Peter Frampton / Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Evening @ Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, Maryland Heights, MO

Words and photos by Duane Clawson
Getting to experience one legend in a night is awesome but getting to see two legends in one night, mind blowing! I remember staring at the Frampton Comes Alive album cover, absorbing the purple halo and angelic glow that surrounded him. I remember listening to the album taking in the magical sounds he made with his Talk Box. I remember the simple genius of Peter Frampton! This night at Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre was a whole night of memories. Let's dive in!

I would guess by now most people know John Bonham. But just in case you’ve forgotten, he played drums with this band called Led Zeppelin. Although John passed at an early age, he left behind his legacy in the form of a son, Jason Bonham. John’s DNA is certainly evident in Jason’s drumming. His resume impressive, including filling his father’s shoes during a 2007 reunion of Led Zeppelin. Putting together a spot on Led Zeppelin tribute band, Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Evening. And when I say spot on, you close your eyes, you hear Zeppelin.

What I was not prepared for, but knew it would happen, is the force Bonham hits the skins with! He is a beast of a man that puts it all in to his drumming. Guitarist, Jimmy Sakurai, channels every drop of Jimmy Page through his Les Paul, while vocalist James Dylan nails Robert Plant, with bassist Dorian Heartsong playing the part of John Paul Jones to the fullest. This powerful reincarnation of Zeppelin tears through classics such as “Black Dog”, “Rock and Roll”, and of course, “Stairway to Heaven”. Bonham’s band is certainly the right choice to open this night of rock’s yesteryear!

There are certain things that go through your mind before a legend walks onstage. What if he sucks? Will he be as good as he was then? Do I still like his music or am I here just to see if he’s still alive? Well, I can say he didn’t suck, he’s as good if not better than he was then, and yes, Frampton is still alive! I quickly discovered there was so much more to Frampton than I knew. Sure, I knew the classics “Show me the Way” and “Baby I Love Your Way”, but I had forgotten his past before Frampton was Frampton. It was not until his encore nod to Humble Pie did I remember just how long his career had been. I did not know he covered Soundgarden’s “Black Hole Sun” or that he played with Bill Wyman and Charlie Watts of the Rolling Stones until he told us. Unfortunately, I kinda lost track of Peter.

It was also surreal to think this will be the last time anyone will hear these songs live, as this is Frampton’s farewell tour.  He has announced he has a rare muscular disease that will eventually prevent him for playing guitar. But for now his playing is excellent! His covers of “Georgia on My Mind” and “Me and My Guitar” leave little doubt there is no style of music he cannot play efficiently. Closing out the night, Frampton fittingly covers the Beatles' “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”. I feel this song was chosen to express the sadness he feels leaving what he loves behind. His emotion was most evident in his parting words, “I’ll wave but I can’t say goodbye”.  Thank you Mr. Frampton for being a professional and sharing your musical talents with the world!

I’d personally like to thank Peter Frampton’s management and Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre for  hosting a great concert!  Photos of the show are below.

Jason Bonham's Led Zeppelin Evening
Peter Frampton
Contributed by Duane Clawson
Peter Frampton / Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Evening @ Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, Maryland Heights, MO Peter Frampton / Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Evening @ Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, Maryland Heights, MO Reviewed by Scott Rowe, Editor on August 09, 2019 Rating: 5
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