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Todd Rundgren
-The Tralf-Buffalo, NY- 7-15-10-

Concert Review - By Bob Silvestri

     Never let it be said that Todd Rundgren panders to his audience. His performance at The Tralf on July 15th, 2010 was billed as Todd Rundgren's Johnson, a tribute to blues legend Robert Johnson and the blues, which is also the title of his forthcoming album. It seemed some in the crowd were expecting a greatest radio hits show as the repeated shout outs for the hit songs was met with silence from the artist. Instead what we got was a blistering set of those Johnson and other blues classics along with some more obscure Rundgren material all done in the British blues style of the 60's and 70's. Rundgren is an outstanding musician and his band, Jessie Gress on guitar, Kasim Sultan on bass and Prairie Prince on drums is equally adept.
     Kicking off the night with Elmore James' "Dust My Broom" followed by "Stop Breaking Down Blues" the band set the tone for the evening. The nearly two hour set was punctuated by blues classics "Walking Blues", "Love In Vain" and "Come On Into My Kitchen" among others but the band really seemed to dig into the Rundgren oeuvre with a vengeance notably on "Black Maria", "Mystified/Broke Down and Busted" and "#1 Lowest Common Denominator". They closed the set with "Crossroad Blues" before returning for an encore where Rundgren threw a bone to the crowd and played "I Saw the Light" before dipping back to the blues with fierce renditions of "Tiny Demons" and "Boogies (Hamburger Hell)".
     Except for the sweltering heat in the club (the air conditioning and fans were on full blast) that even had Rundgren requesting a fan for the stage and a few patrons hitting the floor from the heat the show was one of the best so far this summer concert season. For more upcoming shows at The Tralf go to www.tralfmusichall.com


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