The English Beat
It is obvious that The English Beat front man Dave Wakeling continues to enjoy the music and performing for his fans. This was evident with the energy he and the rest of his band provided. I was expecting an artist with a chip on his shoulder, having to perform a free show to 200 people. Such was not the case with Wakeling. He was happy and gracious, excited to start his 2013 tour in Las Vegas. While Wakeling is the last original member of The English Beat, he does have talented musicians from other bands such as The Specials and General Public backing him up.
The English Beat performed their two most recognizable songs from the ’80s, "Save It For Later" and "Mirror In The Bathroom." They also performed many of their songs from the past 30 years, including "I Confess," "Hands Off She’s Mine" and "I’ll Take You There." Even the most casual English Beat fan would have gotten something out of this energetic performance.
I did find it mildly amusing, however, that vocalist Antonee First Class decided to give one of the fans grief for shouting out requests (other than the idiot screaming "Freebird," because unfortunately there always seems to be one in every crowd). I would have figured that the band would have been flattered that anyone cared enough to request one of its songs, since they were only known for two songs that made it on to the American charts.
There were two large downsides to the concert for me. For one, it was standing room only. The staff at the Hard Rock mentioned that if I wanted to sit, I had to order food. That’s fine, but I would have liked to have known that the concert was actually going to start at 9:30 p.m. rather than the advertised 8 p.m.
It is also a tough venue to hear any vocals. I have no idea who the opening band was because I could not hear their introduction. The same went for The English Beat. I honestly understood about ten percent of the vocals. I would have liked to hear Wakeling’s banter in between songs as well because he sounded like a funny guy.
This didn’t happen and it frustrated me. It just seems that The Hard Rock Café is a difficult place to put on a show due to the noisy restaurant sounds that are clashing with the concert. The quality of music was certainly there. I just desperately wanted to hear the vocals.
by The English Beat
The English Beat played March 13 at The Hard Rock Café, 4475 Paradise Road in Las Vegas. For info about upcoming shows, call 702-733-7625 or visit www.hardrock.com. For more information about The English Beat tour dates, visit www.englishbeat.net.