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cweinsch Diary today got me thinking. I don't do it as much anymore, but I used to travel for no other reason then to see a concert. Heck there might have been a few months in the 80s where I followed this band called The Dead.

Below the fold my top concerts of all time. Call me tomorrow they will change :).

The Meters "Funky Uptown Rulers"
The Varsity, Baton Rouge, LA
1993

My two roommates, and I was a Yankee, were these two women in Baton Rouge. They were confused I'd never heard of The Meters. They pulled me to see them. Best concet I've ever seen. They are a shell of what they were in the late 60s, but they still can rock a place to its foundation.

David Lindley (and Hanni Nasser)
The Birchmere, Alexandria VA
1998

I recall a co-worker telling me I needed to go with him and see David Lindley play. I was like who is David Lindley? He said the best guitar player in the world. I think I said, "well that is a bold claim." I went. If you know the Birchmere at the time I got a room or two in my house about the size of where they play. They just rocked it. He is maybe the best guitar player alive .... just none of this "good" stuff is on YouTube (he guards his copyrights).

Los Lobos
A Field in Tennessee (Bonnaroo)
2005

I recall getting up, and you camp out at this event, and it was raining so hard. My buddies are like what are you doing? I said going to see Los Lobos. It rained so hard it hurt. I assume they never thought anybody would show up for that show in the early AM and with the rain. They just rocked the place.

The Blues Travelers
The Varsity, Baton Rouge, LA
1993

My second shoutout to The Varsity. The Blues Travelers were not popular then. John, the lead singer wasn't "skinny." I saw them like four times and they always just rocked.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Probably the Chicago Symphony. Back in the day (5+ / 0-)

    when nobody said that a group "rocked the house." This was MUSIC, not noise.

  •  Hard to say (6+ / 0-)

    We were on the second row for Stevie Ray Vaughn at the Charleston Municipal Auditorium in 87? and that was definately one of the top 10.

    Not a well known band but I saw an amazing concert in Morgantown WV in the 80's with Trapezoid.

    My first Dead show 4/10/83 in Morgantown ranks up there as do the Dead's Richmond shows in 85 and Merriweather Post in 85. JGB at Merriweather 89 was really great too.

    I saw Del Mc Coury and Leftover Salmon play a great 4 hour show at the Paramount in Ashland but I can't remember the date. That was one of the top shows.

    Also in 79 I saw the Seldom Scene and in the mid 80's the Tony Rice Unit with Jerry Douglas and that was really good.

  •  My first, actually (16+ / 0-)

    Bob Dylan, during the transition from acoustic to electric, October 29, 1965. First half, acoustic, Second half, electric, mostly the stuff from the Highway 61 Revisited album. This is what had us not knowing whether to s**t or go blind.

    -7.75, -8.10; All it takes is security in your own civil rights to make you complacent.

    by Dave in Northridge on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:15:09 AM PST

  •  The Jeff Beck Group (9+ / 0-)

    At the Grande Ballroom, Detroit, 1968.

    Lineup:  Jeff Beck, Rod Stewart, Ron Wood, Nicky Hopkins, Mick Waller.

    I was probably within 20 feet of the stage.

    Preparing for the Mayan doomsday prophecy by hastily trying to get in the good graces of snake-bird god Q’uq’umatz

    by dov12348 on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:15:20 AM PST

  •  Hmmm... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    webranding, blueoregon, IB JOHN

    Lollapalooza, Stanhope NJ, 1993
    Ramones, , Allentown PA,1995
    Phish, Big Cypress FL, 2000
    Eric Clapton and Derek Trucks, Stuttgart FRG, 2006

  •  Not the best, but at least it's a story (6+ / 0-)

    30 years ago I was on the street in a provincial city in Colombia when I thought I heard not the usual vallenato or cumbia music, but orchestral music, more specifically the overture to theFlying Dutchman.  That was odd enough (this was Pereira, not the classiest place even in its region), but what was really odd was the kick-ass sound quality: it was like the orchestra was right there on the street.  As I walked along, it turned out that it was...well, not exactly on the street, but inside the Cathedral.  

