Don’t Miss: Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo @ Warner Theatre, 7/8/15

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Neil Giraldo and Pat Benatar, husband and wife rock gods (Photo courtesy Webster PR)

I was an unabashed MTV kid, and I absorbed as much music as I could through the heydey of the music video channel.

That music came in various stripes, such as the hard rockin’ Pat Benatar, who debuted as the second video ever on MTV with “You Better Run” from her 1980 album Crimes of Passion.

“We now call that album ‘Crimes of Fashion,'” quipped Neil Giraldo, the longtime husband and guitar player of the “Invincible” songbird, holding up the album’s back cover at a concert I attended many moons ago.

Now more than 35 years on, Pat and Neil Giraldo have become perhaps the happiest couple in show business, and certainly one of the most dynamic, between her indefatigable voice and his irrepressible guitar chops. In fact, the duo launched a 35th anniversary tour in 2014, and they bring that tour to the Warner Theatre on Wednesday, July 8.

Watch these amazing musicians perform a set of three songs — 1979’s “We Live for Love,” 1984’s “We Belong,” and 1981’s “Promises in the Dark” — for an NPR Tiny Desk Concert on Nov. 25, 2014.

As you can see, Pat and Neil sound even better with age. The tour setlist promises a lineup of classics, although I’m also an admirer of her last studio album, 2003’s “Go,” which I felt was critically underrated! Anyway, the show certainly will feature many longtime favorites, perhaps including “Shadows of the Night,” “Hit Me with Your Best Shot,” “Love Is a Battlefield,” and many others.

Speaking of “Love Is a Battlefield,” the song is the subject of the latest in an excellent retrospective series of videos the duo have been doing in honor of their 35th anniversary.

Watch Neil and Pat discuss how the song came to take shape:

And don’t miss them in what is sure to be a terrific show at the Warner Theatre on July 8.

Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo
Warner Theatre
Wednesday, July 8
Show @8pm
$43-$93
All ages

Don’t Miss: Huey Lewis and The News @ Warner Theatre, 6/23/15

Huey Lewis and The New

Huey Lewis and The News have been together for 36 years and they are still going strong. So strong, they will play for us at the Warner Theatre on 6/23/15.

Their songs were essential listening for my second decade of life.

Even when their popularity waned in the 1990’s and beyond, I caught them live for the first and only time in 1996. Time to rectify that.

In the past 15 years, Huey Lewis and The News have released two studio albums, the latest one a tribute to the music of Stax Records.

I have not listened to either of those albums, but I’m sure Huey’s voice and The News’ sound, including R&B and soul influences, make them a worthy entry into their discography.

For me, I still go back to the classic hits of the 1980’s. ‘Power of Love’ and ‘If This Is It’, of course, but I always enjoyed ‘Heart of Rock & Roll’, ‘Jacob’s Ladder’ and my favorite, ‘Walking On a Thin Line’.

Let’s relive the classics! Tickets are still available.

Huey Lewis and The News
Warner Theatre
Tuesday, June 26
8:00pm
$53 and up
All ages

Music Park: Prince + 3rdeyegirl @ Warner Theatre — 6/14/15

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Prince jams at the Warner Theatre on June 14. (Photo by Karrah Kobus / NPG Records)

Hey, we all agree: Prince is awesome. He’s funky, and he rocks the house in live performance. And he did as much in two sold-out shows at the Warner Theatre on Sunday as part of his series in the Hit & Run tour.

And so, yes, we’re going to talk a little about Prince. But Prince wants us to talk a bit about his backing band, 3rdeyegirl. So let’s talk about them first.

I actually first attended the Rally 4 Peace at the Royal Farms Arena in Baltimore on Sunday, May 10, and then I caught the late 11pm show at Warner Theatre this past Sunday, June 14.

In both performances, 3rdeyegirl were really quite great. They add fire to the overall show, and they hold down specific numbers on their own. Guitarist Donna Grantis often takes the front of the stage, literally leaping into action as she thunders away on her guitar. She did as much for the opening number Sunday night — “Plectrumelectrum,” the title track from their 2014 debut album with Prince. “Plectrumelectrum” is an instrumental track that gives the audience a chance to see 3rdeyegirl in action as the band gets warmed up. Donna is always in the minute, and her axe is really sharp.

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Music Park: Daryl Hall & John Oates @ Warner Theatre — 4/29/15

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Daryl Hall and John Oates during a show in Austin in February 2014.

Because their kiss is on your list, Daryl Hall and John Oates sold out the Warner Theatre again Wednesday night!

The talented gentlemen from Philadelphia brought along a six-man band to play 14 time-honored tunes from their catalog, including “Kiss on My List,” from 1980’s Voices. By the time they hit that number in their second encore, much of the audience in the orchestra had spilled into the aisles and lined up around the stage to dance the rest of the night away. It’s become expected that people will simply dance, regardless of where they are seated, at a Hall & Oates concert, and the folks at the Warner were pretty cool about letting the audience do its own thing.

Hall & Oates did their own thing as well, crooning through a well-received collection of ‘70s and ‘80s songs that everyone in the house loved. When I say they played these songs, I should instead say they emoted them! They jammed the night away. So when you hear they played 14 songs, they made a very respectable 90 minute set out of those 14 songs.

I was excited right away as Hall & Oates and their band walked to the opening notes of “Maneater,” the classic from 1982’s H20. They followed that up with a personal favorite song of mine, “Out of Touch” from my favorite album by the duo — 1984’s Big Bam Boom. Their blue eyed-soul was awash in the rising tide of new wave by 1984, and the blending of styles brought out some remarkably catchy creativity to my welcoming ears.

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Don’t Miss: Hall & Oates @ Warner Theatre, 4/29/15

Visiting Artist: John Oates
John Oates visits the Berklee College of Music on April 14, 2015.

Daryl Hall and John Oates, the dynamic duo who kept breaking records since their first album in 1972, return to DC to perform at the Warner Theatre on Wednesday, April 29.

I last caught Hall and Oates, as they are colloquially known, at the Warner on Oct. 2, 2013, in a damn fine show. The gents and their band raised blue-eyed soul to a whole new level that night, as they ran through about 14 songs in their catalog with a heavy focus on their material from the 1970s.

In that show about a year and a half ago, Hall and Oates performed “She’s Gone” from platinum album “Abandoned Luncheonette” with so much power and passion that it literally brought the entire audience to its feet. The entire house literally responded with a standing ovation to the ever-popular and equally passionate “Sara Smile.”

The duo made me happy as well when they hit some of their tunes from the 80s, including “Private Eyes” and “I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do).” Their six-man band rose to the occasion, particularly sax player Charles DeChant, who has been performing with the guys for many years (and who proves to be a draw himself).

Dig Charles DeChant’s sax solo in the video for “Maneater” below:

Tickets are available online and at the box office. Based on my last time seeing Hall and Oates, you absolutely shouldn’t miss this show. Soul and reggae singer Mutlu, who hails from Philadelphia like our heroes, opens the show.

Daryl Hall and John Oates
w/ Mutlu
Warner Theatre
Wednesday, April 29, 2015
Doors @7pm
$73-148
All ages