"Just take those old records off the shelf. I sit and listen to them by myself. Today's music ain't got the same soul. I like that old time rock n' roll."
When I was four years old, I knew every word to that song. I still do. The reason has absolutely nothing to do with Tom Cruise or Risky Business.
My first musical memories are listening to the Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band. My father often played their two live albums, Live Bullet and Nine Tonight, and Old Time Rock & Roll stayed stuck in my head when I was a young child.
I did not call Nine Tonight and Live Bullet by their names. It was "The One With Old Time Rock & Roll" and "The One Without Old Time Rock & Roll."
That song was burned into my young mind for several reasons. The guitar solos. The saxophone. The intro.
The intro to Old Time Rock & Roll on the Nine Tonight album was one of the biggest factors that separated it from the studio version. Those piano notes just never did the song justice. This is why the most disappointing part of seeing Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band in Charlotte on Thursday night was that intro.
Craig Frost, the band's keyboard player, hit those notes and the band kicked into the instantly recognizable song. To be fair to Frost, he had no idea that there was a grown man in the audience who remembers the excitement of the drum kicking in on the extended introduction to Old Time Rock & Roll. How could he know? I didn't tell him.
I should have told him.
The Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band concert at Time Warner Cable Arena was spectacular. But, I was a biased audience. I have friends who love Star Wars. Seeing Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band in concert is like a Star Wars fan playing with a light sabre.
In about a week, Bob Seger will turn 68. He moves incredibly well for his age and his voice, while perhaps not as strong as it was in the Live Bullet days, has held up well over the years.
"Those are the memories that make me a wealthy soul."
While my five-year-old self may disagree because it lacks one certain song, Live Bullet is possibly the greatest live album of all time. Seger is a musician who acknowledges that people are there to see the classics. He alerted the crowd when he played his last "new" song. He also introduced one song by saying, "this one goes back to the Live Bullet days." That announcement was met with uproarious applause.
One of my personal highlights from the show was hearing Travelin' Man and Beautiful Loser. The songs are tracks two and three on Live Bullet and they must be done together. The crowd appreciated the incredible rendition of Turn The Page. With Seger on piano and Alto Reed on sax, the crowd stood at attention for one of their most powerful songs.
"Come back baby, rock and roll never forgets."
Many in the audience were twice my age. At the show, I couldn't help but think about how many of Seger's songs are more relevant to his audience now than they were when they were released. The reflective mood of songs like Rock and Roll Never Forgets, Night Moves, and of course Old Time Rock and Roll clearly connect with Seger's aging audience.
At the concert, fans heard just about every song they wanted to hear, including Seger's hits that weren't featured on those two live albums.
They have it right.
Who knows when Seger and company will return to Charlotte. So, I highly recommend picking up Live Bullet and Nine Tonight. You will not be disappointed.
-- Jeffrey Clayton
Online Content Director: 99.7 The Fox