Rod Stewart, Cyndi Lauper, Jon Stevens @ Entertainment Centre, Adelaide 21/3/2023

With secrecy and publicity surrounding his health, following the cancellation of his show in Melbourne last Saturday, Rod Stewart came to bless Adelaide fans playing his iconic classics and new hits to a capacity crowd.Opening the night was

Noiseworks’ Jon Stevens who entered to a welcoming applause. Jon kicked off with a collection of Noiseworks and INXS classics including, Reach OutNo LiesHot Chilli Woman and anthem, Never Tear Us Apart. The set concluded with Take Me Back, written in memory of a former girlfriend that had passed away. During the ballad, Jon asked audience members to turn on their torches for lost loved ones and when the song faded out, he thanked the crowd for arriving early and wished all a good night.

Special guest, Cyndi Lauper, followed entering the stage through prop door and straight in to Hole in my Heart. Cyndi looked right at home on stage wearing a matching black suit with colourful bows, embodying her trademark eccentric style. Lauper detailed, ‘I got nervous driving past all those churches here, having been thrown out of two catholic schools…’ before the beautiful tribute to her late mother, Good Enough. With her boots and socks removed on stage, Lauper reminisced saying, ‘when I was in cover bands, I was singing Sir Rod songs…” before moving into the opening verse of Sailing then transitioning into her ballad Sally’s Pigeons. Lauper also empowered speaking of women’s rights that, from a simple guitar riff, drifted into the worldwide hit Girls Want to Have Fun. To conclude the memorable set was the iconic True Colours song, a crowd favourite.

With anticipation built in the arena, Scottish bagpipes bellowed Scotland the Brave. As the pipes filled the room, female performers entered the stage one behind each other revealing Rod Stewart strolling in behind them. With loud applause, Sir Rod launched into Robert Palmer’s Addicted To Love kicking off the show in superb style. For just over two hours Rod commanded the stage, defying his seventy eight years while delivering a masterful performance. His eight-piece band and three backup singers wonderfully created the foundation for the rock legend to shine, delivering all songs with professionalism, ease and grace. There were no signs of any throat infection to the audience, with Rod’s unique voice sounding polished and distinct in every song.

With the band in full swing, You Wear it Well was next followed by The Faces 1973 hit, Ooh La La, which was originally sung by Ronnie Wood. Cat Stevens’ The First Cut is the Deepest and Maggie May were also show stoppers.

Rod looked his stylist best, dressed in a black and gold suit coat with sparkly silver shoes. ‘Good evening my friends it’s been seven years since we’ve been here with two cancellations, by fuck we are here and will play songs across my entire career including The Faces and Jeff Beck’. Rod moved into the Sam Cooke’s Having a Party and Some Guys Have all the Luck.

Stewart commented, ‘I drink to your good health and thank you for spending your good money and hope you enjoy the show. In 1972 I first heard this song with my good friend Ronnie Wood of the Rolling Stones and heard Christine McVie sing this before Fleetwood Mac fame’ playing the Etta James cover, I’d Rather Go BlindYoung Turks followed with another drum and harp instrumental, which allowed Rod change costumes and reappear in a blue shirt and yellow jacket, symbolising support for Ukraine. With Stewart’s total dislike of war, he commented ‘there was no more important time for the world to unite’ and called out ‘stupid fucking Putin’. The screens on stage were filled with images of war-torn Ukraine and its people, with the final image of the Ukraine President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, to a loud applause. Rod dedicated Rhythm of my Heart to the Ukrainian people.

With another costume change Rod returned in a leopard patterned suit for the acoustic set with band and singers seated at the front all in a row. Rod commented, ‘this one is dedicated to Jeff Beck, one of the greatest guitar players and who gave Ronnie Wood and me our first break in America’ playing People Get Ready. Next was I Don’t Want to Talk About It, followed by Tonight’s the Night, then You’re in My Heart (the Final Acclaim) with a dedication to Rod’s favourite soccer team, Glasgow’s Celtic F.C. The seated set concluded with a Van Morrison cover and the beautiful ballad, Have I told you Lately.

Rod returned to the stage in a black suit and started throwing soccer balls into the front section while singing the hit Baby Jane. Stewart then announced, ‘this is the last one and then I’m going home’ moving in to Do you think I’m Sexy.

The encore was the iconic smash hit, Sailing to end wonderful night of nostalgic music and showmanship by the legendary Scottish star. Sir Rod Stewart waved to the audience and left the stage quickly to thunderous applause to end the evening.

Live Review By David Kerr

Rod Stewart ‘The Hits’ Australia tour continues across the eastern states during March and April. Check for more tour information

Rod Stewart Performs Incredible First Melbourne Show ’Sailing’ Through a Timeless Setlist

by PAUL CASHMERE on MARCH 15, 2023


Rod Stewart is unbelievably good at age 78. It seemed the most asked question leading into the tour was ‘can he still sing’?. The answer is ‘fuck yeah’.


