046Written by Eddie Ferranti
Covering gigs is a very wonderful way to escape the rat race for a few hours in Houston and just have fun.  When you get to go to one where there is a full blown “entertainer’ and chick magnet like Chris Isaak it combines awesome vocal range, killer band mates, and a dash of comedy that all comes together for a great night.
That is exactly what occurred when Isaak and his polished band of 31 years packed the House of Blues bringing along a sound crew that presented the show in crisp, clean and non-earplug volume that was sweet. Isaak’s years of acting and being a talk show host helps him dominate a stage in a good way like few others.

Starting the night out by proclaiming:  “I’d just like to thank all of you for showing up because otherwise I would be wondering the streets of Houston in this suit!”  Of course it was a signature “colorful” one that he’s been known to wear for every show he does. Other one liners that stuck with Rose and I were: “We’re not a Beyonce dance show, but if you try real hard you might imagine Lady gaga!”  Plus::  “We’re a gig where you can just about smell the corndogs early on!”  Classics that kept the night loose and he never bogged it down with too much jabber jawin’ either.

Of course the man can cover all the bases in a night of music for sure.  With a stud lead guitarist like Hershel Yatovitz, Roland Sally (the only member with a Grammy for “Killin the Blues”), and Texas native Kenny Dale Johnson on drums, these guys are as slick as snot on a door knob!

134Several highlights of the night included “Wicked Game” a sweet tune that jump started his career over 25 years ago, opener “Dancin'”, swooning “San Francisco Days” featuring extended hold of last note that was incredible and the beautifully sappy “Somebody’s Crying”.  CI can do homage to the greats , too with stellar covers of “Oh Pretty Woman” and “Great Balls of Fire”.  Plus he paid respect to the passing of Scotty Moore, Elvis’ original guitarist and a great rock pioneer with a couple of Presley numbers. I personally dig when he puts the harder edge to his stuff like rockin’ numbers “Blue Hotel” and from soundtrack of “Eyes Wide Shut” the sexy “Baby Did a Bad Bad Thing” !

Isaak is a witty gent who has a real talent for making his audience feel special.  This was my fifth time to catch him and he seems to get better with age if that is possible. The glitzy costumes coupled with the rockabilly beat wrapped around high falsetto note ballads all total up to one heck of an experience.  Judging by the high energy in the building the packed house agreed.  You have not lived until ya see a dude do an encore in a one-of-a-kind mirrored tuxedo………..Try it next go around !  I’m out until the next one…………..

Eddie “Edge” Ferranti
Senior Editor
Houston Music Review