I'm a Toronto-area musician. I played in some rock/blues bands for a while back in the 80s and 90s. Then I sort of switched gears and started performing solo "cocktail" piano music at private and corporate events for many years.
It was great fun playing with bands, but I found a bit more satisfaction.. Ok.. I admit, I really loved the complete control of playing music without needing the rest of a band's input! Of course, my clients had some degree of control in what I was playing at their events as a pianist, so I've never really been in complete control, have I!? But I certainly appreciated that solo pianist experience. I spent my evenings playing several hours of instrumental music, whether it was old standards or just instrumental versions of popular contemporary songs. I also played lots of movie themes. I loved them all! I think that's what got me to where I am now.. recording my own instrumental songs.
Haven't really performed "shows" in many years! I spent the last 25 years doing the "cocktail piano" thing...so I don't think we can count that as an "audience".. can we? I think the most special live audience memory was the First, of course. I was a bit nervous getting up on that stage in that bar, but I couldn't believe how quickly the evening was over! It was crazy! So much fun!
So many to choose from...The Beatles, Billy Joel, Elton John, Pink Floyd, Deep Purple.. this list goes on.. I also enjoy Vince Guaraldi, Ben Folds..and Queen, of course...