    You know, I sometimes think if I could see, I'd be kicking a lot of ass. -Stevie Wonder at the Glastonbury Festival, 2010

    by Rich in PA on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:16:56 AM PST

    •  My actual best concert, probably Son Seals... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      stlsophos, IB JOHN, SilentBrook

      ...at Williams College in 1984.  I remember it was the weekend of Doug Flutie's Hail Mary pass.  I did go to an Elvis Presley concert in 1973 or thereabouts, but I don't remember much about it and I had just got glasses but wasn't yet accustomed to bringing them with me, so I didn't see it very clearly.

      You know, I sometimes think if I could see, I'd be kicking a lot of ass. -Stevie Wonder at the Glastonbury Festival, 2010

      by Rich in PA on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:31:15 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  my favorites (5+ / 0-)

    Jethro Tull - 20 Years Tour - Richmond VA

    Lots of stuff from the early albums, including Sossity and Reasons for Waiting.

    Rush - Time Machine Tour - Red Rocks, CO

    Totally awesome to see Moving Pictures in its entirety at this amazing natural venue.

    Blue Oyster Cult - Heaven Forbid Tour - Big Flats, NY

    Seeing the legendary BOC at a tiny club.....

    Critical Thinking: The Other National Deficit.

    by cultjake on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:21:47 AM PST

    •  Jethro Tull Is A Perfect Example (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      IB JOHN, Over the Edge, SilentBrook

      a band I don't think of, then think about them and can't stop listening to them for a day or so.

      When opportunity calls pick up the phone and give it directions to your house.

      by webranding on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:25:25 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Jethro Tull had always been my favorite concert, (0+ / 0-)

      I saw him six times.

      Until I saw Roger Waters.

      However, my favorite album to this day is Thick As A Brick.

      And his new album, TAAB2 is outstanding.

    •  Jethro Tull (0+ / 0-)

      72 Calgary Corral Thick as a Brick Tour, warm up act was The Eagles on their first tour.

      runner up Bowie - Serious Moonlight - 83? Winnipeg Stadium

      Sep-14-83 Stadium Winnipeg Canada

      Setlist

      01. Look Back in Anger

      Lavender's Blue [Intro]

      02. "Heroes"

      03. What in the World?

      04. Golden Years

      05. Fashion

      06. Let's Dance

      07. Life on Mars?

      08. Sorrow

      09. Cat People (Putting Out Fire)

      10. China Girl

      11. Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps)

      12. Rebel Rebel

      13. White Light/White Heat

      14. Station to Station

      15. Cracked Actor

      16. Ashes to Ashes

      17. Space Oddity

      18. Young Americans

      19. Fame

      20. TVC 15

      Encore

      21. Star

      22. Stay

      23. The Jean Genie

      24. Modern Love

      ummm how do you add a signature?

      by bunkai on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 10:54:04 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Bowie, five times. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    blueoregon, IB JOHN, Bill W, Over the Edge

    Each show, stellar.  His band is always made up of the creme de le creme.  Clapton, five times also.  Was never disappointed.  

    Saw The Tubes in a small venue.  Their showmanship was second to none, which was their demise.  They'd put more into their shows than they took in.

    Saw the first (of the many) FINAL tours The Who did back in 1982.  It was decent but they really need to either learn the meaning of the word final and remove it from the billing of their never-ending tours or stop touring.  Bowie did it and so did Joni Mitchell, so it's not like it can't be done.

    Ancora Imparo. ("I am still learning.") - Michelangelo, Age 87

    by Dreaming of Better Days on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:26:15 AM PST

    •  Loved the Tubes. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dreaming of Better Days

      Saw them twice, on the "Remote Control" tour, 78/79.  They'd pared down their theatrics a lot by then, but they still put on a great show.  I think the final nail in the coffin for their early extravagance was the cost of fuel during the energy crisis.  They were a large band to start with, and then you start adding truckloads of props, stage sets, etc., and it's just not workable.

  •  The Beach Boys- on the beach in Atlantic City (5+ / 0-)

    Forgive me.  I can't remember the actual year, but it was on the Fourth of July- the year the Beach Boys were banned from performing in DC due to the riff-raff they bring in.

    So they moved the concert to Atlantic City.

    I live in New York.  At that time, a bus trip to AC cost $20 round trip, and when you arrived, you were given $10 in quarters and a coupon for $5 for the buffet.  So, for $5, you could see the Beach Boys in concert!

