Do The Beach Boys Still Have It? My Vote Is In.
At the last minute yesterday I had the chance to attend The Beach Boys Concert at The Chicago Theatre. I decided NATO protesters would not keep me from the downtown area and decided to go.
Tomorrow, I officially will be closer to age 50 than 40 and have been to hundreds of shows. I’ve seen acts from The Osmonds to Metallica and Barry Manilow to Ozzy Osbourne, but I have never seen The Beach Boys. I figured I would be on the low end of the age spectrum because since this was the Boys’ 50th Anniversary Tour – and that seemed to be the case.
The Chicago Theatre has a nice set-up and I was fortunate to be sitting in the 6th row a little off center from the stage. However, having the best view wasn’t that important. I didn’t expect to see a single Beach Boy run around like Mick Jagger or a theatrical display like Alice Cooper’s performances. I was relying on the music to entertain me. The result….
Excellent Show! First off, if I knew I was going sooner I would have sported a Hawaiian shirt like many in the capacity crowd. The tone was set for a good time and The Beach Boys delivered. I knew just about every one of the 44 songs they performed during the 2 ½ hour show (15 minute intermission). From the opening tune, “Do It Again” until the well known finale “Fun Fun Fun” they entertained the crowd as best they could. Front man Mike Love even joked that they wouldn’t be moving around too much and that there would be an intermission. The crowd, me included, did most of the moving by dancing in the aisles and keeping the beach balls circulating the crowd and away from security.
It saddened me a bit to see the condition of Beach Boy founder Brian Wilson. He spent the first half of the show seated at the keyboard and contributed some vocals. He sang lead on a few second half tunes and played bass for two of the encores. He has had well-publicized past battles with anxiety, mental instability and reliance on prescription and illegal drugs. It was good to see him back performing with the band.
I recommend seeing The Beach Boys if the opportunity ever arises for you. It is a just a feel-good, fun show. No songs about politics, the economy, the war, drugs or alcohol. They sing of chasing, getting, and sometimes losing the girl. Hanging out with buddies and trying to use Dad’s Car. The kinds of things that send you home in a good mood.
Follow me on twitter! @airballcub