JLL, Little Richard &
Chuck Berry in Vegas

Mike Vincent - - 23 Oct 2006

Last night I attended the perfect rock n roll show featuring as JJ Walker (the MC) put it the founding fathers show. WHAT A SHOW as I get into this I want everyone to know that I love all 3 of these guys like many of you do so any of my comments are constructive and surely not meant to offend any of these giants ... anyway how can you offend the BEST. Since moving to the Las Vegas area last March it has afforded us to see some of these shows, this show was at the Orleans Hotel and Casino. Nice place and a great buffet too.

Upon going there I was filled with a lot of anticipation cause after all the killer is now 71 with Little Richard almost 74 and Chuck Berry just had his 80th birthday, but in the back of my mindI knew these friends of mine ( with the exception of Chuck ... I never met him) were rockers in the 50s and I knew they would be rockers now. I will go through the show as best as I recall it was pretty much a sold out show, as far back as I could see it was full and it is a huge arena, we sat on the upper right side about 15 rows from the front, not too bad of seats JJ talked for about 10 minutes brfore and after each act.

At 810 out comes Jerry Lee ...looking real good, he had Kenny Lovelace and his band with him, with a kick-butt drummer. He opened and they had great sound and amplification and the piano was super, clear as heck.

JERRY LEE LEWIS - 8:00-8:50

1. ROCKIN MY LIFE AWAY, he pounded this out and his piano playing was better than ever and he had no trouble stretching his arms and staying at the high notes on the keyboard, pushing his hands up and down ferouciously, a lot like in the old days.

2. DOWN THE LINE ... another great early rocker. He used a lot of the right hand in this one.

3. DRINKIN WINE SPODEE O DEE. He always rocks this one and man did he speed this up, this song helps show the greatness of the killer and how he CONTINUES TO ROCK BETTER THAN ANYONE. After this song he talked a little and said to the audience, he never drank much wine ... did too much whiskey (LOL)

4. MEXICALI ROSE. A standard he usually does a lot because of his love for Gene Autry as he stated after the song (they were close friends). He starts it up slow and then pumps it up and rocks this standard and after the song stated Mr Autry never did it this fast though (LOL).

5. WHOLE LOT OF SHAKIN GOING ON. The killer was in top form as always on his number 1 song doing his best to show his artistry with BOTH hands intermixing and rolling down the keys.

6. OVER THE RAINBOW ... JLL shows here how he can also play a great piano while he does this standard as only he can ... using the full keyboard and holding his keys while playing others ... pretty stuff and his voice excelled

7. YOUR CHEATIN HEART, his friend Hank Williams' great song done in JLL style.

8. ME AND BOBBY MC GEE ... yes sir he rocks on this putting in some dynamic powered rock n roll and singing as if hes in the story, his friend Kris Kristofferson wrote this and Janis Joplin made it a hit and so did the killer ... great job.

9. GREAT BALLS OF FIRE, his final song but as always. He made it count, pounding out the keys as excitng as ever and did everything and believe it or not as fast as in 1957 ... he rocked, at the end he stood up and the stool fell over (and he picked it up) unlike the killer and continued rocking to the end and walked off with his famous wave ....

WHAT A PERFORMANCE and I thought he might have slowed down, NOT A CHANCE...ALL KILLER NO FILLER. On the David Letterman show recently I dont feel he was at his best but he sure made up for it last night, the set was alittle shorter than I thought it would be, but as for rocking and rollin he was best of the three...but with the next guy putting on the best SHOW as only the architect of rock can do.

LITTLE RICHARD - 9:05-10:00

Upon introducing Little Richard, they played a intro of a blaring horns and a kick ass solid band (the best I've heard him have since the days in the 50s) and introduced him three times, Sandy had said maybe somethings wrong and the band kept rocking and I said no, he sometime takes his time, and then he came ... he walked out slowly with a cane in each hand while the band smoked and as his brother helped him sit ... then came that familiar sound of that staccato beat in his piano with a driving beat.

