The second leg of the “United We Rock” tour kicked off at MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre in Tampa, FL on Tuesday, July 18th. Classic rockers Styx and REO Speedwagon co-headline the tour, with special guest Don Felder (former Eagles guitarist) as the opening act.
Don Felder quickly set the tone for the evening, opening with Eagles classic “Already Gone.” The crowd sang along for the majority of his set, which consisted almost entirely of Eagles hits – “Witchy Woman,” “Life in the Fast Lane,” and of course closing with “Hotel California.”
Originally, REO Speedwagon was scheduled to headline the Tampa date, however a last minute change put them up next… but not before a slight delay due to inclement weather. Once the lightning had passed, REO was safe to take stage. At about 10 minutes into their set, vocalist Kevin Cronin was handed two poster signs. Each sign had “HELLO TAMPA!” written in large bubble letters, which Cronin held up for the audience to see, as he was barely able to croak an apology into the mic, explaining that he woke up with no voice. The signs were unexpected, and the front row audience chattered to each other saying, “Wow! He still sounds perfect!” Cronin said that he still had no voice during soundcheck, however he just knew he would be able to channel the energy from the audience to find his voice that evening. Regardless of how he was actually feeling, he energetically bounced across the stage through a set that included popular sing alongs: “Can’t Fight This Feeling,” “Keep On Loving You,” and the coincidentally appropriate “Ridin’ the Storm Out.”
Last but not least, rock and roll classics Styx hit the stage, opening with “Gone, Gone, Gone.”. Amazingly, half of the members (Chuck Panozzo, James “J.Y.” Young, and Tommy Shaw) have remained unchanged since the early 1970s days. The nearly 40 years of experience show, as each member dances across the stage expressively, flashing smiles amongst themselves and to doting fans alike. Their setlist included “Too Much Time On My Hands,” “Come Sail Away” and even a cover of Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” performed by keyboardist/vocalist Lawrence Gowan. After a burst of confetti, a two song encore of “Rockin’ The Paradise” and “Renegade” brought an end to the night.
The United We Rock tour will continue until August 22nd, ending in Holmdel, NJ. Be sure to catch a date near you!
• Gone, Gone, Gone
• Blue Collar Man
• The Grand Illusion
• Radio Silence
• Crystal Ball
• Light Up
• Fooling Yourself
• Too Much Time on My Hands
• Come Sail Away
• Rockin’ The Paradise