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04:50 AM, Apr 22, 2009
Gary Helms was quite a surprise from his mellow radio hits ("Another Perfect Day, and I've Got A Good Mind"). His show was definitely high energy, with a lot of up-tempo honky tonk numbers, along with everything from AC/DC and Metallica to a perfectly executed medley of hits from historic Texas hit-makers. "On the strength of his live performance, this guy's gonna be huge!"
120 Minutes of "Wow!", He didn't have much time it seemed like maybe twenty minutes but two hours were gone before we knew it. Gary Helms did just about everything in those one hundred twenty minutes so flawlessly that I almost forgot to scribble down the notes. "Wow, he works that stage better than some of the better acts I have seen." He gave those grins to the girls, he waved at nearly everyone who waved at him, and whereas some other up-and-trying-to-make-it-big acts have this problem of not knowing how to work a stage, Gary Helms definitely did not have this problem, and he wasn't afraid to talk to the crowd either. Within one hundred twenty minutes he played his radio hits, "Another Perfect Day," "Stupid Little Cupid," and "In My Mind," (most that I didn't know he sang - that kinda goes along with the not listening to country radio much these days), but then proceeded to maybe scare the living daylights out of some of the older folks at the show when he went into his rock-n-roll set, starting with a tease of some AC/DC, "Back in Black" I believe, but then out of that into a medley of Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Sweet Home Alabama," into Aerosmith's "Walk this Way" (led by the keyboard player), into Wild Cherry's "Play That Funky Music White Boy," and back into "Sweet Home.." Now, this little twist in his set-list was very cool, although I would have really been impressed if he could have pulled off all of "Back in Black" other than the tease, but I like it when an artist can push the envelope a little other than sticking with the mundane. Closing things out, Gary sang "I've Got A Good Mind" and had all of the young girlies going crazy.
So, Gary Helms was pretty cool, and I was duly impressed with his live show. You see, I think Gary has a great voice, it's obvious he has a great stage presence, and he shows he can take chances while up on stage.
Well, that was a little more about Gary Helms set than I intended to write, but I'll give him TWO BIG OL' HONKIN' THUMBS UP! for his set. He was cool to see live, and I look forward to seeing him again in concert soon!
"Budweiser Made In America," Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, Pa.
Michael Zorn / Invision / AP
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AP Photo / Sunday Alamba
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