At $82.70 for a good seat and $35.40 for a spot on the grass, this concert holds The Gorge’s highest ticket price of the summer.
Eighty-two clams or not, obviously 36,000 fans feel that Saturday’s and Sunday’s shows, featuring three major figures of rock history - Rod Stewart, Carlos Santana and Jeff Beck - are well worth the ticket price because the first night has sold out and the second is close.
The seasoned Stewart headlines the two-day extravaganza.
Both nights, Stewart’s warm, throaty voice will be bolstered by a 12-piece band and a 22-piece orchestra.
The colorful singer is yet another middle-aged artist who is enjoying a tremendous career and creative resurgence.
He is as popular now as ever.
Much of this can be attributed to the release of the critically acclaimed bestseller “Unplugged … And Seated” in 1993.
On this album, Stewart re-introduced his old chestnuts in a live acoustical setting, bringing the song-writer and the deeply soulful singer to the forefront. His updated treatment of the collection of songs gave them an even more timeless quality.
“Unplugged … And Seated,” which has sold 6 million copies worldwide, was followed up by a major world tour. That, too, was also a commercial success.
On New Year’s Day in 1994, Stewart drew more than 4 million people to his concert at Copacabana Beach in Rio De Janeiro, setting a Guinness Book world record for the largest concert attendance ever.
The same year, Stewart was inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame.
Just this year, Stewart unleashed yet another studio album “A Spanner in the Works,” an album Stewart said has renewed his zest for music.
“I didn’t put my heart and soul into some of the albums I made in the mid-‘80s. I put myself in the hands of the producer and just sang the songs,” he told a reporter. “I’d sort of fallen out of love with what I was doing.”
During the ‘60s, Stewart once sang in the Jeff Beck group. So, there’s a possibility the two might unite on stage for a song or two.
Beck, aa alumnus of the aforementioned band, the Yardbirds and numerous other collaborations, will mostly be playing with fellow guitar hero Santana. (This will undoubtedly provoke guitar fans in the audience to drool.)
Beck and Santana have been touring together since July.
Santana, whose band consistently draws from some of the most talented musicians in the world, continues to blaze down the concert trail every summer.
Santana in 1994 joined brother Jorge Santana and nephew Carlos Hernandez in the studio and recorded an all-instrumental project called “Brothers.” The album was nominated for a Grammy.
Beck’s most recent studio effort is an album called “Crazy Legs,” an all-out tribute to his hero and early rock ‘n’ roller Gene Vincent.
Unlike most tributes, Beck didn’t just update the old standards like “Cruisin’,” “Race with the Devil,” “Red Blue Jeans” and “Five Feet of Loving.”
Instead, he and his Big Town Playboys tried to re-create Vincent’s music as authentically as possible. There were no over-dubs, no effects pedals, no distortion. Beck even played the same model guitar as Vincent, a Gretsch Duo-Jet, and played it through the same amplifier, a Fender Bassman.
“Crazy Legs” ranks as one of Beck’s best efforts in quite a number of years.
MEMO: This sidebar appeared with the story: Rod Stewart, Santana, Jeff Beck Location and time: The Gorge, Saturday and Sunday at 4 p.m. Tickets: $82.70-$35.40