Posts Tagged ‘SPAC’

LIVE: The Zac Brown Band @ SPAC, 8/24/14

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

Zac Brown Band

Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

No question about it, the Zac Brown Band is one of the biggest groups on the today’s contemporary country circuit, and they delivered a two-hour super-smackdown of a concert at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center in Saratoga Springs last weekend.

But their concert – which included a number of cover songs stretching from Van Morrison’s “Into the Mystic” to Metallica’s “Enter Sandman” to Billy Joel’s “Piano Man” (without a piano, by the way) – also begs the question: Just how do you define country music these days?

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LIVE: Luke Bryan @ SPAC, 8/17/14

Thursday, August 21st, 2014
Luke Bryan

Luke Bryan

Remember the days not too long ago when the Saratoga Performing Arts Center simply couldn’t figure out how to sell tickets to country music concerts? Well, things have changed… and of course, so too has country music.

Luke Bryan, the reigning country music superstar, was back in the spotlight again last Sunday evening, after selling out approximately 25,000 tickets at SPAC last summer on his Dirt Road Diaries Tour 2013.

No surprise, the Luke-ster sold out SPAC once again with his That’s My Kind of Night Tour, featuring support acts Cole Swindell and Lee Brice.

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LIVE: Rascal Flatts @ SPAC, 8/3/14

Thursday, August 7th, 2014
Rascal Flats

Rascal Flatts

Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

It was a country-pop triple-header at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center last Sunday night. Headlining the big bash was Rascal Flatts, and lead vocalist Gary LeVox led the band through a hit-filled hour and a half in the Saratoga spotlight.

Grammy Award-winning pop singer-songwriter Sheryl Crow has shifted to the country end of the music spectrum without changing her sound at all. Her hour-long set featured such hits as “All I Wanna Do,” “Soak Up the Sun” and “Every Day Is a Winding Road.”

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LIVE: The Moody Blues @ SPAC, 8/4/14

Wednesday, August 6th, 2014
The Moody Blues

The Moody Blues

Review by Don Wilcock
Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

Of all the rock legends from the ’60s still performing, the Moody Blues are the best at stopping time. Justin Hayward’s lyrics are inspired by the romantic British poetry of Byron, Keats and Shelley blended with classical music buoyed by Hayward’s perfectly executed rock guitar that, if anything, has more edge than it did back in 1967. It’s a sumptuous and lush sound that made the band the most blatantly British of a cadre of rockers, the rest of whom were selling American roots music back to the colonies half a century ago.

At Monday night’s Saratoga Performing Arts Center performance, drummer Graeme Edge announced that the band had just celebrated their 50th anniversary the night before. They ended their first set with one of their newest songs, “I Know You’re Out There Somewhere,” a mid-’80s hit. They built their second hour-long set around ever more familiar waves of hits that included “Isn’t Life Strange” from Seventh Sojourn; their first American hit from Days of Future Passed, “Tuesday Afternoon;” “Higher and Higher” with Edge on vocal from To Our Children’s Children’s Children; “Singer in a Rock and Roll Band” from Seventh Sojourn; and they encored with “Ride My See Saw” from In Search of a Lost Chord. Most songs prompted repeated standing ovations from a crowd of all ages, and they closed with their signature song “Nights in White Satin” from the 1967 breakout album Days of Future Passed.

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LIVE: Rockstar Mayhem Festival @ SPAC, 7/23/2014

Tuesday, August 5th, 2014
Korn

Korn

Review and photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

With three stages ringing around the outside of the Saratoga Performing Arts Center’s amphitheater – each presenting a Grade-A selection of heavy metal heroes – it was difficult to determine where the craziest bout of head-banging was about to break out during the early afternoon hours.

Later that evening when the action shifted to the amphitheater, the annual Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival (also known as Q-Ruption) cranking up the volume and shifting into high gear.

Cannibal Corpse closed out the afternoon at the Coldcock Whiskey Stage with their brand of roaring, indescribable metal, while across the lawn at the Sumerian Records Stage, Ice-T – yes, he of “Law & Order SVU” – fronted the veteran rap-meets-metal aggregation Body Count (who made their SPAC debut during the 1991 Lollapalooza tour) as they launched into their controversial hit, “Cop Killer.” Like he said, “I hate cops, though I play one on TV…”

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LIVE: Sarah McLachlan @ SPAC, 7/16/14

Monday, July 28th, 2014

sm1

Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

Cozy, cozy, cozy…

Singer-songstress Sarah McLachlan turned her pavilion-only concert at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center into an intimate house concert. Not quite sure how she did it, either. Perhaps it’s just that inherent Canadian charm. Her stage set featured some living-room furniture, and she invited fans to come up and sit on the sofa. She did a Q&A session, sometimes doing the Q-ing, and sometimes doing the A-ing.

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Parade o’ Shoes: Chris Bergson

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014

Parade of Shoes: Chris Bergson

Photograph by J Hunter

- Chris Bergson @ Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Saratoga Springs, NY, 6/30/13

Blues guitarist Chris Bergson leads his band in concert at Shepard Park in Lake George at 7:30pm on Wednesday (July 23), in support if his recently released album, “Live at Jazz Standard.” Admission is FREE.

LIVE: James Taylor @ SPAC, 7/19/14

Monday, July 21st, 2014

James Taylor's All Stars

Photographs by Stanley Johnson

Since the Berkshires’ own James Taylor sells out a handful of dates at Tanglewood every July, Local 518 fans tend to take him for granted. It’s hard to believe that his previous tour stop at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center was more than a decade ago.

But Taylor is remarkably reliable in concert. And on Saturday night (July 19) he brought along his nine-piece All-Star Band, featuring Blues Brothers’ saxman Lou Marini, drum master Steve Gadd and noted session guitarist Michael Landau, among others.

Relaxed and comfortable in the spotlight, Taylor told stories about the Beatles (his debut album was released on their Apple Records) and crooned his way through two hour-plus sets of singer-songwriter classics from the ’70s, and a few new selections, too.

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