Right from the start with his cover of Robert Palmer’s ‘Addicted To Love’, Sir Rod pranced on stage with all the glitter and glam of old school professionalism. This was an amazing concert. It felt good to be in the room. For 2 hours and 5 minutes, all eyes were on Rod. Whatever was happening in the world was left outside to deal with later. This audience was in for a good time.

Rod’s point of difference with the recent Elton and Sting show is his ability to improvise his setlist. If you are old enough to remember The Faces, (Rod’s band of the early 70s), you will remember how sloppy they were. (And I used sloppy in a good ol’ rock and roll sense). They would start, fuck it up, stop, start again and it just made for a better show. We had one of those moments with this show when someone in the band didn’t notice ‘Stay With Me’ was a last minute addition to the setlist and launched into ‘Da Ya Think I’m Sexy’. Rod stopped, and started it again. How appropriate that they fucked it up with a Faces song.

None of that matters at a Rod Stewart concert. Rod’s show is his party and everyone in the audience is his guest.

Rod is also a gracious host at his party, sharing his stories, giving us all a glimpse into his life. One story was about how The Faces members used to share hotel rooms. “We took all the furniture in the room and put it down the middle. And then when we got a couple of girls in there, we couldn’t stop fucking giggling. The girls went home”.

There was also the recollection of his first Australia tour (with Faces in 1974) when he looked into the audience and someone was holding the sign “fuck off Pommy bastards”.

There was the serious moment. ‘Rhythm of My Heart’ was dedicated to Ukraine, with Rod calling out ‘stupid fucking Putin’ and filling the screens with images of war-torn Ukraine as the band performed the classic hit, and climaxing with an image of Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to thunderous applause from the audience.

The highlights from this show happen fast and furious. There were no lows. We are navigated through various eras. Rod’s setlist is a time-machine. We are transported back to 1973 for a tribute to the Faces with ‘Ooh La La’, sung by Ron Wood on the original song. Rod doesn’t even appear on the Faces version. It was only the two Ronnies (Lane and Wood), Ian McLagan and Kenney Jones. Rod recorded his version of it on 1998’s ‘When We Were The New Boys’ as a tribute to the then recently deceased Ronnie Lane (1946-1997).

‘You’re In My Heart’ was dedicated to Melbourne soccer coach Ange Postecoglou who was soccer coach for Rod’s team Celtic United (name checked in the song).

There is also a tribute to Jeff Beck with ‘People Get Ready’ Rod was singer for the Jeff Beck Group before the Faces and sang vocals for 1985 Beck recording.

Rod also performed ‘The Killing of George Part 1’ at this show but not in Perth. It was a controversial song when released in 1976, the subject being about the murder of a gay friend Rod knew. He didn’t include Part 2 in the performance.

‘Da Ya Think I’m Sexy’ ends the main set and was followed by ‘Sailing’ in the encore. Two hours felt like 10 minutes.

Jon Stevens opened the show sandwiching his INXS era between his Noiseworks classics. Cyndi Lauper was the perfect before Rod with a good hour covering all of her classics as well as showcasing some of her more recent new music.

Rod Stewart setlist 14 March 2023 Rod Laver Arena Melbourne

Addicted to Love (Robert Palmer cover)
You Wear It Well (from Never A Dull Moment, 1972)
Ooh La La (from Faces, Ooh La La, 1973)
Some Guys Have All the Luck (from Camouflage, 1984)
Twisting The Night Away (from Never A Dull Moment, 1972)
It Takes Two (from Vagabond Heart, 1991)
Rollin’ and Tumblin’ (from Blood Red Roses, 2018)
The First Cut Is the Deepest (from A Night On The Town, 1976)
Forever Young (from Out of Order, 1988)
Maggie May (from Every Picture Tells A Story, 1971)
I’d Rather Go Blind (from Never A Dull Moment, 1972)
Young Turks (from Tonight I’m Yours, 1981)
Rhythm of My Heart (from Vagabond Heart, 1991)
I’m Every Woman (Chaka Khan cover, sung by backing singers)
People Get Ready (from Jeff Beck’s Flash, 1985)
The Killing Of Georgie Part 1 (from A Night On The Town, 1976)
Tonight’s the Night (Gonna Be Alright) (from A Night On The Town, 1976)
You’re in my Heart (from Footloose and Fancy Free, 1977)
Have I Told You Lately (from Vagabond Heart, 1991)
Lady Marmalade (LaBelle cover, sung by backing singers)
Stay With Me (from Faces, A Nod Is As Good As A Wink, 1972)
Da Ya Think I’m Sexy? (from Blonds Have More Fun, 1979)

Live Review: Rod Stewart, Cyndi Lauper @ Rod Laver Arena

15 March 2023 | 12:41 pm | Andy Hazel

“We’re going to have a f**king good time tonight.”

