Story by: Nicole Abdessalam
Calvary Church, Orland Park, IL--Not even the dreary Friday night weather could stop Grammy nominated guitarist, Phil Keaggy, from captivating. This was my first time seeing Phil, and being that I was unfamiliar with his work, I wasn’t sure what to expect. His graceful presence filled the soft purple backdropped stage with plenty of witty antidotes and humor along the way.
The concert was so memorable that I actually woke up the next morning with one of the Phil's hit songs stuck in my head. Mercy is a fan-favorite--YouTube it and give it a whirl.
There were a few technical equipment issues at the start of the performance, but that didn’t prevent Phil from delivering a remarkable performance. He’s so down to earth--he provided humor in between his songs, which helped create a lovable vibe and make a connection with the audience.
He demonstrated some amazing techniques and actually used his hands to beat on his guitar, while at the same time continuing to strum. There was one point where he stopped strumming, but as the music and beat continued I thought, is this guy pulling a Milli Vanilli?! Well, no. It’s actually an advanced technique called looping, which lets you record live segments of music and then replay it on a loop to create harmonious rhythms in the song you’re currently playing. I’ve never seen someone do that before. Phil’s quite the talent!
On a side note, I cannot recommend Calvary Church enough. If you have the opportunity to see a concert there, do it! It’s a beautiful venue with friendly people working the crowd. They have a coffee and smoothie bar to treat yourself during intermission. The vibe was very welcoming and accepting.
Phil Keaggy is currently on tour until the end of the year. Lucky for you, if you’re in New York, West Virginia, Washington, Texas, Arizona, Tennessee, Arkansas, Georgia, British Columbia, or Ohio, you still have the chance to see him!