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Strider   

I went to that Derringer show at the Whiskey, it was red-hot! Just like their live LP

I bet it was, badgeholder! I couldn't make the Derringer show myself. And in case anybody is wondering, I didn't go to any of those Ramones-Blondie shows advertised either...shortly after the Tom Petty-Blondie show, I got into trouble and was grounded for two weeks.

So no Ramones for me...I think their second album had just been released, or was just about due.

Note to Led Zep Girl: I haven't forgotten your request...just be a little patient and I'll pm you the entire details very soon.

Edited by Strider

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Strider   

Funny typo! :D

Great thread, Strider, very interesting reading.

Oh lord...I'm so embarrassed. :bagoverhead:

Sorry badgeholder...I've fixed it now.

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Strider   

Post #10: TOUR IS DELAYED: Led Zeppelin Marches into June!

Because of the Academy Awards this weekend and the prepping needed for the Oscar-watching party I'll be at, I am writing one post for the two dates this chapter of the thread covers...as I won't have time to post Sunday.

Date: Friday February 25, and Saturday February 26, 1977

Talk about your "good news, bad news"...or actually the reverse.

The 1977 Led Zeppelin tour was set to open in Ft. Worth, Texas on Sunday the 27th. The tour was due to hit Los Angeles in two weeks...the wait and the build-up of the anticipation was peaking and I could barely think about anything else other than Led Zeppelin.

I had already traded two of my extra Led Zeppelin tickets for two other concerts coming up...Boston/Outlaws at Long Beach Arena March 19, and The Runaways at Santa Monica Civic April 1. Both shows were on a weekend night, so no problems going as long as I stayed out of trouble. At this time, I was grounded for two weeks, causing me to miss the Kinks concert as well as the Ramones/Blondie show the Whisky.

The word was that Pink Floyd was bringing the Animals tour to Anaheim Stadium, and there were also rumours of a Fleetwood Mac show in the summer. The ticket agency ads also announced they were taking deposits on bands like Aerosmith, David Bowie and Yes. I was still trying to think of a way that I could use my March 9 ticket...I didn't think I could bear sitting at home that first night knowing Zeppelin was playing and I wasn't there. Plus, the first night's are often when the crowd is at its highest pitch for a show; it's been years since the band last played and nobody knows what the band looks like or what they are playing yet. It's all new and fresh.

Litle did I know as I headed off to school that Friday morning of the 25th of February that EVERYTHING was about to change and my worries come to an end. It wasn't until after school, on the bus ride home that I first heard the report come over the radio station that the bus driver conveniently played for us kids...it was an AM station; probably something like 93 KHJ.

Led Zeppelin's tour was postponed...and the LA Forum dates in March were now being moved to June. I couldn't quite make out the exact dates of the switch over the noise and commotion of the bus. But I understood enough to know that I was going to have to WAIT even LONGER now for those Zeppelin shows. I instantly got into a funk and was gloomy the rest of the ride home.

Once home, I had some chores to do before I could retreat to my room and monitor the radio for more details as I did my homework(yes, we got homework on Fridays back then). KMET was my station of choice, and Pat "Paraquat" Kelley usually handled the news in the afternoons. Sure enough, I got the lowdown from Kelley: Plant had tonsillitis and the 1977 tour would now begin April 1 in Toronto. The Los Angeles dates of March 9, 12, 13, 15 and 16 NOW became June 21, 22, 23, 25 and 26 respectively at the Forum. Additionally, there would be an historic 6th show added on June 27...with tickets to go on sale in the future. No band had ever played the LA Forum for six straight nights before.

FUCK! FUCK! FUCK! Poor Robert Plant...first his leg, now tonsillitis. Now, instead of being two weeks away, it would be FOUR MONTHS before the concerts...116 days of waiting, aaaaarrrrgggghhhh!

I simmered and stewed and cursed the rotten luck and struggled to concentrate on my homework the rest of the night...until a light went on! :blink:

School would be out in June! By the time of the concerts I wouldn't have to worry about school night curfews...I could go to any and all the Zeppelin shows I wanted! This wasn't BAD news...this was GOOD news!!! I started to relax and feel better. Since I was on restriction, I couldn't watch tv or use the phone, so I would have to wait until Monday when I could see my friend at school to find out if this news affected his concert plans. I left the radio on as I went to bed as soon as I finished my homework and drifted off to sleep, my thoughts being primarily this: Could I possibly go to all SIX concerts? Did I have the stamina to do such a thing? Was Led Zeppelin still worthy enough in concert to warrant going to so many shows?

