Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Recent Reviews ...

re:  Alan Parsons:

Alan told me I am his brother in Chicago ... and the Arcada is his home.
Ron Onesti
ALWAYS a good show.  And, thanks to Lou, we've been able to add a couple of photos to the website, too.  Be sure to check out Ron's "backstage" story this Friday as Alan discusses what it was like to engineer the very last "live" Beatles recording session ... on the rooftop of Apple Records.  (kk) 

Here's one you haven't seen yet ...

Lead singer PJ Olsson (with Alan Parsons in the background) playing my personal favorite "Time" 
- photo courtesy of Luciano Bilotti - Thanks, Lou!

After reading your write up about Alan Parsons I regret not making the trip to St. Charles for that show.  Ron Onesti makes everyone feel like they are family!  Thanks Ron for the hospitality!
Marlee Harrison  
Based on the fact that Parsons has sold out The Arcada every time he's performed there, my guess is he'll be back ... see Ron's comment above ... don't miss it next time ... it truly is amazing!  (kk)  

Based on your first Alan Parsons review from last year I decided to check this out for myself.  So glad I did.  Professional musicianship of the highest caliber ... what a great show.  It was exactly as you described it ... rock royalty on stage.  

I wasn't all that familiar with a lot of the music performed by the Alan Parsons Project Friday night at the Arcada theater  I knew the hits, of course, but felt a bit in the dark on some of the other material.  However it was so perfectly executed that I was still able to enjoy the show to the fullest.  A perfect night of music, perfectly executed. 

Your review of The Alan Parsons Project pissed me off ... only 'cause I couldn't be there  LOL 
Great job. One of these days I HAVE to get to Chicago to meet you and Frannie. 

re:  Peter Noone:

It was nice visiting with you in line after the Peter Noone concert and meeting your wife.  Peter Noone was wonderful as always and the sound check for the fan club in the afternoon was fun as he answered questions and sang a few songs.  I enjoyed your review of the Marty Grebb benefit and remember what an incredible evening we had at the Arcada with all the great Chicago talent!   
Marlee Harrison

Hi Kent,  
Great review!! 
I was there ... I saw you at the back stage entrance and was going to run over to say Hi and how much I enjoy the Forgotten Hits blog and all your history and insights. But before I could decide, yes no, yes no, you went back stage and I didn't see you again.I had a great time at the Arcada ... just wish it wasn't so far away ... we came from the Detroit area. I've been on your mailing list a long time, have won a few of your prizes and, like I said, always enjoy hearing about the entertainers we grew up with. Never in a million years would have thought I'd EVER meet Peter and get pictures and all that fun stuff. He a great entertainer and your review was spot on - the music takes you back to when you were young. He is SOOO patient and treats his fans great. And like you say, he enjoys it just as much ... or seems to - ha, his sound check / noonefests gives you a up close and personal feel. So, I just wanted to say thanks and keep it up!Judi Glatfelter

Nice to see you at the Peter Noone concert - I think you described the evening perfectly.  I had never seen his show before so I wasn't quite sure what to expect.  Needless to say, I loved it.
I ran into quite a few Forgotten Hits Readers that night ... still adjusting to getting recognized at some of these shows!  I know I say it a lot but I'm still ... and always will be ... a fan first.  I get just as excited seeing these artists as all of you do ... especially when they're as "spot on" as Peter and the band were Saturday Night!  (kk)

How fun to sit with Peter AND enjoy the show. Glad for you!   

Hi Kent,
Great Peter Noone blog!

(I feel like its godfather for introducing you two!)
I just emailed Vinny Martell of Vanilla Fudge and told
him about you (unless he already knows) and suggested he
contact you.  He's a real good guy ... and an *extremely* underrated talent.
I hope all's well.

Bob Rush
I've not spoken to anyone from Vanilla Fudge (but from what I understand, I have been indirectly responsible for a couple of their bookings recently.)  They're coming to Chicago later this year.  (They hit The Arcada Theatre on Sunday, August 7th, with opening act Nazareth!)
(For those who don't know, Bob got our interview with Peter Noone published in a British Music Magazine called "The Beat" a few years back ... in fact, they liked it so much they split it into THREE consecutive cover stories ... first time I think that's EVER happened!!!)  
We've been buddies ever since ... he's the Philadelphia Cheese Steak to my Chicago Italian Beef!  (lol)  kk  

Excellent review of the Herman's Hermits show - Peter Noone sounds exactly the same and he looks great - obviously the crowd loved him.  As you said, the Nooneatics were out in full force Saturday Night - but they were having a GREAT time so it was hard not to just go with the flow.  Downright infectious! 