    Well, I could not find anyone to go with me.  Nobody.  How could anyone pass up this chance?

    So, for the first time in my life, I went alone.  And I had the best time ever!!!  I got there early enough to get a front row 'seat', spreading my little blanket out in the sand to wait the three hours before the greatest concert ever was to begin.  I met college students from Rhode Island, a family from Philadelphia and so many others.

    And after the concert, I took that $10 in quarters and turned it into $83 at the slots before boarding my bus for the return trip home.

    I became totally independent that day.  After a failed marriage and struggling on my own with three kids, that day was the turning point of my life.

    And I never looked back.

    Growing old is inevitable...Growing up is purely optional

    by grannycarol on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:29:16 AM PST

  •  Bruce Springsteen (5+ / 0-)

    I was right behind the stage and could watch Max attempt to levitate via drumstick.

    Economics is a social *science*. Can we base future economic decisions on math?

    by blue aardvark on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:30:44 AM PST

  •  Buddy Guy, London Shepherd's Bush, May 1996 (5+ / 0-)

    Two shows, I was front row for both of them. 15 minutes into the first show, the guy next to me taps me on the shoulder and says "That's Eric Clapton over there." He was sitting on the side of the stage just enjoying himself. I was 15 feet from a dual between Buddy and Clapton on Strange Brew and Red House. The next night was probably better, but Clapton didn't play. Peter Green was in the house, but he didn't play either (Buddy announced him and someone told me he was sitting behind him).

    "The room was dark as an honest politician's prospects." -- Dashiell Hammett

    by being released on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:31:24 AM PST

    •  I Mentioned The Varsity In Baton Rouge (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      IB JOHN, quaoar, SilentBrook

      in this Diary, twice. I saw Buddy Guy play there. He was amazing. I could write an entire Diary about just what I saw in that little place. Here is something for you. George Porter.

      Turn down your volume. He plays base in the group I mentioned above. The Meters.

      When opportunity calls pick up the phone and give it directions to your house.

      by webranding on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:43:51 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  It was a memorial service, ironically, (7+ / 0-)

    for Bill Graham and his girlfriend and their helicopter pilot. A free concert in Golden Gate Park 1991, CSN&Y, The Dead, Robin Williams, Aron Neville, joan Baex, Carlos Santana, i forget who else.

    "Let us never forget that doing the impossible is the history of this nation....It's how we are as Americans...It's how this country was built"- Michelle Obama

    by blueoregon on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:43:37 AM PST

  •  Yes! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    webranding

    These'd be on my top list too!

  •  A few! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    webranding, Garrett

    All on around 1997:

    Godspeed You Black Emperor + Labradford
    Six Parts Seven
    Red House Painters
    Sixteen Horsepower

  •  Joni Mitchell "Shadows and Light" tour (3+ / 0-)

    I saw Joni Mitchell on what I think was called the Shadows and Light tour.  Her back-up band consisted of Pat Methany on guitar, Herbie Hancock on keys, Jaco Pastorius on bass.  The Temptations opened the show - I remember them doing "Hang Down Your Head Tom Dooley", and joined Joni to sing Shadows and Light.

    the show was at TangleWood in Western Mass.  so we sat out under the stars to hear some of the greatest musicians on the planet doing their thing

    A magical night.

    I also highlight the Rolling Stone 25th anniversary concert, which I only saw on TV.  It had everyone from The Boss to Stevie Wonder.  Epic!

    "The fool doth think he is wise: the wise man knows himself to be a fool" - W. Shakespeare

    by Hugh Jim Bissell on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:53:41 AM PST

    •  I Don't Know Why. But You Made Me Think Of This (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      zerelda, SilentBrook

      I think it was like 1988 or 1989. My parents, which are rock stars, took me on a road trip to like the 20 colleges I applied to. About halfway through it I asked for us to stay at a hotel where I could watch Paul Simons Concert In Central Park.

      They left me alone and I recall, I think in AL, watching it. I eventually went to LSU(as my dad and grandfather did)  but I have to admit Auburn was one of the nicest places I've ever been.

