Sunday, August 05, 2007
Two Reverends and a King
We had been planning to see the show at the Arts Center (BB King, Al Green and Etta James) the day before but two things changed that:
1. Etta James in the hospital and Chaka Khan was replacing her
2. Because I didn't really care for Chaka Khan and Al Green wasn't really that high on my list of people to see, we were going to get lawn seats. Lawn seats that started under $30 each but after the $11 "convenience charge," the $6 "parking charge", the $5 "order fee"... sitting on the ground watching a giant tv screen didn't seem like that great of a deal.
Lucky suggested seeing when BB King would be performing again and lo, both Saturday and Sunday, he was in the area. We nixed the Musikfest in Bethlehem (King and Green) because on Saturday, LITTLE RICHARD was going to be with them!!!
That's right... Little Richard (shut up!). That soooo sealed the deal.
On Saturday, we headed down the Parkway, parked on the Parkway for a few hours, detoured onto 9 for a while, and then after getting back on the Parkway, parked on the AC Expressway. All the while, time ticking by.
We made it in time though... enough to speed through the Steel Pier before Trump's henchmen tear it down for the luxury condos (honestly not that much to talk about, 'cept that it's about the only place in AC to take kids).
Little Richard opened up the concert. He entered on white glittery crutches because at 75, his right knee was severely arthritic. But his energy was "whooooooo!" He opened with "Good Golly Miss Molly," sang a few of his other hits like "The Girl Can't Help It," and chatted with the audience about his life in Mahykin Gor-gah. The "architect of rock n roll" (like Al Green) is an ordained minister and he passed out little books of "salvation" along with a photo of himself with a note of encouragement.
Al Green was next. And while his back-up singer/daughter watched, he passed out hugs, kisses, and flowers to any woman who approached the stage or who he met walking in the audience. He rambled a bit, was actually the most scattered of the three (only 61). But had more of a "show" with two male back-up dancers who changed their outfits according to the song.
Eighty-one year old BB King finished up the show, singing and talking about his life in the rural South where he really wasn't aware of segregation. Unfortunately the show ended a bit sooner than he (and us!) would have liked, because union regulations made the concert end exactly at midnight.
It was a fantastic show... real "old school." All three acts had their bands warm up the audience with a song or two before they got on stage. They talked to the audience, making us feel like we were welcomed...
If only it hadn't taken an hour to get out of AC (30 minutes in the parking garage), the high would have lasted longer!