1. GOOD GOLLY MISS MOLLY and he moved with hands NOT SLOWED AT ALL and he gave it his all and did all parts of the song with full enthusiasm as opposed to Jerry, he talked a lot and he makes you know your at a show. I first met Richard at a show at the Chicago Theatre and it was a cold cold night and if he had twenty five people in the audience he had a lot and he announced as he sat down ... haha watch this show, you'd think cause its a slow crowd I will leave ... watch this and he hammered for 2 hours what a show AND HE MET EVERYONE. Great guy, have seen and talked with him many times since ... lots of funny stories but on with last night ...

2. BAMA LAMA LAMA LOO He hammered right into this song, a early rocker,also very strong piano playing being backed by a fantastic horn section and a kick ass band very full sound.

3. TRUE FINE MAMA. Another early rocker where he howls and growls and does his fine little Richard style.

4. BLUEBERRY HILL Does a great job on Fats' song and really reaches in the bridge and gets that high little Richard sound.

5. MISS ANN. One of my favorites and he played it better than the record and after the song he says ARE YALL HAVING A GOOD TIME...everybody yells and claps and he says I MEAN A REAL GOOD TIME and again the audience responds and he says SHUTUP (LOL).

6. LUCILLE pounding into this famous song the audience is on its feet and rockin and rollin with him and he was into it and when Richard gets into it. His whole being is concentrated on him and his band and he's yelling c'mon ... c'mon. He then said do you people like the blues, everyone yelled yes ... good I'm doing the blues

7. DIRECTLY FROM MY HEART and he did such a pretty version of this early ballad and gave it a definite blues feel it was really quiet, while he did this ... see when Richard wants to play pretty he knows how to get that bluesy feel to his songs. 8. ALL AROUND THE WORLD one of my favorites, he did a short version of this great song. He then said recently I lost my good friend Ray Charles and I miss him greatly and were doing his song right now.

9. I GOT A WOMAN .... GREAT RENDITION OF THIS SONG THE PARTY AND lITTLE RICHARD NOW STARTED PICKING UP. He YELLED whew ooh ooh let me hear you, the audience responded he said my my my .. whew. I'm going to be 74 in December and a lot of my friends are gone but I'm still beautiful and I remember as a child I had a bronze tan (the audience laughed with approval) and then I started the Beatles and Jimi Hendrix and WHEW ... my man is crazy but what a man and then he went into a fast version of ...

10. SHES GOT IT. Man did he rock sounded like the Girl Cant Help It all over again. After he ended this, the band kept playing and he talked, he said I want a big white woman that screams real loud and a big black juicy woman too. Oh and the white woman has to be juicy too and also a skinney Jewish woman and I want you up here on the stage right now and here they come right to the stage and then more came and the stage got full and as the band played a rock intro he still talked and he said WOW HONEY you are a big woman and audience cracked up. Then he saw a real young girl ... cute thing and he said WOW YOUR PRETTY ... NO YOUR REALLY PRETTY come over here they lifted her on top of the piano and the whole stage rocked to a fantastic version of ...

11. I KNOW ITS ONLY ROCK N ROLL ... the girl on the piano looked like she was about 15 but she danced like she was born in the 50s. Richard just kept hollering the line I know its only rock and roll over and over. This lasted about 10 minutes G-R-E-A-T.. THIS CONTINUED ON INTO ...

12. BONEY MARONIE, while the whole stage still rocked Richard brought down the house . People were all standing and clapping and at the end when the audience settled down he yells out DO YOU PEOPLE LOVE ME? YES they said and he said no do YOU REALLY LOVE ME? Again everybody screamed yes and he ecstatically said well I LOVE YOU AND WENT INTO MY FAVORITE OF HIS ... a jamming version of ...

13. JENNY JENNY. MAN did he fly ripping up the keyboards going from bass keys to high keys just downright rocking, by now people werent sitting anymore. After a 5 minute stretch they helped him off the stage as the band continued and he said I LOVE YOU....this is why Little Richard is the Architect of rock n roll and all this at almost 74 years old ... what a great performer and showman. As little Richard left just as did Jerry Lee, we ALL had tears in our eyes, just that we were ALL so glad to see these great performers 50 years after their start. OOH MY SOUL!!