      When opportunity calls pick up the phone and give it directions to your house.

      by webranding on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 09:03:47 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  That's hard, they're all different, but (0+ / 0-)

    overall, not just music but the whole presentation, probably the “Idomineo” that David Packard/San Jose Opera produced last year.  The Incredible String Band did some great shows back in the ‘60’s (maybe it was the acid . . .) that I still remember with surprising clarity.

    Fake Left, Drive Right . . . not my idea of a Democrat . . .

    by Deward Hastings on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:55:20 AM PST

  •  Bob Marley, Sep 1980 Hynes Auditorium, Boston (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    webranding, SilentBrook

    Kickoff of his last US tour, 5th to last concert he ever gave (only Brown University, 2 shows at MSG in NY and Pittsburgh thereafter).

    No words to describe it. Just beautiful.

    Liberalism is trust of the people tempered by prudence. Conservatism is distrust of the people tempered by fear. ~William E. Gladstone, 1866

    by absdoggy on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:56:05 AM PST

  •  The Mississippi River Festival (3+ / 0-)

    ran for a dozen or so years starting in 1969 on the campus of Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville and provided an amazing array of musical artists for $3-5 a pop.  Dylan made his first public appearance after his motorcycle accident when he surprised everyone by joining The Band onstage.  The artists frequently visited local watering holes after their shows and played local sets.  

    It was also the summer home for the St. Louis Symphony under the energetic leadership of a young Leonard Slatkin.

    Those were wonderful musical times but it began heading downhill when the university outsourced booking to an East Coast group and a couple of patrons out of tens of thousands were injured at events.  Thanks for the diary, there is no substitute for a live musical experience.

     

    A petty criminal is someone with predatory instincts but insufficient capital to form a corporation. --Clarence Darrow

    by stlsophos on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 08:56:56 AM PST

    •  I Did Not Know That (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      stlsophos

      and I live, well in southern Illinois.

      When opportunity calls pick up the phone and give it directions to your house.

      by webranding on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 09:07:32 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  As do I. (0+ / 0-)

        If you google Mississippi River Festival or MRF you can find a number of articles and photographs and a book came out in 2009 to mark the 40th anniversary.

        You knew the MRF season was drawing nigh when certified tentmaster, Skip Manley, would come to town to erect the massive canvas structure and regale us between pitchers of beer at the Stagger Inn with his wonderful stories.  It weren't no pup tent.

        A petty criminal is someone with predatory instincts but insufficient capital to form a corporation. --Clarence Darrow

        by stlsophos on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 01:25:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Loved the "Murf!" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      stlsophos

      Saw Rod Stewart there-- great show.

      Any idea if Ronnie B's BBQ is still around? A great Edwardsville landmark back in the day.

      "What everyone wants is a job and some hope."--RFK

      by For Dean in Dixie on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 01:56:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Funny you should mention those two things. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        For Dean in Dixie

        I saw Rod Stewart there too, so perhaps we were at the same show (although I think he may have appeared multiple times).

        I was working in the kitchen at Ronnie B's at that time while going to school.  The place is still there, under a different name and management.  Ronnie B(adalamenti) died in 2004.  I don't know if you remember the latter '70s movie, Stingray, with Chris Mitchum (Robert's son), but part of the film was shot at Ronnie B's.  

        A petty criminal is someone with predatory instincts but insufficient capital to form a corporation. --Clarence Darrow

        by stlsophos on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 02:09:47 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Jimi Hendrix. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    webranding, SilentBrook

    He played Friday night at the 1969 Newport Pops Music Festival in Northridge, California.
    Jimi was known for playing a short concert when he wasn't playing up to his own standards, but was applauded by the audience. He felt that such applause was phony and he didn't like it.
    On this night though, he was in the groove and played for over 2 hours. He was superb.
    And as an additional bonus, he was joined on stage by Janis Joplin for 1 song.
    Jimi was a genius on the guitar and could sing. I'm still amazed how so much talent could be wrapped up in one package.

    "I'm gonna dance between the raindrops"

    by IB JOHN on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 09:00:36 AM PST

  •  Steeleye Span. (2+ / 0-)

    I don't remember how long ago, but I was in my 20s.  They were playing the Roxie in Los Angeles.  They were incredible.

