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Top music events that glued us to our seats or made us want to get up and dance

One of the beautiful things about music is its ability to transform a moment. Sometimes the moments are quiet, and you don’t want to move or barely even breathe for fear of missing a note. Sometimes the music physically takes over you, and your body can’t stop moving.

As we continue our journey of looking back over the past 30 years, here are some of our favorite musical moments and artists.

Concerts that kept us glued to our seats

Elvis Costello

The stars aligned for a brief period in 2012, and the Barclay was asked if it would be interested in presenting a rare solo performance by Elvis Costello. It didn’t even take a second to say yes. Tickets sold out almost immediately, and on the night of the show, the audience was intent on listening to every word until the hall exploded in a standing ovation.

Arlo Guthrie

We miss Arlo. He has retired from touring these days, but we have so many wonderful memories of him and his family. Arlo appeared at the Barclay 13 times over the years. Plus, we presented him outdoors at the Orange County Great Park. Arlo carries the mantle of folk singer, and he believes in that tradition. It is his superpower that enables him to take a disparate group of people, gathered from all walks of life, and tell them stories and sing songs; and by the end, turn them into a unified group, all happily singing together.

David Hidalgo & Louie Perez of Los Lobos: Stories in Song

Los Lobos can’t be pigeon-holed into one musical genre…they play it all. This band from East L.A. has described themselves as accidental rock stars, but it is certainly not an accident. The members are muy talented. It was a very special night when the song-writing team behind the band played their stories on our stage.

Concerts that made us get up and dance!

Preservation Hall Jazz Band

No artist has performed more times at the Barclay than Preservation Hall Jazz Band. An audience favorite, they have appeared 21 times on the Barclay stage, plus outdoors at the Orange County Great Park. The band is steeped in the New Orleans tradition, and yet they continue to be relevant in today’s music scene, performing with major artists like Dave Grohl and the Foo Fighters and taking their style to new audiences at Coachella. No matter where they play, they have audiences on their feet swaying and dancing to the beat.

Big Bad Voodoo Daddy

It’s all about the swing… and that’s what this band does best. They make studio records and have appeared on television and film; but live concerts are what this band lives for — and they never phone it in.

Tower of Power

This band may have come to fame in the 70s, but they still draw crowds and bring the funk. I defy you to sit still during a Tower of Power show.

Please click here to return to the January 2021 Newsletter Table of Contents.