Tip your cap to the Go-Go’s. They made some great New Wave music in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s, and even though they planned a "farewell tour" in 2010, here they are three years later, still playing their greatest hits, although as drummer Gina Schock said, they didn't get a sound check. We could tell.
And, even without bassist Kathy Valentine, the Go-Go’s still were themselves Wednesday night at a chilly sparsely attended show at the BMO Harris Pavilion. All these years later, barefoot Belinda Carlisle (in black capri pants) sounded young and vibrant – although hard to hear at first – and you’ve gotta love Milwaukee’s own Jane Wiedlin (knee brace, Packers owner and all) – who I still fondly remember from "Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure."
Wiedlin gave it all, making fun of Coors Light, while Carlisle seemed to go through the motions, at least physically, onstage. Still, they sounded good once they got going.
In a lengthy firework-punctuated set, we didn’t hear many surprises, nor did we expect to. Hits like "Vacation," "Our Lips Are Sealed" and "Head Over Heels" still brought smiles. (Carlisle’s solo hit, "Mad About You" still annoyed the crap out of me). And it was interesting to hear the girl group cover the Rolling Stones’ "Paint It Black." Less interesting to hear KISS in the encore, however.
Interesting, too, was that this show began quite early at 8 p.m. with Streetlife as the opener who played for a whole hour. The ladies didn't take the stage until much later. Personally, I would’ve loved to see The B-52’s, as they’ve joined the Go-Go’s on several dates during this tour.
But I love ‘80s music, so I’m not complaining at all. I loved it then, and I love it now. Seeing the Go-Go’s isn’t such a rare opportunity, but it was still the first time for me. Personality conflicts, breakups and reunions aside, this was a fun, festive show. My mind already on the holiday weekend, "Vacation" seemed totally apropos for my fifth and final visit to Summerfest this year. Jump back.
Get Up and Go
How Much More
Mad About You
Paint It Black
Skidmarks on my Heart
Our Lips Are Sealed
I Want To Be Sedated
We Got the Beat
Rock N Roll All Nite
Fun With Ropes
Head Over Heels
No Talkbacks for this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Andy Tarnoff
Published July 9, 2017
If a picture is worth 1,000 words, then sometimes it's best to let them just speak for themselves. Here are eight photos I took that made me look twice during Summerfest's 2017 run.
Published July 8, 2017
Rereading my review from 2009, I see that Lewis' set list hasn't changed much in the last seven years ... and why would it? The order has flipped: he opened with "The Heart of Rock & Roll" this time instead off closing with it. But this very tight band, which has been performing in almost the same incarnation since 1979, played hit after `80s hit.
Published July 6, 2017
Up until just two years ago, Summerfest offered something very unique at a few of the beer stands on the grounds. If you looked hard enough, you could find special red and white wine coolers, with the closely-guarded secret ingredients, that were made just for the Big Gig.
Published July 6, 2017
Nineteen Thirteen is high art, a pairing of two unlikely instruments and a style that is totally its own. This is a group that sounds at home at the Jazz Estate or Linneman's, but eclectically and wonderfully out-of-place on the BMO Stage. But also not.
Published June 29, 2017
Original founders Anthony Kiedis and Flea, buffeted by longtime drummer and Will Ferrell doppelgänger Chad Smith, plus former touring guitarist Josh Kinghoffer, looked like the crazy, ripped, tattooed, formerly drunk uncles you always wish you had (or at least I wish I had). And they put on one of the best Summerfest shows I've ever seen.
Published June 27, 2017
OnMilwaukee Publisher Andy Tarnoff might as well call Summerfest 2017 his "guilty pleasure tour." But he's not ashamed. Here's who he's seeing at the Big Gig.
Published June 22, 2017
I love black coffee, so I took a little umbrage to a new study published in the journal Appetite, which cited a connection between black coffee drinkers and sadists, psychopaths and narcissists.
Published June 2, 2017
In an industry where positioning a brand as retro vintage is suddenly new and trendy, Milwaukee's Lucky Tiger doesn't even need to even try. Trademarked in Kansas City in 1935, the iconic men's brand actually stretches back to a barber shop from the 1920s, when it was a very large line of tonics and hair products.
Published May 13, 2017
Such an unlikely pairing. The blue-eyed soul of Hall & Oates, or the Brit pop of Tears For Fears? Who was better Saturday night at the Bradley Center? Depends who you're asking.
Published May 11, 2017
Milwaukee artist Ava Herrider is an animal lover, but it took her a few career changes to settle upon pet portraiture as her full-time job. Last year, she decided to do what moves her: "paint things people love," as she says. In other words, their pets.