“Everybody having a good time so far?” singer-songwriter and actor Dennis Quaid asked the cheering crowd in the heart of Downtown Los Angeles last Thursday night. Performing an acoustic set, the Emmy- and two-time Golden Globe-nominated star showcased his powerful musical talent and undeniable stage presence at an exclusive Chase United Cardmember event on June 1 to kick off summer.
Hosted at Rhythm Room LA, an intimate lounge and venue inspired by a turn-of-the-century underground jazz speakeasy, the performance offered Cardmembers a rare experience to get up close and personal with Quaid. Small tables of two and three were placed thoughtfully around the venue, allowing every attendee a stellar view of the stripped-down stage.
Quaid, who’s known for his roles in hit films like The Day After Tomorrow and The Parent Trap, gave nods to his acting career throughout the night; however, on that evening, Quaid’s musical talent commanded the room. He worked the crowd effortlessly with his lighthearted banter and rowdy energy, peppering his performance with entertaining tidbits about everything from his personal life to what it was like studying under rock & roll legend Jerry Lee Lewis (who he paid homage to with a custom drink, “Great Ball of Fire”).
As a solo show, Quaid more than made up for his missing band through his instrumental prowess as he pounded on the keys and broke into lengthy guitar riffs. After a few songs at the guitar, he moved seamlessly to the piano — sharing, as he messed around, sitting on the keys and cracking jokes to the crowd’s pleasure, that he learned how to play at 34 years old.
The set list was a mix of crowd favorites, including “Good Man, Bad Boy,” and new music from his upcoming album Fallen: A Gospel Record For Sinners, which is set for release on July 28 via Gaither/Primary Wave.
While Quaid’s set was undoubtedly the centerpiece of the night, an impeccably-serviced open bar, stellar hors d’oeuvres, and a buffet dinner offered the perfect setting to socialize before and after the show. Attendees easily struck up conversations with one another over bacon-wrapped dates, and blackened mushrooms and grits.
While most Cardmembers were local, some guests drove hours for the event, and one particularly passionate fan flew in from New York solely for the performance. And regardless of whether someone came alone or with a plus one, many Cardmembers shared that they formed friendships within the Chase United Cardmember community — a result of the warm and welcoming environment that matched the nature of Quaid’s performance.
After the show, attendees were invited to a meet-and-greet and photo opportunity with Quaid, and were gifted an autographed commemorative poster to remember the night by.
As Quaid wrapped up his set with “Please Don’t Call Me Legend,” he earnestly thanked the crowd for coming, addressing the audience as “kind, sweet people” — a sentiment that perfectly encapsulated the overarching aura of warmth and joy Quaid brought to the evening.