Berks Jazz Fest 2012: George Benson

Saturday evening, guitarist and singer extraordinaire George Benson was appearing at the Sovereign Performing Arts Center in front of a capacity crowd. He was backed by his longtime band members Michael O'Neill on guitar and Stanley Banks on bass, musical director David Garfield and Tom Hall on keys, plus Oscar Seaton Jr. on drums. George Benson, just having become 69 years old, is still going strong, both on guitar and vocals, delivering a professional and hit-packed show. He opened the concert with the instrumental "Breezin'" on the guitar, before focusing on his singing with tracks like "Love X Love", "Turn This Love Around", plus the jazzy "Moody's Mood" for good measure, then loosened things up with the instrumental "Affirmation", followed by "The Lady In My Life", his current hit single from the Guitar Man album, spicing things up with "Tequila" before flooring the crowd with "This Masquerade". He turned up the heat with "On Broadway", which was an early highlight. We were almost bombarded with hits, it is incredible how many great and familiar songs have been crafted by this man over his lengthy career. The crowd got on their feet with the closing song "Give Me The Night".