Everyone’s favorite Stray Cat, Brian Setzer, was back in town this week with his big time Christmas extravaganza back by his nineteen-piece orchestra. This even has proven to be a blast in the past and this year’s edition was no different. With his vibrant personality, dashing good looks and extreme guitar capabilities – Brian gives the fans what they desire and has a blast doing so.
Kicking it off with a brilliant cover of Glenn Miller’s “Pennsylvania 6-5000”, the audience was definitely up for it as the singing along, dancing in the aisles and general mayhem started quickly. Another Christmas staple, Brenda Lee’s “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” was followed by the stunning BSO original “Hoodoo Voodoo Doll”. Mr. Setzer ripped into a great guitar solo just before playing perhaps his most popular song ever = “Stray Cat Strut”. This little tune really gets the juices flowing and we could barely hear him sing over all of the audience members loud crooning. A long bass solo during that song only added to the great musicianship we were witnessing as the crowd continued to scream for more.
A few more Christmas covers, Mabel Scott’s “Boogie Woogie Santa Claus” and the traditional “Angels We Have Heard On High” were sandwiched around another Stray Cats classic – “Gene & Eddie”!!! This song epitomizes that classic 50’s swing sound that he is famous for and while the casual fan was a bit lost during this one = his longtime followers were eating it up. Another Orchestra song, “The Dirty Boogie”, flashed by just before they launched into the Louis Prima cover “Jump, Jive an’ Wail……………….. and it was awesome!!!
Slowing it down a bit (and playing one for the children in the audience), they reeled off a great “Here Comes Santa Claus” that had everyone singing along. The cover song of the night was up next as Brian and his group tore into a blazing “Runnin’ Down a Dream” by Tom Petty. It was evident that the audience was still hurting a bit from Petty’s untimely passing, as it seemed like everyone was belting out the lyrics at the top of their lungs. That one song probably received the heartiest standing ovation of the night.
Playing a few more Stray Cats songs, “Fishnet Stockings” and “Rock This Town”, before ending the set with a couple of classic Christmas songs “The Nutcracker Suite” and “Jingle Bells”, Brain and his orchestra had finished off a wonderful night of music. Albeit a bit tired from all of the singing and dancing, everyone I saw on the way out the door had the broadest of smiles on their faces & they all looked like they enjoyed this concert immensely.
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