Bret Michaels took center stage at Freedom Mortgage Pavilion in Camden, NJ on July 23rd, captivating the audience with an unforgettable performance that left everyone in awe. The legendary rock icon, known for his charismatic stage presence and powerful vocals, delivered a night of pure rock and roll magic. The Parti-Gras Tour also included iconic rockers Jefferson Starship and Night Ranger as the openers. Bret Michaels set included performances by Sugar Ray's, Mark McGrath and Journey veteran vocalist, Steve Augeri.
Jefferson Starship performed a mix of classic songs from themselves and covers of Starship, Albert Hammond, Jefferson Airplane, and The Great Society songs. "Sara," "Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now "and "We Built This City" brought me right back to my childhood. "We Built This City" was especially nostalgic for me. I loved this song when I was growing up. I grew in NJ the home of the diner, so every chance I got I would play that song on the table jukeboxes. Their vocals were great and their energy was a definite build up to the next performance.
Night Ranger has been serving up the hits for just over 40 years. Starting out in 1982 they fall somewhere between the end of the classic rock era and the beginning of hair metal. For me they never fell into the realm of hair metal, they had a big sound and musical chops that didn't rely on the gimmick of the moment. Even though they have 12 studio albums they only played songs off of their first two albums, Dawn Patrol and Midnight Madness. Their set started off with "(You Can Still) Rock in America" and "Sing Me Away". Both songs were absolute madness, Jack's voice is as strong as ever and Brad's guitar licks and energy had the crowd following him back and forth across the stage. Since Jack is a founding member of Damn Yankees he took the opportunity to play two of their hits durning the set, "Coming of Age" and "High Enough". It was a nice surprise to hear these classic tunes performed live. They played their biggest hit, power ballad, Sister Christian toward the end of their set. Every person in the venue sang along with their hands raised high in the air. Night Ranger had an amazing set playing classic, yet timeless tunes, proving that classic rock is still the best era in rock and roll.
As the lights dimmed for the finale, anticipation filled the air, and the crowd erupted into thunderous cheers as Bret Michaels emerged. The opening notes of "Talk Dirty to Me" resonated through the venue, instantly transporting the audience back to the glory days of '80s hair metal.
Throughout the evening, Bret's raw and soulful voice took center stage, showcasing his talent and leaving no doubt as to why he remains an icon in the world of rock music. His performance was filled with genuine emotion, connecting with fans on a personal level, and creating an atmosphere of camaraderie that united the entire audience. In addition to his remarkable vocals, Bret Michaels proved to be a master showman. He effortlessly worked the stage, engaging the crowd with his infectious energy and charm.
Since this was a "Parti" Bret shared his set with two other incredible artists, Mark McGrath of Sugar Ray and Steve Augeri of Journey. Mark perform two of his biggest hits, "Every Morning" and "Fly". Both of these songs were super energetic and just plain fun. Mark has some stellar dad dance moves that he showed off during his songs, spinning around and shaking his booty. Steve performed three of Journey's biggest hits during the set. "Separate Ways (Worlds Apart)", which seems to be the cover song dejour, by other artists recently. As well as "Don't Stop Believin''" and "Any Way You Want It". Steve's vocals smashed these songs as they were originally performed.
As the night progressed, the Poison hits kept coming, and the crowd's enthusiasm never waned. Songs like "Unskinny Bop", "Something to Believe In" and "Every Rose Has its Thorn" had the audience singing along at the top of their lungs, creating an electric atmosphere that reverberated throughout the venue.
Bret Michaels' concert was not just a trip down memory lane but a testament to the timelessness of rock and roll. It was a celebration of music, life, and the power of coming together through shared experiences. Whether you were a die-hard fan or a newcomer to any of the artists' music, the performance left an indelible mark on everyone lucky enough to be present.
In conclusion, Bret Michaels' Parti-Gras was a true spectacle of rock music mastery. His unwavering passion, stage presence, and ability to connect with the audience made for an unforgettable night. If you ever get the chance to witness Bret Michaels in concert, don't hesitate – it's an experience that will resonate with you long after the final sounds fade away.