Last Thursday I went to see Paul Gilbert in the P60 in Amstelveen together with two friends. We got what we paid for. And I mean this in a good way. Here is a guitar virtuoso extraordinaire who toured the world with the band Mr. Big (yes, from the major hit “Just to Be With You”, which proves again that bands usually become famous by a song outside of their normal repertoire), has released many solo albums, but has no problem whatsoever to come to the tiny town of Amstelveen and play for not more than 100 people, and have fun as well!
Now I must admit that I knew Paul Gilbert, but wasn’t too much aware of his solo repertoire other than I knew he mixes up styles without scruples, sings sometimes, and seems like a nice fellow. So I entered the evening pretty blank. But I am not blank anymore! Boy, what a great evening! I have been to many many gigs over a period of ten years, seeing big names in big venues, big names in small venues, small names in small venues, and small names in big venues. But it doesn’t happen a lot that a big name in a small venue shows so much enthusiasm in his playing and seems genuinely interested in giving the audience their money’s worth (there are of course exceptions, like guitar virtuoso Tony MacAlpine). So, I had fun. A lot of notes where played, a lot of styles flashed by, a lot of guitars where tuned, and a lot of laughing was done… To me the musical highlights of the show where the “old” Racer X songs “Scarified” and “Technical Difficulties” and the fusion song “Burning Organ“.
Paul Gilbert is unique, his own class, rated PG, and does it an a way that is not offending or arrogant at all (and in that he is unique as well). Definitely someone to go see again for a good old night out.