Some People Call him the Space Cowboy

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By Matt Miller
Staff Writer

Steve Miller

It was 8:00 on damp, rainy Friday night. People amassed outside of the Orpheum Theater eagerly waiting to pass through the doors. I was among this crowd of many along with two of my companions. When the clock reached 8:10, the doors were opened. Everyone moved in leaving the street practically empty within five minutes. The show was about to begin.

Around 8:30, everyone packed into the theater waiting eagerly for the show to begin. Suddenly the stage was flooded with light and the Steve Miller Band appeared, including the titular bandleader himself, Steve Miller. The audience roared with excitement as the guitarist/singer ran straight into the  set.

There was only a one hour and a half set, but it was a very well constructed one. They started off with “Rockin Me” and ended with an acoustic version of “The Joker”. Other favorites included “Fly Like an Eagle”, “Space Cowboy” and “Jet Airliner” to name a few. Towards the middle portion of the show, Steve and his band demonstrated their skills in Blues music as well as Jazz. They improvised over various chord progressions provided by the rhythm section.

For a man of 68 years, he still has a copious amount of musical dexterity. He possessed prowess with the guitar which was well worthy of the audience’s praise. Not only did he demonstrate expertise in the rock genre, he also displayed a passion for both blues as well as some jazz. And lets not forget his band, the backbone so to speak. The band included  newcomer Jacob Peterson on Guitars/Ukulele, Sonny Charles on backing vocals, Joseph Wooten on Keyboards, Kenny Lee Lewis on Bass Guitar and Gordy Knudtston on drums/percussion.

I do have one or two gripes about the atmosphere, but both do not regard the performers. The Orpheum Theater is quite old and lacks one or two modern conveniences. When that theater is packed with about 1,000 or more people it becomes uncomfortably hot. So air-conditioning is a must. Another complaint is regarding the intoxicated behavior of some of the audience members. When I’m at a concert, I usually like to concentrate on the performance and the musicians. I find it extremely irksome when someone is behaving obnoxiously and I’m trying to enjoy the performance.

Despite those two gripes, the show was quite an enjoyable one. If the Steve Miller Band comes to a local venue, I would highly recommend attending.

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