Johnny Depp is once again impressing American audiences!
After postponing many foreign shows, most notably in Slovakia last week, The Hollywood Vampires, comprised of Johnny Depp, Alice Cooper, Joe Perry, and Tommy Henriksen, hit the stage in Boston Friday night in front of a sold-out audience of 3,500 at the Boch Center’s Wang Theatre.
Prior to the show, Depp arrived at the venue’s backstage door and made his way to the spectators gathering behind a barrier, expecting to get a peek at him. At least 20 of the more than 60 shouting fans got pictures, signatures, and embraces from the actor and singer.
Molly Smith, a 12-year-old from Concord, New Hampshire, was one such admirer who burst into tears after receiving not just a selfie with Depp, but also an embrace from him.
He smiled at her, and all she could say was ‘hi,’ Smith recalls. Her mother introduced her to his movies and music. She can’t believe she just met him.
Cathy Smith, her mother, claims Depp was “unbelievably sweet” to not just her daughter but to others in the throng he met.
He really was so nice, and she has never seen her that excited, she adds of her daughter’s meeting with Depp. She will forever remember this.
While all of the band members, including traveling bandmates Glen Sobel, Buck Johnson, and Chris Wyse, have long-established careers in the music business, fans seemed to be most thrilled to see Depp, who is most known for his film appearances.
The audience exploded in cheers and chants when Depp took over the microphone to sing the lead vocals on “People Who Died” (The Jim Carroll Band cover) 10 songs into the 19-song setlist, everything from “we love you, Johnny” to “Jack Sparrow rocks,” a nod to his popular character in the Pirates of the Caribbean films. Later in the act, he earned thunderous applause when he fronted a version of David Bowie’s “Heroes.”
Depp, who was dressed in a striped blue denim hat, a black vest with the words “Hollywood Vampires” inscribed on the back, a black short-sleeve shirt, black jeans, and black boots, displayed constant signals of enthusiasm for the crowd. He punched his fist to his chest and extended it out to the audience, clasped his hands together in thanks, and grinned and waved virtually continuously. He delivered background vocals on many tracks and played guitar on all of them.
Following Cooper’s memorable “School’s Out” encore, Depp was showered with presents ranging from cuddly animals to a bespoke Hollywood Vampires jacket from fans who made their way to the stage.
Several fans expressed confidence that The Hollywood Vampires would not cancel the Boston event ahead of time. Depp’s band postponed many recent gigs in a row, notably a July tour date in Slovakia.
“Upon arrival today to the venue in Slovakia to begin set up for tonight’s performance, it quickly became clear that the construction of the facility was incomplete, and therefore unsafe for both the band and the general public,” Hollywood Vampires wrote in a since-deleted Instagram note attributed to the four main members as well as touring bandmates Sobel, Johnson, and Wyse.
Depp announced on Instagram in May that he had a fracture that would prevent him from performing with his band for a spell.
But one admirer admits to contacting the theater on Friday morning to ensure that the almost two-hour travel was not in vain.
Iliana Donis, 32, a daycare worker from Lawrence, Massachusetts, recalls that she guesses that for a split second she thought, ‘Oh no, what if they cancel this one, too’. But when her brother and she arrived and saw all of the equipment trucks and tour buses, they knew the show would go on.
And, although she is a great admirer of the band, the mother of four claims it was Depp who drew her to the show.
She is simply a huge admirer of his and the kind of person he is, Donis adds. She likes his acting, singing, and art. He is very skilled, but he is also really modest.
According to a venue source, Depp landed in Boston minutes before the event, as opposed to Cooper, who stated that he spent five days in Boston before the concert.
“We don’t usually get that kind of time off, so my wife and I went everywhere in and around Boston,” Cooper said when he arrived at the event, adding that he had “some great food and played golf.” The Hollywood Vampires will perform on Saturday in Manchester, New Hampshire, and on Sunday in Bethel, New York.
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