Rod Stewart shows few signs of age at SPAC

Two women strutted down the amphitheater aisle in shaggy blonde wigs before Rod Stewart’s headlining set at Saratoga Performing Arts Center on Saturday night, in homage to the British singer’s rooster-like do. The soulful rocker is in the middle of a five-week tour with ’80s icon Cyndi Lauper, with whom he shares a lively fashion sense and an iconic spiky hairstyle.

The two stars are also quintessential show-people, and they put on one of the best shows of the summer — a rollicking double-bill that thrilled the packed crowd.

Aside from his somewhat diminished vocal range — in part a result of surgery he underwent in 2000 — the raspy-voiced 72-year-old showed few signs of his age, and Stewart’s charisma as a performer transcended the vocal limitations.

During a 21-song set that drew from his greatest hits, he swaggered across the stage in a gold tuxedo jacket during “Some Guys Have All the Luck,” executed jumping jacks during the sing-along “Maggie May,” and kicked around soccer balls during the set-closing “Stay with Me” from his days with the rock band Faces.   

Part of the success of Stewart’s show had to do with its top-notch stage craft and the quality of his band and backup singers — a crew of consummate pros dressed in checkered jackets (the men) and red Celtic skirts (the women) who truly looked like they were having a ball as they backed Stewart on classic ‘70s and ‘80s hits like “Infatuation,” “Forever Young,” “Tonight’s the Night” and “You Wear It Well.”

A video of Stewart being knighted by Prince William in 2016 played on the backdrop during the Celtic-flavored “Rhythm of My Heart,” a mid-set highlight followed by Stewart’s Grammy-winning tune “Young Turks” and his heartfelt Tom Waits cover, “Downtown Train.”

After this tour, Stewart returns to his long-running Las Vegas residency at Caesars Palace. A series of acoustic tunes — for which the singer donned a satin lavender suit — had a bit of that Vegas crooner feel. He and his band sat on chairs along the stage for “The First Cut Is the Deepest,” “Ooh La La,” “Reason to Believe” and massive sing-along “You’re in My Heart.”

Stewart exuded sexy vulnerability and genuine feeling on Van Morrison’s “Have I Told You Lately,” and encored with a goofily fun version of ‘70s disco hit “Do Ya Think I’m Sexy.”

Shortly into her 11-song opening set, ‘80s synth-pop star Lauper pulled off a long powder-blue wig to reveal her trademark hot-pink hair. She had come out onstage in black and white striped pants and a black top-hat for Wanda Jackson’s haunting rockabilly tune “Funnel of Love.” The song appears on Lauper’s Nashville-recorded 2016 album “Detour,” from which she also showcased Skeeter Davis tune “The End of the World.”

But the crowd truly thrilled to the ’80s hits: quirky new wave song “She Bop,” beautiful ballad “Time After Time,” LGBT anthem “True Colors” and smash “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun[damental rights],” which became a women’s empowerment theme after the Women’s Marches of January 2017.  

Later, Lauper appeared onstage with Stewart during his headlining performance to duet on the Isley Brothers love song, “This Old Heart of Mine,” fulfilling a bucket-list accomplishment to tour with one of her idols, she said

Concert review: Stewart, Lauper provide timeles

performances at Xfinity Center

MANSFIELD — There are concerts and then there are productions. Saturday’s Rod Stewart appearance at the Xfinity Center was a throw-back style Vegas show orchestrated by a 72-year-old who proved that age is merely a number.

Stewart’s signature raspy voice never faltered in a 90-minute set that dazzled with showmanship and personality, changes from one flashy costume to the next, and stellar vocals that drew the audience in close for their favorites in his songbook.

Backed by a seven-piece band clad in tuxedos with black and white checkered jackets that matched a checkerboard print on the drum sets and keyboard, as well as a gaggle of back-up dancers, several of whom doubled as musicians, Stewart was simply a treat.Clad initially in a sliver lame jacket, a black sequined shirt, black pants and silver sneakers, Stewart humbly shared the stage with his musicians who dominated solos in certain songs and added to the showmanship.

Stewart rolled easily through favorites like “Infatuation,” “Some Guys Have All the Luck” and a slow and sexy version of “Tonight’s the Night,” which also featured a sizzling saxophone solo by Jimmy Roberts. Roberts also lit up the air later in the show on the sax segment of “Downtown Train.”

There was a delicate harp intro to “The First Cut is the Deepest,” a pair of violins wailing in “You Wear It Well” and a riveting interlude featuring a pair of drummers and the percussionist wailing on their instruments in “Forever Young.”The first portion of his set included a duet with his opening act Cyndi Lauper on the Isley Brothers classic “This Old Heart of Mine,” which showcased how very similar his voice is to Lauper’s distinct rasp.

