Friday, January 13, 2012

Review: Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band @ Bank Atlantic Center 1/12/12

70’s reborn! That is about the sum total of it.

I would love to open with a full review of the opening act, but I can’t really as they never told us who they were. OK, to be fair, I was a bit late and heard the start of their first song as I got to the fourth floor of the Bank Atlantic Center, but still as an opening act one would assume they would remind us who they were once or twice during their set. They instead just said random rock Cliches like “Ft Lauderdale!” and “Bob Seger folks!” We know where we are and who we came to see; we need to know who you are! They then closed their set with the ultimate rock cliché by playing a song for our troops.

While a song for the troops is noble, playing Creedence Clearwater’s Fortunate Son is not the song to play. I love the song personally and was glad to hear it, but the “for the troops” kept repeating in my head as the lead singer sang the lyrics “some folks are born made to wave the flag…but it ain’t me.” I kept being reminded of those poor people who think Born in the USA is a pro-America song, but never bothered to pay attention to the actual lyrics. This band did not have the luxury of that excuse as they sang them 100% correct. They just didn’t get the song and anyone who knows me and how I am with lyrics knows this was totally distracting for the rest of the opening act. Actually made me think of Nirvana who sang: He’s the one who likes all our pretty songs and he loves to sing along, but he don’t know what it means.

However…this is a review of Bob Seger. It is a sign of poor writing that I have spoken so far of an unknown opening act, CCR, Springsteen, and Nirvana and have not yet got to the Detroit Rock Star himself. I will correct that now.

Bob Seger is a man I never knew what he looked like to begin with and my only real exposure to his songs are via the live albums, so I thought I knew what to expect and I was promised not to be disappointed by his older appearance. I was wrong on the first count and never saw beyond a gray blur on a black body thanks to my 40 year old vision. The audio of a Bob Seger show I knew was only 30% of the experience. The man and his band know how to put on a show. It didn’t matter where you looked on the stage at any time; each member of the band was performing and giving it their all. And there were about 15 people on the stage from his back up singers to his horn section to his band.

The songs were just one hit after another with no filler tunes save for one new song towards the end of his set, but the man can’t do just “Turn the Page” forever…well, he actually could. My friend and I would comment after each song ended “that could have been the encore!” Most bands would be lucky to have a song like “Old Time Rock and Roll” or “Fire Down Below” to close a set with, but Bob has so many hit songs that those were placed early in his set with bigger hits following. Even the previously mentioned “Turn the Page” didn’t earn encore status which gave it an amazing “out of nowhere” feel as I really expected it to be at least the closer.

I must take a moment here to speak about Alto Reed. Alto has been with Bob Seger since 1971 and the man IS the show. He moves nonstop with these funky dance steps and his sax solos empower every song he touches. As much as Bob’s singing, Alto’s sax IS “Turn the Page” and as much as I wanted to watch Bob do his thing, Alto kept stealing my attention.

And the crowd…I posted on Facebook from the show “Cougars, and Bikers, and Hicks…Oh My” and that about sums it up. My beard and bald spot fit in perfectly which was actually nice for a change at a concert. The only problem was the quality of the pot they smoked. I did not partake at all, but the aroma of cheap dirt weed was rather pathetic given the age of the crowd. Shows I go to with younger crowds has better smelling herb and it isn’t a concert until you smell that first joint. You know that is true.

Overall, I am so happy I got to see Bob Seger and am more than happy that even 40 years later, he still seems to love every moment on the stage playing the same songs he has for 40 years. He sounds exactly like he always did, but given his voice was never operatic to begin with, that really wasn’t too shocking.

Go see him if you get the chance. You will be more than happy.


1. Roll Me Away
2. Tryin' to Live My Life Without You (Otis Clay cover)
3. The Fire Down Below
4. Mainstreet
5. Old Time Rock & Roll
6. Ramblin' Gamblin' Man
7. Hey Hey Hey Hey (Goin' Back to Birmingham)(Little Richard cover)
8. Travelin' Man
9. Beautiful Loser
10. We've Got Tonight
11. Nutbush City Limits (Tina Turner cover)
12. Come to Poppa
13. Her Strut
14. Real Mean Bottle (Vince Gill cover)
15. Turn the Page
16. Sunspot Baby
17. Katmandu
18. Against the Wind
19. Hollywood Nights
Encore 2:
20. Night Moves
21. Rock and Roll Never Forgets

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