Monday, December 17, 2018

REO Speedwagon, Deadwood, South Dakota

REO Speedwagon made up for a cancelled concert almost a year earlier when on December 2, 2018 they played to a completely sold-out show at the Deadwood Mountain Grand in Deadwood, South Dakota. The packed house enjoyed all the hits by the band that originally formed in 1967. Classic lineup members bassist Bruce Hall, keyboardist Neal Doughty and singer/guitarist Kevin Cronin were complemented by guitarist Dave Amato and drummer Bryan Hitt, who have both been with the band almost 30 years.

One of the coolest things I've ever seen from a big-name band happened when the lights first went down. Kevin Cronin walked out and explained that this was the last show of their 2018 tour, so they would like to do something special for their hard-working crew. He pointed out that the guys behind the scenes are pretty good musicians themselves and introduced the "Crewzitions" for a three-song performance that proved it. Cronin himself played "roadie" and provided a drink of water mid-song for the crew's singer.




Oh yeah, I got to hang out backstage for a few minutes before the show. This was all pretty cool because back when I yearned to be a rock and roll photographer, REO Speedwagon was the first nationally-touring act for which I got a photo/backstage pass. So roughly 35 years later I got to say hi to the guys again.



Monday, August 27, 2018

Little Texas, Mitchell, SD

Little Texas brought America's favorite rockin' country to the World's Only Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota on Friday, August 24, 2018. The crowd wasn't huge, but they seemed to enjoy the show.














I spent a good chunk of the afternoon with the band checking out the Corn Palace itself and the Corn Palace Festival carnival on Mitchell's Main Street. They guys couldn't decide whether the corn-covered venue was cool or hokey. All of them had to take pictures of it though.


Openers for the show were the locally-popular Weston Frank band from eastern South Dakota. They also played an after-party at the Back 40 across the street from the Corn Palace.






Friday, June 22, 2018

Ron Keel Band, Sioux Falls, SD

It's great to say that Ron Keel has become a friend along with the rest of his band. You aren't going to find a friendlier bunch of rockers. On June 9, 2018 they headlined a brand new festival in downtown Sioux Falls - Porkpalooza.

The "Metal Cowboy" with DC Cothern on guitar, El Diablo on bass, Dakota Scott on keyboards and the Rev on drums always put on a great show. Original Keel tunes, deep rock classics and legendary country songs are performed with all the flash and flair of Ron's 80's hair metal background.

Check them out at RonKeelBand.com.













Sunday, June 17, 2018

Sidehackers, Fort Pierre, SD

Local favorites The Sidehackers opened and closed the show at the Silver Spur Bar and Restaurant in Fort Pierre, South Dakota on June 15, 2018. They warmed up the large crowd, then let headliners Hairball do their thing before stepping onto a smaller side stage to keep people entertained late into the night.