I can't review the NYE in Orlando just as a musical concert; this has to be reviewed as an event in its entirety. This R.R. sponsored event started as an Eve of New Year's Eve fan party at B.B.King's - allowing Todd fans to mingle and reconnect over their favorite beverage (new fans were greeted and welcomed into the group). Kasim presented a nice well-played set of both new material from an upcoming release as well as covers. One has to love his 'Rockstar attitude', "No video","No flash", "Could you lower the lights?", "What's with the sound system?". He was gracious enough to stay awhile and interact with his fans. The evening continued with some great fan performed music (thanx Dode) and concluded when the remaining revelers closed the house down singing and shakin' it to Jill Mingo's Todd setlists. A typical Todd family get together!
The venue for NYE was also at B.B. King's - a small very intimate space with an ample dance floor and mezzanine area with tables. We found the food to be very good, much better than at many other NYE events I have attended. The Pat Travers Band opened with some straight on rock-n-roll and quickly got the crowd up on their feet. That boy can play some guitar! The set's highlight was the band/crowd interaction with "Boom, boom!"....(crowd response) "Out go the lights!". Not very Utopian, but very effective. A great start to the evening. After a short intermission Mr. Rundgren took the stage in a dapper gold paisley sportcoat and launched into a rousing Real Man. Todd looked good and sang well; he really appeared to be in good spirits. The band was its usual almost perfect self. The show was rumored to be a 'guitar heavy' show, but was basically the 'An Evening with Todd Rundgren' show that Todd could perform in his sleep. Not that I was disappointed, it was a good show, but I would have liked Last Ride, Black Maria ,or how about his Nazz rocker Under the Ice?!
Some memorable moments: after Pat Travers joins the band on stage for Mystified/Broke Down and Busted Todd subtly reclaims his stage with, "I'm sure you won't know the next one (song)", Dode and Pat Travers playing the inflatable guitar, and Mr.T's quips throughout the show.
Missing: Some of the usual suspects (missed many fellow Utopians), Rachel and Danny, and Michelle Rundgren and her smile.
Overall a great event! Let's do it again sometime.