Ray Manzarek, gave a party for 500 of his Napa neighbors Saturday night at the Napa Valley Opera House. Imagine the Doors coming to your college dorm for a private concert and all your friends come to that very special party. That’s the feeling you get at the Napa Valley Opera House – there’s only about 500 seats, all of them good- and you always see someone you know there.
A venue the size of the NVOH wouldn’t normally be able to attract acts such as Manzarek and Robby Krieger. I don’t know if it was a favor to his hometown or the wheedling of the Opera House’s amazing artistic director, Evy Warshawski, or both, but as she said in her introduction, the ticket price only covers about half of what a show like that costs. We need to support this jewel of a venue and not take it for granted. Another Mondavi beneficiary, Copia did not fare so well.
An audience of prosperous and aging hippies was on their feet most of the night. You really didn’t have a choice – there was no way to stand still with a band that rocked so tight, so loud and so Morrisonesque. Manzarek told us Jim Morrison was in heaven and I believe him- the stars were moving when we walked into the night.