Huey Lewis & The News
(Jerome-Duncan Ford Theatre, Sterling Heights, MI - August 3rd, 2005)
Huey Lewis & the News are a bar band that made good and with their simple, straightforward rock & roll, the San Francisco-based group soon became one of America's most popular pop/rock bands of the mid-'80s.
Taking to the stage tonight, a heavy stubble-sporting Huey Lewis casts his gaze out upon the two-thirds filled outdoor venue, gently smiles and then slowly, but surely brings the News to those yet uninitiated.
Cuts such as 'Trouble In Paradise,' 'Heart of Rock & Roll' and 'Thank You #19' burst forth before the classic 'I Want A New Drug' finally gets everyone up on their feet. Blending seamlessly into 'Small World,' Lewis continues to walk the stage, but this time takes a seat at one end to sing a lyric or three. "We're going way out West now," he states as they crash into a rousing rendition of 'Rhythm Ranch.'
The fist-clenching anthem 'Power of Love' is next, followed by Huey checking in with his fans ("Are you still with me?"), before the web-site requested song 'The Day After Tomorrow (World Stops Turning)' is presented. The highly under appreciated 'Jacob's Ladder' from '88s highly under appreciated Small World is next, before four additional mic stands are brought to the front of stage.
Taking a couple of live audience polls for a few minutes, Huey and various members of The News first sing (a cappella style) 'It's All Right,' then 'Um, Um, Um, Um, Um, Um' (a Major Lance cover), before finishing it all off with 'Stagger Lee.' Plugging in once more, we get both 'Heart And Soul,' and 'But It's Alright,' before one of their own personal favorites 'We're Not Here For A Long Time (We're Here For A Good Time)' brings the hour and a half set to and end.
First up for the encore is the movie-inspired 'Back In Time' which is quickly followed by 'Doing It All For My Baby.' Beginning with some Huey train-approaching harmonica, 'Workin for a Livin' finally (although unfortunately!) brings the whole show to an end. Incorporating strong elements of R&B and doo wop, embracing pop, and including polished, anthemic hooks, Huey Lewis & The News may well still play their brand of steady, middle-class rock & roll, but MAN, do they do it better than anyone out there today!
Photo and Review by Russell A. Trunk