The next morning, I got up early and checked the Saturday Feb. 26 L.A. Times over my bowl of cereal(most likely a bowl of Lucky Charms). There, tucked among the movie reviews and listings on page 7 of the B section of the paper was the following article:

post-1470-0-89935200-1330210278.jpg

Hmmmm, Led Zeppelin's 1977 Tour was now starting April 1 in Toronto. This signified a couple of things besides the ability of me to go to more of the concerts.

1.) Unlike 1975, the weather would be considerably warmer for both band and fans alike on this tour, which definitely makes things more comfortable and the band less susceptible to catching a cold or the flu.

2.) On the original tour itinerary, Los Angeles was part of the first leg, with barely two weeks for the band to shake the rust off and work out any kinks in the sound and lighting systems, set list and song arrangements. Now, the L.A. dates closed the second leg and the band should be firing on all cylinders by June.

With my two extra tickets from March 12 already exchanged for Boston and Runaways tickets, I had 6 tickets left. With the schedule change, I now had:

1 Loge for June 21

1 Colonnade for June 22

1 Loge for June 23

3 Rear Floors for June 25

I would have to wait until Monday Feb. 28 to consult with my friend and see if he wanted to go to more shows and also try to get more tickets when the 6th Forum show went on sale. As it stood now, I could trade in two of my extra June 25's for one each of the 26 and 27 dates...if I wanted, I could go to every one of the six LA Forum shows.

But with the shows four months away, there was no rush. There was plenty of time to sort things out in the days to come. 116 days, to be exact.

Edited by Strider

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I roadied at that Runaways show! (Sorry to keep doing this, but, fuck, I'm starting to think me and Strider were at a LOT of the same shows! Anyway, carry on, carry on.....)

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Strider   

I roadied at that Runaways show! (Sorry to keep doing this, but, fuck, I'm starting to think me and Strider were at a LOT of the same shows! Anyway, carry on, carry on.....)

No apologies necessary badgeholder. But as you were doing sound and roadieing, I've got a feeling you were at a LOT MORE shows than I was in 1977. But yes, it does appear our musical tastes were similar so there will probably be a few more concerts that pop up in my timeline that we both attended.

Hey Sems Fir: How did you get a copy of the press release? Were you a reporter at the time?

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snapper   

Post #10: TOUR IS DELAYED: Led Zeppelin Marches into June!

Because of the Academy Awards this weekend and the prepping needed for the Oscar-watching party I'll be at, I am writing one post for the two dates this chapter of the thread covers...as I won't have time to post Sunday.

Date: Friday February 25, and Saturday February 26, 1977

Talk about your "good news, bad news"...or actually the reverse.

The 1977 Led Zeppelin tour was set to open in Ft. Worth, Texas on Sunday the 27th. The tour was due to hit Los Angeles in two weeks...the wait and the build-up of the anticipation was peaking and I could barely think about anything else other than Led Zeppelin.

I had already traded two of my extra Led Zeppelin tickets for two other concerts coming up...Boston/Outlaws at Long Beach Arena March 19, and The Runaways at Santa Monica Civic April 1. Both shows were on a weekend night, so no problems going as long as I stayed out of trouble. At this time, I was grounded for two weeks, causing me to miss the Kinks concert as well as the Ramones/Blondie show the Whisky.

The word was that Pink Floyd was bringing the Animals tour to Anaheim Stadium, and there were also rumours of a Fleetwood Mac show in the summer. The ticket agency ads also announced they were taking deposits on bands like Aerosmith, David Bowie and Yes. I was still trying to think of a way that I could use my March 9 ticket...I didn't think I could bear sitting at home that first night knowing Zeppelin was playing and I wasn't there. Plus, the first night's are often when the crowd is at its highest pitch for a show; it's been years since the band last played and nobody knows what the band looks like or what they are playing yet. It's all new and fresh.

Litle did I know as I headed off to school that Friday morning of the 25th of February that EVERYTHING was about to change and my worries come to an end. It wasn't until after school, on the bus ride home that I first heard the report come over the radio station that the bus driver conveniently played for us kids...it was an AM station; probably something like 93 KHJ.

Led Zeppelin's tour was postponed...and the LA Forum dates in March were now being moved to June. I couldn't quite make out the exact dates of the switch over the noise and commotion of the bus. But I understood enough to know that I was going to have to WAIT even LONGER now for those Zeppelin shows. I instantly got into a funk and was gloomy the rest of the ride home.

Once home, I had some chores to do before I could retreat to my room and monitor the radio for more details as I did my homework(yes, we got homework on Fridays back then). KMET was my station of choice, and Pat "Paraquat" Kelley usually handled the news in the afternoons. Sure enough, I got the lowdown from Kelley: Plant had tonsillitis and the 1977 tour would now begin April 1 in Toronto. The Los Angeles dates of March 9, 12, 13, 15 and 16 NOW became June 21, 22, 23, 25 and 26 respectively at the Forum. Additionally, there would be an historic 6th show added on June 27...with tickets to go on sale in the future. No band had ever played the LA Forum for six straight nights before.

