Monday, March 28, 2016

In Retrospect, a Most Magical Night: Rock to the Rescue - December 4, 2013

Sometimes the appreciation of an event comes much later than one would expect. Tonight I was thinking back to a magical concert in Bloomington, Illinois on December 4, 2013: Rock to the Rescue, a fund raiser for tornado victims in central Illinois. Most of the performers came from Illinois and were joined by a few that were not, such as Larry the Cable Guy and Ted Nugent. Some things that, in my mind, made the concert one to remember:

Gary Richrath, former lead guitar player for REO Speedwagon, joined the band on stage for a rousing rendition of Riding the Storm Out. Richrath left the band in 1989 and had not played with them for 24 years. It was his one and only performance with them, as he passed away on September 13, 2015.
One of several bands playing that night was Survivor. In an interesting set, Survivor performed with its two main lead singers -- original singer Dave Bickler, who went to high school in my home town, and his replacement, Jimi Jamison. Bickler was the voice on Eye of the Tiger while Jamison was the original singer on subsequent songs like I Can't Hold Back, High on You and The Search is Over. Sadly, Jamison passed away on August 31, 2014.

Styx also performed at the concert. I have seen Styx a few times, most notably for the Mr. Roboto tour in the early 1980's, and a couple of times more recently. I even bought a raffle ticket at the concert from Tommy Shaw's daughter! However, former lead singer Dennis DeYoung has been gone from the band since 1999. I finally got to see Dennis DeYoung in concert in ... Bloomington, Illinois earlier this month. It was worth every penny.

Another Illinois rock band, Head East, opened the show. When keyboard player Roger Boyd played the opening riff to Head East's most popular song Never Been Any Reason, it occurred to me that I had seen him do the same riff during my freshman year in college -- in 1977! Here is was, over 37 years later, and I was hearing the same player hit those notes. Who would have ever believed it?
The show was sold out for some time. However, I was able to snatch a great main floor seat about 16 hours before the concert when I looked by chance in the wee hours of the morning.

Funny how now, after over two years have passed, the concert means much more to me than it did that night I saw the performances. Some things you just can't really appreciate without the perspective of time.


Blogger Memphis MOJO said...

Some things you just can't really appreciate without the perspective of time.

Maybe you were just high at the time, ha.

7:49 AM  
Blogger lightning36 said...

You forget that I am a boy scout -- or at least I have been told. My secret to success: clean living.

10:13 AM  

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