Rock and Roll Hall of Famers Chicago made a return visit to the beautiful Vina Robles Amphitheatre in the Wine Country of Paso Robles, CA. and it was yet another stellar display of the musicianship that continually is delivered by this revered band.
Fresh off their induction into the Hall just over a month prior, the 9 man band is riding a high that showed in this performance. All of the classic tracks from the band were featured, as the band has crossed generations with the distinct different eras that defines them.
It really is as if the band was a different one in the 70’s from the one it became in the 80’s. The rock leaning tracks of the 70’s definitely had a much different appeal that the adult contemporary tracks of the 80’s had for some. And while some fans may not have been able to completely palate the top charting ballads of the 80’s, the entire catalog has morphed into an evening that appeals to everyone, whatever era you were into. It is a perfect storm that makes for an entire enjoyable evening of music.
There was one missing Chicago piece, as bassist and vocalist Jason Scheff was not on the tour, having announced in early May that he would be taking a leave from the band due to a family medical issue. His shoes were filled more than admirably by bassist Jeff Coffey. Jeff is an Orlando, FL. based musician/singer/songwriter who has toured and performing with such artists as Hootie and the Blowfish, Edwin McCain, Sixpence None the Richer, Vertical Horizon & Brian Howe (from Bad Company) just to name a few. He has been a in demand session player, with recording credits include working with such great producers as Keith Olsen, John Kurzweg, Justin Niebank, and Stan Lynch, as well as being an award winning solo artist. I did not know this going into the night, but am glad the band found someone as accomplished as Coffey.
Opener Rita Wilson, wife of actor Tom Hanks (who I was hoping would make it to the show and be sitting near me to no avail) provided opening music to set the Chicago table, and she did join the band for their ‘If You Leave Me Now,’ early in their set.
This was the second visit to Vina Robles Amphitheatre by Chicago, and hopefully there will be many more. Check out the band this summer if you can. For all their tour dates go to www.chicagotheband,com.
Click here for all upcoming shows at the beautiful Vina Robles Amphitheatre, and enjoy some amazing nights of music.
1. Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is?
2. Dialogue (Part I & II)
3. Questions 67 & 68
4. If You Leave Me Now
5. Old Days
6. Call on Me
7. (I’ve Been) Searchin’ So Long
9. Ballet For a Girl In Buchanon
10. Make Me Smile
11. So Much to Say, So Much to Give
12. Anxiety’s Moment
13. West Virginia Fantasies
14. Colour My World
15. To Be Free
16. Now More Than Ever
17. Hard Habit to Break
18. You’re the Inspiration
20. I’m a Man (The Spencer Davis Group cover)
21. Just You ‘n’ Me
22. Hard to Say I’m Sorry / Get Away
23. Saturday in the Park
24. Feelin’ Stronger Every Day
25. Encore: 25 or 6 to 4