With more than 10,000 fans attending the co-headlining The Sharp Dressed Simple Man Tour featuring southern rock icons Lynyrd Skynyrd and ZZ Top with Uncle Kracker opening at Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre in St. Louis on August 17, there’s no doubt that this Midwestern city loves its classic rock. Thanks in large part to KSHE-95 FM, the world’s longest-running rock station in the world that’s been bringing classic rock and more to this region for nearly 56 years.
On the 10th night of this 23-city tour, the summer evening cooled nicely by the time Lynyrd Skynyrd took the stage around 9:30 p.m. after a whimsical video played highlighting some of the band’s 50-plus year history to the delight of fans that fell mostly in the Gen X and Boomer generations. We’re pretty sure Lynyrd Skynyrd is, in a way, still on its farewell tour that started in 2018 — we’ll just say was interrupted by the pandemic. Here’s a bit more about them rethinking their farewell tour. Whatever the reason is that they’re still touring, it was great to see the band (albeit with no original members, not that it mattered to anyone in the crowd) on stage having a blast and performing for well over an hour such songs as “What’s Your Name,” “Simple Man,” “Saturday Night Special,” and “Gimmie Three Steps,” that have become ingrained in popular culture.
Co-headliner ZZ Top sauntered onto the stage at about 7:30 for 75 minutes of their brand of southern, bluesy, Texas rock. With Elwood Francis taking over on bass since Dusty Hill passed in 2021, it was a little odd not to see the two similarly clad and bearded frontmen of Billy Gibbons and Hill but Francis brought his own bearded style to the stage. Plus, Francis is now known for bringing out a monster 17-string bass to play that’s hard to miss. Another rock band that’s now been around for 50-plus years, each song they perform takes you back to a time from your child or young adulthood and may very well even have you remembering those music videos of theirs when MTV actually showed music videos. Their set kicked off with the rousing “Got Me Under Pressure” and included “Gimme All Your Lovin’,” “Sharp Dressed Man,” and a three-song encore of “Brown Sugar,” “Tube Snake Boogie,” and “La Grange.” The cheers from the crowd nearly drowned out the band despite the vast amount of Magnatone amps on stage for their set.
Uncle Kracker (aka Matthew Shafer) and backing band kicked the night off to a growing crowd with a half-hour set of his own tunes, including a honky-tonk “Nobody’s Sad on a Saturday Night,” mixed in with a few covers, such as his version of “Drift Away.”
See more photos: https://bit.ly/SkynyrdZZTop23cz
In my work life, I help nonprofits and small businesses with media and public relations. In my what I love to do life, you can typically find me photographing either wild horses or concerts.