United for a kick ass rock show.
– review of the show at the Perfect Vodka Amphitheater (Wellington).
Nostalgia rocked the Wellington crowd with heavyweights Styx, REO Speedwagon during The United We Rock tour, but not to be forgotten was Don Felder. The former member of The Eagles sang many familiar songs from the band including: Already Gone, One of These Nights, The Long Run, Take It Easy, Life in The Fast Lane and Hotel California. While people may have not recognized his name at first, they left knowing who he was. His 5-piece band included a pianist from Whitesnake and a guitarist from the B-52’s. Even Tommy Shaw from Styx joined him on stage during Take It Easy. His legendary guitar skills were at a high during the popular riff Life in the Fast Lane when he yielded a double neck guitar. His set closed with members from both Styx & REO joining him on stage for Hotel California.
Next, REO Speedwagon came on the stage and rocked it immediately. Whereas Don Felder was kind of subdued on stage, REO’s energy, coupled with the lights on the stage was a stark contrast. They sang all of their hits, including: Don’t Let It Go, Take It On The Run, Fly, Ridin’ The Storm Out, Keep On Lovin’ You and Roll With The Changes. The crowd was hanging on every word, singing along and smiling from ear to ear. While the show was a spectacle, it was even more so considering that frontman Kevin Cronin was having a hard time talking. But, as he claimed, “I can’t talk, but I sure as hell can rock,” and rock he did. Kevin pulled out his double neck guitar and stormed through Fly before Bruce Hall, the longtime bassist, sang a harder rock song himself. However, the drummer, Bryan Hitt, was a sight to be held too. His performance alone seemed to breathe a fire of energy into the crowd. As the set began to unwind, Cronin sat down to play piano for Keep On Lovin’ You and showed just how multi-talented he is.
It seemed each time another band took the stage, the energy level rose. While REO put on a good show, Styx was unbelievable. All the band members seemingly covered every inch of the stage. There wasn’t a bad seat around. But, as is customary it seems with every one of their shows, they’re not just about the music, but also about everything else that comes with it. The theatrics included a rotating backdrop and a eye-catching light show that really was second to none. It’s just incredible how great music isn’t all you get at one of their shows.
Still, aside from the great effects, the band members had memorable takes too. Lawrence Gowan, the talented keyboardist, performed on a rotating keyboard in all kinds of ways (backwards, upside down and even standing on the keyboard). The guitarists jammed out while often synchronized in a fun choreography. One of them even played with his guitar behind his head during Miss America.
Before the song Light Up, the crowd was asked to turn on their cell phone light. It was a cool effect to see so many lights on in the crowd.
Tommy Shaw mentioned that Charles Panozzo, a bassist who has been with the band since 1970, was a hometown hero (lives in South Florida).
During a piano solo from Lawrence, he tranisitoned into a fun sampling of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody, to the delight of the crowd before Styx came back with a catalog of hits like, Blue Collar Man, Lady, Fooling Yourself, Too Much Time, Come Sail Away, and Renegade. Their setlist also included songs from their new album The Mission, which has already shot up to #6 on the Billboard’s Top Rock Albums.
It was a hot summer night in Florida, but that didn’t stop these three legends (Don Felder, REO Speedwagon and Styx) from rockin’ the crowd. It was a night that no one will forget and you could still hear people talking about the great show on their way to their cars that is aside from the ones who weren’t singing their songs on the way to the parking lot.