This is how it’s meant to be

The Revival Tour – Live Music Hall, Cologne; October 23rd, 2012

This year’s concert of The Revival Tour was totally different from last year, but just as intense and just as good. Every Year, Chuck Ragan brings together different musicians for one tour where each one of them plays their own songs, but everyone else is invited to join. This time around he brough Emily Barker, Cory Branan, Jay Malinowski and Rocky Votolato as well as guests Joe Ginsberg, John Gaunt and The dad Coast. They all treated us to a 3+ hours jam session, bringing a lot of fun and much love to the stage.

I’d been so caught up in other things that I had not realized the concert was moved from the Glorria to the Live Music Hall. Thus, when I arrived, I had to take a trip through Cologne to get to the right place. Luckily, I always come early. At the Live Music hall I saw there was one more thing I had not realized. They were having a food drive for the local food bank. Well, the least I could do was help prepare packages of stickers for the donors so I did just that. Had a good chat with the guys who organized it and kept busy until shortly before the doors opened.

All the fans were relaxed, it was easy to get a spot in front row. I didn’t know anyone in the line up but Chuck Ragan, so I wondered what it was going to be like. At 8:00 p.m. they walked out, Chuck screamed “Welcome to the Revival Tour” into the mic and off they went. The first two or three songs were performed together, before each one of them got their own set, inviting guests here and there.

This time around I didn’t know anyone but Chuck, John Gaunt and Joe before, so I was ready to be surprised. Cory Branan was the first to get his own set. I immediately loved his voice and his songs. It wasn’t much stuff to clap along to, so everyone was listening. His performance was powerful and intense.

Emily Barker was next on stage, playing several instruments, talking, laughing and singing in a lovely voice. She was quite energetic and didn’t stand still much. Her songs were great too – I much enjoyed listening to her.

Jay Malinowski and the Dead Coast traded places with her on stage. They played strings and he played piano at first. His set took me longest to get into, but it was also really good. It is just amazing how many great musicians are out there. As with the others, I especially enjoyed the parts where everyone just was invited to play with everyone else and there were always several people on stage singing together.

Rocky Votolato followed, also singing beautiful songs. His set was just as great as the others’. Not a boring song to be heard from any of them. When he was finished I was already mentally counting my money, wondering how many CDs I’d be able to buy after the show.

Last up was Chuck Ragan. He had quite a few fans there that sang along to his songs. Joe Ginsberg on bass and Jon Gaunt on violin accompanied him and at one point Joe even took over the microphone and sang. Overall, the audience was most active during his set, either because his songs are the most well known ones or they just go better with clapping and singing along.

Either way, apparently everyone had fun and at the end of the night they all sang together again for a few songs. I surely enjoyed the whole concert and could have listened for longer. After 3hours and 15 minutes they walked off stage. The long lines at the merchandise booth showed that they did not only convince me, but many others as well. 🙂

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