"Do not make permanent decisions on the basis of temporary emotions."
Radiohead, Houston, Texas, while on tour with Hail to the Thief (circa 2003). This is the last big concert I have attended. The first and only time I saw Radiohead. It was just brilliant. Ben Folds Five, Rochester, N.Y., while the groups was on tour for the Unauthorized Biography of Reinhold Messner. It was at a concert hall that held less than 1,000. The most energetic performance I have ever witnessed. At on point Ben Folds jumped on top of the piano and played there. Sarah McLachlan, the last performance on her 18 month Fumbling Toward Ecstasy tour (Niagara Falls, NY, 1995). Epic performance. Incredibly emotional as it was her last show. Buffalo Tom: The Palladium in Toronto. The best place to see a band ever.... (Big Red Letter Day Tour)Sunny Day Real Estate: After they reformed though the Bass Player, Nate Mendel, was in the Foo Fighters. (Water Street Music Hall, The Rising Tide Tour.) Other concerts worth mentioning: Pearl Jam (Rochester, NY on tour with Vs. album. Mudhoney opened.) Sarah McLachlin with Lisa Loeb. Soundgarden w/ Nine Inch Nails. (While I don't care for the headliners, it was an all day affair in Toronto with three stages, one a local Toronto stage.) Worst Concert (In recent memory): tie: Weezer and Liz Phair. Put a picture up on the tele and turn on their CD. The concert will sound exactly the same, no variation.
In no particular order, here are five that come to mind:Second Lollapalooza (Pearl Jam was transcendent), Smashing Pumpkins, Roger Waters, Tom Petty, Garbage, Springsteen.
Harrogate is jealous as hell that you saw the Fmubling Towards Ecstasy Tour. And he is plumb green with envy that ye saw Radiohead, as ye know.Worst performance Harrogate ever saw: a tie between Soundgarden and Ice Cube, both at the Second Lollapalooza. But the other acts covered the spread and then some....
I should throw in Primus at the Third Lollapalooza. Dinosaur Jr., Alice in Chains, Arrested Development, and Pop Will Eat Itself were great; Primus bored me to no end after the opened with My Name is Mud. Radiohead was just fantastic. I missed them in AUgust. There were here on August 8 & 9 (two shows and I could not make one for fear Megs would go into labor.) The fear was well-founded.
BEST: First Lollapalooza (FANTASTIC), Second Lollapalooza, Robert Plant & Jimmy Page (Knoxville, TN 1994), Tom Petty, Sting, Tori AmosHONORABLE MENTION: Fugazi (in their anit-skinhead days), Chris LeDoux, Willie Nelson, The Cure (Disintegration Tour)MEMORABLE (not necessarily in a good way): Genitortures, Danzig (Ybor City, FL AND Raleigh, NC)
Best: REM during their Monster Tour, Billy Pilgrim both times I saw them in 1998 & 2000 (by the way, Solon and Harrogate, they do the best cover of "Karma Police," which, unfortunately, they've never recorded), Indigo Girls in 1999, and Sheryl Crow in 2006 (I believe this explains Wild Man's affinity for Sheryl as I was 5 months pregnant with him at the time of the concert).Honorable mention: Joan Osborne and Ben Folds Five (both performed at an outdoor concert I attended while in college).Worst: Matchbox 20--don't mock me for attending this one. The tickets were free, and we also got a really nice (and free) dinner out of it. But I'm fairly certain Rob Thomas was drunk throughout the whole thing.
