YOUNGSTOWN - Going to see Rod Stewart Sunday at the Covelli Centre was a family affair for Judy DeJacimo of Warren and her two daughters, Andrea and Angela.
"They bought me tickets to see him at Blossom a few years ago, and they absolutely loved it," Judy said before show.
When they saw he was coming, the three of them bought tickets to once again see "'Rod the Bod,' as she calls him," Angela said, referring to her mom.
Tribune Chronicle / R. Michael Semple
Two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Rod Stewart performs for a capacity crowd Sunday at the Covelli Centre.
"I don't want to date myself, but me and Rod go back to the '70s," Judy said.
The DeJacimos weren't alone Sunday. A few tickets were available the day of the show, but management announced Sunday night that the show did sell out, drawing just shy of 6,000 people.
Executive Director Eric Ryan said in a news release, "It is remarkable to have another iconic musician grace our stage and we cannot express our gratitude enough to the community for selling out another show at the Covelli Centre."
The 69-year-old Stewart certainly didn't look his age as he and his 10-piece band and three backup singers took the stage promptly at 8 p.m. The band entered to the theme from the "Magnificent Seven" and played the horn riff from Otis Redding's "I Can't Turn You Loose" as Stewart - wearing a white jacket (with a flower in the lapel), black slacks, two-tone shoes and a striped skinny tie - came on stage and started the night with "Infatuation," one of his mid-'80s hits.
"Good evening, Youngstown," Stewart greeted the crowd. "It's my first time here. I'm sure it's going to be memorable."
Stewart's first appearance in the Mahoning Valley was the lure for many people. Jill Kraft of Niles said, "He's right here in Youngstown. You've got to see him when he's here in our backyard."
Kraft saw Stewart and Stevie Nicks at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland in 2012, but her friend, Kathy LaMarco of Warren, was seeing him for the first time.
"I'm trying to see all of the old classics before they fade away," she said.
Terry Spain of Warren also said, "Being so close, I had to go," and he and David Domenick of Warren were hoping to hear some of Stewart's older songs dating back to his time with the band Faces / Small Faces.
And nearly everyone who was asked what song they were hoping to hear Sunday responded with "Maggie May," which was Stewart's first U.S. hit in 1971.
"I love 'Maggie May'," Marlene Fekete of Canfield said. "I grew up with that song. That was the best time in my life - no worries, just the music and what you're going to do that night."
Stewart, who was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a solo artist in 1994 and as a member of Faces in 2012, brought a lavish stage set to the venue, one of the largest ever featured at the Covelli Centre.
A shimmering curtain illuminated with blue light wrapped around the stage before the concert started and raised to reveal a multi-level stage set up with a backdrop-sized screen and seven smaller screens in front of it that provided closeups of Stewart and his band - the men dressed in suits and ties and the women dressed in short, sparkly silver dresses - and other images to accompany the music.