DRUM AND SOUNDS FEST IN KOBLENZ, GERMANY MARCH 30 & 31 2002

REVIEWS

Laurent Biehly


My girlfriend and I went to Koblenz to meet with our good friends David Garfield, Neil Stubenhaus and Michael O'Neill to attend the two Tribute To Jeff concerts organised in memory of the late great Toto drummer Jeff Porcaro. These concerts were part of a drums festival called "Drums-and-Sounds". Glenn was part of the core band which included some of L.A. top session players.

The line-up consisted of David Garfield (George Benson, Cher, Michael McDonald, etc.) on keyboards/musical director, Steve Porcaro (Toto, sessions) on keyboards, Lenny Castro (Toto, George Duke, Boz Scaggs, sessions) on percussion, Steve Gadd (Eric Clapton, BB King, Paul Simon, Chick Corea, sessions) on drums, Gregg Bissonnette (Toto, David Lee Roth, Santana, sessions) on drums, Michael O'Neill (George Benson, Stevie Wonder, sessions) on guitars, Mike Porcaro (Toto, sessions) on bass, Larry Klimas (Karizma, America, Neil Diamond, Toolbox) on saxophone & flute, Alex Ligertwood (Santana, Brian Auger, Jeff Beck) on vocals, Bobby Kimball (Toto) on vocals and a German trumpet player called "Mosh" or something like that. The core band was joined on stage by guests drummers/percussionists Joe Porcaro (Jeff's father and famous drums teacher), Chase Duddy Porcaro (Jeff's nephew), John "JR" Robinson (Michael Jackson, Lionel Richie, Quincy Jones, sessions), Luis Conte (Madonna, Pat Metheny, Curtis Stigers, sessions), Robin DiMaggio (Mariah Carey, Steve Vai, David Bowie), Bernard Purdie (Aretha Franklin, Steely Dan) and Zoro (very famous clinician).

About 50 % of the songs consisted of instrumentals mainly taken from David Garfield & Friends' "Tribute To Jeff Porcaro" released in 1997 and available through Creatchy Records at http://www.creatchy.com The vocals were evenly shared between Glenn, Alex and Bobby even though the amazing Alex Ligetwood was a bit more featured. Glenn got to sing alone a wild rendition of Jimi Hendrix's "Manic Depression". Now let's get to the part that you may not like to hear...... Glenn was in a very fine vocal shape. His voice is impressive and to say that he can reach those very high notes is an understatement. "Manic Depression" was truly a great vocal tour-de-force. Still, I regret that Glenn "screamed" a bit too much and spent too much times singing very high notes when the overall feel of the songs did not necessarily called for it. When he sung verses in "Let's Stay Together" or Toto's "Georgy Porgy" he simply was excellent. When he sung ad-libs - almost "screaming" - he still was excellent but I feel like he could have done it more la "Play Me Out" than la "Burning Japan Live" if you see what I mean.

He could have given more space to his soul influences in these parts than to his rock roots. This outstanding band would have been the perfect support for his to do so. His vocals on Toto's "Rosanna" and "Africa" as well as on Steely Dan's "Babylon Sisters" were superb. There he proved how a soulful singer he can be. I still think it is fair to say that the crowd was very very very pleased with Glenn's performance but that it was Alex Ligertwood who won the audience over. Having seen Glenn backed by these top musicians really makes me want to hear him go in a soul direction and somewhat give up rock. Really. I've heard some fantastic vocals like the first verse of "Let's Stay Together" for instance. Glenn felt at home singing those tunes. I'd love to hear more of that.... maybe an album with Alex would be great... :-)

Femke (Dutch)

Samen met Bobby Kimball en Alex Ligterwood zong Glenn mee op de tribute voor Jeff Porcaro. De meeste nummers kwamen ook van de tribute cd voor Jeff, maar ook wat TOTO werk kwam natuurlijk naar voren. Glenn zong oa mee bij Rosanna, Africa, Low Down en Babylon Sister. Hij had ook 1 solonummer en dat was Manic Depression van Jimi Hendrix. Dat was echt fenomenaal. Glenn zong de sterren van de hemel, vooral de tweede avond was hij goed op dreef. Vooral in combinatie met Alex. Bobby werd de tweede avond totaal het podium afgezongen door die twee!