At 8pm the lights dim and Todd walks out alone. Several of us in the first few rows raised our hands and then bowed to him repeatedly as if paying homage...he returned the gesture as if praising us for being the faithful that keeps his church doors open to anyone. There's no doubt in my mind that he claimed many new converts tonight into "the house of Todd".
He strapped on a 6 string acoustic and gave us LOVE OF THE COMMON MAN and CLICHE. Todd babbled about arriving into town the day prior and visiting the Arch, the big silver "Gateway to the West" landmark. He made reference to Keil Auditorium where he had played many a gig and now "missing" as it was torn down to accomodate new corporate developments. He was very relaxed, talking in between songs, charming the crowd.
Next, Hall & Oates band came out and joined him. The crowd was calling for him to "Punch it up a couple notches" as one fellow yelled out. Todd obliged with HIT ME LIKE A TRAIN. Next up was LOOKING AT YOU (BUT I'M TALKING TO MYSELF) which was very heartfelt...we've all been in one of those relationships before, haven't we???
Wonderful classics with a mix of new, voice in top form...I'm thinking I've died and gone to heaven.
He rocked out with BUFFALO GRASS and followed it up with PARALLEL LINES, one of my favorites. Everyone cheered when they heard the first few notes of HELLO IT'S ME and we're all doing the wave and dancing and singing together along with the Toddster...powerful stuff! I think that it finally dawned on some hard-core Hall and Oates fans who the fella with the skunky hairdo was when he finally played HELLO. At the end of HELLO, he turns to the side and makes a ringing sound into the mic (reminicent of onomotopiaism)...followed by a recorded ringing. Sure enough, there's more in the delightful bag of tricks as a stage hand brings out a white telephone to Todd and just stands there. Well of course he has to answer it...right? People are screaming "Answer it Todd!" and he does of course,..."Hello,....it's me". I love the goofy side of the man. I've got the same nutball streak and just love it when it surfaces in others.
Next up was LOVE IS THE ANSWER and we were all once again on our feet, swaying, dancing, singing. Even the H&O people were up, clapping and singing (so many converts!).
He happy-footed his way through ROCK LOVE,...it's the happy feet dance that just really gets to me. Great Utopia tune.
The whole Todd thing: the hand motions that bring you into his music and relay what he's feeling deep inside as he shares with his audience, the Todd happy-feet dance (don't 'cha just love it!), the banter with the crowd, the endearing silliness of having someone bring out a telephone just so he can pick up the receiver...
Hall and Oates band was fantastic. I really like a full back-up band behind Todd - the sound is so much richer, and I believe that he just performs better when he's got one behind him.
No doubt, I was there for Todd and planned on sitting through H&O just so I'd get to see him join Darryl and John for the rest of their set. Quite surprisingly, I really enjoyed H&O...very tight, very entertaining. Darryl was amazing to me and as I told my friend, "quite Todd-like" in both his mannerisms, lyrics and style. John is just cute as a button, mustache gone, singing back-up. The stage set-up was unremarkable, plain curtain behind the band, no props and yet was one of the better concerts that I can say I've been to in awhile.
Of the H&O tunes that I knew, they played ADULT EDUCATION, OUT OF TOUCH, SAY IT ISN'T SO, SHE'S GONE, ONE ON ONE, EVERYTIME YOU GO AWAY, SARAH SMILE, I CAN'T GO FOR THAT and MANEATER.
Todd fans rushed the stage as Todd came back out and joined Darryl and John and the band on WAIT FOR ME, CAN WE STILL BE FRIENDS, RICH GIRL, I SAW THE LIGHT and KISS IS ON MY LIST. We were all longing for that old Todd touch of hands, but it wasn't possible because the stage being too far back from the barrier.
The big finale was HOT FUN IN THE SUMMERTIME, just perfect for our outdoor setting at the end of August...more dancing, more singing in the audience...an awsome tune to end the night with!!!
The TR/H&O show was like the Philly Sound Machine...the boys played well together and didn't run with scissors. I'd love to see Todd perform with Darryl and John again. Todd really seems to be in his element when he's got the full back-up band behind him, it seems to move him.
THANKS SO MUCH TODD FOR A WONDERFUL NIGHT - YOU WERE AWSOME AND WE LOVE YOU!!!