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STYX, FOREIGNER, JOHN WAITE In Houston, TX With Photos!

By Larry Petro, News Monkey
Monday, June 24, 2024 @ 6:18 PM


The 'Renegades And Juke Box Heroes Tour' Stops At The Woodlands Pavilion On June 22

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All Photos By Larry Petro/Petrofyed Photography

It was a trip back in time on Saturday, June 22nd as the co-headline tour of STYX and FOREIGNER, dubbed "The Renegades And Juke Box Heroes Tour", made its way to Houston for a show at the Woodlands Pavilion just north of the Houston area. With both bands getting their starts way back in the 70s, for those of us that are old enough to remember, they each got quite a share of radio airplay back in the day. And while STYX continues to record and release new music (2021's Crash Of The Crown), FOREIGNER has pretty much relegated itself to being a nostalgia act with no new material in quite a number of years and that's ok because they music they did give us over the years is more than enough to satisfy those that remember the golden years of the band.

British singer/musician John Waite is the support act for this tour and as you may recall, he got his name originally as a member of rock act THE BABYS and also had a stint in BAD ENGLISH. Now as an American citizen, he brought his material to the stage, along with his backing band comprised of guitarist Brent Woods, whom you may know as having worked with Sebastian Bach and as a member of the band WILDSIDE, Tim Hogan on bass and Alan Childs on drums, kicked things off with THE BABYS hit "Midnight Rendezvous". His eight song performance included additional songs from THE BABYS such as "Head First", songs from BAD ENGLISH like "When I See You Smile" and "Best Of What I Got", along with his main solo hit, "Missing You". They closed their portion of the show with a mash up combo of "Whole Lotta Love" (LED ZEPPELIN) and "Let Me Love You Baby" (Stevie Ray Vaughn). At nearly 72 years of age, John Waite still sounds as good as he always did.

Setlist:

  • "Midnight Rendezvous" (THE BABYS)
  • "Change" (SPIDER cover)
  • "When I See You Smile" (BAD ENGLISH)
  • "Best of What I Got" (BAD ENGLISH)
  • "Missing You"
  • "Head First" (THE BABYS)
  • "Back on My Feet Again" (THE BABYS)
  • "Whole Lotta Love"/"Let Me Love You Baby"
Being a co-headline tour the bands (STYX and FOREIGNER) were alternating closing slots on the tour and for us, STYX got to close the show, which was special for this reviewer, but more on that later. As for FOREIGNER, the band is heading down the home stretch of their two-year Farewell Tour that was announced in November of 2022 and though founding guitarist Mick Jones had to step aside from performing with the band, vocalist Kelly Hansen (HURRICANE) has led the charge for nearly 20 years now and with the supporting cast of musicians, bassist Jeff Pilson (ex-DOKKEN, THE END MACHINE, etc), guitarists Bruce Watson and Luis Maldonado, drummer Chris Frazier and Michael Bluestein on the keyboards, they are keeping the FOREIGNER name alive, rocking the packed house of the Woodlands Pavilion with all the hits including set opener "Double Vision", "Head Games", "Cold As Ice", "Feels Like The First Time", "Urgent" and "Juke Box Hero", which saw Hanson begin the song perched atop a tall platform raised up toward the back of the audience by the soundboard, singing the first verse and chorus before rushing down the aisle and back onstage to finish it off. Bassist Jeff Pilson, who had been hobbled as of late with knee issues which forced him to perform sitting down for a number of shows was back to his old self though he sported braces on both knees, which certainly didn't hamper his spirit and fire.

For the encores, first up was their smash hit "I Want To Know What Love Is" and in keeping with what they've done in the past, they bring a coir from a local high school onto the stage to help sing the song and on this night the chosen group was none other than my youngest daughter's alma mater, Montgomery High School and their Madrigals choir. It was a nice surprise for me because my daughter was in choir when she went to school there. The band then closed out the show with "Hot Blooded".

If this is truly the last show that FOREIGNER ever plays in Houston then they went out in style and I say thanks for all the music and the memories over the years! Absolutely one of the greatest classic rock bands in history!

Setlist:

  • "Double Vision"
  • "Head Games"
  • "Cold as Ice"
  • "Waiting for a Girl Like You"
  • "Dirty White Boy"
  • "Feels Like the First Time"
  • Instrumental Jam Session
  • "Urgent"
  • Drum Solo
  • "Juke Box Hero"
Encore:
  • "I Want to Know What Love Is"
  • "Hot Blooded"
The last time I saw STYX in concert was the 1983 Texxas Jam (anyone remember those?) when they co-headlined with Sammy Hagar during the Kilroy Was Here Tour at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas. It was god-awful hot, as it tends to be in the summertime in Texas but even more so on the field of an open air football stadium, but I do remember STYX putting on a phenomenal show. For some reason that would be the last time I caught them onstage until now, so I was definitely stoked to discover that they and not FOREIGNER would close the show. Absolutely no offense to them but given the length of time it had been and the fact that FOREIGNER contains exactly zero original members anymore made this an exciting and anticipated event for me.

