It was supposed to just be a Rick Springfield evening. I would go to
his concert on Friday night, write the review, maybe listen to
"Karma" (his latest CD) again, and be done with it. But
the whole weekend I couldn't get away from him. Saturday comes, I'm
at Bed, Bath & Beyond, (hey, no jokes, I needed some supplies
for the dude-pad) when over the speakers I hear "Prayer,"
one of the songs from "Karma," as part of the piped-in
music. "Hmm, that's a little coincidental, don't you
think?" I thought to myself. But I let it go. Then, that
evening, I'm channel surfing and stumble across "Martial
Law." That's not special, but I rarely channel surf to the
local stations on a Saturday night because there's usually nothing I
like on. Then I notice something and mumble to myself "That's
Rick Springfield. He's getting hand-cuffed to a tree!" I was
beginning to have Rick Springfield overload. He was everywhere.
Thank goodness Saturday was over. No more Rick Springfield! But then
Sunday came. I'm watching VH-1, it's "The List," they're
listing best bands of the 70's, and there he was, again, Rick
Springfield. I was beginning to go out of my mind and figured I had
better write this review soon because if I didn't I might have pages
and pages of Rick Springfield experiences instead of just a concert
review. So let's get to it before somehow Rick Springfield ends up
on "King of the Hill."
A Concert Review
When I told Stu I was going to see Rick Springfield he asked
where Rick was playing. I told him "Some bar called
'Joe's," to which Stu replied "Oh, how the mighty have
fallen." I told him that Rick sold out three shows and little
did I know about Joe's. After getting there I realized Rick hadn't
fallen at all.
Driving to Joe's I recalled seeing Meat Loaf in a bar. It was
small, cramped, I think Meat sweat on me, and as cool as it was to
see him so up close and personal it was a little sad that he was
stuck playing such a small place. I was getting close to Joe's and
those same feelings came back - it would be cool to see Rick
Springfield in a bar, but he should really be playing larger venues.
I walked into Joe's, it seemed kinda small, more a restaurant than a
bar, but no stage. Then I noticed people walking to another room. I
followed. So much for a small bar as the place opened up into a
large room with people already packed around a real stage. There was
no photo pit, I was stuck on a stairway near the back, and my dreams
of Rick sweating on me all but disappeared. Alright, the place is no
United Center, but a bouncer-dude told me they sold around 1200
tickets per night, bodies, mostly of the dudette persuasion, were
packed from front to back, and Rick put on an hour and a half show
that had the dudettes screaming while their boyfriend dudes tried to
be too cool for Rick Springfield even though I could see them
It's 11:30 PM, an hour and a half later than the concert was
listed, Rick came out, screams reminiscent of a Backstreet Boys
concert filled the air, and suddenly I'm remembering things that I
figured were long forgotten, things like the words to "I've
Done Everything for You," like the words to "Human
Touch," like the words to "Kristina," and, well, you
get the idea. And you know what, Rick rocked. Yea, that's right, I
said "Rick rocked." I never knew.
Opening with "His Last Words" and "It'salwayssomething"
from "Karma (with one of my new favoritist lyric lines in
"Down one, home run, your dog steals the ball"), Rick,
dressed in leather pants that looked like they were painted on, led
the crowd through sing-a-longs, destroyed dozens of roses as he used
them as guitar picks, hiked a guitar to a member of his crew, used
cameras as guitar slides, and played lots of songs most people knew
and a few songs from his new CD that some people knew. It was all
Highlights, there were many, and none of them for me revolved
around "Jessie's Girl." Even though I like the song, it's
not my favorite ("Inside Sylvia" actually tops that list),
but Rick showed that he can play with the best of them doing a great
surf riff into, happily for me, "Inside Sylvia," could
turn forgetting lyrics into crowd pleasing, worked a stage like a
master, and even tried to fill audience requests. He did it all and
looked like he was having so much fun. That's what it's all about.
What else can I say about Rick Springfield except that the man
puts on one hell of a show. The old songs sounded as fresh as when
they were new, and the new songs show that Rick still has it,
although you can tell he has grown a little in their messages. He
led the crowd through "Free," his latest single (which
sounds to me like it belongs in a movie, in the scene where the dude
and dudette realize they love each other and wind up in bed - it's
way romantic), had dudettes screaming at him like they were
teenagers and he was 25, and showed that you don't have to get any
slower with age.
Some people seemed a little grumpy that Rick started late, and I
was a little grumpy too, but that grumpiness went away once he hit
the stage. He impressed me with his guitar work, had dudettes
screaming at him, made me remember songs I had long forgotten, and
showed to me that he is still mighty, has not fallen, and just plain
knows how to rock. It's TWO "STILL MIGHTY AND NOT FALLEN"
THUMBS UP for Rick Springfield.
That's it for this one! I'm The Dude on the Right!! L8R!!!