Saturday, February 16, 2008

The Big Shoo

I was thinking a few minutes ago about all the fantastic concerts I've seen in my lifetime. Heading home from PetSmart (which is all the shopping I seem to get done lately) I was scanning the stations and hit on Bryan Adams. That show in the mid-80's was among my top 5 for entertainment level and showmanship.

When I lived in TX a long while ago I used to usher shows just to get a free entry. I surely couldn't afford to see them all, otherwise. And it was a nothing job - where some silly outfit and use your flashlight to get stoners to their seats. And after the lights went down on the main act, you were free to hover wherever you wanted as long as you didn't obscure someone else's view.

I saw Journey at least a half dozen times though the shows were often quite similar. Loverboy and .38 Special were always favorites. And Sammy Hagar. He's got to be in the top 5, also. That man - in his youth - was insane on stage. He played a Super Bowl of Rock in TX and was in the damned rigging without a harness. Climbing the damned rigging to the very top so he could see all of us. Fool. Anyone else remember those shows and how they had to literally hose people down with water to stop the heat prostration?

Heart was in its heyday, of course. (I've picked my personal favorite.) Then there was Yes, Van Halen (their first tour, I asked Eddie for a pass because I thought he was a soundman), and Pat Metheny. I saw Stevie Nicks a few times (actually a link to FM but it's my fav vid) and Genesis just once. Def Leppard? Another of the top 5, sure. Bad Company was insanely good even if dated. I remember at that show some hot babe was dancing down the main aisle to the front and the light men spotted her all the way - she danced like an evil spider, seducing its prey. Yes, I remember it still.

ACDC? They LOVE Texas. I saw them quite often. And the Back In Black tour - just fabulous. Just listen to those bagpipes, too. Hot damn.

I can remember a show with The Cult - it had to be the late 80's - the opener was Lenny Kravitz and he rocked the house. The Cult came on but the lead singer was so smashed that they couldn't even get through a song. He went off in a huff and, shortly after, Lenny returned and finished the show to a very appreciative house - even though he had to do some covers and replay his current hit again.

First concert? Well, I was a mere child. But it was in Chicago (`76, I think?) - Peter Frampton (the Comes Alive tour, of course) with Bob Seger opening. It was amazing.

Recently, another show was added to the top 5 - I am sure someone had to take a fall to get them there but Kodo is simply the BEST live show, period. You cannot let those drums play and not feel them in your soul. I'd seen them in Atlanta and sat dumbfounded. Here, Trooper sat with me and was caught up in it just as I was.

I haven't even mentioned the many others simply because time has erased so many from my memory. Those are the standouts. Of course, I also keep in my mind that Van Halen show - one of the last tours with Dave - wherein I was in 3rd or 4th row. Mike blasted out a solo, standing quite in front of me, and when finished, he looked right at me and I gave a "Hmm, I've seen better" eyebrow lift and shoulder shrug, jokingly. He spun on his heel, cracking up and we grinned at each other off and on all evening.

Small moments...but I remember them quite well. Recently? My latest favorite, Del Castillo. That's a band to get you into a lather.

Rock on, folks.

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