In 'grand' fashion the band started the night with "The Grand Illusion" and then went straight into "Too Much Time On My Hands" and let me just say that at 70 years of age guitarist Tommy Shaw still has the pipes as he took the lead vocals on that track. Next up was "Lady" and was the first appearance of original bassist Chuck Panozzo, which was a nice surprise to see that he still performs with the band. He would join the band for at least 3 more tunes including the pre-encore closing of the epic hit "Come Sail Away". Vocalist Lawrence Gowan, who's been in the band now for 25 years since originally temporarily replacing original singer Dennis DeYoung when he had fallen ill on tour. Gowan is the consummate showman, the ringleader of the STYX circus if you will, commanding the stage and his co-performers including guitarist James 'JY' Young, Shaw, Gowan's brother Terry Gowan on bass, drummer Todd Sucherman and guitarist Will Evankovich.

The band was tight and on point but the thing that struck me the most was exactly how much damn fun they were having! As they rolled through the STYX catalog of "Lorelei", "Miss America", "Rockin' The Paradise" and "Blue Collar Man (Long Night)" vocalist Gowan went from behind the keyboard to on top of it to strutting all over the stage in his tux-style jeans, yellow sport jacket and tennis shoes, which he certainly needed throughout the night. The interactions between all band members was incredible to see and the music itself sounded just like the STYX I remember hearing all those years ago.

Following the performance of "The Best Of Times" guitarist Shaw led the crowd in a rendition of "Deep In The Heart Of Texas". I mean, it was Texas after all....He followed that up with "Fooling Yourself (The Angry Young Man)" before capping it with the aforementioned "Come Sail Away". The band returned for 2 encores, "Mr. Roboto", which they hadn't played for years and only recently inserted back into their set, and "Renegade".

This joint tour runs through the end of August so there's still plenty of chances to catch a show, especially if they come near you. If you've been contemplating whether or not to attend all I can say was this was a fantastic way to start off the summer concert season and it is certainly a spectacle not to be missed!

Setlist:

  • "The Grand Illusion"
  • "Too Much Time on My Hands"
  • "Lady" (with Chuck Panozzo)
  • "Lorelei"
  • "Crash of The Crown"
  • "Miss America"
  • "Rockin' The Paradise"
  • "Blue Collar Man (Long Nights)"
  • "The Best of Times"
  • "Deep in The Heart of Texas" (Alvino Rey & His Orchestra cover) (Crowd participation)
  • "Fooling Yourself (The Angry Young Man)"
  • "Come Sail Away" (with Chuck Panozzo)
Encore:
  • "Mr. Roboto (with Chuck Panozzo)
  • "Renegade (with Chuck Panozzo)
Remaining Tour Dates (closer listed):
  • Tue 6/25 - Denver, CO - Ball Arena - Foreigner
  • Wed 6/26 - West Valley City, UT - USANA Amphitheatre - Styx
  • Fri 6/28 - Anaheim, CA - Honda Center - Foreigner
  • Sat 6/29 - Concord, CA - Toyota Pavilion at Concord - Styx
  • Sun 6/30 - Bend, OR - Hayden Homes Amphitheater - Foreigner
  • Fri 7/12 - Nashville, TN - Ascend Amphitheater - Styx
  • Sat 7/13 - Charlotte, NC - PNC Music Pavilion - Foreigner
  • Mon 7/15 - Charleston, SC - Credit One Stadium - Foreigner
  • Wed 7/17 - Alpharetta, GA - Ameris Bank Amphitheatre - Styx
  • Fri 7/19 - West Palm Beach, FL - iTHINK Financial Amphitheatre - Foreigner
  • Sat 7/20 - Tampa, FL - MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre - Styx
  • Tue 7/23 - Holmdel, NJ - PNC Bank Arts Center - Foreigner
  • Wed 7/24 - Bristow, VA - Jiffy Lube Live - Styx
  • Fri 7/26 - Noblesville, IN - Ruoff Music Center - Styx
  • Sun 7/28 - Camden, NJ - Freedom Mortgage Pavilion - Foreigner
  • Tue 7/30 - Saratoga Springs, NY - Broadview Stage at SPAC - Foreigner
  • Wed 7/31 - Burgettstown, PA - The Pavilion at Star Lake - Styx
  • Fri 8/2 - Mansfield, MA - Xfinity Center - Styx
  • Sat 8/3 - Bangor, ME - Maine Savings Amphitheater - Foreigner
  • Sun 8/4 - Gilford, NH - BankNH Pavilion - Styx
  • Fri 8/16 - Orange Beach, AL - The Wharf Amphitheater - Foreigner
  • Sat 8/17 - Huntsville, AL - Orion Amphitheater - Styx
  • Tue 8/20 - Virginia Beach, VA - Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater at VB - Foreigner
  • Wed 8/21 - Raleigh, NC - Coastal Credit Union Music Park at Walnut Creek - Styx
  • Fri 8/23 - Cincinnati, OH - Riverbend Music Center - Foreigner
  • Sat 8/24 - Tinley Park, IL - Credit Union 1 Amphitheatre - Styx
  • Mon 8/26 - Omaha, NE - CHI Health Center Omaha - Foreigner
  • Wed 8/28 - Sioux Falls, SD - Denny Sanford PREMIER Center - Styx
Check out some more photos from the show!
All Photos By Larry Petro/Petrofyed Photography


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