Don Felder

St. George Theater, SI, NY

Don Felder
St. George Theater - Staten Island, NY - 10/19/18
Review- Rebecca Wolf
Photos - Rebecca Wolf

Don Felder, former member of the classic rock band the Eagles, many no longer sell out stadiums and arenas, like the remaining members of the Eagles continue to do. However, if you want to hear an amazing night of Eagles hits, expertly played and beautifully sung by an original Eagles member, without emptying your pockets, then you must see a Don Felder show.  

At the St. George Theater in Staten Island on Friday October 19th, Don Felder played to an audience of enthusiastic, adoring fans. It was evident that the crowd not only was thrilled to hear the music of the Eagles but to be experiencing it through the voice and guitar-jamming of Don Felder. Don Felder himself was obviously just as enthusiastic to be playing these songs that have been a part of his life for over 40 years. No one would be able to detect any feelings of negativity or animosity towards the band Felder had been ousted from in 2001, nor the ugly drama and court battles that ensued. 

It was May 2007 before the initial lawsuits were settled out of court. In 2008, Felder published an autobiography about his experiences with the Eagles, “Heaven and Hell: My Life in the Eagles (1974-2001), which was long contested by founding members, Don Henley and Glenn Frey. The book provided Don Felder the opportunity to present his life story, describe his relationships with Henley and Frey, and relay his perspective on his termination from the band. When the Eagles later created their “History of the Eagles” Documentary, followed by a tour, Felder was not included and criticized the documentary as incomplete. These former band members have never been able to reconcile, though Felder reports having made overtures to do so.  After Frey’s death, Felder expressed deep sorrow that his hope, to “have dinner together, talking about old times and letting it go with a handshake and a hug,” had never come to fruition.
However, on the night of October 19th, what Don Felder expressed was positive nostalgia towards his history with the Eagles and the music he helped create with the band. A smile remained on his face throughout the evening, along with a look of appreciation for the warm embrace he was receiving from his fans. Felder shared brief introductory information before each upcoming song, leading to excited cheers from the audience upon determining the next anticipated number. Equal enthusiasm was shown by the crowd for the Felder’s songs outside the Eagles catalog, including those from his most recent solo album. Fans shouted out words of praise to Felder, while singing and dancing throughout the evening, 

The current Don Felder band includes Kasim Sultan, as a back up singer and bass guitar player, who’s been a part of the music industry for more than 40 years. Sultan began his career as an original member of the group Utopia. He was the bassist and background vocalist on two Meat Loaf albums, including, “Bat Out of Hell”, and has toured with Meat Loaf, Blue Oyster Cult, Hall & Oates, and Cheap Trick, amongst others. He has also been a frequent collaborator, as well as bassist and singer on former Utopia band member, Todd Rundgren’s projects and solo tours. 

At the end of the show Felder graciously remained on stage, signing autographs and taking selfies with fans - not something you frequently see these days. He appeared to genuinely be invigorated by the adoration given to him by his fans.  It was heartwarming to witness an artist who wanted to not only connect with the fans but to give back a bit of the love and attention being bestowed upon him. Don Felder is a show to see, if your want to leave the theater with a smile on your face, a warm feeling in your heart, and an Eagles tune in your head.
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