By Sheena Barnett
TUPELO – John Fogerty opened his concert in Tupelo like a true rock star, with fireworks, smoke and flashing lights.
Fogerty played all the tracks off his band Creedence Clearwater Revival’s fifth album, “Cosmo’s Factory,” which included hits like “Travelin’ Band,” “Up Around the Bend,” “Run Through the Jungle,” “Lookin’ Out My Back Door” and “Who’ll Stop the Rain.” Fogerty played a host of other hits like “Centerfield” and “Green River” in his non-stop, two-hour-plus concert at the BancorpSouth Arena.
“I’m so happy to be here,” he told the crowd. “I took a trip to the Elvis house. That guy had a lot of influence on my personally.”
• PHOTO GALLERY: John Fogerty in Tupelo
Fogerty’s influence on the crowd was evident, with nearly all 2,357 on their feet, singing along.
That’s what “Dodson,” a DJ with Z98.5, was doing, singing along to “Who’ll Stop the Rain.”
“I’ve been a fan of him since I was 9,” Dodson, 33, said. “This music transcends age, time, whatever.”
Before Fogerty took the stage, pictures and facts from his life and career flashed up on a large screen on the stage. Facts included his accomplishments, like his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and pictures included him with the likes of the Rolling Stones, Tina Turner, Keith Urban and Jennifer Hudson.
Fogerty recalled his band’s gig at Woodstock, following Grateful Dead, and seeing Elvis Presley on TV as a child.
“He was a cool guy, as radical as you can get,” Fogerty said of Elvis. “I’d stand in front of the mirror practicing this” – re-creating Elvis’ famous sneer – “because that was real important stuff.”
Fans Stuart and Michelle Booth from Bryant, Ark., drove in to see the rock legend for their first visit to Tupelo.
It was Michelle’s first Fogerty show, but Stuart saw him years ago with Creedence Clearwater Revival.
“He’s excellent,” Stuart said. “He never gets old.”