July 8, 2023
Columbia County Performing Arts Center
Review by Joseph Hett
Air Supply Is Awesome In Evans
Air Supply brought The Lost in Love Experience Tour to the Columbia County Performing Arts Center in Evans, GA on Saturday night. Airheads made their way into the PAC to escape the heat outside as the temperature was approaching 100 degrees.
Right on time, Aaron McLain (lead guitar/musical director), Mirko Tessandori (keyboards), Pavel Valdman (drums) and Doug Gild (bass) made their way out onstage to crank out a loud intro for the gentlemen of the hour. Graham Russell (guitar/vocals) and Russell Hitchcock (lead vocals) then made their way out for “Sweet Dreams.”
The capacity crowd became electric when the first notes were heard for “Even the Nights Are Better.” The Airheads immediately began singing along – and that would become a common theme throughout the evening. Air Supply kept the classics coming with “Just as I Am,” “Every Woman in the World” and “Here I Am.”
Russell stated that “Tonight is our 5,327th show of our career, but tonight will be the best show ever. We are yours…in return you are ours,” before they slowed it down with “Chances,” “Goodbye” and “I Can Wait Forever.”
At this point in the show, Hitchcock and the rest of the band exited the stage for a well deserved break except for Russell. After asking the audience who all hasn’t seen Air Supply in concert before, Russell quipped why it took them 48 years to do so. “We just got back from doing five shows in Honolulu and we thought it was HOT until we came here,” Russell jokingly said. Russell noted that Hitchcock was backstage having tea so he could come back and sing even higher than before.
Russell then went on to recite a short poem titled “Am I” from his book “Turn Left at Greenland.” Tessandori then came out to play keyboards on “I’ll Find You.”
Hitchcock came back wearing a black sleeveless shirt exposing his tattoo-filled arms. Ironically, his shirt said “TATTOOS ARE STUPID.” Russell and Hitchcock both sat on stools on the center of the stage and told a few stories. They spoke about first meeting each other, similarities, early music making and opening for Rod Stewart in 1977. They then encouraged the crowd to singalong with “Two Less Lonely People in the World.”
Russell performed a unique solo on his acoustic guitar. He plucked and tapped on the strings all while banging it’s body for a percussion effect. For “The One That You Love,” Hitchcock instructed the audience to sing the chorus.
After the timeless “Lost in Love,” Valdman performed a drum solo and McLain performed a monstrous guitar solo. McLain was shredding so fast, the fog machine to his right made it look like his guitar was smoking. Throughout the evening, McLain made soloing look effortlessly.
Air Supply closed out the set with the epic “Making Love Out of Nothing at All.” After a brief break, they returned for “Without You” followed by crew and band introductions. They even gave a shout-out to military veterans in the building. To close out the show, they ended with the one and only “All Out of Love.”
Air Supply put on a marvelous show. The musicianship of all members of the band was phenomenal. It’s amazing how Hitchcock hit the high notes perfectly. While Air Supply might be typecast as a band playing sappy love songs, they truly put on a rocking show in concert. Air Supply is still at the top of their game!
For more information including tour dates, please visit: airsupplymusic.com