In the mid 80s, one band clawed their way out of the happening Sunset Strip music scene and found fame on rock radio and MTV. LA Guns. The band’s founder, Tracii Guns was a key figure in the Sunset Strip scene even being an original member of Gun N’ Roses in their very first incarnation. Tracii would leave Guns N’ Roses and take his band to their own fame. Fueled by Phil Lewis’s vocals and Tracii’s guitar sound, the band became a favorite of the rock fans all over. From their first cd in 1988, the band has made 10 studio albums while playing live all over the world. Tracii would also play with bands outside of LA Guns.. He did stints in Brides of Destruction and even the super group, Contraband in 1991. Needless to say Tracii has been there done that when it comes to rock n’ roll. When I saw him listed to the play the Tonic, I knew I had to go. The venue is intimate and in your face. Tracii was listed to play with Andrew Freeman (Offspring/Lynch Mob) and would be an acoustic performance. Sweet. The songs of LA Guns really shined acoustic especially with the way Tracii transferred his power packed guitar parts to his trusted 12 string. Andrew’s vocals were strong and breathed new life into the songs. Songs like the Ballad of Jayne were expected, but songs like Never Enough, Rip N Tear, and Electric Gypsy were a BLAST. The show may have been acoustic, but it felt electric to us in the crowd. The band was having a lot of fun too making jokes with the fans and simply letting go on the music. Fans would shout at requests at times and Tracii was quick to oblige. Highlighted requests included a cool version of One More Reason sung off the cuff by Tracii and a fun take on Jimi Hendrix’s Red House. There were also touching moments on Crystal Eyes, Its Over Now and of course the Ballad of Jayne. For any fan of LA Guns, this set of music is a must do and the show really gives those songs we all love a whole new depth. I hope the band finds time to record a performance to put out and really capture the magic that is happening right now. I was so thankful to be one of the few shows that were played (so far). I was also thankful for the band being so cool to the fans after making time for photos and autographs. There were no egos or attitudes here. This is the kind of show every rock fan wants. You get an in your face cool performance and after you get to hang out with the people whose music you love. So, thanks for coming to the Portland area and bringing some cool songwriting history with you. Come back anytime. We will be waiting.
By the way, kudos to the Tonic Lounge. In the last few months, they have been stepping up their game and really getting some good talent to play there again. The club recently had Gilby Clarke, just had Tracii Guns, and has shows coming up from the likes of Michael Schenker and Lynch Mob. This club is bringing the rock to the fans and reminding people in Portland they are a goto rock club. Keep the good shows coming. They also have good food and drinks.
It’s Over Now http://youtu.be/wVhe45VJYrQ
Don’t Cry http://youtu.be/nRGmh5cvmOw
The Ballad of Jayne http://youtu.be/cvzJ8b09SKA
Never Enough http://youtu.be/L-6alwZ55Yo
Brent Angelo Photography Photos https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.696090897076448.1073741864.504776716207868&type=1&l=3b0ef0805b