Nice to finally meet you at the Arcada show.  Thanks for all you have done for me and the band over the years - it truly is appreciated. 
Vance Brescia 
Glad we finally had the chance to say hello.  I love the work that you're doing bring musical joy to some of our senior citizens who can't make it out to a show like this one ... it truly is commendable and I am ALWAYS happy to help spread the word.  Thanks, Vance!  (kk)   

Great review on Peter Noone ... I used to see Peter at the East Bank Club about 25 years ago when he was performing - help me on this - Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat?
Truly one heck of a nice guy. 
"Joseph" would have been Donny Osmond ... but Peter Noone has made NUMEROUS (Noonerous???) appearances in Chicago over the years ... big at Star Plaza just across the border, too ... maybe it was for one of those?  (kk)  

I was at the Peter Noone show at the Arcada on Saturday, too.  A Noonatic from across the Lake in Michigan.  
I concur that it is one of the best performances that Peter has delivered, and I overheard some people leaving the theater speaking of how obvious it is that Peter loves what he does.  It's his enthusiasm and his desire to make sure the audience and the band are having fun which keeps me coming back for more, year after year.  
Alice M 

Wonderful review.  You're correct ... Peter Noone and Jody Klein are getting along very well together ... and it’s so nice to see Eric Burdon and Peter together … two Mickie Most veterans (they live fairly close to each other in Santa Barbara County); Eric told me he borrowed Peter’s guitar player (with Peter’s consent) for a gig when Eric’s guy had to attend a family wedding ... warms my heart to hear this.
Bob Merlis 

Double K - 
Just a quick note to say thank you for suggesting that I take my wife to the Peter Noone show at the Arcada for our anniversary.  We had a great dinner before the show and then laughed and sang our way through the entire performance.  I never realized how many big hits he really had.  Loved his performance of Daydream Believer, too.  We had a fantastic time.
Spent the night down the street at beautiful Pheasant Run and did the nasty till the wee hours of the morning.  One of our best anniversary celebrations ever.
So thanks to you for making this recommendation - and thanks to Peter for an incredible and inspiring performance.
I knew you guys would love it ... ALWAYS a great show when Peter comes to town.  
On a related note (?) here's a picture we ran a few years ago from backstage at The Star Plaza in Indiana ... we call it "Peter Noone With Wood" ... sound like he wasn't the only one this past weekend! (lol)  kk

Just read your Peter Noone concert review ... I think it was one of your best.
You would!!! (lol)
Then again, turn-about's fair play ... so here's one of Shelley's more recent reviews ... 

re:  And A NEW One ... :
The sound system wasn't that great to begin with at the 1st Armed Forces Day Rock and Roll Show.  I attributed it to all the necessary changes in mics, monitors, instruments, and other changes needed from performer to performer.  Then as Shirley Alston Reeves and The Shirelles finish a song selection, the entire sound system quits.  I mean NADA!!!  NO sound at all!  My eyes pop open wide, my mouth forms the sympathetic, "oh nooooooo ... " shape and I sit stunned.  Maybe they should never have started with 'Mama Told Me There'd Be Days Like This'.  OK, what happens next?  
Well, some of the crew jump into problem-solving mode, some (shockingly) start unplugging and removing the equipment from the stage (WHAT??? WHO said the show was over?) and Shirley and The Shirelles STAY on stage and start DANCING with whatever musicians would stay and softly (even the trumpet was on mic) accompany them.  CLASS A1 PROFESSIONALS, LADIES!!  And when they start to tire?  We, the audience, start singing 'Soldier Boy' to THEM!  Shirley leads us on, and then we stand and give them the ovation they deserve.  Shirley is crying.  They are kind of hurried off the stage and the emcee comes out to talk into a non-working mic.  Looks like he is mouthing, "Can you hear me?" 
My appreciation and thanks to the stage crew who insisted on fixing the situation and succeeded in bringing back the sound system ... somehow.  And to the crew who bailed and then were told to set the equipment back up to finish the show ... phhhhhhhttttt!!  I belong to a union, too.  There are such things as extenuating circumstances and just caring for others more than yourself.  Shirley comes back out, carrying her sparkly heels to complete her part of the show.  And as she and The Shirelles do a better rendition of 'Soldier Boy' than we did, we again rise up in applause.  This audience is not that young, but we insist on standing. 
The final act is next and guess who it is?  Lou Christie, who explains that the building was struck by lightning.  What?  BEFORE he performs?  
(Seriously?!?!?  Lightning Strikes ... at a Lou Christie Concert?!?!?  kk)
I am not totally confident that is the reason, but it makes for a grand evening after all.  Lou and his Crayons still have issues with mics, mic stands, and ill-working monitors as stage crew are still bustling to re-install everything.  One stage hand comes out, removes the mic from Lou and tightens it on the stand so that it does not fall off ... as it had been doing.  Lou talks Italian sign language to his audience till this is finished.  I know sign language and this is NOT what I usually teach my students.  But we love it, and laugh openly, which breaks the tension.  Lou, you were great.  Your music director must have looked more my age after this, but everyone pulled through.  Thank you for hanging around backstage till we could give you the stage back.  
My respect for Shirley Alston Reeves, The Shirelles, Lou Christie, The Crayons, Hell's Kitchen Horns, and Lou's other musicians grew so much during this night that I will hold you all in high esteem forever now.  No matter what.  Professionals!  Good people!  60's Musicians!  
Who else appeared?  Oh yes, it is not their fault they had sound.  (yes, sarcasm)  I will name them ...  
Linda Jansen and the Angels:  great job.  
Louis Vanaria, actor/performer opened.  Good job from a Bronx homeboy.  
Tally Lauriti, performing an Elvis tribute.  He gives a good tribute, but it was long for this type of show.  The audience grew restless.  
So, will there be a 2nd Armed Forces Day Rock and Roll Show in White Plains, NY?  ??????

-- Shelley J Sweet-Tufano