Concert Review: Scoundrels know how to pump up an audience

Backstage at the Pacific Amphitheatre, tucked away in a tiny room, David Rosales of Huntington Beach strummed his guitar as the rest of the members of the Scoundrels huddled to sing along.

They sang one of his songs, "Strike Gold," intimately and calmly to get in the right mood to perform as the opening act for Chris Isaak on Friday night.

There have been many great moments in the fun, trying and workmanlike music career of Rosales, and surely this was one of them — performing at the Orange County Fair's main venue, bringing more attention to his music. That's true, especially when you consider that Rosales called it probably the band's best performance. And especially when you consider that it left the flawless Isaak saying, "Pretty damn good."

Within a 30-minute set, Rosales did his best to plug his music — find it on iTunes and his website — as well as his next gig, on Aug. 18 at Irvine Regional Park, in Orange. But Rosales also found a way to connect with the crowd.

Rosales, a big baseball and Dodgers fan, sometimes uses sports analogies to find his groove when performing.

"You just have to let the game come to you," Rosales says. "It's just like baseball."

Rosales has also used that motto when it has come to his career. He has maintained a strong love for music. His style has a country and blues feel, yet there's also a blend of rock, the root of his early work.

The up-tempo, hard-pumping "Crashing down" got people dancing in the amphitheater . Other tunes like "It's good to be alive" and "Now and then" opened the crowd's eyes to the talent of Rosales and the Scoundrels and also got the people ready for more great music with Isaak.

Isaak, famous for his chart-topping 1990 ballad "Wicked Game," delivered an extraordinary performance. Rosales looked on from backstage, just as Isaak did during his set.

Those close to Rosales won't be surprised if Rosales becomes a headliner. In the meantime, Rosales will continue to have the game come to him.

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