Up in the Catskill Mountains, very close to the footprint of where Woodstock was held in 1969, there now is one spectacular venue to see a show. Winding paths lead to various concession stands, eating areas, and other fun things. The architecture blends perfectly with the countryside. The pavillion where the stage is set, sits halfway down the hill with seating rising up around it. The view is so serene, it's not hard to understand how half a million people peacefully cohabited here for three days in less than ideal conditions.
The event for the night was Ringo Starr's All Starr Band. Fun.
Starting the show was Ringo singing "Matchbox" and next going into "It Don't Come Easy." As this was my first time seeing Ringo, I was happily surprised how well he commands the stage. Light on his feet, he uses the whole stage and enjoys a really nice rapport with the crowd. Throughout the set, he would bounce between center stage and behind the drums.
Originally I had thought the All-Starrs would each do a few songs, but instead they each did one of their own songs, then handed it over to the next. First up was Todd Rundgren who asked "Have the drugs kicked in yet?" Assuming the old vibe from the Woodstock days might still be evident...it wasn't far from the truth. Although this time, I think the drug of choice might have been Prozac. This crowd was just a little too mellow for this rockers' liking...people, you're at a rock show...it's time to boogie. Rundgren began his night with "Hello, It's Me," ...nice.
Greg Rolie took over next with "Evil Ways" and mentioned it was 43 years ago, in that summer of '69, that they first played it at this site. Steve Lukather, one guy who really seems to love his job, said this was "the best summer vacation of my life." He then launched into "Rosanna," helped out by Mark Rivera on the upper range of the song. Richard Page did a fine job on "Kyrie" then bringing the circle back to Ringo.
It was a good mix. How can it not be enjoyable when you are going to hear the hits from each member of the band. From the fun songs like "Yellow Submarine" and "I Don't Want To Work" to the memorable hits "Africa" and "Broken Wing" to the 'just don't stop' songs like "Everybody's Everything" and "Hold the Line.", the music just got better.
There were not a lot of surprises at this show. Except for the songs Ringo decided to highlight off his new CD, every other song was pretty much expected. And that was a good thing. All hits, all the time....what's the problem there? Was it one of the best shows I've ever seen...not at all.. But I never expected it to be. It was a lot of fun for me and I think for the band. If you like at least two members of the All Starr Band...you'll have a enjoyable evening.
Because after all...we'll get by with a little help from our friends.