Sunday, August 9, 2009

Bonnie Raitt and Taj Mahal Concert

The first time we saw Bonnie Raitt was back in the early 70's (maybe late 60's) when she did a show at Glassboro State College, which is now called Rowan University. If I recall she performed in their gymnasium with a packed crowd of young enthusiastic kids enhancing the performance with pot filled room fresheners.

My husband, I don't remember if he was my husband then or not, was and is a music lover who took charge and continues to enlighten me about wonderful musicians. He thinks I'm an alzheimer candidate because I can't recall some of the specifics of my past. I blame it on so many things occurring in my life that I don't have room for all the specifics at this time. Perhaps when I'm retired those specifics will resurface and I'll get to live all those wonderful times again. Ok, I'm off topic.

I can only say Father's Day is a terrific idea. One of my daughters bought him a new ipod thingy - holds years of music - while the other two split on tickets to this concert. Hubby decided to take me although I did ask one of the two if they had intended to go right before we were ready to leave.

The first stop was a nice dinner at the Telford Inn where he indulged with a steak and I a broiled seafood combination entree. We topped that delicious dinner off with dessert thus creating a very stuffed and uncomfortable feeling that was later worked off.

Using that marvelous GPS we found our way to the Mann Center in Philadelphia. Unknowingly we parked in a great spot however it was a bit of a walk to the Center itself. Our tickets indicated that we were to sit in the balcony providing us with a complete view of the stage. We merged with the crowd and found the entrance to the balcony without a problem.

Prior to proceeding I had a good look at the lower level and then found myself craning my neck way, way back to look up at the balcony. We started up and I can say it was like hiking up the side of a small mountain. The trek was definitely a good exercise to rid the dessert calories. I wish I had taken a picture on my way up but I was afraid I'd fall backwards like a snowball and roll back down taking everyone behind me out - hubby would have been the first. However I did take a picture of a small portion of our descent.

One of the staff indicated where our seats were located. Taj Mahal had already begun his performance so it was dark but we slowly made our way and carefully climbed the steps to our seat.

We settled in and took stock of our view. Turns out our seats were center stage with a wonderful panoramic view of a sea of blue heads bobbing and bouncing to Taj. I don't think anyone at that sold out concert was younger then 40 - ok maybe a few.

I couldn't help but sneak a picture of Taj Mahal performing. He was absolutely great - I enjoyed his performance both by himself and with Bonnie Raitt.

A zoomed in view

I was totally fascinated by the stage and lighting effects. They changed continuously making the show similar to a video. It appeared to me that the lighting engineers (or whatever they are called) didn't miss a beat.

Apparently we only missed a very little of Taj's opening. Then is was time for Bonnie Raitt. From our seats she hasn't changed from the first time we saw her.

I know my hearing has degenerated over the years. I was able of course to hear the music but not able to understand all the words. That didn't keep me from bouncing, bobbing and clapping in my seat though. However I think it's time to look into it.

We had a wonderful time however I couldn't help but compare this concert to those of long ago. In the old days no one would have been sitting in their seats bouncing, bobbing and clapping. It was more like standing through the entire concert, swaying, clapping hands above your head and most of all - singing along with the performer. Now the legs won't hold us up that long; clapping our arthritic hands hurts; and our old voices ruin the music we came to hear.

During the duel performance Taj was able to encourage everyone to stand, sway and clap their hands. That lasted through two songs but it was fun! Hubby stood but he didn't sway or clap his hands. I could tell he was enjoying himself as his eyes and attention were riveted on the stage.

The coolest part of the concert was the second time Bonnie Raitt and Taj Mahal performed. Both bands accompanied them. I was awestruck watching each member play. Not once during this concert did the band music overide the voices of Bonnie Raitt or Taj Mahal. This was definitely a class act.

Then it was over. This was perhaps the saddest part of the show. In the old days the audience would remain and demand the performers to come back on stage for one or two more tunes. I don't think I recall any performer not accommodating the crowd. This time though, as soon as the show was over, everyone clapped enthusiastically but immediately left the auditorium. No encore.

We sat in our seats while the crowd dispersed.

Definitely a memorable evening. We located our car which was parked right at the exit so we had no problem exiting and getting home.

I should note that there were no room fresheners.

Have a Firecrackin Good Day!

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