Lita Ford Turns Up The Heat at Harley Davidson – Richmond… You Know the Story, It Was All Right!

Lita Ford rocks the Harley Davidson Pavilion in Ashland, VA on 7/16/2021. Photo credit: Dave Pearson

Ashland, VA – We went to a party on a hot Friday night. It was one hell of a story and everything was all right. Like a song, we were almost late for the party cuz the traffic was bad (really, it was, I-95 was stop and go), but as fate would have it, the best party in town was gearing up at Richmond Harley Davidson Pavilion to the delight of rock and rollers of all ages. The outside temperature was 90+ degrees at show time, but that was nothing compared to the heat that would pour from the stage as the legendary Lita Ford performed to the gathered fans.  

Lita Ford getting the party going at Richmond Harley Davidson, July 16, 2021. Photo credit: Dave Pearson

Before the party even began, Lita was working the crowd, literally. To the delight of several in the gold circle of the Pavilion, she came out before taking the stage, shook a few hands, conversed a bit, and even took a few selfies. The life of the party had arrived and no July heat was going to stop it. 

Lita Ford takes the stage at the Richmond Harley Davidson Pavilion on 7/16/2021. Photo credit: Dave Pearson

Lita opened with “Gotta Let Go” from her 1984 album, Dancin’ on the Edge. Let the headbanging begin! She transitioned to the hard pounding, “Larger Than Life” followed by “Relentless” from her most recent album, Living Like A Runaway, obviously a reference to her early years with the 70s band, The Runaways. A group that pretty much broke all barriers when it came to women in rock and roll. 

To say Lita’s band was tight would be an understatement. Throughout the show Lita threw praises at her supporting cast, Patrick Kennison (guitar), Marty O’Brien (bass), and Bobby Rock (drums).  Each musician had multiple solos and played flawlessly. 

Patrick Kennison, Lita Ford, and Marty O’brien performing at Richmond Harley Davidson on July 16, 2021. Photo credit: Dave Pearson

After several classics, including “Hungry” and “Can’t Catch Me“, Lita announced to the audience, “This is my Runaway’s guitar!” which received loud applause and some shouting, “Cherry Bomb“, which, of course, was the Runaway’s hit she was about to perform. A party song of yesteryear that plays just as well today! 

Lita played the title track from her debut album, “Out for Blood” followed by her only cover of the night, Alice Cooper’s, “Only Women Bleed” (that she also released on her 1990 album, Stiletto). No Lita party would be complete without her signature B.C. Rich doubleneck guitar. This party was no exception. 

Lita wrapped up the night with two of her most famous tunes, “Close my Eyes Forever” with guitarist Patrick Kennison singing the male vocals made famous by Ozzy Osbourne on Lita’s first solo album, Lita, released in 1988. As she concluded her final number, “Kiss Me Deadly“, you could feel the energy level in the audience climax. With the last cymbal crash and guitar riff, the Pavilion ground erupted with applause until Lita left the stage. As quickly as it started, the party was over, that is the story, and it was all right! 

Lita Ford Gallery

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Lita Ford Setlist

Gotta Let Go
Larger Than Life
Relentless
Hungry
Playing With Fire
Can’t Catch Me
Cherry Bomb
Out for Blood
Only Women Bleed
Close My Eyes Forever
Kill Me Deadly

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Dave Pearson is based out of Richmond, VA by way of Hayward, WI. He has long had a passion for music. Growing up in rural Wisconsin, he rocked out to the likes of Barry Manilow, Neil Diamond, and The Lettermen. Then, one Saturday night, being the rebel he was born to be, he caught an Alice Cooper interview (it may have been on The Midnight Special) and saw him perform, “Welcome to My Nightmare”. Dave was hooked on Rock and Roll (and many other genres as well). Dave has enjoyed (amateur) photography to some degree most of his adult life. Recently Dave started to apply his event photography skills in various music settings with success. He finds that photographing a performance gives him a much greater appreciation for the artist.