Legendary musicians Daryl Hall and Todd Rundgren played The Wiltern on Monday night. Hall and Rundgren both come from Pennsylvania and are two years apart in age. During the encore, Hall joked about where they went to high school and possibly their schools playing each other in sports and if Rundgren had finished high school to which he answered he couldn’t remember. The tour kicked off April 1st in Chicago, and Rundgren most recently played L.A. in November with three nights at the Belasco Theater and when Utopia reunited their show was at the Wiltern. Rundgren played first along with Hall’s band. Rundgren was the producer for the Hall & Oates album War Babies, the duo’s third album.
Rundgren has done everything from producing to writing to playing various instruments and singing. As a producer Rundgren did major albums from Grand Funk Railroad, Meatloaf, The New York Dolls, and Badfinger. Last year Rundgren was finally inducted into the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame. Not only is Rundgren known for his solo work but also Utopia, Nazz, The New Cars and was a member of the Ringo Starr All Starr band from 2012-2017. Rundgren opened with “Real Man,” and the 14-song set included 10 solo songs, one Nazz song which was “Hello It’s Me,” and a few covers. Rundgren played The Impressions “I’m So Proud,” The Miracles “Ooo Baby Baby,” and Marvin Gayes “I Want You” before ending with “The Want of a Nail.” Since 1970 Rundgren has released more than solo albums plus one covers album. His most recent album came out this year titled Space Force. With Nazz there were just three albums and Utopia had nine albums.
After an intermission Hall took the stage. Since 2007 Hall has had his own show Live From Daryl’s House which includes performances with various music legends. Hall’s most recent solo release came out the day the tour started titled Before After which is also the tour’s name. Hall & Oates became the most successful duo of all time. They released 18 albums with all but seven selling between gold and 2x platinum as well as releasing over 60 singles, 41 that made the charts, and six number ones. Hall & Oates most recently toured between August 5th and December 4th last year. The last time Hall did a solo tour was 10 years.
Hall played 11 songs before coming back for a four song encore. In total there were six Hall & Oates songs including hits like “Sara Smile,” “I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do)”, and the final song “You Make My Dreams (Come True).” Hall’s solo songs included “I’m In a Philly Mood,” and “Cab Driver.” Rundgren joined Hall for three of the encore songs which were Hall and Oates’ “Wait For Me,” Rundgren’s “Can We Still Be Friends,” and The Sole Survivors’ “Expressway to Your Heart.”
Words and photos by Alex Kluft