That's the only word that needs to be said. Not that I can say a whole lot more this morning. I'm hoarse. I think I strained the old vocal cords last night.
Four decades. With that much time together, your act should be honed to perfection. And it was. Now, I've seen some acts that were pretty memorable in my time. The Who. Neil Young. Elvis Presley. I've seen some pretty theatrical performances. The Tubes. Blue Man Group. And I've been around a while - I saw my first concert (Neil Young at the Forum in L.A. in 1972). But, this was the *best* all around musical performance I've ever seen.
Sure - the venue helped. We were within 20 feet of the stage. Standing for 4 hours really sucked, but once the little band from Texas made it out on stage, who cared? LOUD! And ROCKIN'! It was apparent from the very start that despite playing the same songs night in and night out for 40 years - they still LOVE what they do. They were smiling. They engaged the crowd. Bottom line was they were enjoying themselves on the stage. It was apparent from the git go that they do what they love and love what they do.
To be honest, except for Billy Gibbons, the musical talent isn't epic (Dusty Hill isn't John Entwistle (yes - I've seen The Who), and Frank Beard isn't even in the same category as Zack Starkey (who? can anyone tell me?)), but the three of them have been together for so long that together they work seamlessly. They are so tight that when Beard and Hill stop so Gibbons can showcase his guitar talent, the cuts are exact and perfect. And the starts are the same. The show works. The music rocks. And these guys are classic together.
I have a few photos to share. Sorry for the bad quality, but they snagged my camera on the way in (I did get it back later), so once again, I had to rely on the iPhone:
Bottom line? I'm kinda of glad that Aerosmith had to cancel. I'm not sure that the same energy would come across at a larger venue like the Verizon amphitheater. But, in a small venue (HOB has a max capacity of 2300) these guys are *the best* overall show that I've ever seen. I'd plop down another C note to see these guy tonight at HOB Hollywood if my wife would let me!
Oh - and my boys now know I am strange. From starting the "ZZ Top" chant with the crowd to yelling and screaming at the top of my lungs to the Sharp Dressed Man sing along, I couldn't help but notice that they kept staring as the night progressed. Yes boys - the Old Man knows how to rock and have a good time!