KISS Farewell Tour (the original farewell tour with Ace Frehley and Peter Criss) in 2000 at Sandstone Amphitheater in Kansas City. The show was played on Gene Simmons's birthday. He was given a boobie-shaped cake. Black Crowes and Steady Teddy Nugent opened.The Artist (formerly known as Prince) at Kemper Arena in Kansas City. This was the "Jam of the Year" Tour in 1998. Dawn purchased crappy nose-bleed seats, but I managed to sneak us up to the 20th row or so.Billy Idol with guitarist Steve Stevens at South x Southwest music festival in Austin. This was part of Idol's Devil's Playground tour. The venue was Stubb's BBQ. I was one person back from the stage.Van Halen reunion tour at American Airlines Center in Dallas in 2008. The day of the show was Eddie's birthday. Dave sang for him.Styx's Return to Paradise tour in 1997. A reunion of sorts with Tommy Shaw finally rejoining Dennis DeYoung and James "JY" Young on stage. This was the site of my first official date with Mrs. Oxy.The Blues Mechanics on any given Saturday at Trovato's in Omaha, NE.Honorable mention: AC/DC, Cher, and Donny & Marie.
m:Harrogate would never mock you for attending Matchbox 20, though he is not surprised that ye wound up unimpressed by what ye saw.The reason for no mockery? Thomas did two things that give him a perpetual free pass with Harrogate. First there was that superhot recording with Santana, with helped Santata rack up a deluge of Grammys and caused a whole new generation to go back andd experience Santana's larger oeuvre.And second, "This is How a Heart Breaks." A good song on its own merit, but also one that has myriad sentimental associations for Harrogate, one of which is its reminder of a time when Harrogate still took NBA Basketball seriously.
I also have to mention Joe Walsh at Clapton's Crossroads Guitar Festival at Cotton Bowl stadium in Dallas in '04. This guy is a little bit crazy and a great performer.After his set and a few more artists' sets, James Taylor came on. Boy, was he boring. He nearly put the crowd to sleep--that is, until we saw Walsh peaking through the curtains. Walsh eventually came out with his guitar and joined Taylor for the rest of his performance. Walsh not only woke the crowd, but also James Taylor, who ended up showing some charisma and putting on a good show.
Forgive me my country roots, but I'm throwing in Garth Brooks (so close I was leaning on the stage) and Merle Haggard (intimate performance at an OKC country bar). Worth mention: front row at an outdoor Ted Nugent concert, where I walked away with one of the Motor City Madman's guitar picks ;)Tied with Garth is the AC/DC concert in Dallas (1995 or 96). This concert makes the list not only because of the event itself, but because of the journey. Me and my 3 girlfriends from high school bought KATT-Roadtrip Tickets from the rock station in OKC, which came with concert tickets, various goodies, and a bus trip to/from the concert. On the bus, one was allowed to bring anything one could fit in a cooler. You get the picture...OKC to Dallas takes about 3 1/2 hours, but I enjoyed every second of that trip!
I'm bad at dates and my file-box with all of my ticket stubs disappeared at some point, so at a surface read of my memory:Prince: 1998Tool: 1994 / 1996 / 2001Tori Amos: 1994Pearl Jam: 1994Paul McCartney: 1993The Roots: 1998 / 2000Sage Francis: 2001Radiohead: Amnesiac tourDavid Bowie: HoustonFive-Eight: 1994Nine Inch Nails: 1994 / 2000Beastie Boys: 1994De La Soul: 1999Public Enemy: 2000It's funny, at the Prince show in the urinal cake in New Orleans, so many people were dancing in the aisles that I was able to move from my nosebleed BEHIND THE STAGE to a frontrow-off-the-floor-center seat that no one ever came back for.As to worst: The Magnetic Fields. The Beta Band. Any of the dozens of times "local favorites" Better than Ezra or Cowboy Mouth opened for a much better band but played so long that they cut short the headliners acts (fucking grrrrr), Matthew Sweet (that made me so sad), and Eminem. Twice. The second time worse.Secret Success: Sugar Ray. I was given free tickets and told to skip work by my boss because he had to come in. I invited a friend on my way out of town; he called in sick. It was a blast and a half from a band I had no love for.I also really enjoyed Marilyn Manson, Nick Cave and Sunny Day Real Estate even though I went to each as a date more than a raving fan.
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