The iconic Texas band performed in Dallas to the delight of fans with Mike Morgan and the Crawl opening.
Outdoor concerts in Dallas during the spring can be hit or miss as the weather doesn’t always cooperate. Mother Nature apologized for previous rainy nights, though, with a perfect evening for Texas rock and blues at the Gas Monkey Bar N’ Grill.Â Attending a show at the GMBG is always a treat due to their reputation for great live shows and their friendly staff.
Friends caught up with each other over drinks and dinner as Mike Morgan and the Crawl took the stage. Mike is a terrific guitarist and delivered an incredible set of Texas blues. The band wrapped with “Stagger Lee,” always a great way to endear yourself to the fans.
The growing crowd turned into a packed house. The Fabulous Thunderbirds came out and played the blues while introducing singer Kim Wilson. This incarnation of the TBirds has been together since 2008, although Kim has been the focal point since 1974.
The Saturday night dancers began right away as the band opened with “Wait On Time.” It’s a tremendous opening song, featuring solos on keys by Mike Keller and guitar by Johnny Moeller.
Kim started “I’m Losing You” by Rod Stewart with a harmonica solo that rocked the house. The mouth harp fit the song perfectly as did the symbolism of the planes departing Love Field in the moonlit background. Substitute drummer Rob Stupka of Kim’s other band, Kim Wilson’s Blues Revue, laid down a driving beat that kept the crowd jumping.
They turned back to rock n’ roll for a couple of songs, then electrified the audience with “Wrap It Up.” It was a huge hit for them in the 80s and sounded just as good as it did when first released. The dancers twirled to the beat like it might have been the last song they ever heard.
It was turning into an electric night with the audience approval matching the guitar and keyboard solos. The crowd continued to grow, but the dancers still found room to dance to “She’s Tuff.” Kim was in excellent voice all night, but he could still belt out a gravelly voice when the song called for it.
The song turned into a jam session and continued for “Mama, Talk To Your Daughter.” Everyone in the band got a chance to shine, including bassist Randy Bermudes.
Texas legend Anson Funderburgh joined the band and immediately displayed his mad guitar skills in “I’m Sorry” and “Don’t Burn Me.” The building shook when Kim tore into the harmonica on “Groove With Me Tonight.” The band wailed long and loud on the hit of the night.
An instrumental gave everyone the chance to show off again and they all delivered. A guitar duel between Anson and Johnny highlighted “Head Out On The Highway” before Anson stole the show with a one-man jam.
Fingers were flying on the frets for “Rock This Place” as the guitarists were picking faster than ever. The crowd noise was ear-splitting, but managed to rise a few more decibels for “Tough Enough.” Their biggest hit caused a storm of emotion by the audience.
Nobody wanted the song or the jams to end, and they cheered until Kim and the band came out for an encore. “Roll, Roll, Roll” contained the line, “Roll with me, baby, roll all night long,” and the fans would have if they could have.
Kim Wilson and his two bands tour 300 days a year, so catch their current tour going on through June.
Joe Guzman of National Rock Review was on hand to photograph the event.
Mike Morgan and the Crawl