John Fogerty is the Great Neutralizer.
At one point during his show at Deer Valley‘s amphitheater last night, I looked around and saw kids skipping around the grass, teenage hipsters swaying arm in arm, college kids raising their Solo cups to the sky, middle-aged women clinking plastic wine glasses, grey-bearded bikers dancing with each other- and every single one of them was singing along to Bad Moon Rising, word for word.
John got a text from a friend that morning, asking if we would take two concert tickets he couldn’t use. We looked at each other and shrugged. Who doesn’t love a little Creedence Clearwater Revival? We started singing, “Doo doo doo- lookin’ out my back door…” and anticipated the fun evening ahead.
Being our second outdoor picnic event in two days, we decided to keep it simple and picked up a couple of wood-fired pizzas from Vinto on the way. When we got to Deer Valley Resort, the hillside was already a sea of people. Classic rock tunes played from the speakers and I saw more than a few tie-dye shirts. The weather was ideal. This was going to be fun.
Deer Valley is the fanciest of the ski resorts in Park City (read: most expensive). I have no idea if the experience lives up to the hype because they are a skiers-only mountain, and I snowboard. But in years past, I’ve gotten to see some great acts on stage in the summertime, from Jimmy Cliff to Bob Dylan. We set up shop for the second night in a row and took in the views from the top of the hill.
After an evening spent shivering through an outdoor movie the night before, we packed for coziness. Extra blanket? Check. Puffy coats? Check. Hat, just in case? Check. And we wore real shoes. But with the sun still shining warmly on the hillside, we kicked them off and enjoyed a barefoot summer supper.
When the show started, the whole audience rose to their feet. John Fogerty seems to have discovered the Fountain of Youth, looking far less weathered than I expected. Prior to the show, I had read about a CCR feud that lasted for years, during which Mr. Fogerty refused to sing any of the band’s hits. Thankfully, that is no longer the case. Song after song, he rocked them. Proud Mary. Down on the Corner. Born on the Bayou. Lodi. Fortunate Son. Suzie Q. Tunes so familiar, they could be American anthems. Do bands even make music anymore that will be sung by people of all ages 40 years from now?
As the day began to fade, the sun painted some color onto a few passing clouds. We finally put on socks and shoes and sweaters, but John Fogerty played on. People of every age continued to dance and sing into the night, shouting out their requests between songs.
My advice to struggling high school teachers, parents battling their kids, desperate politicians…Want to bridge the generation gap?
Just play a little Creedence. Music is magic.