I am a long time Todd Fan. I used to spend my New Years in Chicago cuddled up at a TR concert. Seen him many times in Chicago, but not in almost 15 years. Kids and life got in the way, but I never lost my love for the music. I am married to a man named Todd, and his initials are TR, coincidence?? Maybe.. anyhooo.... This was a birthday gift for myself.
Show was to start at 7:00, and we walked over about 4:30 and there was already a line forming. Stood in line with a Starbucks and watched various folks enter the Vic via the alley (caterer, and some other bloke who looked like he worked there, as he banged on the metal door with his wedding ring) but no Todd. Since this was General Admin, stood in line until about 6:30 and we were let in and made a mad dash down to the stage.
My best guess is the Vic holds about 2,500, but I lost count afer the first few rows. My husband wanted to sit up in the balcony, but I wanted to be down in front. Glad I did.
Royston Langdon came on, and ironically he was the bloke knocking on the metal door! No one recognzied him outside before the show, no one asked for his autograph, or nuthin. He was good, played piano, guitar, nice voice and mentioned that Todd is his father in law. Nice compliment to a Todd show.
Then Todd-is-God appeared! Some folks in front mostly ones who were waiting in line with us were in the front row giving him gifts, he mentioned a ring, and he put on a few lei's. Hey, I'd give him a lei... oh never mind....
He starts with Lysistrata. Todd owns Chicago. What a warm, intimate concert. I felt like I was 20 again and no time passed between the last time I saw him. He made comments about his concerts along the way up until Chicago. He said (I'm paraphasing) that he was in some places that were a littly grisly, some a bit tough, some quite tasty, but Chicago was the Prime Rib! Whoo Hoo goes the crowd.
I won't go into the set list, as it was published before, but he sang Lunatic Fringe, a few of my new found friends at the show, guessed it was a Red Ryder song. He said he couldn't get it out of his head. Kinda makes you wonder what goes through his mind, eh?
The crowd was kinda noisy, but not annoying noisy just buzzed I think. He didn't have a lot of annoying hecklers, but one guy yells up "When are you going to make another record" or something to that effect. Without missing a beat he yells back "When was YOUR last record". Todd = 1, heckler = 0.
His voice was solid, guitar great, piano great. I cried during compassion, it was so heartfelt.
I went expecting some flubs and goofs, based on what I've read, but I certainly didn't see or hear any. Just one small one during Hello its me, but I kinda think he does it on purpose cuz people expect it.
My only 'complaint', and trust me it is a minor one that did not in anyway alter my experience, but I kind of lost touch with his music during the 'with a twist' speel. Never saw this before (ya know, I was busy with kid and all) so the Tiki Room, kareoke boom box was new to me. I personally thought it was kinda cheesy, he didn't need to go there. I also didn't dig the Bang on the Ukelele schtick. In my opinion I thought he was doing it to please fans who want to hear this, but it wasn't for me. The solid, pure kick my ass guitar of 'Black and White', or the mesmorizing dreamyness of 'The Wheel', or the soulful respectful 'Hey, You've Got to Hide Your Love Away' - compared to the cheeky bosanova I Saw the Light, give me a break!
I ablsolutely loved this show. It was so warm and intimite. He is truly a great artist, and a wonderful human being. Thanks for listening.