Labor Day usually signals the unofficial end of summer, although those of us that live in the Valley don’t consider summer done until the temperatures drop below 100 sometime in mid-October. Labor Day may also signal the end of the summer concerts. If so, summer promises to go out with a bang with a busy weekend of concerts planned by a variety of classic rock touring acts. Fortunately, most of the concerts will be indoors so who cares if it’s 111 degrees outside?
Start the weekend off on Friday night, September 2, 2011 at 8:00 p.m. and catch Kenny Loggins at Ovations LIVE! Showroom at the Wild Horse Pass and Casino in Chandler, Arizona. Loggins is returning to the road with the first stop of his new tour scheduled for that night. The king of movie soundtrack songs such as “I’m Alright,” from Caddyshack, “Danger Zone,” from Top Gun and “Footloose,” from Footloose, will be pulling double duty that evening as, in addition to headlining as a solo act, he will also perform with the opening act, Loggins’ new trio, Blue Sky Riders.
On Saturday, September 3, 2011, the classic rock fan must decide which subculture of the genre is to his or her liking as there originally were three concerts to choose from. If the funk side of classic rock is your forte, then check out Kool and the Gang at Salt River Grand Ballroom at the Talking Stick Resort in Scottsdale, at 8:00 p.m. There is sure to be a “Celebration” time, so come on. It might even be “Ladies Night.”
For those who like their classic rock with a bit more techo-pop, Berlin, featuring singer Terri Nunn, another group with a famous Top Gun song, “Take My Breath Away,” was scheduled to play The Canyon Club on Saturday night. However, on August 29, 2011 the venue closed. The concert is no longer scheduled for Saturday night and will not be rescheduled.
This leaves you free though for the weekend’s biggest classic rock concert, Def Leppard, with special guests Heart, who will perform at the Ashley Furniture HomeStore Pavilion at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday night. Unfortunately, this concert will be outdoors, but it is pretty likely you would have worked up a sweat anyway dancing to Def Leppard hits such as “Rock of Ages,” Let’s Get Rocked,” and “Pour Some Sugar On Me.” Of course Heart will rock the house too with songs like “Barracuda,” and “Crazy On You.”
Sunday night is a night for Parrotheads. Fans of Jimmy Buffet won’t be lucky enough to see him live in Phoenix, but the next best thing, Adventures in Parrotdise a Jimmy Buffet tribute band fronted by Barrie Cunningham will perform at Ovations LIVE! Showroom at the Wild Horse Pass and Casino. The show starts at 7:30 p.m.
Monday, it’s another return to the casino, this time to Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino in Maricopa, to catch Blue Öyster Cult. The legendary hard rock band of “(Don’t Fear) the Reaper” and “Burnin’ For You” fame will bring their cowbells to the Oasis Lounge Stage at 6:00 p.m. As if just being able to see Blue Öyster Cult perform live could be any better, it will be a free concert.
If this sounds a bit exhausting, at least you can rest up after the weekend. Queensryche, Cinderella and ZZ Top don’t come to the Valley until later in the month.