Although there were a few moments in songs like “You Wear It Well” and “Rhythm of My Heart” where his voice seemed strained or tired, Stewart slid easily into an acoustic section that seemed to refresh him as much as the costume changes. He delivered strong versions of “Reason to Believe,” “You’re In My Heart” and a sweet take on “Have I Told You Lately.”

Lauper also delivered a timeless performance that belies her age of 64. She gyrated, leaped and cavorted across the stage for her hour-long set, her voice soaring to the prolonged high notes on such songs as “I Drove All Night,” “The Goonies R Good Enough,” and a closing vocal boom on “Money Changes Everything.”

She also had moments in which fatigue showed in her vocals, particularly on “You Don’t Know,” but Lauper, who came out in a black pant suit with flower patches all over, black top hat and a green wig pulled on over her shock of pink locks, showcased strong vocal chops on songs like her bluesy version of “The End of the World,” a breathy “Time After Time” and “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.” Her closing number, an a capella version of “True Colors” was powerful

Rod Stewart and Cyndi Lauper draw huge crowd in Tuscaloosa

The Tuscaloosa Amphitheater managed to avoid another round of rain for its second show in a week, this time welcoming a pair of rock legends that packed the place Sunday night.

Rod Stewart and Cyndi Lauper drew an impressive number of fans on a warm evening in the Druid City that saw a gorgeous sunset provide a perfect backdrop that saw both singers in fine form.

Their 2017 U.S. tour rolled through Tuscaloosa, almost exactly four years after Stewart had to cancel a show at the Amp when he needed a couple of days of vocal resting. Fortunately, the raspy Brit got the rest he needed in time for this Alabama gig, and the fans met him halfway.

Scores of folks rolled in with Rod Stewart T-shirts, spanning tours from one decade or another, some of them even homemade. Sunday also marked the first time the venue implemented its brand new clear bag policy, so it meant a little extra time at the front gate, which opened promptly at 6:30 p.m.

Lauper would start right on time at 7:30, the pink-haired New Yorker rocking a top hat and holding a suitcase as he strolled out to warm cheers from the Tuscaloosa crowd, whom she told an amusing anecdote about how she once visited in 1984 sometime around Halloween. She said she even entered a costume contest dressed as herself and won.

Review: Rod Stewart, Cyndi Lauper throw a Saturday night party at Tampa's Amalie Arena

Tilting and whirling, a sinful grin etched across his rakish face, Rod Stewart leaned into the crowd at Tampa’s Amalie Arena and promised them a party.

You can beat a rug, you can beat a carpet, but you can’t beat Saturday night,” he purred to the sold-out crowd of 12,000.

When you’re Rod Stewart, every day might as well be Saturday. All night, the evening's master of ceremonies danced, flirted and wiggled his tight-panted booty with the panache of a man half his age.

His body? Yeah, the fans still want it, and they definitely let him know. And Stewart, 72, is totally okay with that.

Saturday’s show kicked off an epic long weekend of concerts at Amalie Arena, including Paul McCartney on Monday andRoger Waters on Tuesday. Stewart may not have the critical adulation of the former or the gravitas of the latter, but he’d be a hell of a lot more fun than either at a party.

Start with the crew he rolled in with, a killer band a dozen strong styled mostly in chic retro suits atop a checkered sock-hoppy stage. There were percussionists, a saxophonist, even a harpist and string section, who donned cheeky schoolgirl skirts for You Wear It Well. There were backing singers so game to match Stewart’s lively chops that he had them sing Tina Turner’s Mountain High, Valley Low without him.

But otherwise, the spotlight was all Sir Rod’s. His shirt unbuttoned to the bellybutton, his bird’s-nest coif and mullet dancing in the breeze, Stewart was dancing and flirting with every audience member within sniffing distance from the get-go, with nary an ounce of shame about it.

His hits came early and often: Infatuation, Some Guys Have All the Luck, Tonight’s the Night, Forever Young, Young Turks, Tom Waits’ Downtown Train (“This is a song that Tom tells me put a roof over his new house and built him a swimming pool because I recorded it”). On a stirring Maggie May, Stewart shimmied and twirled with his mic stand; on a drunkenly woozy Stay With Me, he punted an arsenal of soccer balls throughout the arena. He changed outfits at least three times, going through more sparkles and satin than a costume shop at Mardi Gras.

