Joe Walsh did not need an opening act on August 13th. The guitarist is well known for his work in the James Gang, The Eagles and his solo work. The weather was wonderful at Wolf Trap and the audience was ready to rock. Joe Walsh was ready as well. He started the show with “Welcome to the Club” from his 1974 album So What. His second song was “Life of Illusion” from his 1981 record There Goes the Neighborhood. The third song got the crowd on their feet as Joe revisited his James Gang days and performed “Walked Away.”
Joe Walsh played the title track of his 1985 album The Confessor for the fourth song of the night before launching into the title track of his current recording Analog Man. The sixth song was a surprise, as he paid a touching tribute to Levon Helm, the drummer of The Band) as he performed “I Shall be Released” which really showcased the talents of his three backup singers who took turns on the lead vocals for the song giving it a much more soulful feel. The background screens also showed images of Levon and the Band during the song.
Next came “Lucky That Way” from the Analog Man release. Then Joe launched into “The Bomber: Closet Queen/Bolero/Cast Your Fate into the Wind” from his James Gang days. This number really let Joe cut loose on the guitar and brought out some of his best soloing of the evening. This was followed by “Turn to Stone,” and “In the City” – a song he released solo and with the Eagles. Joe Walsh made a humorous stab at the record business covering Albert King’s “Personal Manager.” The fun continued as he played “Funk #49” from the James Gang.
The concert was peaking when Joe Walsh performed one of his biggest songs “Life’s Been Good.” The humorous song of rock star excess was followed by a humorous song called “I L.B.T.s” from his 1983 album “You Bought It – You Name It.” It is a song that he doesn’t play very often – and it’s about his love for big breasts. He finished his set with a cover of The Eagles’ “Life in the Fast Lane.”
Joe returned to the stage to perform “Rocky Mountain Way” which I think is his best song. Walsh closed the night with a rowdy version of “All Night Long.” Joe Walsh provided a great mix of songs including rarities and hits, and covered James Gang and Eagles’ songs. The only thing fans might have wanted was more. I could hear fans raving about how “awesome,” “great,” and “fantastic” the show was as they walked towards the exits. They were right.
Running time: Approximately one hour and 45 minutes no intermission.