    Strength and dignity are her clothing, she rejoices at the days to come; She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the law of kindness is on her tongue.

    by loggersbrat on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 09:07:05 AM PST

  •  Many Grateful Dead shows (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    webranding, misterwade, SilentBrook

    The best one was the one you were at at the time.

    I also saw Joni Mitchell in San Francisco during her Shadows and Light tour, with Jaco Pastorius on bass, Don Allias on drums,  and Pat Metheny on guitar, with the Temptations on backup vocals. Four hours of total awesome. Simply awesome.

    A couple of Ravi Shankar concerts, one with Alli Akbar Khan, stand out as sublime moments in time for me.

  •  The 12 12 12 Sandy Relief last night (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SilentBrook

    was pretty awesome. Lots of great performances, Roger Waters, the Stones, Paul, but I thought that The Who stole the show

  •  derek and the dominoes 11-22-70 has always (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    webranding, S F Hippie, SilentBrook

    stayed with me...of course, the stones in june, 1972...the who in 1970...santana at winterland in late 1972

    i stopped going to "concerts" in 1973, for the most part

    Coming Attraction: "Tea Party II - now with more stupid!"

    by memofromturner on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 09:11:42 AM PST

  •  John Lee Hooker (3+ / 0-)

    at the Delta Blues Festival in Freedom Village, Mississippi, in 1983.

    Also the first time I ever ate a pig ear sandwich.

  •  Tina Turner (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SilentBrook

    All I can say is, wow what a show she puts on (or did, before one of her various retirements).

    Runner up: Prince, about a dozen years ago in Toronto, when he was into a jazz/funk period. I recognized none of the music at that concert, and loved every minute of it.

    Honorable mention: Year 5 (or whatever it was) of the Cher farewell tour, also in Toronto, the night that Cyndi Lauper as the opener sat on my lap during her performance (yes, really).

    Psst! Meet me at the Electoral College campus. The baggers will never find it!

    by lotac on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 09:37:57 AM PST

  •  The US Festival in 1982 (6+ / 0-)

    The best weekend of my life (musically). I went to the US Festival the next year in 1983, but not nearly as much fun.  

    Good lord, in one weekend I saw  
    Gang of Four
        * The Ramones
        * The English Beat
        * Oingo Boingo
        * The B-52's
        * Talking Heads
        * The Police
        * The Joe Sharino Band
        * Dave Edmunds
        * Eddie Money
        * Santana
        * The Cars
        * The Kinks
        * Pat Benatar
        * Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers
             * Breakfast with the Dead | Grateful Dead
        * Jerry Jeff Walker
        * Jimmy Buffett
        * Jackson Browne
        * Fleetwood Mac

    The road to excess leads to the palace of Wisdom, I must not have excessed enough

    by JenS on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 09:41:20 AM PST

    •  Great lineup. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JenS, SilentBrook

      I would have loved to see a festival with the Ramones and Jimmy Buffett on the same ticket. Seems like we've gotten less and less tolerant of going outside our musical comfort zones these days.  I was just reading a local blog this morning where a bunch of my neighbors are arguing over whether any hiphop or R&B acts should have performed at last night's Sandy benefit.  

  •  A Day In the Garden: 1998 (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SilentBrook

    was probably the best concert seen by me. It was a Woodstock reunion of sorts, held on the actual original site of Woodstock in Bethel, NY and featured a large number of great entertainers, from Joni Mitchell, to Pete Townsend, Lou Reed, Donovan, Melanie and more.) It actually felt something like what Woodstock must have been like, as far as the atmosphere.

  •  Fishbone at the Blind Pig in Ann Arbor (0+ / 0-)

    The small bar was very hot and hopping.

    Radiohead in Grant Park in 2000.  It was very hot and hopping.

    Sonic Youth at Latin Quarter in Detroit in 1990.  

  •  The Warlocks, 10/09/89 (0+ / 0-)

    Hampton Coliseum. A bunch of stellar Dead shows out of the 100 plus I attended.  Beck and Stevie Ray together. Sonny Rollins at the Masonic in SF.  I sat so close to Tommy Flanagan at One Step down in DC I was almost on his bench, and was mesmerized.  Chucho Valdes at Yoshi's. The Meters at the Warfield.  John McLaughlin and Chick Corea at Woftrap. The Pogues, and many more awesome shows at the Fillmore

    Recently saw Shabazz Palaces at the ECHO in L.A. - I was blown away, but was also super high :)  

  •  Ry Cooder, Leon Redbone & surprise Neil Young (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Over the Edge, SilentBrook

    It may not be "the best" I ever went to but it sure was memorable, and wicked fun.