Soon joined by the brittle clatter of a marching band, it’s Scotland the Brave. The stage lights flicker to life, and six women in tight white shirts and black sparkly shorts file on as the humid grind of Robert Palmer’s Addicted to Love begins, in what one can only assume is a self-diagnosis from the man who follows, Rod Stewart. Setting the tone and warming up his vocal cords, the great deception that takes place isn’t Sir Rod asserting his insatiable libido but the women around him. After establishing the illusion that they are unable to play their instruments, the ensuing songs, You Wear it WellOoh La La and Some Guys Have All the Luck, give the women the chance to show their considerable chops on violins, harp, piano, drums, tap dancing (while playing the violin) and vocals stylings that demonstrate a range Stewart made a virtue out of not having.


Photos by Jonathan White / Rod Laver Arena

“We’re going to have a fucking good time tonight,” he promises. “We’ve got 24 songs, nearly two hours...depending on your applause.” Stewart’s idea of a good time is covering songs from artists he loves. Sam Cooke (Twisting the Night Away), Curtis Mayfield (People Get Ready) and Muddy Waters (Rolling and Tumbling) all get a reverential introduction, video and an interpretation that makes full use of his backing band; seven guys all dressed in pink suit jackets and black slacks. Stewart leaves the stage several times during the show to change outfits, a point he later chastises music critics for complaining about.

This reviewer is not complaining. When Stewart returns to the stage in a blousy zebra print shirt with artfully paint-spattered jeans to croon his way through The First Cut is the Deepest, it feels laughter and reverence are equally appropriate responses. Throughout the performance, there is a strong echo of Bill Nighy’s pop star character in the film Love Actually. Stewart, now in his seventh decade of touring, embraces the concept of geriatric sex appeal so fully it feels cheesy and transgressive at the same time. I’m not sure what it all adds up to, but it is joyously celebratory, and the crowd absolutely love it. 

The music that best suits his brand of sex appeal is driving rock and disco and even if a song doesn’t naturally fit into these styles, he pushes it. It’s a decision that sometimes leaves him cutting the end off words to allow a breath between lyrics or pulling the mic away to allow the other vocalists to carry the song. When he introduces I’d Rather Go Blind as a song he and Ron Wood nailed “in two takes”, the tempo slows, the band chill out, he takes the space he needs to be the blues belter he is, and he sounds eerily like he did when he recorded it 50 years ago. But of course, that’s not what we’re here for, and Stewart is well aware of it. Young Turks follow with its anthemic 80s chorus before he quickly disappears to don a blue shirt and yellow jacket for his “anti-war” song Rhythm of My Heart, which soundtracks images of the Ukrainian war and finishes on a picture of Vladimir Zelenskyy. Then, in a mood whiplash that only Monday’s Academy Awards could match with their transition from Cocaine Bear hassling Malala Yousafzai to a solemn memoriam for Chadwick Boseman, Stewart goes from lamenting the horrors of modern warfare to introducing a trio of women in leopard-print dresses singing Hot Stuff


From 'camp disco' we are suddenly in the show’s 'acoustic section'. Stewart and the band peel through The Killing of Georgie Part 1, Have I Told You Lately, Tonight’s the Night and his ode to Celtic FC, You’re in My Heart, during which Melbourne football coach Ange Postecoglou gets the big screen treatment. This all adds up to a very strange and singular show. Many songs get Celtic twists, drums and violins, and all get Stewart’s gravelly, hip-swivelling signature that just somehow works, though it’s hard to imagine any modern equivalent.

After a final outfit change, Stewart returns in a black sparkly suit and proceeds to boot soccer balls into the crowd as an introduction to The Faces’ classic Stay with Me. That looming inevitability, D’ya Think I’m Sexy?, has all potential awkwardness extracted from it by Stewart’s decision to introduce it with a photo. “Here’s a picture of me in 1979, dressed in a red cape with my right tit hanging out,” he accurately summarises. “I liked to laugh then, and I still do.” After his disco classic gets an extended breakdown, he and the band leave the stage, returning minutes later for a version of Sailing that sees a forest of phone torches waving across the arena. As he throws up his arms and leaves the stage for a final time, there is the sense that, while Stewart might have inspired a lot of different feelings tonight, disappointment was never on the cards.

Rod Stewart electrifies Melbourne with nothing but hits and the raw power of neon animal prints


This wrap of shows around Melbourne includes a night of hits with Rod Stewart and Cyndi Lauper, and a sold-out performance by Carly Rae Jepsen that, exactly as promised, was “so nice”.

