George Thorogood at Coyote's

By Pete Strojny

"He's bad to the bone," "He drinks alone," and if you don't start "drinkin', he's gonna leave."

Those were just some of the high-spirited lyrics resonating through a wall-to-wall crowd of anxious George Thorogood fans at a sold-out Monday night show at Coyote's.

From the opening notes, it was evident that Thorogood had come to rock 'n' roll, which was perfectly agreeable to the crowd. He ripped through most of his hits and then some in a one-hundred-plus minutes jamma-ramma, slide guitar extravaganza.

After only a few minutes into the show, the big man was the source of a Nile of sweat. His fans were likewise worked up by the energetic performance. Leaping about the stage with an agility that belied his size, Thorogood slashed at his Gibson, bending and twisting the strings to the point of kinking.

Close to the stage, rabid Thorogood fans were packed together into a twitching mass of rockers hardly able to move. The steamy atmosphere inspired Thorogood to a tribute to his favorite beer.

"The only good beer - Budweiser," he shouted, then chided a stage hand for handing him a Bud Light.

"I'm no teenager - give me a real Bud." He took a couple of drinks, then, to the delight of the club owners, ordered his fans to go to the bar and buy one. He followed that up with "One Bourbon, One Scotch and One Beer," which brought about an instant, somewhat drunken sing-a-long.

The Destroyers provided solid backing to all of Thorogood's stage antics and manic boogie guitar work. Drummer Jeff Simon and bassist Bill Blough were the rhythmic foundation to Thorogood's guitar excursions, and saxophonist Hank Carter added essential second and, occasionally, lead lines.

The Texas trio Monkey Bead opened the show.