w/ Support from The Hard Way and Madysin Hatter
The Whisky a Go Go – Hollywood, CA – 5/17/19
Lita Ford looked very happy to be back on the Sunset Strip. It had been 5 years since the Queen Of Heavy Metal graced the small Whisky a Go Go stage and it seemed to fit her like a comfy pair of leather pants.
All smiles with constant throwbacks to the days when rock ruled the strip, Lita and her band took the packed house down a trip though memory lane. A set that comprised mainly of her greatest hits was just what the Friday night faithful wanted and got. Sure there were a couple of covers and a few tunes from her last studio album (2012’s “Living Like a Runaway”), but the voices were strongest when songs like “Hungry“, “Gotta Let Go“, and anything from her platinum selling, self-titled album, ‘Lita‘, were played.
Lita has a KILLER band that definitely play bigger than their surroundings. Patrick Kennison (guitar) and Marty O’Brien (bass) often lifting up their guitars to the sky providing a pair of electric bookends for their black leather-bound leader.
Patrick Kennison not only is a great guitar player but also an amazing vocalist in his own right (Check out his band Heaven Below). He provided amazing high harmonies throughout the evening.
Marty O’Brien kills it on bass and backing vocals. His bass is basically an extra limb that he inherited. It’s an extension of his body and to watch the smooth nature of his abilities on his instrument is pure joy.
His partner in rhythm, Bobby Rock, is a fucking octopus behind the kit. A hard hitting drummer who I first heard when he was bashing skins with The Vinnie Vincent Invasion. Bobby has put time on hold and continues to defy age. His solo, complete with breakaway kit, is one that certainly didn’t have people heading to the head.
Lita is still the ultimate rock chick who can shred her BC Rich guitar like it was yesteryear. The spunky attitude, stories of the past and tips of the cap to fellow artists suck as Nikki Sixx and the great Lemmy make for an all around kick ass evening.
Tonight’s great set of songs included, “Falling In And Out Of Love“, “Cherry Bomb” from Lita’s days in The Runaways, “Back To The Cave” with some extended grooving between Lita and Patrick, as well as a couple of covers of Elton John’s “The Bitch is Back” and the Sex Pistols, “Black Leather“.
The evening’s final songs were of course her two biggest hits. Her double necked BC came out for a great version of “Close My Eyes Forever” dueting with Patrick who upped the Ozzy Vocal game and the final song of the evening, which had everybody rocking, “Kiss Me Deadly“. (KMD was played on a new BC Rich with a beautiful Captain Marvel Design which was loaned to Lita for the evening by it’s owner who recently won the guitar)
No explosions, no smoke, no strobes, no need. A great rock show on a Friday night from one of the Rock’s legends.
The Hard Way
The Hard Way are a Hollywood Staple. Led by frontman, Eric Jeffreys, they’re often seen in the opening slot at The Whisky a Go Go for some of the biggest names in Rock. They’re a crowd favorite for sure. Highlights of their set included “Diabolical Bitch“, “I Can’t Go Home” and the gyrating Hard Way dancers, April Showers and Corina Cline.
The first time I saw Madysin Hatter was in 2015 at a Battle of the Bands at the Whisky trying to earn a space on the bill for the Cathouse Live show later that Summer. They didn’t win that evening, but Madysin made a lasting impression on me and I was excited at the opportunity to catch her and her band again. They certainly didn’t disappoint.
A great set of bluesy, hard rock. Highlights were the song “Treasure” and a great version of AC/DC’s “Touch Too Much”. The band were tight and I hope to get to see a longer set at some point. Of note, behind the kit was none other than GnR drummer, Frank Ferrer.