Greg Dulli, Ultimate Rock Star

Beth Lisick

SFGate

If unabashed rock frontmanning was an Olympic sport, Greg Dulli would take home a medal, people. Not in years — like, more than 10 years — have I seen someone so committed to owning the stage at a mid-size venue. Without a hint of irony (and therein lies the wonderment), the former Afghan Whigs dude rocked the Great American Music Hall Saturday night with his band Twilight Singers like it was 1992, or 1978.

It was a mind-blowing feat of utter showmanship that included stuff like raising an arm in the air while yelling, “C’mon!” and really meaning it. Equipped with an ashtray affixed to one side of his mike stand and a shot glass on the other, Dulli and his Singers played for nearly two hours to an adoring crowd, rolling out material from the new record, Blackberry Belle, old Whigs songs and a healthy dose of covers. Never a fan of the Whigs or a detractor (I think I read one too many interviews in which Dulli referred to himself in the third person and just decided not to bother), I was nevertheless excited and frightened enough about the sheer rockness of it all to stay three hours longer than I intended to.

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