In 2015, Roger Hodgson reappeared in Amsterdam for the first time in about 18 years (at that time he performed in the famous Melkweg). In 2015 the Royal Carré Theater overtook him so, that the legend returned to the Amsterdam theater half a year later. In 2017 the old frontman of Supertramp played twice in Carré, and this year the musician also performed twice in the Carré Theatre. “Amsterdam is one of my favorite cities in the world, and Carré is one of my favorite venues,” Hodgson explained. Rightly so, because the Royal Carré Theater can be seen as one of the most beautiful venues in the world. The Brit sold out both evenings. Hodgson once again put on a show that connected past and present.
After a brief announcement from Mr Dutch Top 40, Erik de Zwart, Hodgson appeared on stage in crystal clear white. Erik de Zwart was asked not only because he always regarded Hodgson’s music as a DJ and broadcaster, but of course also because it was his concert agenda that bombed the ‘Fools Ouverure’ to a weekly moment on radio. It was probably no surprise to the real fans that the now 67-year-old started his concert with ‘Take the Long Way Home’ from 1979. It was the opening of a two and a half hour show full of highlights.
Roger Hodgson greeted the audience as if he had seen them before and in part that was certainly the case. The sympathetic musician greeted a few people from the audience, and he had them laughing several times. Relaxed, Hodgson threw Supertramp’s hits through the beautiful theater, interspersed with album tracks, as well as some of his own songs, like ‘Along Came Mary’, ‘Had a Dream’, ‘In Jeopardy’ and the beautiful ‘Death and a Zoo ‘. The progressive rock song, with the question whether an animal would be better dead or alive in captivity, was one of the highlights of the evening.
Hodgson had some new faces in this band for this tour. Michael Ghegan (saxophone and keys) and Ray Coburn (keyboards) seemed to have been in the band for years and did not give in to Aaron Mcdonald and Kevin Adamson, who had taken off this tour to spend some time with their families. Ghegan in particular made a big impression with his sax-playing and impressive collection of saxophones.
Where Hodgson seemed to have played many hits before the break, ‘School’, ‘Breakfast in America’ and ‘Logical Song’, it was only the tip of the iceberg. ‘Hide in your shell’ was dedicated to two fans who were together for 25 years. Of course Roger is lucky to have written the majority of the Supertramp hits and with Rick Davies therefore he has made the agreement both to keep playing their own songs. It is perhaps the reason that Hodgson and band are now more popular than the remaining Supertramp, of which Davies now is the only member of the original four. Fortunately, because Roger Hodgson has lost nothing in terms of voice after a career of almost 50 years.
After the break, the roof was raised and the chairs were soon abandoned by the public. A moment of rest with the melancholic ‘Even in the Quietest Moments’, from the album of the same name, led via ‘Had a Dream’ and ‘Dreamer’ to the spectacle of the evening, ‘Fool’s Overture’. The more than 10 minutes long – most beautiful rock opera in the world – was enthusiastically received by the sold-out Carré from the very first moment. For the first time performed by Hodgson solo during the Night Of the Proms in Antwerp (Belgium) in 1991, the track has been structurally on Hodgson’s set list for ten years now, and rightly so. Only 58 times live performed during concerts of Supertramp itself, it has become the signature track of the British musician. The piece was unfortunately the end of the official setlist. Roger ended exactly how it was, with the highlight of the show.
After a short break there was of course an encore in the form of ‘Give a Little Bit’ and of course ‘It’s Raining Again’, in which the cheerful Hodgson apologized apologetically for the weather in Amsterdam. It was a perfect conclusion to an equally perfect evening. Organizer Live in Europe had once again done well to book the British singer three times in our country before Hodgson in July is set to tour through the USA. After the last notes of ‘It’s Raining Again’ dripped down, a full Carré agreed unanimously: Roger Hodgson combined past to present, and again he did so in a sublime way!
Foto (c) Ruud Lips, archive
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