Schenkerfest at the Whisky A Go Go


Schenkerfest takes over the Whisky A Go Go on April 15th, 2019
By Russ Allsup

I’m a huge Michael Schenker fan and have seen him plenty of times over the years, going back to around ’87. I’d say my favorite three guitar players are Eddie Van Halen, Michael Schenker, and Randy Rhoads. Those three have a perfect balance of chops, riffs, tone and most of all, just the most tasteful layers out there. I always try to catch Michael Schenker when he comes around, and the last few years have been a real treat. His head is in a good place and he’s smiling onstage more than ever now. The last couple of years, he put together what’s pretty much the ultimate show for anyone that’s a fan of Schenker’s solo stuff. Kind of a mind blower- He had lined up four singers that he’s recorded with over the years, and they were big names within the career of Schenker’s. On hand for this tour that he was calling the Michael Schenker Fest, were the three main singers in Schenkers’ solo career, Graham Bonnet, Gary Barden, Robin MaCauley, along with Doogie White, who’d sang with Schenker on a few recent tours before this.

When I first got there, there was a crowd in front of the opening act, TD Clark, who were two guys that played electric guitars over pre recorded backing tracks. Talented as far as guitar chops, but not really my thing, so I went in front of the Whisky and hung out for a bit. Met a few Schenker fans and talked for a while, then went inside to catch the next band, Death Valley Gypsies. They were a pretty good band that played songs in the style of Guns n’ Roses, and were a pretty good fit for this show. After that, I found a great spot by the soundboard at the side of the stage and it was time to rock.

This was also the first of a three night run at the Whisky and the first show of that leg of the tour. He dedicated his set to two recently deceased band mates- Chris Glenn from MSG and Paul Raymond from UFO. His set list covered his entire career, featuring hits from UFO, Scorpions, and MSG. Not sure if this was the best Schenker show I’ve seen, but it was really good. It was a real treat getting to see the different singers play on different songs, and at times sharing the stage together. Afterwards, I hung out and talked to the band, then walked over to the Viper Room to catch some free live music at their jam session that happened every Monday, called The Sunset Jam.

A great night of music with Michael Schenker, Robert Sickels and Whisky A Go-Go at Whisky A Go-Go.

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