The Palace Theater
Let me preface by saying this is the second Chris Daughtry show I have photographed in less than 6 months. I shot the show last August at Key Bank and was amazed by Chris’ vocals and performance. His stage presence is tops. I would not call my self a “Daughtry fan”; however, I appreciate the road he took and the fact that he got screwed in front of 20 million viewers on American Idol and still came out on top and is still rocking to thousands of fans each night at his own direction and doing it the way he wants. Which leads me to my first bit content for my review.
I want to see Chris Daughtry come out and blow the roof off the venue. Any venue for that matter. I want him to come out rocking. Period. In Greensburg PA, at The Palace Theater, he did anything but that. I have been to and shot enough shows to know the goal is to get the crowd OFF THEIR SEATS at song 1. Every other group or solo artist does it and the bad part is, Chris has both a catalog and voice that he can do it. Unfortunately, Chris declined to come out that way and instead decided to get intimate with this crowd for the first three songs. If that was the plan, job well done. It definitely set a very quiet tone for the show.
As Chris and this band take the stage, they have Johnny Cash music playing in the background which to me, was really hyping the crowd up so they could hit the stage with an explosion and go right into a strong set list. Or at least a small boom. Or heck, a small BANG? Neither happened and the increasing pace of the Cash song was short lived as Chris opened with “Just Found Heaven” and really left the crowd with a confused look in their eyes. Trust me, I looked around. I was confused myself. Don’t get me wrong, Just Found Heaven is a great song. Just not a set opener. This is one of those songs you throw in for the band to take a breather at mid-set. Hoping for the tempo to increase with the second song was short lived too when they went into another mellow hit, “Crawling Back To You”. And again, I’m not complaining about the song. Just the placement of it within the setlist. At this point, everyone should be on their feet and well on their way to an energy and fun-packed show. But the look I saw in the faces of the crowd in Greensburg tonight was the look of confusion. I think many of the concert goers were thinking the same thing I was. They went into “Feels Like Tonight” for the third song and I think the crowd started to have a glimmer of hope that the concert was going to be finally energized. I do have to admit, I was confused with the first two songs. Just didn’t get that “POP” from the first two songs. And I know the band did not get the POP that they usually do for a set opener either. Maybe that was the goal. I don’t know. I didn’t get a chance to interview Chris or any members following the show. If the plan was to start slow and build throughout the show, I saw well done!! If it wasn’t, I have to ask “What’s the deal?” I will say after looking at their past set openers for the last 3 months they were on tour, they did open with Just Found Heaven. So they obviously are both happy and content with the responses they are getting from the crowds.
From there on, Chris and the band soared through the set list. From a special compilation of “Life After You” to “It’s Not Over”, the show left no one wondering just how great of a rocker and vocalist Chris Daughtry is today. A nice surprise was a U2 cover of “With Or Without You” and Prince’s “Purple Rain”. Both blew the roof off The Palace Theater in Greensburg PA. Chris shined on both these songs. Heck, Chris shined on EVERY song he belted out tonight. And the Palace Theatre was a GREAT venue for Chris. He voice saturated the high acoustic ceiling on every song.
I do want to give out maybe a “spoiler” to any Daughtry fan out there that has not seen nor heard the new song “Back Bone” due out on his upcoming new CD. It’s a great bluesy song with a little bit of rock thrown in. This is my second time hearing this new track and I was impressed the first time I heard it in August 2017. I was even more impressed with it cleaned up a bit and the drums tweaked tonight in Greensburg. This is going to be the new Daughtry “anthem” for the second leg of his career. It’s a fun and exciting song. Check it out. I have attached it to the article to really spoil it for anyone that hasn’t heard it yet.
All in all, it was a great show. Chris has the chops to wail, and when he wants to, he does, and the fans go crazy. I have always been impressed by Chris and look forward to seeing him the next time he makes a stop in or near Pittsburgh. Maybe I can ask him about the set opener and he can either tell me to go screw myself or change it. My money is they stick with it and Chris has security remove me from backstage and I watch the show from row ZZ.
Looking forward to the next Daughtry show!!! Peace.
All photos ©2018 EdThompson
Check out the following YouTube Vids from the show:
Daughtry “Back Bone” NEW NEW NEW
Daughtry “With Or Without You” U2 Cover
Daughtry “Break Down”
Daughtry “Life After You”