Old Time Rock & Roll

I read today about the passing of one of The Doobie Brothers drummers, Michael Hossack.  Unlike the big name stars who’ve recently died, his barely made the back page obits.  To be sure, I’d not have seen it if a friend hadn’t seen it and posted a link to it to Facebook.  As I typically do when I post an R.I.P. about a musician, I look for a video of them performing, preferably live, to accompany the message.  As I perused the clips of The Doobie Brothers on YouTube, I found a one of them performing live at Wolf Trap in 2004.  It sounded awesome, but it didn’t show a lot of close-ups of Hossack, so I watched another, then another, and before I knew it, I’d watched the seven linked below.  As I watched and listened to the clips, the greatness of this band and, as a genre, old time rock and roll became more clear.  The Doobie Brothers are just this post’s representative of this genre of great music, which consists of a group of musicians playing real instruments, singing naturally with enthusiasm and passion for what they’re doing.  The music endures and thirty years later, the band still sounds great playing it live…and that’s the key:  old time rock and roll sounds great in your ear buds, through your speakers, and on your computer, but it sounds fantastic live.  There was no gimmick to this concert (from what I could tell from the videos) –no pyrotechnics, no swinging around on ropes, no spinning drummers– just a bunch of guys playing their hearts out and singing great songs that the crowd came to hear.  It made me wish I’d been at the concert.  Bob Seger said it best in his song “Old Time Rock and Roll”:

Just take those old records off the shelf
I’ll sit and listen to ’em by m’self
Today’s music ain’t got the same soul
I like that old time rock and roll

All of the clips below are from their performance at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts, July 25, 2004.  If you only listen to two, take your pick of the first six and then play the last one, “Takin’ it to the Streets.”  Aside from being a little more soulful, it starts with a great keyboard solo.

Rockin’ Down the Highway

Long Train Running

Listen to the Music

China Grove

Jesus is Just Alright

Black Water

Takin’ it to the Streets


2 Responses

  1. Good post Rob. The Doobie Brothers are one of my favorites and they are on my photography bucket list 🙂

    • I’ve had their greatest hits on CD for a looooong time and I remember my dad playing the LPs…which will one day be mine…muuuaaahahahaha! I’ve never been a big concert goer, but this looks like it was a fantastic one.

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