1970s (And Beyond) Rock Is Alive And Kicking

Playing to a nearly sold-out crowd at the Lowell Summer Music Series, Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo delivered a fabulous, high-energy show that certainly wowed me!

Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo

Pat Benatar and Neil ‘Spyder’ Giraldo

I am not sure what I expected from this 35th anniversary plus one tour, but the show exceeded any expectations I may have had!

Stage Backdrop

Stage Backdrop

There was no opening act this evening; the show started with a five-minute slide presentation of the story behind Benatar and Giraldo. I did not know most of their story and I found this a good way to begin the show.

Pat Benatar

Pat Benatar

The band, without Benatar, took the stage to thunderous applause, following quickly by Benatar. It was dramatic without being hokey. They immediately launched into ‘Shadows of the Night’, one of their biggest hits.

Pat Benatar

Pat Benatar

Neil Giraldo, Chris Ralles, Pat Benatar, Mick Mahan (l to r)

Spyder Giraldo, Chris Ralles, Pat Benatar, Mick Mahan (l to r)

I knew that Benatar had a powerful mezzo-soprano voice back in the day, and was thrilled that she still has it. She sounds beautiful, she looks beautiful, and – from her conversation that evening – she has a beautiful spirit.

PAt Benatar

Pat Benatar

I had no clue about Neil ‘Spyder’ Giraldo’s talent as a guitarist (and also producer, although that obviously is not something that can be garnered from a live performance). He is a fabulous rock guitarist, who started his career with Rick Derringer. I did not know that he wrote Rick Springfield’s huge hit, ‘Jesse’s Girl’.

Spyder Giraldo

Spyder Giraldo

They are supported by Chris Ralles on drums and Mick Mahan on bass. Neither are flashy but both provide a solid surface on which Benatar and Giraldo may build.

Spyder Giraldo, Mick Mahan, Chris Ralles

Spyder Giraldo, Mick Mahan, Chris Ralles

The set list included their best-known hits – ‘Invincible’, ‘We Belong’, ‘Love is a Battlefield’, ‘Hit Me With Your Best Shot’, and ‘Heartbreaker’ – as well as ‘Hell is for Children’, ‘Strawberry Wine’, ‘We Live for Love’, and ‘Promises’, to name a few. They played ‘You Better Run’ which has the distinction of being the second music video to be played on then-new MTV!

Spyder Giraldo and Pat Benatar

Spyder Giraldo and Pat Benatar

One song was introduced as the first love song they wrote, after penning many darker songs.

Spyder Giraldo and Pat Benatar

Spyder Giraldo and Pat Benatar

This 35+1 anniversary tour is the celebration of the time they have been partners, both creatively and in life. It is clearly evident that they have succeeded at both.

Pat Benatar

Pat Benatar

Spyder Giraldo

Spyder Giraldo

Pat Benatar and Spyder Giraldo

Pat Benatar and Spyder Giraldo

By the time the main part of the set ended and they departed the stage, the crowd was in a frenzy for more! They returned to the stage for a three-song encore, playing ‘Lay Down’ and ‘Precious Time’ before launching into an extended version of ‘Heartbreaker’.

The band

Pat Benatar, Chris Ralles, Mick Mahan

I heard people complain about it being a short show. Other than a lack of opening act, the show was longer than quite a few I have experienced. What it may have lacked in length, it more than compensated for in energy. The performance felt emotional to me; Benatar and Giraldo (and really, the entire band) put their hearts on the stage for us this evening.

Pat Benatar

Pat Benatar

Spyder Giraldo

Spyder Giraldo

What more could anyone ask…

Many thanks to Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo for allowing me to photograph this terrific show.

About suze72

I've loved the arts all my life... I go to a lot of concerts, take lots of photos and want to share them. Every once in a while I do something other than a concert, too. The Boston area is full of opportunities to indulge my passion - I'd like to help make it yours too!

Posted on July 14, 2015, in concert photos, concert reviews, music, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. I was at the show and was amazed and loved every minute of it. The sound of her voice and the lyrics brought back memories long hidden in my mind. I have the original album at home and even at the age of 65 I remembered every word of almost every song. The guitar work by Spyder was phenomenal. Perfect night, worth getting up and placing my blanket and chair down at 7am to save a perfect seat a few feet from the stage. Thank you Lowell, and Ms. Benatar and Mr Giraldo. Fabulous evening!!

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