Monday, August 08, 2005

Concert going nostalgia

Quote of the day: "Love, peace, harmony, and where is my f**king tent?" ~Attendee of Woodstock 94

Song of the day: “Dirt” by Alice in Chains

State of mind: eh

Date: 8/8/05

The five best concerts I have ever been too. (Not in any order.)

1) King's X. I saw these guys at Saratoga Winners a few years back. They aren't a band that I own one single CD of, but a friend of mine had tickets and he was a fan so we went. I had heard a few of their songs and new they were good, I just was never interested enough to buy any for myself.
We got to the club and signed the waiver at the door. (It's required of most of the acts that play there. You pretty much sign away the right to sue the place if you get stomped on by the crown or stabbed by a drunken punk.)
They were amazing. They are probably the tightest band I have ever seen live. During the third encore, they band let some of the audience come up on the stage and dance around while they played. Those that got to go up with the band did not do anything stupid like try to grab the band members or their instruments like I was worried they would. I don't know if you notice, but people can be dumb.
We left a few beers later and much satisfied with their performance.
I still don't own any of their CDs though.

2) Melissa Ethridge. I saw her about 8 years back at SPAC. It was the tour during her best album, “Come to My Window”. I went with two other friends, both girls. We fit right in. :P We tried to get some of the guys to go too but one said "You'd have to let me pretend to be your boyfriend so no one would think you were a lesbian." I responded, "I'd rather let them think I was a lesbian then pretend to be with you." He was not pleased. The rest of the gang however, enjoyed it immensely. I could tell by all of the finger pointing and laughing. Poor Dan. He got even with my by breaking my leg a year later.
Anyhow, the woman rocks. She was amazing and it was the best time I had ever had at SPAC, which is an outdoor venue. Our seats were on the hill and at that time you could bring a blanket and the rest of the crowd respected the boundaries of your blanket by not stepping on it and invading your space. Not so anymore. The new management at SPAC keeps overselling the hill and now you end up standing shoulder to shoulder for two hours. No thanks.

3) Rush, at the Pepsi Arena. (Although I don't think it was called that then.) Our seats were waaaaaaaaaaaay in the back, exactly opposite the stage in the last row at the top. I didn't care. I knew quite a few of their songs (if not their song titles despite constant quizzing by a Rush fanatic named Henry) so I felt confident I would have a good time. They did indeed sound awesome, and the big inflatable bunnies were a treat. Aren't big giant inflatable bunnies always a treat? But the thing that impressed me the most was the crowd. They were so in sync with the band it was almost creepy. It was like someone had handed out a script to the show before hand. Especially when everyone sang along to ‘Time Stands Still’. The arena reverberated with the notes because almost everyone had hit it exactly right at the same time. I got goose bumps. It was spontaneous conformity and it was very very cool. You would think this is a common experience, but the last time I saw Pearl Jam the damn crown couldn't even clap in time with the band. (Want proof? Go get Pearl Jam's live at Saratoga and you will hear what I mean. Disc 2, Track 10, ‘Soon Forget’.)

4) Woodstock 94- the concert I refer to as the “forgotten Woodstock”. It will never be as famous as the original and everyone there had the bad taste to behave themselves and not set anything on fire. What the hell were we thinking? Oh well. It was both the worst, and best weekend I ever had. I was stuck with the most useless man on the planet as my "date" the entire weekend and I never did find the people I went there to hang out with. I did spend a fabulous weekend totally immersed in live bands and Native American Dancing though, so that makes up for it. Sorta.
I was at the front of the North stage for most of Saturday and got to see such people as Cypress Hill, NIN, Melissa Etheridge, Rollins Band, and Metallica close up. (I also saw Crosby, Stills, and Nash and they played foooooreeeeeverrrrr.I was going to cry. Or fall asleep.) I broke two ribs and pulled something in my right angle. I was covered in bruises from head to toe and the crystal I wore had made a perfect impression of itself on my chest that didn't fade for days. And for two hours on the second day I spent it wandering around in the mud in Tent City on that bad ankle with those broken ribs trying to find my tent. Despite that it was still a great time.
When I got home, I had to take four showers in a row just to get rid of the smell. But I would do it again in a heartbeat. But this time, I would stay away from the front of the stage.
Odd thing, every once in a while I will have a dream that I am there again. Weird.

5) Dave Matthews Band. Can't believe I almost forgot these guys! They come every year and play two dates at SPAC. Because of the situation with the hill, I haven't gone until last year when my mother was able to get me tickets inside in actual seats. Not only that, they were 7th row!
Even if you are not a huge fan of the CDS, if you ever get the chance I say see them live. Awesome, good time! They are definitely a jam band.

Angel quote of the day:
Angel: Do you want me to rip that guy's head off for you? Because I can, really. I can actually rip his head right off his body. I can do that.


Henry said...

I have been to so many concerts--I could never do just what you did--but it made my day to see that Rush concert on your list.

NYPinTA said...

Your welcome, incessant quiz master. :P

Henry said...

I tell you I took my older son to see Rush last time thru?
Our seats were a little better than the ones you and I had.
Oh and don't forget about my buds that lost their Rush tics and couldn't go with us that night!

trinamick said...

I would love to see Dave Matthews Band. I haven't seen any on your list, but I'll add one. Nickelback is worth seeing. Major bass, killer guitars, fog, funky lights, and fire. Lots and lots of fire.