    It was a Ry Cooder performance at the Bottom Line in NYC, May 16, 1974. Opening was Leon Redbone. Both great.

    Somewhere after midnight after Ry had finished he came out and said he had a friend he wanted to have come out and play. And who should walk out but Neil Young. He proceeded to play a wonderful set, which started with Citizen Kane Junior Blues.

    The Bottom line was a pretty small place----all on the floor...maybe 150 -200 people. It was very fun. Here's a note about that night, followed by Neil's and Ry's setlists.

    Neil Young Bottom Line
    Neil Young set list

    Ry Cooder's set list

    Resist much, obey little. ~~Edward Abbey, via Walt Whitman

    by willyr on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 10:00:00 AM PST

  •  Let's see... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cardinal

    Can't pick just one, so here's a few.

    Lollapalooza '93, Phoenix, AZ. This is probably the show I went to the most trouble to see (two bus rides through the desert from Vegas to Phoenix and back, at the height of summer). But well worth it in the end. Primus, Alice in Chains, Tool, Rage Against the Machine, and Fishbone, among many others.

    Ozric Tentacles, at Harlow's, Sacramento, CA, March 29, 2005. Ozric Tentacles is a British psychedelic band, mostly instrumental, very spacey. I'm a huge fan, and they don't play much in the US, so this show was a really big deal for me. Thankfully, it was worth it for the light show alone.

    Iggy Pop and the Stooges, at the Warfield, San Francisco, CA, April 21, 2007. Iggy's 60th birthday, and he celebrated it by stage-diving. And kicking ass on punk classics that I never expected to see performed live.

    George Clinton and Parliament/Funkadelic, at the Harmony Festival, Santa Rosa, CA, June 6, 2008. Well past their prime, but still absolutely incredible. Clinton was only onstage for 20 minutes--and was obviously stoned out of his mind--but he was still great to see.

    A quote from the show: "You know that song, 'two-thousand-zero-zero, party over...'? Well, we're gonna do things a little different. We're gonna party like it's nineteen-SEVENTY-nine!"

    Metallica, San Rafael, CA, September 11, 2009. This was a benefit for the Marin History Museum, to help create a big exhibit on the history of rock music in Marin County. They all live and record in Marin, but they never play there because there's no place big enough. This was a large community theater, and the tickets were over $200--so the show was small and intimate, but packed with SERIOUS fans.

    Quote, from James Hetfield: "This is, like, our backyard. A little while ago I was having dinner at my house, then I drove over, and now I'm playing a gig. It's pretty crazy, I love it."

    The Phenomenauts, Minibosses, and GnarBoots, at the Phoenix Theater, Petaluma, CA, October 19, 2012. Yes, this is very recent and the memory is still fresh. But damn, this was a great show. The Phenomenauts are a rockabilly band from the Bay Area with a science fiction theme. Great music, props, and toys; they're consistently voted one of the best live acts in California. The other bands were enormous fun, too--and the theater is a local youth-run community center, covered in graffiti. Great night.

    I think that's probably it... unless you count the 40-plus times I've seen the Sacramento-based Star Trek-themed band Warp 11.

    •  "Lollapalooza '93, Phoenix, AZ." (0+ / 0-)

      I was the one guy in the reserved section standing on the chairs dancing and singing every word along with Rage Against The Machine. And yeah, I had to take a break in the shade after that. That was definitely the hottest concert I had ever attended. But what a fabulous lineup.

      Grew a mustache and a mullet / Got a job at Chick-Fil-A

      by cardinal on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 10:33:34 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Here they are (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SilentBrook

    The Jam - 1980
    Bruce Springsteen - The River tour 1980
    Tom Waits - Rain Dog's tour, circa
    Any NRBQ show
    The Pogues - Rum Sodomy and the Lash tour ca. 1986

  •  The Doors (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SilentBrook

    1968 or thereabouts at the Washington Hilton. Sadly, I saw them again about eighteen months later after Morrison had sunk into an alcoholic morass, and it was awful.

