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buster65
06.29.06, 08:12 PM
Live Review: Sammy Hagar in Gilford, NH
June 29, 2006 02:27 PM
by Jon Zahlaway
liveDaily Senior Writer
Sammy Hagar (tickets | music) has turned the act of making concertgoers feel like they're partying with him and his band into an art form, as he and his group, The Wabos, demonstrated during their Wednesday (6/28) performance at the Meadowbrook Musical Arts Center.

Despite Mother Nature's efforts to put a damper on things by blanketing the amphitheater grounds with fog and rain, Hagar and company still managed to give fans a taste of what it's like to see them play live at Hagar's nightclub in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, a joint dubbed the Cabo Wabo Cantina.

The effect was created partly by a stage designed to resemble the actual club--complete with a bar--as well as a platform across the rear of the stage that was filled with lucky club patrons/fans who watched the entire show from that vantage point.

A stage is just a stage, however, so it was up to Hagar and his cohorts to turn the night into a party, which they did from the get-go by tearing through a set that, appropriately, began with Hagar's late-'90s hit "Mas Tequila." Throughout the song, Hagar showered those close to the stage with Waboritas--a margarita-like drink made with Hagar's own Cabo Wabo-brand tequila--that were served up by three bikini-clad waitresses who kept the singer well oiled throughout the show, answering the call with a fresh drink in hand every time he hollered "Waitress!"

Now nearing his 60th birthday, Hagar is proving to be the Peter Pan of rock and roll; even close up, the blonde-maned, always-smiling singer looks to be 40-something, maybe 50, and his voice sounds exactly the same now as it did 20 years ago. Of course, it's easier to age well when you're entire life is essentially one big party.

It also doesn't hurt that Hagar, who has had tremendous success as a musician over the past 30-plus years, is now a liquor mogul; during the past decade, he has transformed Cabo Wabo tequila from a specialty served only at his Mexican nightclub into one of the top brands on the market.

In order to keep ticket prices for his current tour reasonable (lawn seats go for as little as $10, and the best seats in the house top out at $50), Hagar's tequila company is underwriting the outing. It's a move that is probably more lucrative in the long run, since each concert is two parts rock show, one part Cabo Wabo tequila commercial. To wit: at the end of "Mas Tequila," a giant piņata in the shape of a Cabo Wabo-tequila bottle was lowered from the rafters; Hagar struck it with a guitar to reveal a burst of confetti and a giant faux-worm.

Two things keep the constant Cabo Wabo endorsements from detracting from the performance: one, Hagar really loves the tequila (and for good reason; it's damn delicious); and, two--and most importantly--he puts on a kick-ass rock show.

The first hour comprised cuts culled from throughout Hagar's solo career and his '70s-era stint helming Montrose, including oldies such as "Three Lock Box," "One Way to Rock," "Rock Candy" and his pre-Van Halen signature cut, "I Can't Drive 55," as well as a cover of Bob Dylan's "Rainy Day Women."

It was the show's second hour, however, that blew the roof off the place.

After a brief intermission, the lights went dark and smoke machines engulfed the entire stage in a thick, white haze. A rumbling, distortion-heavy bass guitar suddenly shook the venue, and Van Halen bassist Michael Anthony emerged from the cloud, sending the audience into a frenzy.

Anthony tore through a solo filled with riffs that had largely been shelved since the early '80s, then raised his instrument over his head in a victory pose as the crowd roared. The bassist--who, much like Hagar, appears to have stopped aging--then lowered the guitar to his upturned face and used his teeth to pluck out the opening bass line to the Van Halen classic "Runnin' With the Devil," which further incited the masses.

Hagar, who has always shied away from David Lee Roth-era Van Halen material, sat back while Anthony sang the song, then joined Anthony, drummer David Lauser and guitarist Victor Johnson--a quartet billed as The Other Half--for a second hour of music comprised entirely of Van Halen cuts.

In addition to expected numbers such as "Why Can't This Be Love," "Finish What Ya Started" and "Right Now," the set also included long-buried gems such as "Good Enough" and "5150," two scorching rockers that elicited roars of approval from the Van Halen fans in attendance--of which there were many.

The Van Halen extravaganza ended with "Best of Both Worlds," one of several cuts that showcased Anthony's upper-register background vocals--which, next to Eddie Van Halen's guitar, are the signature sound of the Van Halen catalog.

