Two-time Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee and Grammy Living Legend Rod Stewart returns to The Colosseum.
His show is called The Hits, and Rod Stewart has plenty to choose from.
Rod Stewart has been singing “Some Guys Have All the Luck” for decades. But it wasn’t originally his song. In fact, it was penned by one Jeff Fortgang and first recorded by The Persuaders in 1973. Once Stewart covered it 30 years ago, however, it became a Top 10 hit.
And the tune has also grown into something of a theme song.
“Yeah, it is, the way things have panned out,” says Stewart, whose current engagement at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace runs through May 17. “I’ve had a tremendous life. I’m so grateful for everything. I’ve had a wonderful career. I have a beautiful wife, eight wonderful children, and a life that is still thriving.”
That’s the truth. Consider that the 69-year-old Stewart just recently gave up playing football (what we call soccer in the States). And not just recreational football, but highly competitive organized football, where score is kept and injuries are suffered.
“I’ve just retired, and I wouldn’t say I wanted to stop playing, but my knees did,” he says. “This was very serious league play. I mean, it’s over-50s, but it’s still very competitive and they kick the lumps out of each other.”
On the plus side, Stewart says, he’ll have a chance to spend more time in Las Vegas. He has typically flown back to Los Angeles after his shows here, but now he’s looking forward to checking out other performers on the Strip.
“My wife, Penny, would love to do that,” he says, adding that previously his football commitments and his two youngest kids made it difficult. “One’s just coming up to 3 and one is 8. And if I wasn’t there, I’m thinking that they’re down to breakfast, [asking] ‘Where is Dad? Where is Dad?’ It would break my heart. But we would like to arrange coming up one Saturday and one Sunday night, sure.”
Stewart hasn’t made any significant changes to his show for Vegas, relying on his tremendous catalog of hits, spiced occasionally by a relatively obscure number. “Maggie May” and “Hot Legs,” for example, could be joined by “I’d Rather Go Blind,” a blues and soul classic first recorded by Etta James and covered on Stewart’s 1972 album, Never a Dull Moment.
“When we play Vegas, we very rarely do songs that were big hits in Europe, and there are five or six songs I don’t play,” he says. “‘Sailing’ and ‘Baby Jane’ and ‘Tom Traubert’s Blues’…. We just don’t do those because they were big hits in Europe. I’ve tried ‘Sailing,’ which is like a national anthem in Europe. I put it in in Vegas because there were a few British people in the audience. I said, ‘I’m doing this for my compatriots.’” The result? “You could have heard a pin drop afterward.”
But the manner in which Stewart delivers a show has changed over the years. He’s far more conversational with the audience than he was as a rock star a generation ago.
“I think I’m a much better entertainer and communicator than I was 30 years ago,” he says. “As far as enjoying it, yes, I do enjoy it. These days I am very spontaneous, and that’s just how I talk to the audience in between songs. Of course, the way I sing songs I’m spontaneous, and suddenly I realize that I’ve changed a song and I’m singing a version that is slightly different from the original.”
And the fans notice even the tiniest variation. “It’s hard to describe how that happens, but the crowd will be singing along to the song—like ‘Maggie May’—and they’ll be singing it right and I’m singing it wrong.”
That’s true even for the tune that has become his theme.
“That song should have been written about me in the first place, a guy with all the luck, y’know?” Stewart says, chuckling. “It was written for some other reason, but I think it’s a Rod song now, for good.” Rod Stewart performs eight shows in May at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace, through May 17. For tickets, call 888-929-7849 or visit caesarspalace.com/shows.