Feb 1, 2012

Are you gonna go my way?

Some people spent yesterday supporting other people with very uninspiring names like Mitt or Newt, but GABROEN had better ideas: we cheered on Lenny and Raphael. As in Lenny Kravitz and Raphael Saadiq that is. Lenny returned home to the US for his new world tour "Black and White America" with Saadiq as his very special guest a.k.a. funky opening act. And yesterday night they played the historic Chicago Theater.
Fabulous Chicago Theater

The theater dates back to the roaring 1920s, a particularly roaring era in Chicago with the likes of Al Capone. It's in walking distance from the downtown train station, so we rode our local express, enjoyed a dinner of Angelo's green chili tamales on the train, and arrived way before the theater actually opened its doors. This did give us time to explore the immediate neighborhood, but if the most exciting thing around is the actual studio where they are broadcasting the local ABC evening news, sports and weather, you know you are in trouble. If you think there's still a hint of glamour when you're watching your local news on TV, think again; to see the studio and news anchors both on and off camera is as exciting as going to the local ugly mall to watch a bunch of teenagers lanterfanting (that's a Dutch term that doesn't translate well, but  I'm sure you are getting the visual). Going inside the theater was much more exciting; acoustics may not be optimal, but the building's interior is pretty smashing.
Main foyer chandelier and ornate walls
Central staircase

Being a long time fan of Lenny, Gabriella got out her rock chick look of beige and red, which happened to exactly match the color scheme of the Chicago theater interior. While observing the other concert goers, she can't wait for the show to start.

Pondering rock chick
Raphael Saadiq and his band put down a groovy, funky opening act, with backing vocals that danced like you have not seen before, a horn section that was world class and a pianist with amazing voice and moves for a 300+ lb physique. A physique that literally would have fitted five times the female backing vocalist in snug black leather pants.  Lenny's show was very energetic as well, and we were surprised to see how popular he is. He got the whole theater standing and dancing with the third song, and that party lasted for the rest of the night. Sometimes a bit too much energy - rock songs that were thumbing like a jack hammer and strobe light effects that would drive an epileptic into a definite fit. But a great performer, probably one of the truest rock stars in the industry and a voice that can still give you chills. Let love rule....................


  1. What a beautiful theater! Loved the photos and the story.


  2. What, no photos of Gabriella in her rock chick look? Loved the theater shots.