In My Life
I got my first Boz Scaggs album, “Moments” sometime in 1971. The local FM radio stations were frequently playing “We Were Always Sweethearts” from this album. The song had Boz’s distinctive vocal style backed by a strong horn section. At the time, I was in band playing alto sax, so I was only too happy to play my sax along with the record. From that fateful day in 1971 when I put “Moments” on my turntable, up until today, I have been a fan of Boz Scaggs.
August 11 was the first time that I had the pleasure to see Boz Scaggs in concert. I remember that he often played the Fillmore East (my venue of choice in those years), but given that he was a resident of San Francisco, Boz spent more time on the left coast Fillmore than the east coast one. In describing the artists that made the Fillmore West a landmark, Boz is often mentioned in the same sentence with the Dead, Quicksilver, Jefferson Airplane, etc., as part of the crown jewels of San Francisco music at that time.
The musical story of Boz Scaggs began when he met another young musician as both were in a private school in Texas. At age 15, Boz joined his schoolmate, Steve Miller to be in his band. Miller and Scaggs then went to the University of Wisconsin, played in bands together and the rest is history in that Steve Miller and Boz Scaggs became incredibly successful as solo acts in the music business.
The commercial highpoint for Scaggs came in 1976 when his album, Silk Degrees was released. This was his seventh album. The previous six gave no indication of the profound effect Silk degrees would have. The album peaked at #2 and spent 115 weeks on the charts. It has been certified 5X platinum. The song, “Lowdown” received a Grammy for best R&B song of the year and the accolades for this album are endless. To this day, “Silk Degrees” is on my personal list of the Top 10 albums of all time.
When LP’s were my medium of choice in buying music, I would first remove the shrink wrap on the album and then find the most comfortable chair next to the stereo, put on the headphones, open the album and read the liner notes as the stylus hit the first grooves of the record.
Most albums have some moments of excellence and some moments of mediocrity and some moments which I will generously refer to as “filler.” In the case of “Silk Degrees” there is complete excellence from the beginning note to the last note.
Boz has recorded over 20 albums in his career and the overriding factors in virtually all of those records are the incredible musicians he assembles, the flawless production of the music and the unique quality of his voice. One could easily say that his voice is smooth as silk.
Even though I have been a fan of Boz, it’s been over 40 years since I bought that first album of his music and a lot happens to us all after 40+ years. I was therefore curious to see how Boz has fared after all these years of performing.
Much like “Silk Degrees” the show was excellent. The crowd comprised of a lot people in my age group with a healthy mix of younger people were simply blown away by the performance. So much so, that Boz and the band did four encores over a two hour show with no intermission. I know, since I stayed until the last note was played and the house lights were turned on. The band was amazing and Boz’s voice is still, smooth as silk.
The current tour is publicizing Boz’s latest album, “A Fool To Care.” He plays selections from this album along with the signature hits that has made him the international star that he is today.
25 – Lincoln, CA – Thunder Valley Casino Resort – Outdoor Amphitheatre
26 – Temecula, CA – Thornton Winery
27 – Pomona, CA – Los Angeles County Fairgrounds
29 – Eugene, OR – Hult Center For the Performing Arts – Silva Concert Hall
01 – Napa, CA – The Uptown Theatre
02 – Napa, CA – The Uptown Theatre
16 – Lake Charles, LA – Golden Nugget Lake Charles – Grand Ballroom
17 – New Braunfels, TX – Gruene Hall
21 – Atlanta, GA – Atlanta Symphony Hall
23 – Virginia Beach, VA – Sandler Center For the Performing Arts
24 – Collingswood, NJ – Scottish Rite Auditorium
25 – Huntington, NY – The Paramount
28 – Wilmington, NC – Cape Fear Community College – Humanities & Fine Arts Center
30 – Biloxi, MS – IP Casino Resort & Spa – Studio A
31 – Pensacola, FL – Saenger Theatre
01 – Clearwater, FL – Capitol Theatre
03 – Fort Myers, FL – Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall
04 – Orange Park, FL – Thrasher-Horne Center for the Arts
08 – Coral Springs, FL – Coral Springs Center for the Arts