Sunday night, Gisele and I, along with 9,000 of our closest friends, had the pleasure of seeing James Taylor and Carole King in concert at Mohegan Sun on their Troubadour Reunion Tour.
We've had these tickets since January. The morning they went on sale I was at the computer. The first show for Saturday night sold out FAST. I finally got to the point where I could choose and buy the seats. On Ticketmaster you end up in a queue online and only have so many minutes to pick and purchase seats or you get thrown out.
The seats I chose weren't exactly what I wanted but I was happy to get them. We ended up in the nosebleed section but what could you expect for $100 a ticket? (I know this is cheap for big shows now, but I'm a child of the 60's and 70's when I paid $4.75 to see the best concerts) It didn't matter. We've both seen JT several times but never Carole and to see them together was too good to miss. At the risk of sounding melodramatic, to me it was the chance of a lifetime.
We were far above the stage and couldn't see much clearly but it was a revolving deal so at least no one was behind it. We had to be satisfied with watching on the screens around the arena but the camera guys (and girl) did a great job. Although there were several times I wished I could see Danny Kortchmar's and Leland Sklar's guitar work other than when the cameras were on them. But the acoustics were terrific, and we didn't miss a word or a note.
I'm not sure I've ever seen a concert that started with a standing ovation. The emotion of the crowd continued right through their second encore when they finished the show with You Can Close Your Eyes which is a particular favorite of mine and takes me back to long ago and bittersweet memories. Throughout the show I was leaning forward with elbows on knees and chin in hand.
In some ways it was like seeing two different shows because they played many songs together but usually with one out front and the other singing and playing back up. They played most all the songs we wanted to hear....So Far Away, Machine Gun Kelly, Smackwater Jack, Country Road, Sweet Baby James, Fire and Rain and many more. When they played Up on the Roof, a song Carole wrote but which they both recorded, they each played it the way they recorded it, two definitely different interpretations. It was fun to see their two different styles on the same song.
The affection and camaraderie between the two was so clear. What amazed me was how spontaneous they made the show feel. The banter between the two as well as James' witty comments and stories (he's funny!) seemed so fresh and original. And when they played all the songs they have probably played hundreds, maybe thousands, of times, they seemed to be playing them the first time for an audience. I guess that's the mark of people who love what they do. The adulation of 9,000 fans probably didn't hurt either.
A few times Carole got up from the piano and danced around in her 4" heels and got the crowd clapping along. You'd never know she's 68 years old. JT is 62 and although he is beginning to look his age, that smile and sweet voice are still there. They both seem to have just gotten better with age. Or maybe I just want to believe we all do. They sure made me feel like the 16-year-old who wore out her first copy of Tapestry back in the early 70's. Is it really that long ago?