Don Felder, Foreigner and Styx Put On Best Pure Performance Ever

Consider, for a moment, some of the acts that have performed so far this year at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre: Steve Miller, The Moody Blues, Dierks Bentley, Darius Rucker and Carlos Santana. Just in the last week, Alison Krauss, Willie Nelson and Jack Johnson have all performed to sold-out crowds in the nation’s oldest city.IMG_8138_fb

Let that sink in and consider this: The May 23 Don Felder, Foreigner and Styx concert was the best pure performance of any show there to date. Period.

Those lucky enough to get a ticket for the show were treated to interaction I have never witnessed in over 30 years of attending concerts.

For some they remember the brilliant performance of “Hotel California” by Felder, the legendary song writer and lead guitarist for The Eagles for 27 years. Tommy Shaw (Styx) joined Felder on stage for an unforgettable performance of one of the most recognizable songs in the history of recorded music.

Later Foreigner brought the show, quite literally, to the audience. At one point lead singer Kelly Hansen left the stage and made his way through the crowd taking selfies with fans and giving high-fives along the way. He later co_U4G5265_fbmmandeered a media member’s camera and took it on stage with him. He fired off numerous frames of the band members and crowd giving the lucky photographer once-in-a-lifetime images.

One of the coolest and most unexpected moves of the night came when Foreigner brought members of the St. Augustine High School and Creekside High School choirs on stage to perform their smash hit “I Want To Know What Love Is.”

Unfortunately there was a huge local news angle missed here by not allowin_U4G5428_fbg photographers to capture images of this unforgettable moment for the students. This was the only real “low light” of the night, and a poor public relations decision not allowing this epic moment of community integration to be photographed.

Styx closed out the show with an impressive roster of their greatest hits, opening with “Grand Illusion” and covering “Lady”, “Light Up”, “Crystal Ball”, “Blue Collar Man”, “Come Sail Away”, and finally concluding with “Renegade” as an encore. Show also made his way into the audience performing while the crowd reveled in the experience.

Santana performs at sold out St. Augustine Amphitheatre

Carlos Santana pIMG_6786_fberformed live before a sold-out crowd at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre April 27, 2014.

The line-up at the Amphitheare is about to kick into high gear as the summer heats up. Willie Nelson and Alison Krauss are the first to stage the May 18, and they will be followed closely by a pair of sold-out shows. Jack Johnson performs May 20 and three days later Styx, Foreigner and Don Felder entertain the crowd.

Darius Rucker Performs in St. Augustine

Darius Rucker and his band pulled into the St. Augustine Amphitheatre April 19 to perform to a packed house full of fans eager to see him perform a mix of his country songs along with his Hootie and the Blowfish hits.

IMG_6750_fbThe rain held off for the start of the show but began to fall three songs into his set. It didn’t seem to bother the crowd at the open-air venue, and they even reveled in it with his cover of Prince’s Purple Rain as an encore.

Dierks Bentley Brings His Rocking Country Style to St. Augustine

Dierks Bentley performing April 12, 2014 in St. Augustine, Florida.

Dierks Bentley brought his crossroads style of music — a rocking country mix — to the St. Augustine Amphitheatre as part of his Riser tour.

Dierks Bentley, who has recorded 10 No. 1 singles to date, brought his brand of rocking country to the St. Augustine Amphitheatre April 12, 2014. The 38-year-old Arizona native brought the crowd to its feet before the show ever started by showing video the tour had filmed in and around St. Augustine — including landmark buildings from the nation’s oldest city and tourist favorites such as the Alligator Farm. The crowd rarely sat after that.

Bentley, a dynamic performer who appreciates the crowd and lets them know it, is also very camera aware during the time when media are permitted to photograph the show. He made it a point to

Bentley stood over me as I was photographing and played directly into my lens for several seconds.

Bentley stood over me as I was photographing and played directly into my lens for several seconds.

spend a little time with essentially every photographer as he was performing to make sure they had a chance to get a great picture.

Two other bands were on the bill with Bentley, the Brothers Osborne kicked things off at 6:30 pm and Battle Creek, Michigan’s Frankie Ballard took the stage at 7:30 pm. Ballard’s single Sunshine & Whiskey became his first No. 1 hit earlier this year.

You can see the full image gallery from the concert by visiting the St. Augustine Photos Facebook page.