Geoff Tate’s Big Rock Show brings its Empire to the Peace Center in Greenville, South Carolina on January 9, 2023!



 As I drove to the Peace Center in Greenville, South Carolina on a beautiful and chilly evening I immersed myself in the Queensryche album, Rage for Order. Such a great album and it got me psyched up to see Geoff live for the first time in many years. I have been fortunate to see Geoff with Queensryche in 1989 and sometime around 1995, so it had been awhile. Geoff Tate has to be one of my all time personal favorite vocalists. As being the voice of Queensryche back in the 1980s when I was discovering some of the greatest music being made I always remember, not just the range and power of his voice, but also the subtleties of his vocal style that made him one of the greatest singers of all time.

The Gunter Theater at the Peace Center in Greenville, South Carolina is a great venue. It holds just under 500 people in a classic theater style venue where everyone has a great view of the stage because of the sweeping nature of the seats and the acoustics are great! Of course, I had my ear plugs in but even with them out it was loud but not too loud and the sound was so clear that you could really hear Geoff’s vocals and enjoy the reason you were there that evening. The people working at the venue could not have been nicer and this was my first time being able to photograph a show there. When I applied for the photo pass there were no set rules for how many songs I could shoot and from where I could shoot. Besides one other photographer, who I believe was their tour photographer, I had the place all to myself. I appreciate Geoff Tate’s tour management for allowing us more time to take pictures during the show and when you see the galleries below I hope that you feel I got a more well rounded series of images because of the lack of limitations. I wish more bands would do this… 

The theme that kept running through my head the whole evening while I was watching not only Geoff Tate but also his opening act, Mark Daly, was “fun”. The musicians on the stage this evening were having a great time and that really translated to the audience which were having a great time as well. It was an evening full of great music and great stories and on-stage antics that kept this show entertaining from the beginning to the end. It was genuine! 

As I write this review I encourage you to also read another recent review of Geoff Tate’s Big Rock Show by my fellow All Music Magazine contributor, Elliot Gordon found here. You’ll really enjoy his take on this show and his great images as well! 

Mark Daly was the opener for the evening along with a familiar group of musicians… they are also Geoff Tate’s band! This factor contributed to the family fun atmosphere of the evening. Mark Daly is from Ireland and as an opener he was both very energetic and very comfortable with the audience. It says a lot when the opening act can take a few moments between songs to tell a story or make a joke and not simply have to jump into another song. It kept his performance relaxed and not rushed which was very welcomed. Knowing that Geoff Tate is a big fan of Ireland it was only fitting that Mark Daly would go on tour with him. Mark’s energy level was very high as both a singer and when he played the guitar as well. Just look at the images below and you’ll see his level of energy and how well that works for getting great images. There was nothing boring about this performance, just an energetic musician who gave the audience a heck of a show! “Slainte”! (Cheers in Gaelic) 


Mark Daly and The Ravens

Mark Daly – Vocals
James Brown – Guitar
Jack Ross – Bass
Alex Hart – Guitar
Danny Laverde – Drums



I have to admit that I didn’t know what I was in for with Geoff Tate taking on a myriad of challenging Queensryche songs at this show. I will gladly say that he was incredible! Like I mentioned earlier, the sound in this venue was great and being able to really hear this incredible singer deliver some of the toughest songs ever recorded with the same energy and intricacy as I remember them from thirty plus years ago was just fantastic! To hear Geoff sing some of my all-time favorites like, “Take Hold of the Flame” and “Screaming in Digital” brought me back to some great memories in my life when I had my good ‘ole Sony WM-1 Walkman cassette player stuffed inside my jean jacket pocket. He created a very diverse set list that had a full history of the 19 albums that he said he sang on in his career. These songs can be seen in the setlist below, but a surprise performance was on the song, “The Chase” from Operation Mindcrime II which featured keyboardist, Jason Ames on co-lead vocals with Geoff Tate. He surprised everyone with his great vocals as he and Geoff traded lines from that song in a very dramatic performance. 

As I have been writing in this review that this show was “fun”, it was very apparent with Geoff’s interaction with the other musicians on stage with him. I was anticipating seeing Geoff Tate with some touring musicians that were more in the background but I got exactly the opposite of that. He highlighted and gave every musician the freedom to perform up-front with him the entire show, not as a singer with a backup band, but as a full band with a great relationship together. They played tight but with a looseness that gave it that feeling of fun. I do believe this shows in the images I shot that evening that you can see in the album below. It was also fun during one song when the band did the classic “Scorpions pose” which had the crowd erupt when they saw the three-guitar pyramid! I didn’t know that was going to happen but I’m glad I was ready when it did. 

I feel like I got the best of all Worlds at this show. I didn’t feel like I was watching a Queensryche show but I did know that I was experiencing that classic voice sing the songs that I have loved for a long time. The guys in the band were all great and they did those songs justice, for sure! If you get a chance to see Geoff Tate’s Big Rock Show don’t miss it! 



Geoff Tate – Vocals
Kieran Robertson – Guitar
Jack Ross – Bass
Danny Laverde – Drums
Alex Hart – Guitar
Jason Ames – Keyboards




1.) Empire
2.) Another Rainy Night (Without You)
3.) Desert Dance
4.) I Am I
5.) Sacred Ground
6.) Best I Can
7.) Real World
8.) Breaking The Silence
9.) I Don’t Believe In Love
10.) Cold
11.) Bridge
12.) Screaming in Digital
13.) Walk In The Shadows
14.) Take Hold of the Flame
15.) Jet City Woman
16.) Silent Lucidity


17.) The Chase
18.) Queen of the Reich





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