    Also:

    Cream at the Baltimore Civic Center.

    Spirit -  a free concert at a community center somewhere in the Maryland suburbs..

    Patti Smith at the Warfield in SF about three years ago.

    Bruce Springsteen, Berkeley Community Theater late '70s

    Come to think of it, I've seen a lot of awesome music over the years. (The above list doesn't even mention the ridiculous number of Dead concerts I attended over the years.)

  •  The Byrds, at the Palestra, close enough to touch (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sfbob

    the speaker cases;  around the time of Sweetheart of the Rodeo, plus Jethro Tull, War Memorial, Buffalo, NY. 1970's

    If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever. & http://www.dailykos.com/blog/Okiciyap

    by weck on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 10:33:56 AM PST

    •  Was Gram Parsons still a member? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      weck

      That would have been awesome. But Sweetheart of the Rodeo appeared in 1968, RIGHT before my freshman year of college.

      I saw the Flying Burrito Bros perform outdoors at Queens College sometime around 1970 and I THINK Parsons hadn't yet moved on from them yet.

      •  Yes, and I was still in high school at that time. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sfbob

        I had a friend with a license and a cousin at the U of R.  It was the first time I had ever seen "granola"!

        If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever. & http://www.dailykos.com/blog/Okiciyap

        by weck on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 08:08:21 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  King Crimson Thrak tour in NY 1995 (0+ / 0-)

    Progressive rock King Crimson live in NYC 1995

    All those legendary guys were there: Robert Fripp, Adrian Belew, Tony Levin, Trey Gunn, Bill Bruford, Pat Mastelotto.  

  •  Oh my... so many to choose from (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SilentBrook

    and I've been fortunate to see so many over the years (I'm old!).

    -Ray Charles in Norfolk around 1963 or so
    -Janis Joplin, Joe Cocker & the Butterfield Blues Band at the Baltimore Civic Center 1968(ish)
    -Bob Dylan and The Band at the Capitol Center some time in the mid-70s
    -Willy DeVille in Greenwich Village around 1997 or 1998
    -Rostropovich at the Kennedy Center
    -So many more... Eric Clapton, Joni Mitchell, Elton John, JJ Cale, John Hiatt, BB King, Bonnie Raitt, Paul Simon, Amazing Rhythm Aces, Linda Ronstadt, Hot Tuna, Dr, John, Leon Russell, Neil Young, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Emmy Lou Harris, Peter Tosh, Rusted Root, & on & on.

    The one I was most excited about was the Rolling Stones' Bridges to Babylon tour. They always had been my favorite band and that was... finally!... the first time I'd ever had a chance to see them. Nice up-front seats, too.

    Recently, a friend won free tickets to see kd lang at Wolf Trap. I've always enjoyed her, but was blown away by what a great show she put on. It was obvious how much she truly enjoyed her band and her audience. Having 4th row seats
    helped make it even better.

  •  Best Concerts Ever = Stevie Ray in the late 80s (0+ / 0-)

    I saw him 3 times in Indy and he was awesome each and  every moment he was on stage.

    REM at Wittenburg University in '85' was a terrific show, too. They had just released "Reckoning" and were so fresh and obviously loved performing that is was one of those shows that stands out in my mind. (Still have the ticket stub somewhere. lol)

    Finally for a smaller venue show...the Subdudes at the Vogue in Indy somewhere in the early 90s. I had never heard of them, but allowed my big sister to drag me there (knowing her taste in music was always right on the mark with me.) I went in with a headache and a bad mood and left completely energized, dancing and in love with the band. Too much fun!

    I have to say as many others have that there have been many shows through the years that were worthy of  making the list though...Allmans, U2, BoDeans, Buddy Guy, Bonnie Raitt, DMB, even a Godsmack concert just to name a few.

    For me, the thrill of live music is in the energy of the crowd combining with the magic music provides, so elaborate stage shows, costume changes, dancers and flashy pyrotechnics have never done anything for me in a live setting.

