The Fillmore Silver Spring | 6/29/16

By Jay Oakley

Whitesnake's songs are iconic and have long been considered kings of the 80s glam/hard rock scene. Led by the one and only David Coverdale, I was very curious to see the show I was going to get. I know every record and love singing the songs but up until now I haven't been able to see them live. The last time they were in the area was at the M3 Festival and I heard there were mixed reviews. Well, it seems to me that the naysayers were either blind or deaf because tonight they killed.

Opening up with "Bad Boys" and following up with "Slide It In," they captured the crowd right away but it was "Fool For Your Loving" that really got the crowd synced up with the band. The first big highlight were the guitar solo's of Reb Beach and Joel Hoekstra. Reb's was very bluesy with heavy use of his whammy bar and Joel's was just sheer power. Insane shredding with pin-point tapping and the fans sitting in the palm of his hand.

Following "Slow An' Easy" and "Crying In The Rain" came Tommy Aldridge's drum solo. Wow, just wow. Tommy's pedigree and reputation are untouchable and he showed why. A thunderous two-part solo started with sticks and showed why he's considered a pioneer of the double bass but it was the second part that floored the crowd. after tossing his sticks into the crowd he started wailing away with his fists all over his drum heads and cymbals. Even the band was standing side stage watching the magic that Tommy was laying performing.

After David introduced the members of the band, the main set closed out with "Is This Love," "Give Me All Your Love" and, of course, "Here I Go Again." The encore was "Still Of The Night" and brought a solid close to the evening.

All-in-all, David sounded great. I have to give credit where credit is due. There are certain areas of his range that aren't what they used to be but that's simply because a few calendar days have gone by. One of the things that I have noticed about Whitesnake over the years is that David has always surrounded himself with very excellent musicians. With the success he had in the 80s it would be easy to surround himself with decent players or scrubs just to keep the Whitesnake train on the tracks but that's not his style and it shows. I was very impressed with the talent around him.