Was all this rock-star posturing masking issues with an aging voice? For at least the first half of the set, Stewart's high rasp did seem awfully low in the mix compared to his band, which is normally not a good sign. He acknowledged the toll the years had taken prior to I’d Rather Go Blind, recalling: ““I think we had three glasses of wine in the pub, and we did this one in three takes. Those were the days, ladies and gentlemen.”

But whenever the time came to sing loud and proud, Stewart didn’t back down. An full-band acoustic set in the middle brought his boldest and best vocals of the night, including a rousing Ooh La La, audience-inclusive You’re In My Heart and heartfelt Have I Told You Lately. When a fan preceded that last one by screaming “YOU’RE SO HOT!” at the outset, Stewart couldn’t help but crack up.

If Stewart was a quintessential cad, opener Cyndi Lauper played the quirky foil unafraid to meet him, as she did when Stewart invited her out to grin and giggle through the Isley Brothers’ This Old Heart of Mine.

Lithe and scrappy at 64, the Grammy and Tony winner salvaged the relatively flat first half of her set through sheer force of personality, as she kicked, danced, swirled her bubblegum hair, even ventured into the crowd to sing a few bars. While a vampiric twist on She Bop and the wispy ska number Witness didn't get the crowd up, Lauper's spunky spirit definitely did.

She played to locals' hearts and bellies by confessing her fondness for Frenchy's in Clearwater Beach, where she's eaten more than once ("I wanted to be chic, but I was a little gauche: I wore my Frenchy's T-shirt in Saint Tropez"), and where she got Fried Oreos Friday night.

"It's not on my diet; I'm awful," she said. "So I order it. It was really a beignet with an Oreo on it."

But midway through, Lauper's band jolted to life with a driving heartland rendition of Money Changes Everything that got fans to their its feet; and sparse, dulcimer-driven weepers Time After Time and True Colors.

Before Girls Just Want to Have Fun, Lauper spoke about how inspired she was this spring to see signs reading "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun-Damental Rights" at women's marches across the country: "I was gonna dye my hair a different color, but when I saw them pink hats, I said, that's it. I'm staying pink."

When a guy down front yelled for her to pipe down on the politics, Lauper clapped right back: "I don't know what your problem is, mister, but I'm sure the lady right next to you will kick your ass."

Stewart, unsurprisingly, steered clear of political talk – with one exception. Before Rhythm Of My Heart, his voice went sober as he announced: “Just in the last couple of hours, Mosul has been liberated. So that’s a big kick up the arse for ISIS.” Not since John Cena announced the death of Osama Bin Ladenat the WWE’s Extreme Rules 2011 has Amalie Arena borne witness to such an unlikely source of breaking news.

And yet Stewart still grinned and marched and saluted throughout the rousing song, ending it with a video montage of his elevation to knighthood last fall. Somehow he made even that moment feel like a celebration.

Saturdays, after all, are for parties. With Rod Stewart in town, it can't be helped.

From rocker Rod to the Rodfather: Stewart, 72, didn’t even acknowledge his first child for 18 years as he was too busy chasing blondes... 
but now he is a doting dad to all EIGHT of his children

Was there ever a prouder father than Sir Rod Stewart? The Rodfather, now 72, has eight offspring. His paternal adventures began at the age of 17, and his youngest was born nearly half a century later, when he was 66.

Along the way there has been three wives, one long-term girlfriend and a teenage fling.

He was, by his admission, not the best dad in the world in his Lothario early days. But this weekend, pictures emerged of him gathering ‘the Stewart clan’ as he and wife Penny Lancaster renewed their vows for their tenth wedding anniversary. Six out the eight were there, making the old rocker glow with pride.

‘It’s the best, proudest feeling to look at your kids,’ he says. Expensive too — the adult children apparently get £7,000 a month from a trust, plus other contributions from the Bank of Dad, who is worth £170 million. 

Many credit Penny with keeping all the plates of his complicated family spinning happily. As she once said in an interview: ‘Two kids are the perfect number for me, although I always think of us having eight children because all Rod’s kids are so much a part of our lives, like one big extended family.’

 

Rod, too, is a much more hands-on dad now. ‘He has learned to compromise. He has become a lot softer and his elder children will even admit he’s a better parent who gives them more time,’ says Penny.

So, how have they all turned out? Here’s the Stewart family story . . .


 


 

THE FORGOTTEN ONE

Sarah Streeter, 55, is Rod’s oldest child. Her mother, Susannah Boffey, was an art student girlfriend of Rod’s and he was only 17 when she got pregnant. Sarah was put up for adoption and only learned about Rod when she was 18. They were reconciled in the early Eighties, but fell out of touch again until about six years ago.