    Like all dreamers, I mistook disenchantment for truth. - Jean Paul Sartre

    by ApatheticNoMore1966 on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 10:59:36 AM PST

  •  asdf (0+ / 0-)

    "There are only two ways to live your life. One is though nothing is a miracle. The other is as if everything is." Einstein

    by humanunit on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 11:12:53 AM PST

  •  Yo-Yo Ma in a Small Room (0+ / 0-)

    During a symposium on tango which included lectures, dance performances and live music, Yo-yo Ma played a duet with pianist Octavio Brunetti of Astor Piazzolla's "Soledad" for maybe forty people in a small auditorium at Harvard.

    Charles Mingus at a midnight jam session at Radio City Music Hall and the NY Jazz Fest playing the blues.

    Miles Davis in one of his first shows after coming back to music in the 1980s, leaning over into the first row at Boston disco Kimmie's playing his horn into the lap of his then wife, Cicely Tyson.

    My friends The Natural Wonders playing at the Plough and Stars bar for their posse most every Sunday afternoon:

    Solar is civil defense. Video of my small scale solar experiments at solarray.

    by gmoke on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 11:13:47 AM PST

  •  Pink Floyd in Chicago just after the release (0+ / 0-)

    of "Dark Side of the Moon."  Most incredible sound set up I've ever had the pleasure of experiencing.  

    "They love the founding fathers so much they will destroy everything they created and remake it in Rush Limbaughs image." MinistryofTruth, 9/29/11

    by AnnieR on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 11:28:03 AM PST

  •  beatles (0+ / 0-)

    In 1965 I won 2 tickets to see the Beatles at Red Rocks..
    ...
    The Doors NYE at the Denver Family Dog
    The Denver Pop Fest 1969
    Stones/Stevie/Ike&Tina 73
    George harrison
    Parliament Funkadelic (mothership)
    etc..etc..etc

    Throughout the 70's and even into the 80's concert tickets were cheap $8-10 because it was a promo to buy the "new album" At that time the big money for bands was through the album. The Stones 76 tour was the first $25 ticket for me..
      I have seen 100's of shows but less than 20 in the past five years because ticket prices too crazy...
      Of course spending my life a half hour from Red Rocks..
    (yep all them Dead shows)

    ...live shows were/are about the line community..breaking every drug law..and a whole lot of people dancing our asses off for a couple of hours...

    "If you get confused listen to the music play"

  •  Being the stereotype that I am (0+ / 0-)

    I suppose I'd have to reference Woodstock (yes, I was there). My favorite moment from Woodstock was this early morning performance:

    Most of my favorite concerts were from very early on in my concert-going career, which pretty much had ended by 1973.

    Somewhere around beginning of November 1968, my freshman year in college, Joni Mitchell appeared at my campus on a bill with Tim Hardin. Hardin unfortunately was an out-of-control alcoholic and there was little to commend in his performance but at the time, not that many people knew about Joni Mitchell. But I did. I sat a couple of rows from the front at the early show and then managed to finagle a ticket to the later show (we were supposedly limited to only one) as well. Highlight of the evening was hearing "That Song About the Midway" for the first time, still one of my two or three favorites.

    During the summers of 1969 and 1970 I went to quite a few outdoor concerts at the Wollman Skating Rink in Central Park. One highlight was seeing The Mothers of Invention not long before Frank Zappa dismissed the original band members and they were incredible. And seeing Laura Nyro there was magical too.

    One of the best performances I ever witnessed was my very first live concert, Judy Collins at Forest Hills Tennis Stadium, August 1968. She was the opening act for Arlo Guthrie, who I also enjoyed but it was the beginning of that portion of her musical career that culminated with Who Knows Where the Time Goes and the single most memorable piece of that whole concert was an up-tempo version of "Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues" which I thought was much better than the version on In My Life.

    Also, about two weeks before Woodstock the Jefferson Airplane did a free concert at the Central Park Bandshell that was phenomenal.

  •  currently it is Leonard Cohen in Austin this past (0+ / 0-)

    Halloween.  I never was into seeing arena concents.   My other favorites include Joe Ely on a 4th of July festival in Chicago.  I also witnessed an amazing NRBQ show as well as a Jayhawks show.   I missed seeing David lindley with Ry Cooder at the New Orleans Jazz Fest one year.  The friends I was with had no idea who they were.  Another favorite was a Bob Dylan show about 11 years ago.  It was a general admission show and I got to stand about 15 feet from the stage.

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