Arch Allies Return To The Stage...

MARCH 16, 2005

Photo: Daniel Wills

Hello Friends,

In the photo above, Dave Amato, REO guitarist extraordinaire, and owner of one of the most enviable guitar collections of any touring player on the planet, takes the stage at soundcheck yesterday in Canton, Ohio. That Amato grin tells me he might just be thinking, "Tommy hasn't seen this guitar yet..." He's right too. Wow!

We hadn't seen any of our REO pals in months so it was yet another friendly reunion backstage in Canton. Promoter Brad Garret always puts out the good china for us, and by that I mean it's always more like a five star hotel than a typical backstage catering job which we're all accustomed to. It's hard not to overdo it at dinner on Brad's shows. If you don't show some restraint , well, let me put this way-- Imagine going to your favorite restaurant, enjoying every bite of every good thing brought to you and on the way home, you find out your local sports team (and you're on that team) calls and says you have to come play the championship game, starting in 30 minutes. YIKES!!! I'm too full! I need to go home and put my feet up and watch TV!!! That's what it can be like if you eat every bite of a big tasty meal too close to show time, so there we were visiting with REO, picking at our food and going "MMMMMMMMM!" as we did what my pal Joe Perry gives as credit for why he and Steven Tyler always look so good--"Push-Aways." That means PUSH AWAY FROM THE TABLE!!!

It was REO's turn to go first last night and it was very cool to hear them from our dressing room, and hearing fans go crazy for them. We had an awesome set ourselves. One thing which propelled us was knowing that we would be performing another song from "Big Bang Theory" (our CD which gets released on May 10) near the end of our show. Our version of Humble Pie's "I Don't Need No Doctor" rocks like no other track we've recorded in years so we were amped up the whole set looking at that prize down at the bottom of the set list.

Tonight we're in REO country, Champaign, Illinois, where REO first came to be. But don't worry, we'll plant the STYX flag high on the hill here again. It's going to be another fine night in STYXworld with our friends REO.

See you there...

T Shaw

Previously published on on or about the date mentioned.