Welcome to the musical meandering insights of Aaron Joy. Here you'll find 600 reviews of CDs & DVDs of rock & metal in all its variations, mainstream & indie. What they all share is that the album or band is unique in some way & not every submission was reviewed. Please share these reviews or link to them if you like what you read. Reviews are no longer being posted here but feel free to e-mail Aaron & post comments. (Formerly the Roman Midnight Music Blog)

Sunday, October 9, 2011

DVD: The Doobie Brothers ~ Live At The Greek Theatre 1982 Farewell Tour

(Click on heading to visit official website.)
Style: classic rock, pop rock
Label: Eagle Vision
Year: 2011
Home: America

Concert location: Greek Theatre, Berkeley, California
Year Recorded: 1982
Length: 120 minutes
Bonus Features: bonus tracks "Little Darling (I Need You)", "One Step Closer", "Dependin' On You", "Real Love", "No Stoppin' Us Now"; pre-show interviews with bandmembers: Michael McDonald, Bobby LaKind, John McFee, Cornelius Bumpus, Keith Knudsen, Tom Johnston, Bruce Cohn

Members: Michael McDonald ~ keyboards/vocals
Patrick Simmons ~ guitar/banjo/flute/ vocals
Keith Knudsen ~ drums/vocals
John McFee ~ guitar/violin/vocals
Willie Weeks ~ bass/b. vocals
Bobby LaKind ~ percussion/b. vocals
Cornelius Bumpus ~ sax/flute/keyboards/vocals
Chet McCracken ~ drums

Guests: Tom Johnston ~ guitar/vocals
John Hartman, Michael Hossack ~ drums
Tiran Porter ~ bass
Bill Graham ~ MC


In an age when rock bands wrote relatively harmless, or radio friendly, music that drew from rock, R&B, country & blues there was spawned a branch of consumer friendly rock, i.e. not too many guitar solos, memorable melodies & lots of sing along lyrics of peace & love probably sung by multiple members including the drummer. Some people call this blue-eyed soul. REO Speedwagon, Bread, Toto, Steely Dan, Eagles & America might be bands that come to mind along the spectrum of this genre, alongside the Doobie Brothers. You may have forgotten about the band, but who hasn't rocked out to "Listen To The Music", "Rockin' Down The Highway", "Black Water", "China Grove", "Jesus Is Just Alright" or "You Belong To Me" at some imte? Sadly, the DBs have been kept alive by an older generation as their music is too safe & live show too tame for the present generation. So, for some kick in the pants nostalgia of when music was still fun & not showing off with over the top stage antics, big hair & wild guitars this final show by the DBs is an enjoyable romp. MTV debuted in 1982 & this is not an MTV band & it was time for a change. It's shame they had to call it a day, but they go out on a high. The band reunited five years later & continue to record albums to the present day, kept alive on the nostalgia circuit that didn't exist as a viable career sustaining entity until the last 20 years. But, in 1982 things seemed to have wound down for the band prompting new musical & creative directions away from the DBs name, which indeed is but a name as no original members remained in 1982 & the sound far removed from the early days, most prodominantly in the solo career of pianist/singer Michael McDonald. Introduced by Bill Graham the band goes out in energetic joyous form. There's not a bit of sorrow until a brief twenty seconds clip after the show when a camera backstage spots the bassist hugging another bandmate. He puts his hand over the lens to obviously block out the fact he's crying. He's almost too brief to be seen but summarizes so much about the evening's show. With McDonald hunkered down at a keyboard at the side of the stage, often singing with eyes closed it's not much of a visual show at times, but guitarist Patrick Simmons makes up for it by taking a casual stroll right through the audience while soloing. There's seemingly no security or barricades & when the camera casts its view at the stage over Simmon's shoulder its one of the best, let alone rarest, camera views in a concert video. For two hours the DBs play all the hits across the history of the band. There's even five bonus tracks for some unknown reason cropped from the concert. Potentially its to keep the show at a reasonable length but the bonus songs are also from the McDonald era thus they would give the show more a slant towards a later era when this is a celebration of everyone. And, in that mode of celebration the band was joined on stage by some old bandmates including founding member Tom Johnston. Bonus features also include brief pre-show backstage interviews with many band members about the end of the band, feelings about the on-coming show & planned future activities. It's a bittersweet moment as some members have solo projects on the calendar while others don't. All are sad for the past, while the new members seem the saddest as they're losing their new gig while the old members are ready to move on & have already begun the transition. It makes one want to look up exactly what everyone ended up doing, as it's like a high school year book. Will or won't one become rich and famous? Down the road will we still ... listen to the music?

Track listing: Listen To The Music
Sweet Maxine
Rockin' Down The Highway
You Belong To Me
Take Me In Your Arms (Rock Me)
Long Train Runnin'
Black Water
Minute By Minute
Slat Key Soquel Rag
I Keep Forgettin'
Out On The Streets
What A Fool Believes
Jesus Is Just Alright
Takin' It To The Streets
China Grove





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