CHUCK BERRY - 10:10-11:00

JJ again was out and just went off about these 2 great performers and he said yep and were not done. You know who's coming and everybody screamed and then quicker than Johnny B Goode out he comes ... with no help at 80 and he moved like his old self and had that famous kick in his leg (no duck walk though) but damn he's 80 and he's rockin and rollin and for his age doing it good. The only thing Chuck does that's different and he's done it all his life, is that he has a very small band, himself, a bass player and a piano player (and not Jimmy Johnson) that was noticible but he wasn't bad. What he knew and he had a kick butt drummer also. Chuck walked out and immediately went into ...

1. ROLL OVER BEETOVEN, his famous song but as in Chuck's style in the later years he misses chords here and there, ... but again he's 80 and was more agile then his previous 2 entertainers. He then headed right into ...

2. JOHNNY B GOODE and here he excelled and found his groove as did his other bandmates people shouted out this song and he rocked like always stalking the stage.

3. MEAN OLD WORLD a song he wrote in later years, a bluesy song about real life as it is today.

4. ROCK AND ROLL MUSIC He found his groove definitly with this ... this definitly sounded like Chuck on Bandstand the audience rocked. 5. MEMPHIS TENNESSEE. He felt his way through this song and the piano player had a rough time with this, but most of the audience showed their respect EVEN IN MISTAKES to this great showman some were starting to walk out, but my feeling on this is that THEY really dont know rock n roll ... CHUCK COULD BE A 100 AND HE'D STILL ROCK ... plus as ELVIS found out early on Vegas crowds can be rough ... especially those that aren't into the REAL ROCK N ROLL. Chuck didn't talk a lot but made up for it in this next song:

6. MY DING A LING He had the audience cracking up to this , improvising new verses and didn't miss a word ... got it down perfect, his only number 1 song ... there should've had a lot more!

7.MEAN OLD WORLD. He did it a second time.

8. YOU NEVER CAN TELL. I love this song but his band said we don't know that and he said, naw you can do it and the piano player couldn't do this at all but Chuck stormed through this getting the chords right but stopping in the middle to help the piano player (only Chuck can get away with this) but the audience cheered him on and gave him a standing ovation when he finished (for the most part a very supportive audience). Now his famous intro into 9. OH CAROL and he boogied and didn't miss a note ... perfection from Chuck Berry at its best and told his piano player BOOGIE WOOGIE BROTHER. (he said I wont go there) ... the audience was rockin for most of them he COULDN'T MAKE A MISTAKE...INCLUDING SANDY AND I.

10. I SING THE BLUES and he can, I think he sort of favors his early favorites and does them great. 11..REELIN AND ROCKIN. A kick ass tune that also had the people cracking up he changed the lyrics in this too but the song rocks and he did it perfect ... about 6 to 7 minutes long. He did a lot of kicking in this (the old Chuck Berry moves).

12 SWEET LITTLE SIXTEEN. Great song but he had a problem with this one, the band was off key ... but it still sounded good, Chuck can make that happen, he'd break and start over, but he made it happen.

13 LITTLE QUEENIE. A favorite of mine. If you cant get a crowd to dance, this one will do it and he did. CHUCK BERRY AT HIS BEST. The crowd now wasn't sitting down.

14.JOHNNY B GOODE. Chuck when starting this song was definitly in the mood he told the audience well we gotta go, we gotta ... BUT IF YALL COME DOWN HERE AND DANCE WE WILL PLAY ANOTHER 10 MINUTES. WELL THE WHOLE JOINT WENT DOWN and we all danced by the stage (or as close as we could get about the 3rd row) and he rocked his famous anthem and then slowly slipped off the stage as everybody still danced and he played from behind the curtain and he ended the song and he was gone.

Most loved the show as did Sandy and I (first time for her seeing Chuck and Jerry). She's had a memorable time with Richard as I have many times before THEY WERE ALL FANTASTIC. IF ALL OF YOU GET THE CHANCE TO SEE THIS SHOW ... SEE IT AS JJ SAYS "DYNOMITE". I've tried to give you a minute to minute report of this great show any questions, please ask ... we love you! Mike and Sandy Vincent

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