He said: ‘At first it was hard to feel like she was my own. But I’ve worked hard at it and now it’s beginning to feel like we’re family. Sarah had something of a chip on her shoulder when we first met, but it’s understandable.’

She now lives in East Sussex and is married. She said relations had improved since her adoptive parents died. ‘The more I reflect on why Rod initially didn’t get very involved, the more I believe it had a lot to do with my adoptive parents. I think he was wary of encroaching on their territory.’

THE FULL-TIME MUM

Daughter Kimberly, 37, is the older of his two children by Alana Hamilton. She was five when her parents broke up and Rod was rarely around when she was growing up.

In her youth she was a socialite and pals with Paris Hilton, in LA’s party-hard scene. She dabbled in modelling, launched a clothing label, dated the odd inappropriate rocker and got an embarrassing tattoo.

Rod sighed: ‘I’ve never told my kids what they can and can’t do, who they can and can’t see. But I tell them I had my own bad times and I get it. I had my druggy period between 1979 and 1981, and you know what? I felt like s*** all the time.’

 

Life changed radically for Kimberly after she fell pregnant by actor Benicio Del Toro. They were not in a relationship. She has not worked — other than appearing with brother Sean in a short-lived reality TV show — and been raising daughter Delilah who was born in October 2011.

She has a fiery relationship with Alana, as does Rod. He said: ‘Alana and I don’t see eye to eye on the upbringing of her two children. She’s the type who thinks money should be thrown at them. And I believe they have to work for a living.’

She used to live with the other grown-up children in the guest house in LA, but now lives in a home in Beverly Hills bought by Rod which she used to share with half-sister Ruby.

Rod says she was one of his greatest supports when he was dumped by second wife Rachel Hunter in 2006 and at his lowest ebb. ‘Kimberly was wonderful,’ he said.

 

 

THE BLACK SHEEP

Sean Stewart is 36 and has given his father enough worries to turn his rooster barnet grey many times over.

Rod broke up with his mum, Alana, when Sean was only four, and was touring the world, and chasing blondes, during his formative years.

Sean was going to nightclubs, getting drunk and doing drugs aged 13. Dyslexic, and suffering OCD, he dropped out of school at 16 and says he was bullied. At 17 he tried crack cocaine, at 19, heroin.

 

I felt lost, I didn’t want to deal with my emotions so I just did drugs and partied and acted out because I was hurting inside. I had no direction, I was searching for a kinship with my father,’ he said.

Sean served time in jail for beating up a man outside a nightclub, and was once charged with attacking a couple with a brick outside a party.

He says that he has been clean since he was 30, runs a casual clothing line Dirty Weekend, and is talking about opening a nightclub in Las Vegas.

A chip off the old block, for the past year he has been dating a blonde, busty Playboy model Daisy Lea.

Nowadays Sean and Rod are close, and share a love of football and shopping. Sean said in 2015: ‘I get a lot of love and support from my father.’

He lives in LA in what Rod calls ‘a little apartment, which I pay for’.

THE COUNTRY STAR

Ruby Stewart, 30, is Rod’s daughter by Texan model Kelly Emberg, who he started dating in 1983.

In his autobiography he said he had been planning to propose to Emberg, but on the night in question met New Zealand supermodel, Rachel Hunter, who became his second wife. After their split, Emberg moved to Manhattan Beach, California, with Ruby and trained as an interior designer. She married lawyer Mike Padilla, and they had two children.


 

Fiercely loyal to her mother, Ruby remained outside the Stewart family circle until her teens and told an interviewer in 2008 that there was a point when she and half-sister Kimberly weren’t even speaking.

She recently paid a moving tribute to her mother: ‘She is the most resilient woman I know.’

After a spell as a lingerie model, Ruby launched a music career and is in a band, The Sisterhood, recently signed by Sony Records. Last month, father and daughter were spotted having a pint celebrating the deal.

She said: ‘Dad came to our first show and was crying because he was so proud. It’s rare that my dad cries, so when he does, it’s like mountains move. I couldn’t even look at him when I was on stage because I saw him welling up in the front row. I knew if I looked I’d start crying, too.’


 

THE DANCER

Shy brunette Renee Stewart, 25, is Rod’s older child by Rachel Hunter. He and Rachel were an item from 1990 to 2006, and separated when Renee was seven.

She was raised by Rachel in Culver City and Redondo Beach, California, rather than being a Beverly Hills brat like siblings Kimberly and Sean.