LL said...

Kings X? Well I'll be dipped... Only saw them once when they warmed up for the Scorps. Not too bad for a three man band. The girl we were with summed them up nicely, "That's some serious bass they've got there." Oh, and I actually had a tape of theirs a couple years before I actually saw them. Why mention it? It was called Gretchen goes to Nebraska. Might just have to dig it up.

Some of my fav's? Scorps of course, and BTO, those guys rocked for geriatrics...

cali said...

1. Sex pistols, 1977 (plan to post about it soon).
2. Bowie, 1978, Germany.
3. Rolling Stones, Lynyrd Skynyrd; Knebworth, 1976.
4. Clash, 1977.
5. Bowie, early 80's, Knebworth again.

mr. schprock said...

"I broke two ribs and pulled something in my right ankle."

You kind of skipped over the details of this, don'tcha think? How'd it happen?

I haven't gone to a lot of concerts, but the best one for me was U2. Bono is one of the most charismatic personalities I know. He allowed a girl to get up on stage with him and she handcuffed herself to his bootstrap. After a roadie cut it off, they let her stay up on stage. Another time, he invited a big guy up on stage and he sang a song while seated on the guy's shoulders!

Jim Donahue said...

Well, we have very different taste in music, but here goes anyway (in no particular order):

Paul Simon's Graceland tour, at Radio City Music Hall. A gazillion talented musicians played for well over two hours with no intermission. Paul gets bonus points for starting at 8:00 sharp. I hate waiting for shows to start.

k.d. lang, also at RCMH. Sang for two and half hours, no breaks. It was the second night of a three-night gig. How could she belt like that and not kill her throat?

Jane Siberry at the Bottom Line, touring for her "The Walking" album with a full band. I would kill for a bootleg of this show.

Richard Thompson in Central Park. Played "Goin' Back" as his soundcheck, which he's never recorded. Gave me shivers. Best guitarist alive, IMHO.

Swan Dive at the Knitting Factory. Pop duo from Nashville. Big in Japan; pretty much unknown here.

Jim Donahue said...

Oh, can I have a sixth? Elvis Costello and Burt Bacharach at Radio City. A pairing that shouldn't work, but did.

trinamick said...

I wouldn't mind seeing Paul Simon, but only if he brings along the afro too. :P My mother hated us singing Me & Julio Down By the Schoolyard, because she wasn't sure what it was talking about.

Warrant & Firehouse were pretty good in concert too, even though they're starting to get up there.

NYPinTA said...

Yesterday on TV I saw a commercial for VH1's Rock Never Stops concert and I nearly died! Cinderalla, Firehouse, Ratt, and someone else that I can't recall. Holy crap! LOL!

Oh, can I have a sixth?
Oh.. well, nevermind since you posted a sixth already! Cheater. :P
I like the song "It Can't Rain All the Time" by Jane Sidberry.

NYPinTA said...

"I broke two ribs and pulled something in my right ankle."

You kind of skipped over the details of this, don'tcha think? How'd it happen?

Two words: mud people.

Full story to commence on 11th aniversary. Maybe...

John said...

I've already mentioned seeing the Stones, but I've been to a few other shows, too.

I've seen Dave Matthews twice. The first time, the girl sitting next to me kept saying she was gowing to lift up her shirt, but she never did. She was drunk as hell. She had a friend named Geoff, but I thought she was saying Jeff because A.) I'd never heard the name Geoff before and B.) she was drunk as hell so I figured she was just slurring. She kept calling me Jim anyway.

I saw Santana twice, John Mellencamp twice and Aerosmith twice. I didn't think I was going to like Mellencamp, but it was a really surprising concert, and both times rank right up there as some of the best. Lots of energy on stage, from the other seven people, not Mellencamp himself, who had a heart attack a year before.

The first Aerosmith concert (for Just Push Play) was probablly the best I've been to. The second one was pretty good, but nothing like the first one.

I've been to two concerts put on by dramatically different radio stations, MIX 98.5 and WAAF. And I went with one of my friends to this white rap group show in Rhode Island for some reason. Even though they were rap or hiphop or whatever, they had an actual drummer. His drumkit ruled; it was basically a motorcyle with drums attached. That was the only part I liked...

Weird Al is a great show, too. Lots of costume changes and video stuff.

They aren't musicians, but I've also seen Bill Cosby a couple of times, Dave Chappelle, John Leguizamo, Mitch Hedberg (RIP), and Lewis Black.

Spirit Of Owl said...

I'm a Rush geek, too, as it happens. And the reason that everyone can clap in time at the Rush concerts is because everyone who listens to Rush has been rhythmically trained by the Professor of the Drums Mr Neil Peart.

Oh yeah.

trinamick said...

John, I am officially jealous of all of those. Except for Mitch. Who wants to see a dead guy?

LL said...

"Who wants to see a dead guy?"

Now that comment shows progress. :aok:

NYPinTA said...

The first Aerosmith concert...
I have yet to see Aerosmith in concert. *glares at Henry*

the Professor of the Drums Mr Neil Peart.
Anytime I see this, my automatic response is to say, "Yeah. But can he drum while upside down like Tommy Lee?!" Just to annoy people. :P

Spirit Of Owl said...

Yes he can and has done and spun around faster too. And I'm not annoyed. Rankled. Not annoyed. :P