Tenacious D takes San Francisco

Wow, what a show! The Masonic in San Francisco was sold out and packed for a rock-and-dance kind of night. Beautiful chandeliers on the ceiling and the stage held a large white curtain. In front of the curtain were two acoustic guitars. Opening band Wynchester came out and had fans screaming with excitement. During their 30-minute set, Wynchester talked about meeting Lionel Richie before they played a cover of his hit song, “Easy,” only in a fast folk version. 

Before Tenacious D came onstage, there was a video playing on the white curtain. It was interesting, because it displayed drawings of Jack Black and Kyle Gass with vocals. The skit was of the two of them going on an adventure through outer space. After each skit, the video would turn off and Tenacious D would play behind the curtain. 

The duo dove through their music in reverse order, starting with six minutes of Post-Apocalypto. After a few more songs, the curtains rose and the fans went crazy. Black spoke to fans and said, “We’re going to play our greatest hits!” Black and Gass — backed by a guitarist, bassist and drummer — kicked off fan favorites, with 2012’s hard rock epic “Rize of the Fenix”, followed by “Low Hangin’ Fruit”. They played hit after hit, until Black said something to Gass to upset him. Gass yelled “I quit!” and walked offstage. The fans started booing and looked confused, since they weren’t sure if it was all an act or not. Black played on his guitar by himself and sang “Dude, I Totally Miss You”. Soon after, Gass came onstage and the fans were screaming once again. 

Towards the end of the show, Black told the audience that there was a lot of sexy people in San Francisco.

Towards the end of the show, Black told the audience that there was a lot of sexy people in San Francisco. Then, he asked what’s the real sound of rock? Someone screamed, “METAL!!” Black responded, “That is right! Metal!” They then played oldie-but-goodies “The Metal” and “Beelzeboss”. Later, Black and Gass tearfully thanked the tour crew and the fans as they played “Tribute”. 

Every other song, Black and Gass would switch guitars with the help of the stage crew. During the show, Black busted out a penis-shaped toy saxophone for the long-running live skit “Sax-A-Boom”. As Black was jamming out, fans were recording on their phones amazed. 

Oh, yeah — the best was saved for last! The audience all had a feeling about the encore, which was of no surprise. The real shocker was all the solos from each of the backing musicians. Black came out and started playing the guitar rifts of Cream’s hit song “Sunshine Of Your Love”. Then, the lights onstage aimed at the bassist, who jammed out for three minutes straight! Next, the lights aimed at the guitarist and he jammed out guitar riffs and heavy metal — totally badass. Finally, the lights were on the drummer and he hit the drums like it was his last show. Even Gass started playing the flute. It was so cool to see all of the musicians have their shine. 

Tenacious D still got it and Top Shelf Music is glad to cover them! Catch the boys next time around, as their tour ends today in Los Angeles.

Photography by Arik Ruiz

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