Not many people hold a resume like Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Jerry Lee Lewis. Dubbed the first “Wildman” of Rock and Roll, Lewis is the last surviving member of Sun Records Million Dollar quartet which included Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins and Roy Orbinson. Lewis not only trail blazed what would become “Rock and Roll” as we know it today, but also trail blazed headlines in his personal life as well. He was in out of the headlines for years. Lewis was no stranger to tabloid banter and was the first rock and roller to experience such chatter.

When I heard that this iconic musician was playing BB Kings in NYC, this was a buckletlist show for me to attend. Lewis surrounded himself with a 4 piece backing band that included 2 guitarists, a bassist and a drummer. Lewis who is now 81 is not in great physical health. He gets around in a wheelchair for the most part and needs assistance walking as evident when he was helped from his chair to the piano stool for him to take part in the show. Lewis still displayed the charm and wit for his audience attendees.

Lewis made a few jokes but the night belonged to his piano playing. Even though his walking and maybe his voice wasn’t what it once was, his piano playing was still solid. Lewis’ let his fingers truly do most of the talking through the short 9 song set. Lewis made a lot of eye contact and had plenty of smiles for the audience throughout and even stood up and kicked his seat over at the end of “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On.”

My review is looking at it from a perspective of it from a point that I got to see Jerry Lee Lewis play. Yes, the set was short probably due to physical ailments, as he is not capable of playing a normal set I’m sure. When he was on stage, he gave what he had. Again, his piano playing hasn’t lost much and that’s what he was always known for and to me, seeing him live and watching him play (even though for a short set) was worth the price of admission.  

Setlist:

Down the Line (Roy Robinson cover)

Drinkin’ Wine Spo-Dee-O-Dee (Stick McGhee cover)

C.C. Rider (Ma Gainey cover)

Roll Over Beethoven (Chuck Berry cover)

Before the Night is Over (Joe Simon cover)

Sweet Little Sixteen (Chuck Berry cover)

You Win Again (Hank Williams cover)

Great Balls of Fire

Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On

 

Photo Gallery

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We would like to thank Zach Farnum from 117 Entertainment Group and Nate Goehring DKC Public Relations for the credentials to review the show.

About The Author Gus

My first opportunity to write about music was with Kissunderground, featuring just one band (KISS). In 2006, I started working for another outlet that showcased more musicians. It was a great experience for me at the time. I personally nailed down some great interviews during my time at glam-metal.com (Paul Stanley, Jonathan Davis, Slash and Sully Erna to name a few). In early 2009, I decided to venture out on my own with the idea of creating a website that has all the offerings that a reader would want in a music review website. That’s when Backstageaxxess.com began.
I’m so proud of what was created here and of our staff that brings it to you. Each one offers a diverse opinion and a creative ability to share it in a unique way. We are so lucky to have them here.
When discussing making a list of favorite shows with the staff, I also found it hard to narrow that list down to a select handful of shows. Everyone experiences a concert in their own terms, whether it’s the show itself, maybe it’s the people you met there and the new friendships created, or maybe it was meeting the artist at the show. For my criteria, I tried to stick to just the show itself, but again, it was sometimes hard to do.
My first concert was Sammy Hagar’s first tour with Van Halen at the Niagara Falls Convention Center, Niagara Falls, NY, on August 30, 1986. My favorites are as follows:
1. Kiss – Tiger Stadium – Detroit, Michigan 6/28/96
2. SARS (Rolling Stones, AC/DC, Rush, and handful of other bands) – Downsview Park – Toronto, Ontario 7/30/03
3. Paul McCartney (every McCartney show I saw was awesome, but Iwent with my first show) Air Canada Centre -Toronto, Ontario 10/10/05
4. Motley Crue – Memorial Auditorium – Buffalo, NY 12/19/89
5. Kid Rock – Tweeter Center – Camden, New Jersey 3/25/06
The honorable mentions would be any McCartney show (The Joint at the Hard Rock, Las Vegas, Nevada, April 2009 or Air Canada Centre Toronto, Ontario 8/10/10), Prince (Club 2112) at the Rio Hotel, Las Vegas 12/30/07, Heart (Pulse Lounge * only 200 people) Hilton Hotel, Anaheim, California, January 21,2008, Monsters of Rock (Van Halen, Scorpions, Metallica, Dokken, and Kingdom Come) Rich Stadium, Orchard Park, NY 6/19/88 and the Rocklahoma Festival (Queensryche, Lita Ford, Triumph, etc.). Also, Cher (with my mom) at the Blue Cross Arena Rochester, NY, November 22, 2004.