Then he said "but I had to take it back when I found out it wasn't decaffienated". That might not sound terribly funny now but the way Rod told it---it was very funny and he got quite a laugh. At first you thought he was just telling you what he did earlier in the day to kill time and then he pulls outs the zinger. It was another example of his great storytelling skills.
I have to add on a personal that when Rod mentioned that he recorded this song in 1972, it was my cue to hold up my signature sign that Rod has said he has seen a million times that reads "Lost in you since '72". We were second row in the center and Rod saw it right away. He said "Thanks Marcy" and I almost died! It was just a little thing. A wonderful acknowledgement and I almost cried. So I need to say, No Rod-Thank YOU!,
When he sang "Stay With Me" in all black again, from our vantage point, we could see the swinging of the microphone stand and the twisting and the turning from the front view view and it was another flash back to the 70's. The same thing happened during "Sweet Little Rock and Roller". I just love when that happens. Rod is in wonderful shape, his energy is contagious and his voice is in great form. He mentioned the prospect of a Faces reunion again and said "Keep The Faith-it's going to happen".
Don was having more guitar problems during the sit down that got worked out. As Rod was trying to introduce "I Don't Want to talk about it"' someone was yelling something about the Faces and Rod said "Shut the fuck up, I'm talking!". And as only Rod Stewart can do-when he finished talking, he flashed that boyish grin that made all okay.
There was a couple sitting behind us that had seen Rod maybe 40 times and knew all the words to every song. Her husband caught her a soccer ball which was her first ever. It was touching to see her excitement and how she held on to her new most precious possession. Dave gave her one of our laminates we had received with one of the fan club packages. She went home a happy lady. Another soccer ball incident worth mentioning is Rod threw a ball directly to a girl in a Celtic shirt but a man intercepted, grabbed the ball and handed it to the woman with him. Rod motioned for the man to give it to the girl. He did reluctantly and then left the show in a huff.
Rod's band continues to amaze me. Each member gives it their all and appear to be having a lot of fun night after night. They seem to enjoy when something unexpected happens but they are so professional that when something does occur, they don't skip a beat unless Rod makes a joke of it. Di was down front singing and dancing during Santana and then came out and did it on stage for 90 or so minutes. You can tell she loves music and loves to perform. Lucy and Rod had a couple of moments--Rod was wiping his face at one point and then wiped Lucy's arm and Lucy replied with a nice little pat on the bum-I don't miss a thing. It was Lucy's lap that Rod chose to sit on during the sit down which she really enjoyed. Hey, it's all in the name of Rock n Roll! Lucy, Di and Kim did a wonderful job during "Rhythm of my heart"---their voices are unbelievable! I hope each and every band member knows how much they add to the show.
I can easily sum up this review by quoting one of the ushers at the venue. He asked if we enjoyed the show and after bantering back and forth about what a great time we had, he said "ROD Stewart knows what the crowd wants and he gives it to them". What a night! Thank You Rod!
Review By Marcy Braunstein
Photos By Marcy Braunstein