Sunday, October 29, 2017

Arizona State Fair

Phoenix, AZ
Arizona State Fair
October 27, 2017
photos by Renata Hearn

Our plan was to go the fair a little early, get a decent parking spot, possibly get a little food then head to the show.  We left at 5:30 for what should have been a 10 minute drive and got stuck in traffic, finally got parked about 6:40 and made it into the venue about 6:55 (show scheduled to start at 7:00). Next time, if there is a next time at this fair, will definitely have a better plan on getting there. The show was a little late to start, which this time worked in our favor. You know when you hear Uptown Funk over the loud speakers, the start is near.

As we know, Rick had surgery in late August and was unable to play his guitar for the shows in September and early October.  He was coming off  a 2 week break so we weren't sure if he would be healed enough to play yet, or not.  It was obvious right away, you could see the glow from the "light up" guitar he has been using to open up the show.

After I Get Excited,  Rick handed off his guitar but did not get another one to take its place.   It seemed like a deliberate choice, and nothing to do with his previous injury.  He seems to have picked out a few songs to perform without the guitar, something he may have decided to keep going from the time he spent unable to play.  He also mentioned he had a new cd coming out - in January - I'm not going to get excited about that 2 month bump in the release date - everything else has indicated it won't be out until March.

Before performing Roar, the jacket comes off and he takes possession of the silver sparkle guitar - he likes to refer to it as his "girly" guitar, which seems appropriate for his "girly" song that has been "rocked up" with guitars and drums.

At the end of The Medley, during the State of the Heart segment, he flung the guitar to his side and sat down at the edge of the stage.

The gold guitar comes out for Wild Thing.

He took an audience vote - between Our Ship is Sinking and Don't Talk to Strangers.  First he asked who wanted to hear Our Ship is Sinking - loud cheers from the first rows of the venue.  Who wants to hear Don't Talk to Strangers - loud cheers from the rest of the venue.  Clearly that was going to be no contest.  Once again, he starts the song with no guitar.  It is common for him to get rid of the guitar part way through the song, but it is new for him to not use it at all.  He does a mini rose explosion against the monitor during the song.  His first attempt at getting someone from the audience to sing and there is no sound from the 2nd mic.  So Rick talks about Matty, the sound guy, comparing him to My Little Pony - along with a shot of MLP on the background screen - because of the multiple colors in Matty's hair.

Before going out to do Human Touch, he talks about his surgery and asks people not to grab on to the part of his arm underneath his arm band, because that is where the scar/healing is.

He has a new acting role now to add  during the beginning of Love Somebody, he can now add

American Horror Story to the list.  We see the red sparkle guitar for the first time during Love Somebody.

Off to the side of the stage while the Jessie's Girl montage plays, the crowd favorite Jessie's girl is performed as the light up guitar makes another appearance  and then Kristina. 
He then goes to the edge of the 
stage for a quick autograph of a WCD LP and the show is over.  The two week break since the last show seems to have been good - so much energy -although he never lacks that.  Playin g a few songs without the guitar, having free use of his hands and the full use of the stage has really added a nice new layer to the performance.

Light This Party Up
I've Done Everything For You
I Get Excited
Affair of the Heart
Jesus Saves
The Medley
Love is Alright Tonite
Miss Mayem

Wild Thing
Don't Talk to Strangers
Human Touch
Love Somebody
Jessie's Girl