Joan Jett and the Blackhearts
The Pacific Amphitheater was packed full of families, couples and men and women of all ages a performance by the legendary Joan Jett and the Blackhearts. It was a partly overcast evening, but that didn't stop OC Fairgoers and fans from experiencing this concert.
The only opening act was the Texas based all girl band Girl In A Coma, which unfortunately many people didn't get a chance to see. But for the fans there, the band provided a great precursor to Joan Jett and the Blackhearts by their warming concoction of alternative, indie rock and punk.
The beautiful Joan Jett and her band, the Blackhearts took the stage just after 8:30 p.m. and began to rock the crowd of several thousand in Costa Mesa immediately. Fans cheered and sang along for most songs, which included mandatory juke box classics from Jett, and her nearly 40 year career with the Runaways as well as the Blackhearts and other solo music/collaborations.
Fan favorites included “I Hate Myself for loving you,” “Cheery Bomb,” “Do You Want To Touch Me?,” “Bad Reputation,” and her iconic “I Love Rock 'n' Roll.”
Jett might be in her early 50s, but her voice sounds perfect. The petite, youthful guitarist/singer appeared in a silver striped spandex, with hair as gorgeous as her days with the Runaways. Backing her in the Blackhearts was guitarist Dougie Needles, drummer Thomas Price, keyboardist Kenny Laguna and bass player Acey Slade. The band threw down with a tightness that felt crisp, clear and loud, all across the entire stadium. It was a great musical backdrop for Jett's high energy, emotional super-charged love songs. This was in your face fist pumping Rock 'n' Roll music in the vein of Aerosmith and AC/DC meets The Sex Pistols and Ramones.
Fans in the Pacific Amphitheater enjoyed new songs “From Soulmates to Strangers,” and “Fragile,” as well as other classic rock tunes such as “Crimson and Clover,” and the first song Jett ever wrote, “You Drive Me Wild.”
At the end of the evening, Jett graciously thanked the audience, before exiting with the Blackhearts. All in all, the crowd was pleased to experience Joan Jett and the Blackhearts perform these classic rock songs live. Jett gave a stellar performance for OC Fair attendees and fans, with a memorable, and powerful set that lasted just over an hour.
The crowd: Various families from the fair, couples from all ages, old and younger people with dates, from hipsters to bikers, and everyone in between. There were also tons of ladies, especially middle-aged OC cougars drinking wine, smoking cigarettes (or vaporizing), and attempting to relive their youth by dressing in tight all black revealing outfits.
Overheard in the crowd:“So this is the band that movie the Runaways was about? “Asked a younger blonde girl to her family just before the show, outside of the Pacific Amphitheater but still on the OC Fairgrounds.
Random Notebook Dump/Interesting Fact: Joan Jett's career in music began in the 70s with the all girl rock band The Runaways, which the 2010 film is based on. Jett has toured the world and been in the music/entertainment business for over four decades. She is an acclaimed songwriter, guitarist, and musical producer.