Chicago & The Doobie Brothers @ Budweiser Stage

Life moves pretty fast, sometimes you need to just stop and listen to the music. And listen we did, as Chicago and The Doobie Brothers made their grand return to Toronto on July 19th.

It was on a hot and steamy night at the Budweiser Stage, which almost felt like the first true day of summer that the GTA has seen, when The Doobie Brothers would set the scene for the evening. Both Chicago and The Doobie Brothers are are representative of an era in which music budgets and touring fees were minimal, which allowed for large groups of instrumentalists to create larger-than-life music. Touring around a four-piece in 2017 can be quite costly, never mind 6+ members and crew. In those days, the cost didn’t matter, it was all about making great music.

And what great music was played! The Doobie Brothers have an envious music catalogue and brought out all of the hits at the Bud Stage, including “Black Water”, “China Grove”, “Takin’ It to the Streets” and “Long Train Runnin’”. Earlier in the set, Patrick Simmonsintroduced “Eye of Silver” by saying,”We’re going to play a song now off of our album, The Captain and Me, which we recorded in 1960…” and then trailed off as he tried to remember which year in the 60s it took place, which drew much laughter from the crowd. Apparently, The Doobie Brothers came by their name honestly. To end the show, the Doobies and the crowd, belted out to their tune “Listen to the Music”, which had everyone on their feet.

Why go to Chicago, when Chicago can come to Toronto! After the dust had settled on The Doobie Brothers’ set, it was time for those Chicago boys to hit the stage. While it has been a while since they graced a Toronto stage, Chicago showed no signs of slowing down. From “Saturday in the Park”, to “Hard to Say I’m Sorry/Get Away”, and to “Your My Inspiration” and “If You Leave Me Now”, the set list was filled with 29 of your favourite tunes. Fans were excited to be seeing one of the greats in experimental/psychedelic rock onstage, leaving one attendee to exclaim, “This is how real music is supposed to be!”, which no one could deny. Saving the best for last, Chicago left the audience on “25 and 6 to 4”, which brought anyone who was left in their seats to their feet.


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