WILLIAM CORGAN, JR. @ HOLLYWOOD FOREVER
Photos by Carl Pocket Words by Neelofer Lodhy.
William Patrick Corgan, better known as Billy Corgan, kicked off the first of four sold out evenings at the Masonic Lodge at Hollywood Forever. The Smashing Pumpkins’ frontman played an intimate, acoustic set toggling between piano, guitar and harmonica throughout the evening.
The first half of the show was dedicated to his latest solo effort, Ogilala, in which he performed in full Corgan fashion–the album in its entirety. Accompanied by a backdrop of folk-inspired imagery and necessary mood lighting, Corgan serenaded us with what appears to be his most gentle collection of songs to date.
As Corgan concluded Ogilala in the first set, he expressed his gratitude and said how honored he was to be with us, when really, the honor was all ours. It was evident that a dedicated array of Pumpkins fans were present to support the legendary frontman for a very, magical evening.
While the instrumentals seemed limited to cater to stripped down versions of well-known classics and Ogilala, no other instruments were deemed necessary as Corgan’s effortless vocal talents are without a doubt in the prime of his career, and notably unchanged.
Corgan was in good spirits throughout the evening laughing and joking with us. Fans screamed out their desired tracks to be played, to which Corgan responded “I already told you man, I’ll perform that one for you back in the hotel room,” he joked. “I was gonna bring the Yamaha, you were gonna bring the baby oil, we were gonna get really deep into that back catalogue.”
We witnessed Corgan tap into vocal powers that had yet to be explored, and with Ogilala, he gets to do just that. After a 20-minute intermission, Corgan returned to the stage to perform a series Pumpkins’ tracks that ranged throughout their wide discography. The set was career spanning with deep cuts such as “Gossamer,” which was worked out during the Smashing Pumpkins 2007 Filmore residency, and “Of a Broken Heart” from his days in the failed project Zwan. When the opening chords of rarely played tracks like “Annie-Dog” (from Adore) and “Age of Innocence” (from MACHINA), the crowd erupted. And fittingly, the evening ended with Corgan back on the piano with the closer from Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, “Farewell and Goodnight” as it was indeed a good night.
Fans in attendance of the next few evenings are in for a real treat as Corgan will delve deeper into the Pumpkins’ discography as he has been playing contrasting tracks throughout the tour thus far.
Setlist via setlist.fm.com
The Long Goodbye
Half-Life of an Autodidact
If I Were a Carpenter (Tim Hardin cover)
Starla (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Pale Horse (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Muzzle (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Of a Broken Heart (Zwan song)
(Fleetwood Mac cover)
(The Smashing Pumpkins song)
You Were Mine
Wish You Were Here (Pink Floyd cover)
Soma (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Drum + Fife (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Winterlong (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Gossamer (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Stand Inside Your Love (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Tonight, Tonight (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Spaceboy (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Age of Innocence (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Farewell and Goodnight (The Smashing Pumpkins song)