Grooving! Neil Francis at Thalia Hall (January 14, 2022)

Two days before the show, Thalia announces they will be covid testing on site before you are granted access. Here is the lengthy process.  Firstly, you line up outside the testing center while it is snowing. Then, they hand you a form to fill out. After filling out the form, you then have to fill out another form online and copy the code onto the hard form. At last, you go inside and get a cotton swap shoved up your nose. Then you wait inside for 10 minutes. You realize your tester has not returned and you ask another person if your results have come back. They find your card and you are given an orange wristband. You then go outside and head to the venue where they ask for your vaccination card and ID. At last you enter Thalia Hall and are immediately asked to remove all items from your pockets and are then wanded with a metal detector. You go up the stairs and then they check your ticket. Afterwards, another person checks your ID so you can get alcohol. At last, you are finished. Do you get to meet the President or the Queen of England now?!

At last, the concert begins. Neil Francis was in prime form tonight. He was very excited to play Thalia Hall, which is walking distance from where he lives. His last Chicago show was in Millennium Park on September 9th.

One of the best songs is “Can’t Stop The Rain”. It’s so catchy and so groovy. “You can’t stop the rain! It’s always coming down! It’s always gonna fall, but you’re not gonna drown!” Everyone is swaying and dancing along. His style of music is a blend of 70s southern rock, Americana, soul, and Chicago funk.

Another great groover is Changes, Pts. 1 & 2. It includes a very long jam that continually builds to a fantastic climax. The whammy bar on the keyboard is uncommon to see, and he uses it fantastically.

Cost of a ticket: $42 (including fees)

PlaylistHQ Economic Rating: Worth It –

Rating Scale: Exceptional Value > Worth It > Half Price > Go for Free > Don’t Bother

See the full setlist here.

Quinn Delaney

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