Hollywood Vampires is of course anchored by Alice Cooper on vocals and dual guitars of Johnny Depp and Joe Perry of Aerosmith (the touring band also includes Matt Sorum on drums, Robert DeLeo on bass, Tommy Henriksen on rhythm guitar and Bruce Witkin on keyboards and other assorted instruments).
This was the show where Joe "collapsed on stage." Well, not quite...
The show began with the second track off their self titled debut album, a tune called "Raise the Dead." It was hot as balls in the semi circus tent design of the new theatre so I was heading back to my seat with waters (yes WATER...I know) so I wouldn't pass out during the show. Got to my seat as they started in with their great cover of Spirit's "I Got A Line On You"
It was pretty exciting as we had kinda crap seats all the way in the back in section 302, but an usher came up to our group and asked if we wanted upgrades...for free! To 10th row Orchestra section 102...Thank you concert Gods!
There's Alice! There's Johnny Depp! There's friggin Joe Perry...but wait...a minute or so into the song is he kinda sitting on the corner of the drum riser not looking great...and then he walked around it behind the Marshall amps not to be seen again. The band didn't blink an eye...(and no...I didn't get any shots of Joe...I figured I had the whole show to do so...damn)
Next up were a couple of David Bowie classics with "Rebel Rebel" and "Suffragette City." Around this time I leaned over to my buddy Kev and yelled "Where the fuck is Joe Perry?" I wasn't sure if this was one of those All-Star band kinda deals where various members only are on stage for certain songs...guess we'll see...
There's a giant video screen behind the band and as they play covers of these dead classic rockers, they show montages of classic images. Jim Morrison popped up as "Five To One" / "Break On Thru (To The Other Side)" was played.
The band of course is great. The legendary Alice Cooper handling lead vocals and telling short tales of his friends whose songs were being covered. Johnny Depp looking and sounding great on guitar. Robert DeLeo of Stone Temple Pilots fame absolutely holding down the rhythm section along with Matt Sorum of Guns n Roses on drums. On Rhythm guitar there was Tommy Henriksen (filling in valiantly on many of the leads that would have normally been Joe Perry's) and keyboardist Bruce Witkin filled out the sound. Super tight and super cool...but man, Joe Perry not being there definitely was a bummer...
I'm not sure exactly when the band actually acknowledged Joe's absence, I would say it was about an hour into the show when Alice said he had fallen ill. We all now know he was rushed to a local hospital having gone into cardiac arrest.
Another Hollywood Vampires original "As Bad As I Am" was followed by a tribute to Marc Bolan and T. Rex with covers of "20th Century Boy" and "Bang A Gong (Get It On)"
Surprisingly, they still played the cover of the Beatles "Come Together" next...I say this as it is the Aerosmith version of the song. The other Aerosmith songs normally played would be cut from the set.
An amazing cover of Love's "7 and 7 Is" was next followed by what I thought was the one throwaway cover of the night, an okay version of Led Zeppelin's "Whole Lotta Love"
The last original of the night, the fitting "My Dead Drunk Friends" then led into the powerful closing set of Motorhead's "Ace of Spades" into The Who's "Pinball Wizard" and "My Generation" (with a little taste of "Won't Get Fooled Again" thrown in).
The main set ended with Alice announcing they were going to do a song by the one remaining original Hollywood Vampire (basically made up of Alice and the aforementioned "Dead Drunk (rock star) Friends" back in the 70's) with a killer version of "I'm Eighteen."
Normally Aerosmith's "Sweet Emotion" would follow as the set ender, but it was nixed. Also cut were the Perry led version of Jimi Hendrix's "Manic Depression" and Fleetwood Mac's "Stop Messin Around" which he would normally sing lead vocals on. The encore would be next and the normal opener of "Train Kept A Rollin" was also cut, but we did get a special surprise.
Alice announced they would be back after a quick break with a special guest. They returned to the stage with Ian Hunter of Mott The Hoople.
Hunter opened the encore set with a cover of the Velvet Underground's "Sweet Jane" and then of course played the Mott classic "All The Young Dudes". Alice played maracas during both songs letting Hunter do lead vocals.
The night ended with Cooper's "School's Out" (with acrowd singalong it of Pink Floyd's "Another Brick In The Wall (part 2)" thrown in the middle).
It was cool to see Ian Hunter. It was a bummer Joe was not there most of the show, but of course we all know now he is on the mend and expected to rejoin the tour shortly.
It was a damn good rock show. (Keep scrolling down for the rest of the photos)
If you dug this go to the MostPeopleAreBlank Facebook page by following this link and click the "Like" button to join (as shown below) to be kept up to date on future posts, to comment, share and take part in our giveaways and contests!
Click any photos to enlarge them to full screen. Also follow on twitter @MostPeopleBlank Then, of course, as always - Rock on and Enjoy - Paul