Tokyo, Japan

Zepp DiverCity

April 8, 2014

[Laurette Maillet]

Review by Laurette Maillet

What happened on the 8th of April? First I explain the organization of 
General Admission in Japan. The capacity is 2000 with some seats on a far 
away balcony. The floor section is divided in three sections A, B, C. 
A section being the closest from the stage. The ticket one buys will be 
for example A567. Of course the first ticket should be A001. At 5:45 PM,
an usher with a loud speaker will call the section and numbers by 10 : A10, 
A20, ... A610. Then B10...then C40... The line will then be formed section 
by section, no need to be in the line at 9:00 am. Then again before the 
security control (no camera allowed) a usher will call the ticket number by 
number, no cheating. No rush except for the last few meters (the Japanese 
are human after all). On that evening of the 8th of April. I find myself 
at my usual spot ; right in front of the piano on the rail. For the first 
time in Tokyo I can see the stage. The piano is closer to the first row than 
before (no more keyboard). There is only one mirror, right in front George's 
drums. Still wonder why. On my left a young Japanese fellow. Young Fans 
are on the rail. On my right a Fan from California. 7:10 pm Stu takes the 
stage with his acoustic guitar : the Stu noodle(some call it). Then one by 
one the Band ; Tony, George, Charlie, Donnie...and Bob takes the center 
stage for "Things have changed" followed by "She belongs to me". Bobby 
is so close. Nice cream color suit, white shirt, black and white boots (but 
not the cowboy ones), cream color hat. His face is white, even pale but 
smooth (well shaven, no more mustache). His hair is dark (probably dyed). 
At times he is looking straight at me but...this is the feelings all the Fans 
will have in front. He moves to the piano for "Beyond here lies nothing", 
one of my favorite songs. In the middle of the song we can hear a loud 
noise, for my opinion coming from Charlie's guitar but who knows? Tony 
puts his hands on in ears and they disconnect the guitars and stop the 
song...shit! Bob doesn't panic and start a little tune on the piano joined by 
Donnie on banjo (I believe). Some five minutes before the technicians 
come to Bob (to explain it will take a while to find the problem?) and Bob 
leaves the stage with the Band. Some minutes later Stu crosses the stage 
to pick up an acoustic guitar. We believe he will do a little song! but no, 
he comes back to put the guitar on his support. Alright! Stu will come back
on stage, and we hear Stu! Stu! here and there. He's clowning around; 
trying the drums then Bob's piano, disappearing again. Charlie will pass by
also. I hear; Charlie! Charlie! He crosses the stage and disappear on the left. 
Then...Bob comes on my right accompanied by George. They move to 
that white guitar lying right in front George drums. They seam to be in a 
heavy discussion about that guitar and both disappear on the left on the 
stage. Woa! kind of funny! The only one who is not clowning is Tony. He 
seems seriously concerned! We don't see Donnie. Bob's crew and 
Japanese technicians are working hard to find the problem. Four of them 
crawled underneath the piano, paradoxically a Yamaha! They change some 
cables and Jules ask Jason to adjust the volume of the mics (the center 
mic and the piano mic). Some 25 minutes later they take the stage again. 
I hope Bob will start again "Beyond here lies nothing". He moves to the 
piano, flipped some pages and trots to center stage. He will do "Huck's 
tune". As an apology? to please the public? (it is my feelings). He will then 
go on with the regular set list. Before the intermission he mentions the
incident and says "Arigato" (thank you in Japanese). The public is thrilled. 
The intermission will be shorter than usual. He will move on with the songs 
on that static set list. But truly I don't mind for I am right in front the 
piano and I enjoy every single minute of the performance. Bobby doesn't 
smile (not even with Donnie). He looks more like a Buddha, sage and 
resolute : "Nothing in front and nothing behind". One of those shows I
will remember! Thanks Bobby for those memorable moments in my life!


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