Dennis Quaid• May 5, 2022• Egyptian Theater
Reviewed and Photographed by Alisha Gregson
On May 5th, movie star Dennis Quaid arrived in Park City to show off his musical talent to a theater full of adoring fans. When I was first asked to cover his concert I had to read the name a couple of times to make sure I wasn’t mistaken. I had no idea that the same Dennis Quaid I have grown up watching on the big screen also performed live music. It would be easy to go on and on about how talented of an actor Quaid is, but since this is a review of his concert I will leave his many well-loved movies for another day.
I always enjoy breaking away to see a live show. Did Dennis Quaid have the right stuff to rock the crowd? On my drive up to park city I thought “I can only imagine what his concert might be like”. Most weekday nights I’m just the parent trapped at home with the kids. So I couldn’t wait to enjoy good music all night long. I found myself in good company surrounded by music lovers at the Egyptian Theater. Every seat offers an excellent vantage point. Ok, ok, enough of the puns, I’ll tell you how the concert went.
I thought it was pretty exciting that Dennis Quaid would kick off his tour with 3 shows in Park City. A town where he has often been spotted attending events for the Sundance Film Festival. At the beginning of the night theater manager, Randy Barton stepped out wearing a fedora and Rose-colored glasses. He talked a little bit about the history of the theater playfully claiming “we own risqué in Utah”. He then introduced Dennis Quaid as a big star on a little stage.
Quaid walked out to a standing ovation and immediately went into his first song. At some point during the song, I thought it must be an Elvis cover. While I know many Elvis songs I don’t know them all. This was not one I was familiar with. After he finished singing the song I learned however that it was not an Elvis cover but actually an original song that Quaid wrote with Elvis in mind. He then told the crowd how much he enjoys his visits to Park City, “Park City, I love Park City. It’s quaint but ain’t too quaint.” I’m sure that it will come as no surprise that the women in the audience were swooning over Quaid. The swooning began from the moment he took the stage to the very last song of the evening.
He then shared that he was from Houston Texas where he once worked as a clown, “with all the makeup and everything. Kids hate clowns. They kick you and everything.” As someone who actually grew up with a birthday party clown for a mother, I can tell you kids really do hate clowns. But not nearly as much as teenage me hated clowns when my mom would pull out her costume every time I brought a boy home. Let’s move on.
The next song up was a cover of Johnny Cash’s ‘Walk The Line.’ He invited everyone to join in saying “If you want to sing along go ahead, because I know you think you know the words to it, and I think I know the words to it.” As far as I could tell he did in fact know all the words, and he did an excellent job. I was very impressed with his musical talent, both in his guitar playing and vocals.
Before singing his cover of Beatle’s ‘I Need You” he reminisced about when he and his brother Randy Quaid would stand in front of the stereo and pretend to be the Beatles. “He got to be John. He made me be Paul, but I wanted to be John.” I was loving Dennis Quaid’s fun stories and sense of humor. It was clear that he was an all-around entertainer. Quaid then opened up about his faith as he introduced his next original song “Fallen” from his new gospel album he just finished in Nashville. He mentioned that he had just finished reading the Bible for the 4th time in his life last week, “Stories still the same, but maybe I’m different.” He received a lot of love and encouragement from the crowd as he began singing, with multiple fans shouting out their love to him.
“You can’t grow up in Texas without knowing about Buddy Holly,” Quaid said, and then sang his energetic cover of “Not Fade Away.” His version omitted all the “bop – bop”s from the original and had more of that Nashville sound. The crowd really enjoyed it and clapped along with the beat. Quaid then set down the guitar and played the keyboard for his next 2 songs. His original song “Good Man, Bad Boy” was a really good song with blues vibes. It went perfectly with his next cover “Whole Lot Of Shakin’ Goin’ On” by Jerry Lee Lewis, who Dennis Quaid portrayed in the movie ‘Great Balls Of Fire!’ The theatre was filled with excited energy.
After a short break, Quaid came back onto the stage. This time with a special guest. Peaches, his adorable bulldog followed him out and stole the show for the next few minutes. Peaches greeted the guests in the front row before sitting down and looking up at Quaid. His next 6 songs were all original country songs written by Dennis. He sang ‘After The Fall’ then another titled “Everything” which he wrote about his philosophy on life. That was followed by ‘Heartbeat’ a love song he wrote for his wife. Before singing his very catchy song ‘Please Don’t Call me Legend’ He told the crowd “Once you turn 60 you start getting undeserved respect from people.” This fun song was definitely one of my favorites from the night, I absolutely loved it.
Quaid then talked a little bit about his drug use earlier in life, rehab, and recovery. He sang “On My Way To Heaven” a beautiful song he wrote for his mom. Dennis thanked everyone for coming and then said he was planning to walk out and come back for an encore. He instead decided to just “skip that encore B.S.” and just play the last 2 songs now.
Next up “Way Out Here On The Road” was a song written for military veterans. Saved for the very end was the one I know many fans were waiting for, “Great Balls of Fire”. This Jerry Lee Lewis cover got the crowd so excited. Some fans even got off their seats and started dancing in the aisle. It was the perfect song to end an exciting night with Dennis Quaid.
I knew the movie star was an excellent entertainer with a fun personality. So I was expecting a fun show, and he really did deliver. Overall I would say I was very impressed and surprised by his musical talent. I am looking forward to seeing where his musical journey takes him next. I know I will still have his songs stuck in my head until the day after tomorrow. (Sorry, I just had to.)