By Mike McKenney, New England Correspondent
Venue: Xfinity Center, Mansfield, Massachusetts-Saturday July 7, 2018
With perfect weather for an outdoor concert, living legends The Doobie Brothers and Steely Dan, thrilled the sold out Xfinity Center crowd with all their familiar hits from the last forty plus years. At first blush it may seem like a strange mix of styles but these two bands have a lot of history and fans in common.
While both bands enjoyed their most successful in the “70’s” they both took a break during the “80’s”. When Steely Dan decided to stop touring and head to the studio, co-lead guitarist Jeff ‘Skunk” Baxter left Steely Dan to join The Doobie Brothers. Michael McDonald enjoyed a stint as the frontman for the Doobie Brothers while also a collaborator with Steely Dan. Their musical stylings are where these two iconic bands diverge and it was evident the crowd enjoyed both the rock/country/R&B, of the Doobie Brothers and the jazz/funk/rock that Steely Dan is famous for.
The Doobie Brothers took to the stage first. Founders Tom Johnston (guitar/vocals), Patrick Simmons (guitar/vocals), long time member John McFee (guitars, Pedal Steel, Dobro, Fiddle, Vocals) and current touring members Bill Payne (keyboards), Marc Russo (Killer Sax!), Ed Toth (drums) and John Cowan (bass/vocals), sounded exactly as remembered. Doobie Brothers vocal harmonies were smooth as silk on mega hits, “Jesus is Just Alright”, “Black Water”, and “Taking it to the Streets”.
Steely Dan, even without beloved co-founder, Walter Becker (RIP), is still relevant today, with Donald Fagen suppling his funky New Yorker attitude. (Becker and Fagen met in 1967 at Bard College in NY). The amazing musicians that are Steely Dan brought the crowd to their feet with favorites “FM”, “Asia”, and “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number”.
Their set included hits spanning an incredible selection of albums including, Can’t Buy A Thrill. A Decade of Steely Dan, Goucho, Pretzel Logic, The Royal Scam, and Aja. With a catalog spanning almost 50 yrs, it’s no wonder Steely Dan has sold more than 40 million albums worldwide and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in March 2001. VH1 listed Steely Dan at #82 as one of the 100 greatest musical artists of all time.
Not to be outdone, The Doobie Brothers were inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2004, have won four GRAMMY® Awards and sold more than 48 million records worldwide (including three multi-platinum, seven platinum, and 14 gold albums). Experiencing these two legendary bands for the price of one “The Summer Of Living Dangerously Tour” ticket is the best value around, and one of the best concerts of the summer!
Doobie Brothers Setlist:
Rockin’ Down the Highway
South City Midnight Lady
Dark Eyed Cajun Woman
Jesus is Just Alright
Eyes Of Silver
World Gone Crazy
Takin’ It To The Streets
Take Me In Your Arms (Rock Me a little while)
Long Train Runnin’
Listen To The Music
Steely Dan Setlist:
Home At Last
Time Out of Mind
Rikki Don’t Lose that Number
Keep That Same Old Feeling
My Old School
Reelin’ in the Years
A Man Ain’t Supposed to Cry