The Redneck, for our ten anniversary which will be on January 28th, bought tickets to see Robert Cray at the Arkley Center in Eureka. Yep. I was the loud one.
I had to work at the office this week, so on Friday, the Redneck planned to meet me in Eureka. On his way home, he surprised me. He stopped at the Blue Lake Casino.
He got us a room at their hotel there. With a King size bed. SWEEEEEET!
So, we had dinner at the Woodley Island Marina.
The Redneck had Petrole Sole and I had scallops. Great view and awesome food.
Then we went to see Robert Cray.
He was AWESOME!!! Let me say that again. AWESOME!!!!! “Chicken In The Kitchen” was probably the most fun. The Cray band was ON FIRE last night. He did his signature “Phone Booth”, “Smoking Gun” and “Strong Persuader”, mixing it in with his new stuff like “Love 2009” and “Trouble and Pain”. Jim Pugh was brilliant, as always, taking the keyboards to new and glorious heights. The Redneck and I love Jim as both a performer and a song writer since many of the songs we love are written by Cray or by Jim. Richard Cousins, the bassist, is new to me, though not to the Cray band since he was with Cray when they recorded some of his earlier work. Cousins was energetic and seemed to bring a more outward performance for entertainment. I loved it.
Cray was his usual fantastic fingering self adding a few tricks such as echoing on his guitar to really drive his music straight to the gut. During on quiet period between songs, I shouted in my usual shy way for the song that has become the theme song for the Redneck and I. “Time Makes Two”. Though Robert Cray didn’t do the song in the first set, the rowdy response from the crowd brought him out for an encore. Three songs. My favorite new song “I Can’t Fail” (which is a personal song to me and I cried when he played it. Shhhh don’t tell anyone), “That’s What Keeps Me Rockin'” and, for the finale, “Time Makes Two” which was one of the most beautiful live performances I’ve ever seen.
I don’t know if he played it specifically because I yelled for it or because he’d planned it already, but it went straight to my heart and reminded me why I love Robert Cray. Few artists can evoke the same emotion from a live performance that he can from a studio one for me, yet I’ve seen Cray four times (HSU 1999, Blues By The Bay 2003, Konocti 2003 and last night at the Arkley Center.) and he’s never, ever disappointed me. He is one of the few artist that I’ll buy a live performance CD.
We weren’t allowed to take pics or video, so I don’t have any for you. If you have a chance to see him live, go.
After the concert, we drove out to The Blue Lake Casino and checked out our room. They’re brand new, having just been built last year, and very, very nice. At only $108 a night for two, it was a STEAL IMHO.
We had a perfect night’s stay and slept in. It was late when when we dragged our butts out of bed and went to breakfast at The Samoa Cookhouse.
We met up with a waitress who was the wife of a fisherman the Redneck used to know. It was a blast finding out how everyone is doing. What a great time.
It was the best way to spend an anniversary. I loved every minute.