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Bad News From the Casino Circuit
by David Volk

"Danger, there's a breakdown dead ahead, Maybe you're in way above your head, I've been burned, Might upset you, But you know I'd never let you down...." --A Boz Scaggs fan's lament.

When I heard the news it took all that I had to keep from crying over the fact that Boz Scaggs and Aaron Neville had succumbed to a fate that had befallen so many before them.

Like Air Supply.

Now, I admit I wasn't all that crushed when I heard Air Supply was involved. The hair band was long overdue.

And The Charlie Daniels Band? Again, not all that sad.

My world was rocked when I heard my beloved Little River Band was touring on the casino circuit, but I was able to console myself with a trip to Spain's big tomato battle just days after, so I managed.

But this….this is almost too much to bear.

Boz "Danger There's a Breakdown Dead Ahead" Saggs and Aaron "Yellow Moon" Neville? Say it's not so.

Now, of course there are those who would defend the casino circuit saying it helps make big acts more accessible to the public by bringing them to regional locations that are easier for fans to attend. But so do movie theater showings of big concerts and I wouldn't be caught dead seeing them, either.

Those of you who have followed the rant over the years know I keep tabs on the casino concert circuit, the last resort of bands on their way out, has-beens, never weres, wanna-bes and one-hit wonders. In case you haven’t noticed, casino concerts are the last stop on the road to Palookaville. There's the state fair circuit where a band is a draw even though fairgoers don't have to pay extra to see the show and then there are casinos where the bands are as big a draw as, say, the all you can eat buffet.

Granted, in recent years the quality of food has been improving, but it's often still free to frequent gamblers. And now the entertainment is getting better, too, but it's still been relegated to, well, the status of buffet food.

And now that I've just heard the news that Boz Scaggs has been demoted to playing casinos and Aaron Neville has been reduced to an opening act, well, it's almost too much to bear. Wasn't this the guy who was doing duets with Linda Ronstadt?

Granted, they are playing at the Tulalip Amphitheater in Marysville, but it's still part of a casino resort.

Oh, how the mighty have fallen!

Don’t get me wrong. I would have attended the Little River Band concert if I hadn't been leaving for Spain the next morning. And I would also attend the Boz Scaggs concert if I didn't already have plans—I believe I'm washing my hair that night—it's just that it's so horribly, terribly sad.

On the plus side, it has given me another way to be prepared for the coming apocalypse.

I know the end will be near when the Snoqualmie Casino hosts….Bruce Springsteen.

From a man who always plays the fool, sometimes…

David Volk

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