FUCK! FUCK! FUCK! Poor Robert Plant...first his leg, now tonsillitis. Now, instead of being two weeks away, it would be FOUR MONTHS before the concerts...116 days of waiting, aaaaarrrrgggghhhh!

I simmered and stewed and cursed the rotten luck and struggled to concentrate on my homework the rest of the night...until a light went on! :blink:

School would be out in June! By the time of the concerts I wouldn't have to worry about school night curfews...I could go to any and all the Zeppelin shows I wanted! This wasn't BAD news...this was GOOD news!!! I started to relax and feel better. Since I was on restriction, I couldn't watch tv or use the phone, so I would have to wait until Monday when I could see my friend at school to find out if this news affected his concert plans. I left the radio on as I went to bed as soon as I finished my homework and drifted off to sleep, my thoughts being primarily this: Could I possibly go to all SIX concerts? Did I have the stamina to do such a thing? Was Led Zeppelin still worthy enough in concert to warrant going to so many shows?

The next morning, I got up early and checked the Saturday Feb. 26 L.A. Times over my bowl of cereal(most likely a bowl of Lucky Charms). There, tucked among the movie reviews and listings on page 7 of the B section of the paper was the following article:

post-1470-0-89935200-1330210278.jpg

Hmmmm, Led Zeppelin's 1977 Tour was now starting April 1 in Toronto. This signified a couple of things besides the ability of me to go to more of the concerts.

1.) Unlike 1975, the weather would be considerably warmer for both band and fans alike on this tour, which definitely makes things more comfortable and the band less susceptible to catching a cold or the flu.

2.) On the original tour itinerary, Los Angeles was part of the first leg, with barely two weeks for the band to shake the rust off and work out any kinks in the sound and lighting systems, set list and song arrangements. Now, the L.A. dates closed the second leg and the band should be firing on all cylinders by June.

With my two extra tickets from March 12 already exchanged for Boston and Runaways tickets, I had 6 tickets left. With the schedule change, I now had:

1 Loge for June 21

1 Colonnade for June 22

1 Loge for June 23

3 Rear Floors for June 25

I would have to wait until Monday Feb. 28 to consult with my friend and see if he wanted to go to more shows and also try to get more tickets when the 6th Forum show went on sale. As it stood now, I could trade in two of my extra June 25's for one each of the 26 and 27 dates...if I wanted, I could go to every one of the six LA Forum shows.

But with the shows four months away, there was no rush. There was plenty of time to sort things out in the days to come. 116 days, to be exact.

I sometimes think about what the '77 tour would have been like had it not been postponed 4 months (thats a long time).

If I'm not mistaken, the band did not do 'any' rehearsals during this time, probably because of Plants voice, I'm sure.

Page, by his own admission said he did not touch a guitar during this time, so they basically started their tour totally

unrehearsed, thats scary (it sure would scare me).

I really do think '77 would have been a different story if it had not been postponed 4 months.

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Sems Fir   

No apologies necessary badgeholder. But as you were doing sound and roadieing, I've got a feeling you were at a LOT MORE shows than I was in 1977. But yes, it does appear our musical tastes were similar so there will probably be a few more concerts that pop up in my timeline that we both attended.

Hey Sems Fir: How did you get a copy of the press release? Were you a reporter at the time?

Hi Strider! I actually picked up the release through Ebay. Although not on Swan Song stationary I thought it was interesting enough to pick up. There's a couple of more pages with it that mainly list the concert dates and cities. I can scan in the rest if you want to see the remaining pages? Please let me know.

Have a good one.

Ever onward.

Robert

www.behindthetoys.com

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Strider   

Post #11: APRIL FOOL'S DAY: A Day for Firsts

Date: Friday April 1, 1977

Hello again...your prodigal narrator returns. I had some computer problems...lost some archival files...but I'll carry on the best I can. When last I left, Robert Plant had contracted tonsillitis and the 1977 Tour was postponed. All the Los Angeles dates were moved from March to June, which turned out to be a godsend as that made it possible to see more of the Forum concerts than I had originally anticipated.

So now it's a month later, April Fools' Day to be exact, and here is where things stood. After consulting with my friend, our original tickets for March 12, which were now June 22 tix, were traded in for June 25, as my friend could only go on the weekend dates, as he had a family engagement during the week that he couldn't get out of.

