Huey Lewis and The News Bring Their Fans Back From The Future in Westbury, NY
The first day of summer has finally arrived; time for good vibes and better music in the hot summer heat. But for Huey Lewis and The News fans on Long Island, they were enjoying the good music in the nice cool air conditioning of the NYCB Theater at Westbury in Westbury, NY. People of all ages came out to hear some good time classic rock hits that would bring them back all the way to the very early 1980’s.
Starting the evening off was a trio who played some original Americana tunes lead by Jamie Kent. Kent brought his infectious personality to the stage and in no time had the crowd in the palm of his hands. Joined by his band mates, Rhees Williams (bass) and Dan Holmes (percussion), they played several songs off their album All American Mutt, including the title track, “Look Up,” “Diamond” and “Sheila.” “Sheila” was also recorded with Huey Lewis on harmonica and The News’ Sports Section on horns. As a special treat the Sports Section came out on stage to perform the song live with Kent. Closing out their set they did something rather unexpected for people unfamiliar with Kent’s music. They covered a song by Britney Spears, a funky folk version of “Baby One More Time,” that was truly a hit with the crowd. After they were done playing, the audience were cheering and clapping for them, and many rose to their feet; it was obvious that Kent gained quite a few more fans this evening.
A brief intermission gave the audience time to freshen their drinks and get ready to rock out to some of their favorite songs. Just as the venue went dark, the stage lights were all glowing red and pulsating as a heartbeat simulating the beat of what would become the opening song of the night. The News came out on stage to cheering fans and they started playing a heavy rocking heartbeat; soon Lewis ran out on stage to join them. The audience was already up on their feet and many were dancing in the isles to the hit song “The Heart Of Rock & Roll,” what a way to set the tone for the evening.
They showed their fans with hit after hit and after performing “I Want A New Drug,” Lewis said, “It’s great to be back on Long Island! Did you miss us?” And with an overwhelmingly positive response from the audience the whole band had smiles on their faces. After a few more hits it was time to switch things up a bit. Huey took a few minutes to introduce some of his personal dear friends who were in the audience this evening. Then he took some time to introduce the core section of The News, Johnny Colla (Guitar/Sax/Vocals), Bill Gibson (Drums/Vocals), Sean Hopper (Keys/Vocals), John Pierce (Bass), and James Harrah (Guitar) while giving a brief description of how long he has known each one of them as he introduced them. They then did two songs A cappella, which featured their vocals and harmonies and were toughly enjoyed by their fans.
Now going back to their instruments, the Sports Section returned to the stage and it was time to get back to the good time rock and roll hits. Once Lewis announced, “Let’s go back to the future!” fans jumped to their feet and joined in singing to “Back In Time.” Now with most of the venue up on their feet, Lewis encouraged the remainder to join them, “Alright let’s get up and dance!” and they gladly complied with his request. Dancing along to the next few songs, at one point Lewis said “Thank You” before leaving the stage after “We’re Not Here for a Long Time (We’re Here for a Good Time)” and once the song was over, The News followed him backstage.
Some fans sat and hollered as the rest stayed on their feet, they were not ready for the night to end and wanted the band to play just a few more hits. Soon Lewis and The News came back out and Lewis smiled as he said, “Alright if you insist.” He then asked for a round of applause for their opening act, Jamie Kent, and asked for another round for the Sports Section of The News. He then took time to introduce Johnnie Bamont (Baritone and Tenor Sax), Marvin McFadden (Trumpet) and Rob Sudduth (Tenor Sax) and again gave a brief description of how long he has known each one of them.
Then he said, “So many hits, so little time, what do you want to hear next?” Fans were eagerly shouting their requests and Lewis said, as he chuckled a little, “I know what you want, here’s a new song for you, well new in it is thirty or so years old. This one’s for you New York!” And they hit them all hard with “The Power Of Love.” After two more fan favorites it was time to say good night, the band all joined together in a single row and raised their fists to the crowd. Their fans were screaming and hollering and waving their fists back to them, every single person had smiles on their faces; a good time was had by all.
After performing an amazingly energized show, the audience was truly satisfied. Covering nearly all of their hits and more, every song was done to perfection and Lewis’ vocals were spot on. Be sure to see them live soon, it is a show you do not want to miss.
See full gallery of the night here.
Remaining tour dates: http://hueylewisandthenews.com/