Last night I went to check out the Gipsy Kings at the Riverside Theatre in Milwaukee. What a cool show. Those guys really knew how to put on a good show. Six guitarists, three leftie, three rightie, and they looked very symmetrical. The musicians in the back row consisted of a drum kit player, a bassist, a percussionist (leather pants), and a keyboard player. Of the four, only the percussionist looked like he was a regular performer. The rest (keyboards, drums, bass) looked like they may have been session musicians filling in.
The Gipsy Kings put on a great presentation, and they really knew how to work the audience. After every song, the lead singer (a rotating role, using a centralized microphone) would take a bow, and then gesture loftily to the other musicians. All the motions were regal and elegant.
My one gripe about this show had nothing to do with the Gipsy Kings themselves. The Riverside Theatre had hired a completely incompetent sound engineer that night, as the sound really sucked. The bass drum was too loud, and too drenched in sub tones to allow the delicate upper-register instruments to shine. At one point, the bass player took a wicked solo, but I couldn’t hear a note. The sound tech had rolled off all the high frequencies of the bass, and every now and then you’d hear a fat splat of a low note, but nothing else. I could tell the bassist was sailing all over the place by his hand movements, and by the response that he got from the audience close to the stage.
All in all, great show. Bummer that the Riverside Theatre would bring a world class act and not step up accordingly.