Review and photos by Fred Kuhlman
Promoter: Danny Zelisko Presents
Venue: Talking Stick Resort Showroom
Date: Friday April 13th , 2018
There was a famous comedy sketch aired on Saturday Night Live with cast members playing Blue Oyster Cult (BOC) and Will Ferrell. Will played a cow bell on BOC’s hit single, “The Reaper”. Christopher Walken played Bruce Dickerson (Lead Singer for Iron Maiden) the studio manager/producer and kept demanding “More Cow Bell” during the song. If you haven’t seen it, check it out here: http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x64iyhl . I bring this up because when BOC played that song tonight, guitarist Eric Bloom mimicked playing a cow bell. The crowd loved it.
The show started with Danny Zelisko coming out on the stage to announce upcoming shows. He then asked the crowd how many times they had seen BOC. One person said 68 times and then another person said over 300 times. Now those are real diehard fans. This was my first time to see BOC. I remember them from back in the 70s and early 80s, but for some strange reason I never got around to seeing them. I have loved their music and this time around I was lucky enough to see them at Talking Stick Resort Showroom which is a great venue to see concerts. It is small and intimate and the lighting and sound are very good. An you can even get drinks, yeah…
The band had many names in the year days but finally settle on Blue Oyster Cult (BOC) in 1971. Over the years the band has gone through a number of band line-up changes. But since 1969, there have been two main members, Donald “Buck Dharma” Roeser (lead guitar, vocals) and Eric Bloom (lead vocals, rhythm guitar, keyboards). For this tour they are joined by Danny Miranda (bass, backing vocals), Jules Radino (drums, percussion), and Richie Castellano (keyboard, rhythm guitar, backing vocals).
They started the show with a number of songs from their early albums including “Transmaniacon MC”and “Before The Kiss, A Redcap” from their first album and “Golden Age of Leather” from Spectres. At different times, Eric and Richie would trade places either playing guitar or keyboards. Buck Dharma played lead guitar on almost every song. Lead vocals were shared between Buck and Eric with Richie stepping in every once in a while. Both Buck and Richie did guitar solos.
Of course, they played all of the fan favorites including “Godzilla”, “Burnin’ For You” and “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper”. They also included a few other fan favorites, “Shooting Shark”, “The Vigil” and “E.T.I. (Extra Terrestrial Intelligence)”. They ended the main set with their classic and fan favorite, “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper”. Again, this is where Eric at the start of the song mimicked playing the cow bell. Everyone was up singing along and dancing. After a short break they came back to play an encore. They ended the show with “Cities On Flame With Rock ‘n’ Roll” where Eric, Buck, Richie and Danny all came to the front of the stage playing their guitars.
A first for me was seeing Buck playing a headless guitar. I have seen a headless bass before, but this was the first time I saw someone playing a 6-string headless guitar. Buck had this beautiful Kiesel 6-string headless guitar that he played for most of the show. At the end of the show he changed over to another headless guitar, his signature white Steinberger “Cheese”berger guitar. If you have never seen or heard one of these headless guitars, they sound amazing. Too bad they don’t sell a kit version of it, I would love to build one.
Blue Oyster Cult has had only 1 number 1 hit, “Burin’ For You”. They however have 4 Gold and 2 Platinum albums over their career. What makes BOC really great is their live performances. They have a very loyal fan base as you can tell by the number of people that have seen them multiple times. If you have never seen BOC (like me), and you love classic Rock ‘n’ Roll, then this a band you definitely need to see.
Photos © Fred Kuhlman 2018
Main Title (background entry) (Ramin Djawadi song) (Game of Thrones Theme)
Transmaniacon MC (Blue Öyster Cult)
Before The Kiss, A Redcap (Blue Öyster Cult)
Golden Age of Leather (Spectres)
Career of Evil (Secret Treaties)
Burnin’ For You (Fire of Unknown Origin)
Shooting Shark (The Revölution By Night)
The Vigil (Mirrors)
E.T.I. (Extra Terrestrial Intelligence) (Agents of Fortune)
Then Came the Last Days of May (Blue Öyster Cult)
Guitar Solo (Richie and Donald “Buck Dharma” Roeser)
(Don’t Fear) The Reaper (Agents of Fortune)
Cities On Flame With Rock ‘n’ Roll (Blue Öyster Cult)