Sunday, June 19, 2011

Brian Wilson Reimagines Gershwin
Massey Hall
Toronto ON

A strange coincidence tonight as Al Jardine is playing just down the highway.

But this is the real deal. THE Beach Man. (I don't want to get Mike Love on my back until they finally resolve who owns The Beach Boys© )

Iconic rock mystery man, Brian Wilson, out of bed, well under 300 pounds, survives and thrives today, bringing the song stylings of George Gershwin to a music hall near you.

And a sloop-load of surfin' songs.

The band and orchestra are terrific. The arrangements superb. The harmonies heavenly. And take a look at the generous setlist below.

Brian Wilson sits behind his keyboard (for all but Surfin' USA where he picks up the bass)holding court over an impressive career retrospective. I've seen my share of classic artists over the past few years. I'd say only Leonard Cohen has sustained a peak performance level. John Fogerty is a close second. Some have been ravaged by time (Dylan), others by illness (Levon Helm). Brian's had to deal with a heaping helping of both and I'd say his current skills fall in the comfortable middle; not soaring but a joy to watch. What he hasn't lost is a love and enthusiasm for the songs and the arrangements as he periodically breaks out of his stoic demeanour to flash a smile and punch the air emphatically in time to the music changes.

Brian Wilson Reimagines Gershwin
Massey Hall, Toronto ON

Set 1

01 Do It Again (cut at beginning,incomplete)
02 Catch A Wave
03 Row Row Row Your Boat
04 Dance, Dance, Dance
05 Girl Don't Tell Me
06 Salt Lake City
07 Little Surfer Girl
08 Then I Kissed Her(Jeffrey on vox and Brian)
09 Please Let Me Wonder
10 Don't Worry Baby
11 I Get Around
12 Add Some Music to Your Day
13 Do You Wanna Dance?
14 The Little Girl I Once Knew
15 Darlin' (Darian on vox)
16 Sail On Sailor
17 California Girls
18 Pet Sounds (Run James Run)
19 Wouldn't It Be Nice
20 Sloop John B
21 God Only Knows
22 Heros and Villians
23 Good Vibrations

Set 2

01 Gershwin intro
02 Rhapsody in Blue (Intro)
03 The Like In I Love You (Gershwin/Wilson/Bennett)
04 Summertime
05 I Loves You, Porgy
06 I Got Plenty O Nutin'
07 It Ain't Necessarily So
08 'S Wonderful
09 They Can't Take That Away From Me
10 Our Love Is Here To Stay
11 I Got A Crush On You
12 I Got Rhythm
13 Someone to Watch Over Me
14 Nothing But Love (Gershwin/Wilson/Bennett)
15 Rhapsody in Blue (Outro)
16 encore break/Band Intro
17 Johnny B Goode
18 Help Me Rhonda
19 Barbara Ann
20 Surfin' USA
21 Fun Fun Fun
22 2nd encore break
23 All Summer Long

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