David Cook at The Fillmore in San Francisco on Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2009

David Cook at The Fillmore in San Francisco on Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2009

SAN FRANCISCO – As I was headed from paying for my parking in the structure diagonally across from The Fillmore Tuesday night, I overheard one guy say to another: “I don’t think he was ready for The Fillmore.”

   Well, maybe they went to different concert than I did.

   Or maybe they weren’t referring to David Cook. Maybe it was a buddy of theirs.

   But one thing is for certain David Cook was indeed ready for The Fillmore.

   Fourteen songs, one encore, 75 minutes of pure rock n roll. He and his band were more than ready.

   There were plenty of legendary echos in that place Tuesday night and he probably woke up more than a few of them.

  Amidst the Cougars and the Kids there is a love affair for the guy. And, yes, even if you are a 62-year old male Boomer you can admit – unabashedly – that you like his music. You like the songs he writes. You like the ones he interprets. You like the band behind him. The drummer, the lead guitar player put on a show themselves.

   Oh, he still didn’t introduce all of them and that is something he absolutely needs to work into his show. But that’s ticky-tack especially when you compare it to the way he sang “I Just Died In Your Arms Tonight.” Amazing.

  It’s oh-so-easy to hear just about any artist on a record and realize how sanitized the recording is. I don’t know how many times they do it, or how many ways they splice it together, but it always comes out perfect. The real trick is to hear the artist do the same song in person. It’s always different, the spin is always unique and sometimes it really, really works.

So it was with Cook Tuesday night. He sang “Lie” and “I Did It For You” way, way better than the recordings.

  He opened with “Mr. Sensitive” and “Heroes” and ended it with “Come Back To Me.”

  “We had a couple of days off before the show,” he said, “and we got to experience the City and now to play in the historic Fillmore.”

  I don’t quite know what the two guys in the garage were thinking as they left, but I have a feeling I know what the mom and her daughter who had driven over from Modesto and stood in line for eight hours to be in the front row were thinking.

 Mr. Cook, I applaud you.