Lensmenship Speaking Through The Lens: Rod Stewart and Cheap Trick at SPAC 07/22/2022 -By: Stephanie J Bartik

Written by on July 25, 2022

After two unsuccessful attempts (7/29/2020 and 7/31/2021), Sir Rod Stewart finally made it to Saratoga!

Named by the late, great James Brown as music’s “best white soul singer”, Rod Stewart has packed a full career of Rock, Pop, Blues and Soul. All around talent spanning decades.
Saratoga, Friday, July 22, 2022 , the temperatures were continuing to oppress at over 90 degrees. But it did not stop over 10,000 fans from coming to the show.
I have seen some ‘older performers’ lately, and I was a bit concerned about what I would hear. I have been a Stewart fan since the’60s when he was with Long John Baldry and the All Stars (This was the ROD the MOD period) Jeff Beck, and Faces. I was a fan from very early on; The way he dressed, the rasp to his voice was something this preteen never quite heard before.
But as I said, I have heard some of the older performers lately, and was disappointed, and a bit saddened, to know, what someone has loved doing, and has been doing so long, just cannot and should not be done any longer. And since Stewart has had some threatening health issues, (May 2000, Stewart was diagnosed with thyroid cancer, for which he underwent surgery . It had been previously reported he suffered from a benign vocal cord nodule. Besides being a major health scare, the resulting surgery also threatened his voice, and he had to re-learn how to sing. In September 2019, Stewart revealed that he was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2017, and has been given the all-clear after treatment) I was hoping he would sound at least “OK”.
He did not disappoint! 77 years old? He wears it well! His voice was spot on, sounding as I had remembered, rasp and all. He didn’t jump from the speakers as I remember from the ’70s, but he still sashayed across the stage and had a ton of energy.

The darkened stage, gave way to the sound of bagpipes blaring over the speakers. White spotlights moving slowly side to side, shining through a fog across the stage, almost searching for him. The band started playing Robert Palmer classic “Addicted To Love.” then in pure Stewart style, six women dressed in matching white blouses and glittering black shorts, and long legs walked to the front of the stage, each carrying their instruments: a violin, a fiddle, a guitar and a bass guitar. They were not props as these women played beautifully!
The production was magical! The entire perimeter of the stage from top to bottom was framed in video monitors. I would describe it almost like a kaleidoscope effect. (I hope my photos do justice to this)

All in all, this show will go down as one of my favorites. The sounds, the sights, it all brought me back to my younger years. A true Stewart fan (Although I did bury my head a bit when he tiptoed into DISCO!) he came out of that phase successfully. WHEW! Stewart says this will be his last ROCK SHOW; he doesn’t want to be doing this at 80. His plan is to slow it down, and get back into the American Classics type of show. After his 8 marriages /serious relationships, he has said he wasn’t going to get married again, he will “Just find a woman he doesn’t like and give her a house”. Sure, a house would be nice, but I would settle for more of his rock, maybe a few more photo ops! Maybe a meet and greet—ok, I just went back to preteen Stef… CARRYON AND ROCK WILL LIVE FOREVER! We are not our age, we are our energy!

“Addicted to Love”
“You Wear It Well”
“Ooh La La”
“Some Guys Have All the Luck”
“It Takes Two”
“Forever Young”
“The First Cut Is the Deepest”
“Have You Ever Seen the Rain?”
“Maggie May”
“I’d Rather Go Blind”
“Young Turks”
“Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?”
“Rhythm of My Heart”
“Call Me (Rod off stage)”
“People Get Ready”
“Tonight’s the Night”
“You’re in My Heart”
“Have I Told You Lately”
“Hot Stuff (Rod off stage)”
“Hot Legs”
“Encore: Stay With Me”

Cheap Trick setlist:
“Hello There”
“In the Street”
“Ain’t That a Shame”
“Boys & Girls & Rock N Roll”
“I Know What I Want”
“The Flame”
“I Want You to Want Me”
“Dream Police”
“Never Had a Lot to Lose”
“Clock Strikes Ten”

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