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Tommy Shaw: “couldn’t stop myself from being a fan”

Tommy Shaw of Styx guested on Smoke on the Water at the Wembley Arena and posted his impressions on styxworld.com:

Before I knew it, I was heading for the stage again to sit in with Deep Purple. It was sweet to see all our people watching from the wings. I waited for the last notes of “Highway Star” and climbed the stairs to where Jimmy was waiting with guitar in hand. The rest was somewhat surreal. Steve and I traded some riffs back and forth, and soon we were in this zone which I had not anticipated. Steve Morse was so accommodating and open, it was not a duel, but more of a conversation, picking up on themes, repeating, elaborating, and letting it lead to the next one. I had to keep reminding myself that I was on the stage. It was a real treat. Soon we were playing the classic guitar intro to “Smoke On The Water.” Traveling back 35 years to when I first heard that song in my hometown of Montgomery, Alabama, to standing on stage between Steve Morse and Ian Gillan, I couldn’t stop myself from being a fan. But there was still playing to do, and when the chorus came around, Steve nudged Ian to have me sing the harmony with him. Since there’s only one vocal mic on their stage, we sang it on his mic together. I could hear him singing acoustically and could tell our voices blended well together, but then again, I’d been singing that part with him in my car for 35 years. Legendary bassist Roger Glover, who obviously has sold his soul so that he can remain eternally young, joined in and Steve, myself and he became the three man wall of guitars on stage left. It could not have been more fun and soon it was over and I was shaking their hands and walking back down the stairs to all the crew, band mates and family members who were smiling ear to ear. Another one for the “I’ll never forget this night” file.

Thanks to Daniel Bengtsson for the info.

5 Comments to “Tommy Shaw: “couldn’t stop myself from being a fan””:

  1. 1
    Anthony Emery says:

    Awesome – I love Tommy Shaw from – of all things – his stint in Damn Yankees!!! How you could put a vegetarian melodic rocker with Ted Nugent and make it work is as ridiculous as it was fun and awesome!!!

  2. 2
    Chuck says:

    Well I’ve got to hand it to Tommy Shaw! He described the scene beautifully. I was sidestage with all of his Family and friends and I think they enjoyed the moment as well as anything Styx did that night. I was lucky enough to have been at the Old Ship after the Brighton show (the morning after) and caught Tommy in his rising sun vest going out for a morning walk at 6 a.m.. We were still finishing up the evening (and a few bottles)- Nigel, Eleanor, Suzanne and I -when he appeared before me in the foyer. I had been saying, “hey Tommy” anytime we would bring up Styx (oh, we weren’t saying anything bad-were we?) as if he were hearing us for the past 6 hours of our social session. So much like the boy who cried wolf, it was understandable when Nigel and the ladies refused to entertain the possibility that he was actually there. I looked up and there he was. I said, “hey Tommy!” and he replied “Hey” then went out the front door. It wasn’t until they continued to walk the beachfront, to and fro, outside the front of the hotel that my partying partners began to believe me. Finally they came back and ordered their vegetarian breakfast and we all had a good laugh about the condition we would be in later on that day. Thanks for saying “hey” and for a great job on guitar all these years Tommy (nice vest)…Chuck

  3. 3
    legris richard elprupdeep@w.fr says:

    welcome to the purple family tree!
    another big entrie! cheers guys!

  4. 4
    Jeff Summers says:

    Tommy did a great job and you could see that he was genuinely enjoying himself!!

  5. 5
    Bryan Greene says:

    Styx were truly awesome at Wembley – quite possibly the best support act I have seen at a Purple show, and it was great to see Tommy Shaw come out on stage and jam/participate in SOTW

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