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Artist: Sammy Hagar
Venue: Dodge Theater, Phoenix, Arizona
Date: Sunday, August 14, 2005 @ 10:26 PM

Sammy Hagar hits the Arizona desert!

There was only one way to rock at the Dodge Theatre in Phoenix on August 9th. Sammy Hagar and the Wabos had arrived.

The energetic Red Rocker hit the stage around 8:00ish, as there was no opening band support. The near capacity and diverse crowd was ready and waiting, then finally erupting at the sight of those trademark blonde locks. Soon the opening chords and the bass thumping of Mona were heard as Shaka Doobie came to life, followed by One Way to Rock and Sympathy for the Human before the band took a breather. Give to Live, I’ll Fall in Love Again, Three Lock Box, a mostly drum-less version of Right Now all followed throughout his set. The band was as tight as ever, having fun all night long. The performance reflected the care free, have fun rock ‘n roll attitude that Hagar is notorious for, and other bands should take note of. It didn’t even matter there was no new material present, which is something most bands can’t pull off in their shows (hear that KISS?).

Hagar, at one point early in the set, was even signing autographs during a couple of songs (during, not between). He also had an interesting stage set up. Behind him (and drummer David Lauser) were risers that started on one side of the stage and wrapped around. Not sure if these were contest winners or not, but they had the premium seats tonight. At one point Hagar even walked through the entire crowd, from one side to the other. While these people definitely had the best seats in the house, it was comical to learn later that they got no restroom breaks until the show was done.

Hagar definitely puts on a show that is worth seeing. The energy, the atmosphere – hell at one point I thought I was in Cabo again. Do yourself a favor, don’t miss this show if its coming your way.

Note to Dodge Theater: This is not a “photographer friendly” venue. There is no photo pit because they allow the front row to go to the stage, thereby not making any room for photographers. The photographers are informed that they can shoot from the space between what appears to be the 7th row and the 8th row. Not a good area for good shots. Very limiting for angle shots. C'mon guys, get it together.

--Photos © 2005 David Svendsen (CrpnDeth)

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