LIVE: Boz Scaggs @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, 9/12/17

Review by Mark Alexander Hudson

The question Tuesday night at Boz Scaggs’ performance at the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall was which Boz would show up. Would we see the roots-rocker of his early years, fresh out of his sideman gig with the original Steve Miller Group? Or perhaps the slick, suave, suited blue-eyed-soul hitmaker of his late ’70s heyday? Or even the jazz and blues explorer of his more recent body of well-considered work?

In truth we got a combination of all three, in a hugely enjoyable journey through his career.

Boz didn’t have to win the crowd over. They were in his pocket as soon as he ambled on stage and flashed a sheepish grin. “We’re going to play some songs you may know from the radio or CDs or, uh, 8-tracks,” he cracked, acknowledging the amount of grey hair present both on stage and in the audience.

Also in the pocket were his excellent band, led by musical director-bassist Richard Patterson. They handled the stylistic twists and turns of songs that had elements of rock, funk, blues and pop with ease.

Highlights were many – the impeccable groove of ’70s favorites “Lowdown” & “Lido Shuffle,” a good-natured romp through “You Never Can Tell” as a tribute to Chuck Berry (the “greatest rocker of them all,” according to Boz) and a soulful rendition of “Look What You’ve Done to Me” that particularly hit home with the crowd.

I also enjoyed the extended, slow blues of “Loan Me a Dime,” going all the way back to his debut solo album. Now a slow blues can be dangerous territory, but Boz & band handled it expertly, bumping up the tempo midway through and keeping the solos just the right side of over-cooked.

With Boz Scaggs you do not get showbiz flash or showmanship. Boz pretty much just stands there and sings, his unique voice as strong as ever, and plays his guitar. The band, too, avoids any showboating and lays down just what the songs need. In fact, what you do get is simply an evening of terrific music from a true American original.

1 Comment
  1. Ken V says

    It was a terrific concert and the audience responded. When he came out for his 3rd encore, he said, “You people are great. I can’t believe this is a Tuesday night. I gotta come back here on a Saturday!”

    Can you name any of the other members of his band? I can’t seem to find that online.

Comments are closed.