by Bruce HIcks
With nearly four decades of concerts in Cleveland under his guitar strap, Todd Rundgren continued his ongoing and very public love affair with Cleveland last night at the Agora Theatre for the first of two shows. Judging by the reaction of the crowd, one thing was clear: Cleveland continues to love Rundgren as much as he loves Cleveland.
Vocalist, songwriter, studio virtuoso, multi instrumentalist, multi media wizard, and true star, Rundgren has crossed genres ranging from prog and hard rock, new wave, dance, techno, rap, bossa nova, soul, pop, blues, and beyond. And let’s not forget country. Backed by long time and much loved bassist Kasim Sulton, guitarist Jesse Gress, and veteran drummer Eddie Zyne (formerly of Foghat, Hall and Oates, and others). Rundgren has the ability to change setlists every night. His soulful voice soared as he rotated between guitar and keys throughout the night.
Over the course of two hours, Rundgren and company dished up 21 tasty servings including "Lysistrata," "Inspiration," "I Saw the Light," "One World," "Cliché," "Too Far Gone," "Past," "Determination," and "Song of the Viking." “The Wheel”, performed too infrequently these days, was included in one of two encores. In between, we heard a bit of political banter mixed with a song to the ladies and a couple of country covers, one of which was Lorne Greene’s “Endless Prairie.” Rundgren’s main digs are in Kauai, Hawaii these days, but last night he proved again why Northeast Ohio is his home away from home.