Operation Overlord at Busty G’s 44th Avenue Grill in Wheat Ridge, CO on 11/02/19

When I was in high school, friends of mine were in bands that played at dances and parties (one even at my house). A few of those musicians still play together (no longer at high school parties because that would be weird). Operation Overlord, named after the code name for the Battle of Normandy during World War II, jam every week at guitar player Jim Boardman’s home. A class reunion over the summer pushed them to come out of their live performance hibernation.

Operation Overlord

Busty G’s 44th Avenue Grill hosted the reunion where the band provided the entertainment. Operation Overlord went over so well that the sports bar asked them to return. Last Saturday night they came back. The band played original material as well as cover songs that they pulled together for the reunion gig. The crowd was mainly there to see the band, but a few were gathered just to watch the Oregon Ducks defeat USC on a television playing behind the band.

Ed McSheehy and Scott Bruggeman

Scott Bruggeman sang and played the drums reminiscent of other singing drummers like The Band’s Levon Helm or KISS’ Peter Criss (without the Catman makeup). He led the band through their own songs Moving Target, Bone Garden, and Livin’ in a Vacuum. The tunes are dark, heavy, and loud. The self-described 303 Metal band is named after a bloody battle for a reason. The speedy hooks and infectious shout-a-long background vocals won the crowd over. Ed McSheehy’s guitar playing was so scorching hot the ceiling fan above him had to be turned on.

Courtney Waller and Jim Boardman

To get the crowd dancing, Operation Overlord played a number of classic rock cover songs. Judas Priest’s Living After Midnight, The Clash’s Should I Stay or Should I Go, and Bad Company’s Shooting Star were some of the crowd-pleasing tunes performed. Courtney Waller held down the groove with his impressive bass skills while strutting in and out of the audience. Jim Boardman’s stunning guitar solos made the audience ignore the Dodge Durango’s car alarm that kept going off in the parking lot.

See you at the next show. I’ll be the one telling that guy trying to watch the Ducks game that I went to high school with the guys in the band.

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