She says: ‘We didn’t have the whole Hollywood thing going on. I was so focused on dance and Liam [her brother] was focused on his sports. I was never difficult as a kid. The only times I’ve been in trouble with dad is over my dog (chihuahua Jagger) because she poos in the house, which drives him mad.’

She has just finished a BA at the London Contemporary Dance School and is keen on gym and yoga. Her stunning looks have got her some modelling jobs too, for Tatler, Pantene shampoo and a lingerie company Bendon.

Rod had put his wild ways aside when he married Rachel — indeed, she is credited as the only woman to break his heart. He remained a close father to their children.

Rod and Rachel saw her in her final performance at LCDS. Renee, like half-sister Ruby, says her dad sat with tears of pride in his eyes. ‘He tells me he’s proud of me all the time. He knows I work hard and I’m following my passion.’

THE ICE HOCKEY PLAYER

Handsome bearded Liam Stewart, 22, turned his back on a possible football career in favour of ice hockey.

Liam said: ‘Dad’s supportive but he would have loved it more if I’d played football because that’s his sport. He loves coming to watch me play, he enjoys watching the sport, but I’m not sure he’s always been sure of the rules.’

He signed for Coventry Blaze, one of the British Elite League’s top clubs, last year and previously played in Alaska. He specialises in blocking shots — with the puck moving at up to 100mph.

He said: ‘I’ve broken my foot a couple of times and last year I shattered my ankle, but it’s all part of being a hockey player.’

His Twitter account seems to indicate a love of the Liverpool FC, but he told an interviewer: ‘I try to be a fan of Celtic, like Dad.’


 

THE SWIMMER

Penny Lancaster and Rod’s marriage shows all signs of being rock solid, and their boys, Alastair, 11, and Aiden, six, are the children he’s stuck around for.

Alastair is a gifted swimmer. This year, his doting dad lodged plans to build a huge pool house in the grounds of their home in Harlow, Essex. A design statement says: ‘The pool is designed as a training pool for the owner’s son, who is achieving high level performance in competitive swimming.’

Alastair also plays football. Penny said: ‘Come rain or hail, Rod is on the sidelines of Alastair’s football matches. They support Celtic . . . football is about more than just a sport in our house.’

He and Aiden divide their time between Essex and Los Angeles. Penny says she is determined to bring up their boys to appreciate their lifestyle. ‘They have to do chores around the house to earn money and save up. They need to understand that our lifestyle is not the norm.’

THE WILD CARD

Aiden was born after three rounds of IVF treatment just before Penny turned 40. Rod says: ‘The office is now closed, mate. I can’t have any more kids, otherwise I’ll be touring until I’m 90.’

Penny says her youngest is known in the family as ‘the wild one, a right little performer’. Sir Rod said last year: ‘He likes dressing up as a lady. So we don’t know which way he’s thinking.

‘He’s always dressing up like Mary Poppins. Hopefully he’ll grow out of it. If he turns out to be a homosexual, that’s OK with me. As long as he’s happy.’

But Penny has no doubt who’s the biggest kid in the family: ‘Rod has always been like my third child and my most demanding boy out of the three.’

 

Rod Stewart and Penny Lancaster Renew Wedding Vows on Their 10th Anniversary

Huge congrats to Rod Stewart! The 72-year-old singer and his wife Penny Lancaster recently renewed their wedding vows in England over the holiday weekend. The couple shared photos of the ceremony with Hello! magazine, and donated the money received for the pics to the victims of the Grenfell fire. Early June, more than 80 people were killed when the blazed destroyed the London tower apartment block, which marked one of the worst city fires in years.

Further, in lieu of wedding gifts, guests were also asked to donate to the Grenfell fire victims as well. Stewart reportedly also gave a personal donation to the charity.

Ten years after they first wed in a medieval monastery in Portofino, Italy, the couple pledged their love for each other once again under a beech tree at their 45-acre Essex home. The couple stood by their sons Alastair, 11, and Aiden, 6; Rod’s daughters Kimberly, 37, and Renee, 25; sons Sean, 36, and Liam, 22; and Kimberly’s daughter, Delilah, 5. Lancaster's Cavapoo dog Bubbles also played an important role during the vow renewal, as he accompanied the bride down the aisle.

 NEXT RSFC EVENT

OLE!
THE RSFC PALMA PARTY

October 16th - 19th 2017

Sal Palmanova

Mallorca

 

NEXT RS APPEARANCE

July 25th 2017

PNC Banks Arts Center,

Holmdel, NJ

 

 

 

             

 

 

 

 

      

 

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