We went to see TSO for the 3rd year in a row in Greenville this past weekend. We were 6th row, center and once again, it was fabulous. The first half was mostly the same, but since they have a new CD out this year, the second half had some new songs, which was exciting. Also, the lighting seems to get more impressive every year. There seemed to be more lights set up and more effects. The only people changes I noticed this year were 1) Roddy Chong has either gone solo and doesn’t tour with TSO anymore (I’d hear this earlier this year, but I’m not sure because he’s still on the website) or he’s gone over to West and 2) One of last year’s singers (I unfortunately don’t remember his name) was replaced by Rob Evan (who, by Chris Caffery’s intro, seemed to be back from being gone). Apart from the pretty cool violin duel last year, I don’t think the changes made too much of a difference.
The one definitely positive development was that Johnny Lee Middleton, the bassist who I complained about last year, was much more entertaining this year. Maybe he just had a bad day last year. He seemed more into it this year. So…no longer a complaint in my book. 🙂 Also! Since we went to the later show this year, we got to stick around for the meet and greet! Yay! It seemed a bit rushed this year, which was unfortunate because I get flustered when I’m rushed. I wanted to be able to tell at least some of them I enjoyed the show and that we were repeat visitors, but I only managed to blurt it out once or twice. But some people stuck out in my mind as really trying to be personable, which I really appreciated – the drummer Jeff Plate, Johnny Lee Middleton, one of the singers James Lewis, and the violinist Anna Phoebe (who asked me a few questions!). Chris also spoke to Alexa Goddard, one of the singers, and Chris Caffery. Sadly, Alex Skolnick, who I was most looking forward to talking to, seemed distracted, but did respond when I told him I enjoyed the show. Plus, I remember him being nice the first year we went, asking me questions, so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt. Overall, though, it was really cool to see them all up close and even just say hi. And I got a few more guitar picks to add to my TSO pick collection! 😀
Here’s some pictures from the Greenville concert (sorry for the blurriness. I gave up trying to get decent pictures halfway through. I don’t know what the problem was – the pictures were much better last year. I think I need a new camera. A DSLR! Hint, hint. :D):
And here’s a video (which actually came out decent):
So, we had a really good time and I can’t wait to see TSO West in December!! It’ll be exciting to see the different group (and Chris Altenhoff!! Squee!).