The show then closed with a finale befitting of a booze-fueled rock-and-roll party: Hagar's goateed tour manager, who had donned a dozen or so chains, shades and a baseball hat skewed to one side, grabbed the mic and joined the band for a rendition of the Beastie Boys' "Fight for Your Right (to Party)," a song whose title could easily be considered Hagar's mission statement.

Mission accomplished.

Set list:
Mas Tequila
3 Lock Box
One Way to Rock
Rainy Day Women
Shaka Doobie
Girl Gets Around
Rock Candy
Fall in Love Again
I Love This Bar
Sam I Am
Little White Lies
I Can't Drive 55
Heavy Metal

Intermission

Michael Anthony's bass solo

Runnin' With the Devil
Top of the World
Humans Being
Why Can't This Be Love
Good Enough
5150
Right Now
Finish Whatcha Started
Best of Both Worlds
Fight for Your Right (to Party)



http://www.livedaily.com/reviews/Live_Review_Sammy_Hagar_in_Gilford_NH-10322.html?t=1

extreme red roth
06.30.06, 02:33 AM
Nice Review. I think the reviewer gets the whole vibe.

I get the whole vibe, and I enjoy it, but maybe just maybe, it might be time to shelf it after this tour.

The next tour, (if not with Van Halen), just come out and do a full blown rock show. Only the heavy hitters....start to finish. NO people on the stage...no cover tunes...just rock and roll...and no offense to Mona, but just get rid of her, and have Mikey take over full time....again, provided there is no VH in the future...

Hack
06.30.06, 05:01 AM
Everything he just said, I agree.

Van Hampshire
06.30.06, 08:38 AM
http://viewmorepics.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=viewImage&friendID=66123269&imageID=883315531&MyToken=c8de7110-6ac2-4606-b42d-01dc3d247401

I play in a VH tribute called balance and this is my singer Chris with Sammy. I'm hoping this picture works. We had onstage tickets for this show and it was awsome!!! When Sammy saw my singer Chris he flipped! He ran right over and gave him a drink. Mike also approved and did a shot of jack with him!

Van Hampshire
06.30.06, 08:43 AM
Looks like the link worked. It was so funny. People at the show thought Chris was Sammy! I'll bet there at least 10-15 pics of Chris with people who thought he was Sammy. I caught a stick from David Lauser and we all had things signed by Sammy. What a fun time. Sam was awsome and Mike was....Mike was totally Mike! If anyone is interested my Vh tribute is called BalancE and we cover Roth and Hagar VH.(sorry Gary) We have a few shows this weekend and they can be viewed on our my space page.

http://www.myspace.com/balancevhtribute

SuckaInA3Piece
06.30.06, 10:35 AM
Looks like the link worked. It was so funny. People at the show thought Chris was Sammy! I'll bet there at least 10-15 pics of Chris with people who thought he was Sammy. I caught a stick from David Lauser and we all had things signed by Sammy. What a fun time. Sam was awsome and Mike was....Mike was totally Mike! If anyone is interested my Vh tribute is called BalancE and we cover Roth and Hagar VH.(sorry Gary) We have a few shows this weekend and they can be viewed on our my space page.

http://www.myspace.com/balancevhtribute

Loved the solo spot you got up there. Cathedral was way cool. Lots of guys just do the Eruption thing, but I liked the other shit you threw in there. Nice tone ya got too. :thumb:

jrk5150
06.30.06, 12:24 PM
I just want to cry. I had tickets, but had surgery a couple of weeks ago and was just not up to going, so I gave them away within my company. That set list has a lot of tunes I've never seen live, and now I just want to cry.

FUCK! :{ :{ :{ :irked:

Van Hampshire - keep posting where you play, maybe one of these days I'll check y'all out. I know we met at the Mansfield Hagar/Roth shindig, would be fun to see you play.

Greenpaw
06.30.06, 12:57 PM
Anthony's upper-register background vocals--which, next to Eddie Van Halen's guitar, are the signature sound of the Van Halen catalog.



Read it, learn it, live it :thumb:


http://img442.imageshack.us/img442/6938/cincodedrinko3gp.gif

Cool article, cool show..........waitress!

Time to start this fuckin weekend everybody!

Cheers. :)