Here's how it went:
Royston Langdon played front, and did a great job. I've never seen a front act "stand up to Todd" as well as Royston. He captured the audience's attention with the first song, and with a dynamic and forceful delivery, kept us applauding, song after song.
At one point he referred to Todd as a 'genius', and then played a song that he said is as close as he's come to a Todd-like song. It was, in fact, very Todd-like, with many interesting chords and great lyrics.
During the early part of Todd's performance, Todd said that Royston was 'family' and that if he ever got better than Todd, he'd be so outa there! (c:
Todd then came on after a 25 minute break:
He started out with a 'new toy', one of those pedal things that stores sound and plays it back in a loop so that you can perform with yourself. . . he used it to 'grab' the first guitar strokes of "Drive" from TEPTAE, and then played along with it for the entire song, saying he'd never played it before, and starting over twice as he got used to the new toy.
I Don't Want To Tie You Down
Hammer In My Heart
Hide Your Love Away
(moves to piano, saying he's got a love-hate relationship with it, that things will be going along fine, and then all of a sudden, things will go very wrong)
Viking Song (stopped twice, once with a keyflub, once when the monitors were all wrong, and he couldn't hear what he was playing and his voice was too loud)
Compassion (only one bad keyflub, during the first verse, but the rest of it was _great_)
Free, Male & 21
It Wouldn't Have Made Any Difference
(he told a larger airport/border-crossing story, ending with another reference to got plenty of Anthrax for you guys if you want any)
Folk song from last year (_not_ West Virginia Gals, the other one)
(moved to a chair and did a _With A Twist_ medley with his MP3 player, which he had trouble getting to the right sequence of tracks)
I Saw The Light
(I got so involved here that I forgot to keep track of the tunes. . . I became amazed at how much the twist versions have engaged me now, and I feel it's the best part of the show!
I Want You
(moved to guitar again)
Fallin', Yes I am Fallin'
There Goes My Inspiration
(left the stage, then came back for encores)
A Dream Goes On Forever (WAT style)
During the show, he commented on what a great place New Orleans is, and that it's a family kinda place, and that he had his extended family there with him. Sure enough, Liv Tyler was in the Loge seating.
I got to visit with Todd, Royston and Liv a little after the show, and when I told Royston how strong I felt his performance had been, you could see the pride on Liv's face. Royston and Liv seem to be quite close. It's sweet. Todd seemed at ease and enjoying himself. I talked with him about the show he's doing on February 9 for Mountain Stage (a public radio show for Public Radio International that one of my client stations in Boston carries), and he professed a little confusion about it, so I assured him that he would get a great amount of respect at the Mountain Stage, and he'd enjoy it.
Another great experience at HOB NOLA, my third TR show here. Well worth the trip.