Posted on 2/25/2013
It was that time of the year again when lovers exchange gifts and/or cards and Rick Springfield rolls into Nashville, TN for his annual Wildhorse Saloon Valentine’s Day performance. Rick Springfield has made a habit to perform in Nashville this time every year, as he told us, “Because the chicks are hot!” Let me say that the 63 year young Rick Springfield is also on fire with his rock n’ roll (and at times hard rock) performance. Rick Springfield put on a 90 minute set consisting of his hits from the 80s, his favorite cover songs, as well as many tunes from his latest album, “Songs for the End of the World“. Rick said the world didn’t end in December 2012 like some predicted, but if it would have, his new album would have been a great soundtrack for it. Enjoy our blog concert review written by Mike Arnold and Mike’s podcast recorded from the Wildhorse Saloon in Nashville, TN.
Written by Mike Arnold
The Rick Springfield fans flew in or drove in from all parts of the country to attend their favorite rocker perform his annual Valentine’s Day concert in Nashville, TN. Many of the fans attending the show have made their trip an annual event… and Concert Blast has made this show our annual way to kick off the concert review podcasts.
Electric energy was definitely in the air as all three levels of the Wildhorse Saloon were packed with fans. It was approximately 9pm when the PA system exploded the loud intro music and the house lights went down to start this show. The band members slowly took their positions on the stage as Rick Springfield ran out on the dark stage strumming notes on his guitar to hype this crowd. The drummer hit four quick hits to his hi-hat to introduce the opener, from his new album Songs for the End of the World, “Wide Awake”. Rick and company transitioned straight into the next song without stopping, Sammy Hagar’s “I’ve Done Everything For You”. Again without breaking Rick pulls out another older song, “I Get Excited”.
Rick finally stopped the music long enough to say hello to this Nashville, TN crowd, switch guitars, and talk about the writer of this next song as being his musical idol. In fact Rick mentioned that he carried a photo of Paul McCartney in his wallet for years, before leading into the Wings’ hit, “Jet”.
Rick spoke to the audience again and reminded them about his new album, Songs for the End of the World, as he introduced the second new song of the evening, “Our Ship’s Sinking”. Rick once again talked to the fans, but this time it was about the gifts we give our lady friends/wives for Valentines Day. He mentioned that it doesn’t take a lot of imagination to order flowers. Rick said, “So what did I get my wife? … Flowers! … Oh Well.” This story led into another hit from the 80s, “Affair of the Heart”. Without stopping Rick and band dove right into the rocker, “Alyson”.
Rick mentioned this next one is a song from his new record and said, “…If anyone has read my autobiography.” The fans screamed for approval as Rick responded with a fake disappointment, “That’s pretty freaking scary! A lot of people know my skeletons now.” Rick admitted that he’s had several self-worth issues in his past as he introduced the new song, “I Hate Myself”.
Rick continued the show with telling us about the Sound City Project with Foo Fighters, John Fogerty, Fleetwood Mac, Tom Petty, Cheap Trick, and many others. He then performed the song which he wrote with the Foo Fighters, “The Man Who Never Was”.
Next came one of the concert favorites where Rick and his band performed a medley of older material consisting of, “Bop Til You Drop”, “Celebrate Youth”, “Calling All Girls”, “Don’t Walk Away”, “State of the Heart”, and “What Kind of Fool Am I”.
It was time for Rick to show us how well he can play lead guitar as he went through a couple of minutes of his guitar talent which transitioned into the classic rock cover, “Crossroads”. As soon as the tune ended, Rick yelled, “Human Touch!” which got everyone excited because they knew it was time for him to get up close and personal with his fans and he took a wireless mic out into the crowd as he walked through the main floor of the venue on top of the tables. When he returned to the stage, the band took a break (and so did Rick) as he sat on a stool with an acoustic guitar to serenade the audience. Rick played three songs acoustically, a new song called, “You and Me”, an older song called “My Father’s Chair“, about the passing of and missing his dad. He performed this tune while tears rolled down his face. And another new song, “Love Screws Me Up”.
The band returned to the stage and once again it was time to have fun with the fans in the crowd as he picked on certain individuals to sing the line, “Don’t Talk To Strangers”. He had several people singing this one, including a four year old boy who belted the line with confidence!
Rick mentioned a friend of his is going to join him on this song as he introduced Taylor Swift’s guitarist, Paul Sidoti as they performed another older hit, “Love Somebody”. Rick teased everyone by saying that he was all out of songs before playing the world famous riff which led into the big hit, “Jessie’s Girl”.
Rick waved and left the stage with the band members as the crowd yelled for about three minutes before he returned wearing a different t-shirt (that wasn’t drenched with sweat). Rick stepped up to the mic with guitar in hand to perform the 60’s Beatles hit, “All My Loving”. The crowd showed their approval of the song selection by singing along.
Rick introduced his drummer from his early days, Nashville resident Jack White. Rick said that since Jack played drums on the recording of this next song, it would be good for him to play on it tonight and they went into, “Love Is Alright Tonight”. Rick waved goodbye, shook a few hands, and said his “Thank Yous” before leaving the stage for the final time.
It was good to see Mr. Springfield perform a slightly different set than his past ones. What stood out to me about this show was the diversity. New songs, old hits, cover songs, an acoustic set, getting the crowd to sing, walking out into the crowd, and bringing on special guests. This is the way all concerts should be! I loved his version of “All My Loving”. I normally don’t care for solos, but since many don’t realize that Rick can play a mean lead guitar, I’m glad he showed us his talent… and kept it short! There were a couple of things I didn’t like… a few words of profanity (which he probably didn’t realize he was saying) and stumbling over his words at times in between a couple of the songs. Other than that it was a high energy rock and roll concert! On the Concert Blast scale I will give it an 8.5.
Written by Mike Arnold
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