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Sail Rock Tour in full swing for summer 2013! – blog July 10 ’13

Dear friends and fans,

Once again I need to make amends for the long silence. I guess I’m more at home doing things than talking about what it is we’re doing … and there has been PLENTY to do to get from there to here. Still, I don’t mean to cut you out … so let me try to catch you up.

Sail Rock Tour in full swing for summer 2013!

After seemingly endless preparations and coordinations between artists, managers, crew technicians, airlines, hotels and rental car companies, the Sail Rock 2013 tour finally left harbor on June 12th with a pared-down show roster at the San Diego Fairgrounds Racetrack in Del Mar, CA. Being as it was essentially home turf for him, Christopher Cross brought his own band and opened the night with a full 45-minute set. After a 1/2 hour set changeover, the rest of us … Orleans, backing both Player and Firefall … hit the stage for our 45-minute segment. What to do for an encore? Ah!!! … How about an all-hands-on-deck, 3-band version of “Take It Easy“? Yeah, that seemed to work well. 🙂

With that more or less “test case” under our belt, we got ready for the Full Monty 7-act revue. All of us … John Ford Coley, Robbie Dupree, Player, Firefall, Gary Wright, Christopher Cross and Orleans … convened in Erie, PA for a long day of rehearsal on July 4th. Charlie, Lane and I, along with the crew, began at 11 AM. We didn’t crawl out of the rehearsal hall until 8 PM! And, in between, the time was spent going over every song that everybody had brought to the table for the following night’s show.


Have you ever been to Chautauqua, NY? Me neither. But WOW! … what a place! Nestled in western NY state’s Souther Tier, behind the entrance gate, lies a whole town … a quaint, idyllic, arts-centered community that only operates for the 9 summer weeks of the year, hosting event after event. Our show venue was a 5000-seat, covered, open-sided amphitheater with a huge stage, which we were given just after noon for the 8 PM show. OK … ready, set, GO! … everybody get to work!

Ever push a rock uphill? Sound checks finally actually commenced at about 3:30 and went for a full 3 hours. For me, that left just enough time to grab a quick shower, a quicker meal, and to push the reset button to get mentally fit for the actual performance. And, right on time, at 8:15, we hit the stage.

The July 4th day of rehearsal was hard. The long set up and soundcheck day was hard. But you know … it was all well worth it. I don’t recall at exactly what point it was during the show, but I do vividly recall a moment of realization wherein I said to myself, “Man, how cool is this? Am I blessed or what!?!?!”

For a nice look into the July 5th show, please visit this kind review of the evening.


It’s now year 41 for Orleans. Who knew we’d go this long or still have opportunities like this one? Thank you fans, friends, family, Universe for allowing me ths life.

Also many thanks to all the contributors to this part of the journey, especially all the fine artists named and those behind the scenes who have not been named … but you DO know who you are! Together, we make it happen.

We’re off to the Fortune Bay Casino in Tower, MN this coming weekend. I’ll do my best to keep posting as we go along this summer. Also, word soon on some new Orleans recordings being released.

Stay tuned!

Lance Hoppen
(for the entire Orleans ground crew)


Showing 9 Comments

Jim Feller

As a fellow guitar player, I’ve played your songs in cover bands and always looked forward to seeing you guys live. I’ll finally get to do that in Indy (14th)!!!
August 13, 2013 @ 10:46 PMReply

Richard Merrifield

I moved from Connecticut to Colorado. Guess there’s no chance that you would play in Colorado. I saw you guys first time in Connecticut at Shaboo Inn around 1973. Remember that place?
July 25, 2013 @ 1:02 PMReply

Lance Hoppen (Reply to: Richard Merrifield)

Hey Richard … and Alec and Wendy … We’d love to play EVERYwhere, but we can only go where there’s a willing Promoter, who buys the show from the Agent and then sells it to the public. That’s why they call it the “Music Business”. There IS a chance we will play in Colorado, or Dublin or Nashville, but there’s no telling when that might happen. But it’s nice to be wanted. 🙂
July 26, 2013 @ 8:45 PMReply


It’s great to hear the tour is going well. We loved hearing you in Altamonte Springs in March and just received the DVD of the evening and enjoyed it all over again! Love you guys! Rock on!!
July 24, 2013 @ 8:23 PMReply

Lance Hoppen (Reply to: Saint)

Hmmm … you have the DVD, and we haven’t even officially released it yet. 🙂 You must have gotten yours from Greg Rike himself? I just have a few advance copies. If anyone is interested in one of those, drop me a line at orleansworld@yahoo.com
July 26, 2013 @ 8:49 PMReply


Congrats on being so well received on this tour. I have nothing but fond memories of Orleans and your amazing vocals, guitars, original songs, clever takes on covers, improvisations and tight danceable fun music whenever you played at The Last Chance Saloon. The band inspired my guitar playing where the rhythm groove was always as important as those great solos on both the guitars and organ. May the positive spirit and joy of Larry continue to flow through your smiles and grooves. Thanks!
July 18, 2013 @ 8:43 PMReply


Thanks for the stories from the road. The Universe and all of us are equally blessed to have Orleans in our life too. Sail On!!
July 13, 2013 @ 11:36 AMReply

Alec Cowan

It would be nice to think that you might visit Europe….particularly Ireland….and particularly Dublin…yes/no? A.
July 13, 2013 @ 11:24 AMReply


Here’s to hoping to hear your soulful vocals back here in Nashville sometime soon,yet having a great tour. 🙂
July 13, 2013 @ 11:06 AM

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