Rod Stewart ★★★★½
Rod Laver Arena, March 14

“All bangers, no clangers” was the overriding theme of Rod Stewart’s The Hits! tour.

Those who foolishly sauntered into Rod Laver Arena late missed New Zealand singer Jon Stevens’ excellent set of Noiseworks and INXS classics, but most had settled in for Cyndi Lauper’s joyous performance. Lauper’s energy, idiosyncratic dancing, and sublime four octave vocal range kept the audience’s mood, and her pointed pink hair, high. “It takes a lot of yelling at my hair to get it looking like this,” she tells the crowd. Hitting the hits, we got Time after TimeGirls Just Want to Have Fun and an exquisite rendition of True Colours, which the audience sang along with reverently as Lauper played the Appalachian dulcimer.


A blaring bagpipe chorus announced Stewart’s arrival, as he pranced enthusiastically onto stage and tore into Robert Palmer’s Addicted to Love. Stewart’s voice, at 78, is in outstanding condition. He always sounded like an older gent whose vocal cords had stretched into rich, raspy maturity anyhow.

Of course, we get the grand ’70s and ’80s ballads with SailingYou Wear it Well and The First Cut is the Deepest, but we also get a lot of rocking Rod tonight. An energetic, blues-belting wonder, having the time of his life to Maggie MayYoung TurksIt Takes Two, and Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?

Speaking of which, Stewart clearly associates sexiness with the raw power of neon animal prints and his many costume changes include bright tiger, zebra and leopard prints and squeakingly tight trousers. As he states: “One thing critics criticise me about is my costume changes. I don’t f---ing care.” And neither do we. Sir Roderick dances with the joy and precision of a drunken aunt who is, ironically, dancing to Rod Stewart. He is the flamboyant rock star we want him to be and, happily age hasn't dulled that.


Stewart’s enthusiasm can seem a little misplaced at times. After a rousing Rhythm of my Heart, which is dedicated to the people of Ukraine, he shouts: “Freedom! Democracy! Right … bring on the girls!” At which point, his backing vocalists run out and we are whiplashed into Donna Summer’s Hot Stuff.

Towards the end, Stewart gives us one of his great love songs, You’re in My Heart, which he has claimed is “about three women, two football teams, and a country”. Tonight, however, it is entirely about his beloved Celtic Football Club as images of daring goals and the club’s history flash across the arena’s giant screen. Stewart gives a massive shout-out to Celtic’s manager, South Melbourne’s own Ange Postecoglou, whom Stewart reckons he might pop in on today for a cup of tea.

Filled with a spirit of musical and sporting triumph, Stewart shouts: “Are you enjoying it? ’Cos I am!” Well, does he even need to ask?

Reviewed by Andrew McClelland

Rod Stewart rocks Perth!

A Wonderfully Memorable Evening:

Rod’s latest Australian Tour began on a wonderful summer evening in Perth, supported by Jon Stevens and Cyndi Lauper. He took the audience on a journey through a career that is hard to match, making it a show of pure nostalgia

Awesome Performances:

Jon Stevens opened the show, captivating the largely unoccupied crowd with his rendition of Noiseworks and INXS‘s classics. It was the flawless start to the evening.

The anticipation for Rod grew palpable after Cyndi Lauper closed her set on a high note. Rod’s backing band, an almost equal split of male and female musicians and backing singers, accompanied his grand entrance playing Robert Palmer’s ‘Addicted to Love.’ It was a great rendition that set the party atmosphere for the evening.

A Masterful Performance:

Resplendently dressed in a silver suit and zebra shirt, Rod commanded the stage from beginning to end with his unforgettable hits. With a rich catalogue, anything he played was a hit. The band dressed in white with thin ties and smart suits, reminiscent of the bands that played Rhythm and Blues way back yonder.

The band played a wonderful rendition of Faces’ ‘Ooh La La,’ garnering attention and wry smiles from the audience. Rod showcased his love for Sam Cooke and Otis Redding with his spectacular version of ‘Having a Party’ that was thrilling and fun.

The stage transformed to a dimly lit club during a touching performance of Etta James’s ‘I’d Rather Go Blind,’ delivered wonderfully by Rod and one of his remarkable backing singers. Next, we were taken back to the ’80s with Rod’s rendition of ‘Young Turks’ when he announced that his beloved Celtic was up 2-0 against Hearts.

The Majestic Finale:

The show ended with Rod’s iconic hit ‘Do Ya Think I’m Sexy,’ followed by an encore of ‘Sailing,’ leaving the crowd longing for more of his fantastic performances.

Rod Stewart’s catalogue is nearly immeasurable, making his performances unpredictable but always unforgettable, as was the case during the Perth concert.


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