It was a day off yesterday in Chicago. As the tour is coming to a close it seems our internal clocks are winding down and after this run of six in a row, we were all desperate to have this day off. I did next to nothing except get out for a cup of coffee, stop at a Walgreen's pharmacy to pick up a couple of things, and back to the room for a good old three hours with my new guitar in hand.
I met up with MK, Guy and Danny for a sublime dinner at Panecaldo on East Walton Street just off Michigan Ave. Our waiter Michael Curtin steered us in all the right directions from lobster ravioli and rib eye steak to free range chicken layered with prosciutto, spinach and mozzerella cheese with an egg and bread crumb coating and baked. Wonderfully fresh seafood, cheeses, desserts, wines and coffee all superbly served and delicious. A warm, simple and easy atmosphere was just the thing to top off a great meal. When in Chicago, give Panecaldo a try.
An early afternoon flight today from Chicago to Denver with Laurie providing a Chicago hot dog extravaganza along with chicken wings and salad. I sat up in the cock pit of the G4 for a rocky approach, not unusual when coming into Denver. I was nicely surprised on checking in to the hotel with a call from Jack Conrad. Jack's an old pal going back to my early days in Los Angeles when we both worked in the same music store in Hollywood and launched our studio careers. He was a very busy bass player on sessions in those days as well as writing hit songs and touring and recording with The Doors and The Beachboys. Jack's originally from Denver and was in town for a couple of days while his mother was having a pacemaker installed.
Red Rocks Amphitheatre is about 45 minutes outside the city centre, a beautiful, natural amphitheatre created by an uprising of massive red boulders. I first played here in 1972 with Neil Diamond and again in 2001 with Mark. This site has been used for musical performances going back to 1908 with presentations diverse as ballet, Indian performance troups, The Beatles, Nat King Cole and into the modern era. The audience's are always ready for a night of fun and last night was no exception with the crowd 8,700. Our pal William Topley is back with us for the remainder of the dates on this tour and he's very popular in the Denver area. The audience was thunderous after his 50 minute set. During our show I had all I could do to remain concentrating on my playing and not rubbernecking around at the beautiful view of the two main rock formations that you see from the stage. They create the amphitheatre with the seats between them.
Back to the hotel after the show for some sandwiches, drinks and music courtesy of Mark and djFletch.