For almost 61 years old, Rick Springfield can rock just like he is still in his 30s. Springfield performed a free concert at the Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis on August 12, 2010.
Right from the start with breaking glass to get the crowd’s attention, Springfield wandered onto the stage rocking with “Mr. PC,” one of four songs from his last album titled Venus in Overdrive. From there Springfield sang “I’ve Done Everything for You,” one of his first hit songs and written by Sammy Hagar, and two songs from Living in Oz, “Affair of the Heart” and the title track.
With the heat index at 100-105 degrees, Springfield stopped at this point to wipe sweat from his face and said, “Man, it’s hot out here!” He then proceeds to change shirts right on stage in front of the fans.
“What’s Victoria’s Secret?,” the first song released from VIO, kept the audience consisting of mainly women with a few men and teens rocking on their feet. Springfield continued keeping the audience on their feet as he sang “I Get Excited,” “Alyson,” and “Souls.”
Taking another breather, Springfield wiped his face again and briefly talked about VIO before he sang the title track. He quickly moved into the next song by simply saying, “This is for the dads.” Many in the audience sat down since “I’ll Miss That Someday” is not one of Springfield’s well-known hits.
“How many of you remember 1981?” Springfield asked the crowd of around 4,000. Rising to their feet once again, the audience screamed while Springfield began his hit song, “Love is Alright Tonight.”
During the last part of the nearly two hour concert, Springfield interacted with the crowd more than he had the rest of the concert. During one of his biggest hits, “Don’t Talk to Strangers,” Springfield slipped into the audience and chose four girls, aged 4-17, to sing the chorus with him as well as dance. He informed the crowd, “It’s nice to know I can dance like a four-year-old,” as he moved his body just like the youngest girl on stage.
With the girls back to their parents, Springfield shared a story of how he is mistaken for a real-life doctor and how he starred in a movie called Hard to Hold and showed his naked backside. Of course, that drew screams from the female part of the crowd as well as Springfield diving into another hit song, “Love Somebody.”
As soon as Springfield began his next song, “Human Touch,” the crowd showed their excitement knowing shortly he would be wandering around among them. Sure enough as he has done in the last few years, Springfield jumped off of the stage and wandered among the audience sitting on the folding chairs on the dirt track. As he reached the back and looked up into the huge grandstand, Springfield pointed at a sign held by 14-year-old Ashley* and chuckled. The sign said, “Do you remember this? You sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to me on June 26, 1999.” Arrows from this pointed to a copy of another much smaller sign that said, “Rick, would you sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to my daughter?” He headed up into the grandstand where he stayed briefly before heading back to the stage and finishing the song.
Springfield finished up the main part of the show by singing his all-time classic and number one hit, “Jessie’s Girl.” He then introduced the band: Derek Hilland, Matt Bissonette, Rodger Carter and George Bernhardt. Springfield exited from the stage after giving himself his signature hug.
Some of the crowd began meandering out while the majority kept waiting and hoping Springfield would return for an encore. After a few minutes he did return without a shirt and sporting black-rimmed eyeglasses. He treated the audience to a cover of “Wild Thing” and a song from 1982 called “Kristina,” and then he quickly left the stage for good.
Afterwards, Ashley shared how her mom took her to see Rick at Six Flags outside of St. Louis the day after her third birthday. “My mom told me when he saw the smaller sign he stopped in the middle of singing ‘I Get Excited’ and got the whole audience to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to me,” she said. “I feel honored that he did that.”
Indeed, Ashley is right in feeling honored because Springfield truly cares about his fans as was evident in the concert.
NOTE:*The last name is withheld to protect her.