At 85 years of age – 86 in May – Burt Bacharach is still a musical force! Saw his show in Phoenix, Arizona on Saturday night. In a month, he is off with his band to Japan and a summer tour of the festivals in the UK.
Bacharach performed in a black suit with white track shoes at the Yamaha grand with 3 incredible back up singers (Josie Jones, John Pagano, Donna Taylor), two keyboard players to pad string sounds, his bassist, drummer, violinist, trumpet and sax players. Eleven musicians filled the stage with the songs and sounds of the signature Burt Bacharach.
He says, “I have a less than perfect voice, but that’s OK. It’s from the heart.” His musical style “is characterized by unusual chord progressions, striking syncopated rhythmic patterns, irregular phrasing, frequent modulation, and odd and changing meters.”
I was amazed at the Bacharach hits that filled the songlist:
Don’t Make Me Over; Walk On By; This Guy’s In Love With You; I Say A Little Prayer; Trains, Boats & Planes; Wishin’ And Hopin’; Always Something There To Remind Me; One Less Bell To Answer; I’ll Never Fall In Love Again; Only Love Can Break A Heart; Do You Know the Way To San Jose; Anyone Who Had A Heart; On My Own, Close To You; The Look of Love; Arthur’s Theme; What’s New Pussycat; April Fools; Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head; The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance; Wives and Lovers, Alfie; A House Is Not A Home; That’s What Friends Are For; Any Day Now; What The World Needs Now Is Love ….
The guy is serious about his music and life. After the show, he unwinds and takes time to come down after a three encore performance. He works out with a personal trainer regularly – he is still razor sharp at the keyboard.
It was one of those iconic performances one will always remember.