I had 3 June 25 tix that I now didn't need, so I swapped two of the tix for June 26 and 27 seats. The third ticket I swapped for a Pink Floyd ticket. They had just added a second Anaheim Stadium concert for Saturday May 7, which was perfect. I didn't mind skipping the June 22 Forum date, as I figured that would give me a day to recuperate. My schedule of Led Zeppelin shows was now set in stone:

Tuesday June 21: LZ concert

Wednesday June 22: rest

Thursday June 23: LZ concert

Friday June 24: rest

Saturday June 25: LZ concert

Sunday June 26: LZ concert

Monday June 27: LZ concert

Overkill? Maybe...some people found it excessive, and perhaps still do. All I know is that I had accomplished once again my quirky goal of getting tickets to one more Zeppelin concert than the previous tour. In 1972, I saw them twice; in 1973 three times; and so on until in 1977 I was up to 5 shows.

Due to time and money constraints, there were only two concerts I saw in the month of March 1977, but they were both good ones.

First up was the Queen/Thin Lizzy show at the Forum, March 3. This was either the second or third time I had seen both bands in concert, but having both on the bill together was a stroke of genius. At that point in time I was probably slightly more a fan of Thin Lizzy than Queen. Not that I didn't like Queen, but up to that point("Day at the Races" had just been released) I thought Queen's albums were uneven.

In concert, while Queen was definitely a flamboyant and energetic band, there was something about the band's sound, and Brian May's guitar tone in particular, that came off sounding canned. But even so, when Queen was good("Tie Your Mother Down", "Death on Two Legs", "Somebody to Love") they were very good. I just wish they didn't have to rely on backing tapes for "Bohemian Rhapsody", and who knows what other songs.

On the other hand, what a voice Freddie Mercury possessed! And what a performer...what a ham!!! I mean that in the best sense. Pretty good stage lighting for that era, too, if I recall.

Thin Lizzy of course was incredible...they had one of the best twin-guitar attacks of all time. In fact, I'm not positive so I'll allow some Thin Lizzy expert to confirm, but I think that Gary Moore was in the band for this tour. By not being the headliner Thin Lizzy was also able to consolidate their setlist to 45 minutes of their best material.

And what is there to say about the great Phil Lynott that hasn't been said already? He was the heart and soul of Thin Lizzy...a great songwriter and bass player/vocalist and a geniunely warm stage presence. What a unique talent and such a great loss when he died.

I'll tell you one thing, that '77 Queen Lizzy tour was one of the best of the Seventies...they had the Forum rockin'!

The other concert I saw that month was Boston/The Outlaws/Starcastle at Long Beach Arena Saturday March 19. This was one of those bills that were common in the 70s. Starcastle was one of those Yes-wannabe prog-lite bands that seemed to proliferate in the Midwest. Bands like Styx and Kansas. In fact, one of the highlights and side benefits of digging through my past like this has been rediscovering long-forgotten bands from days of yore. Of course, most of them were forgotten for good reasons.

The Outlaws were the second band and they had about three albums under their belt, although none had the impact of their debut album, released in 1975. That was the album that had their best known songs: "There Goes Another Love Song" and "Green Grass and High Tides". As one review of the time put it, they were a harder-rocking Eagles/Poco or a more countrified Lynyrd Skynyrd. The best thing they had going for them was Hughie Thomasson on guitar.

People were toking left and right during the Outlaws...I wasn't smoking, but I didn't need to. The Long Beach Arena was so thick with smokey haze that I probably got a contact high. By the time the band got to "Green Grass...", well, it was high times indeed.

The smoking didn't let up for Boston, either. Now, I don't think much of what Boston became later on, but on that first album tour, I have to say they smoked!!! Even today, I still like much of that debut Boston album. Brad Delp had those crazy high vocals and Tom Scholze came up with that ear-candy guitar tone. That "Boston" album was a smash in 1976...radio played it to death, and having missed them in 1976, I was looking forward to finally checking them out in concert. I was not disappointed. What was incredible was how they recreated the guitar sound from the album. At times they had three guitars going at once, with Tom, Brad and Barry all wielding axes.

The setlist was pretty much the first album. But I still recall the encore being a new song..."Television Politician". It didn't appear on "Don't Look Back", either. Don't know if it ever got released. "Foreplay/Longtime" was a highlight and "Smokin'" was...well, smokin'.

If only they could have kept that creative spark they had for that first year or so, Boston could have been a decent band. But by the second album I was already beginning to lose interest and when they took a decade to make their third, I had long ceased to care.

But man, that first album and tour...if you are old enough and lucky enough to have seen them then, you know what I mean.

That brings me to April 1, 1977, where a couple of events of note and importance took place.

Event number 1: The Runaways/Cheap Trick at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium. This was my FIRST TIME seeing both bands. Cheap Trick was a late add to the bill and I didn't know a thing about them. I think their first album might have just been released, but radio wasn't playing it...at least I didn't hear it on KMET, KLOS, or KWEST. But there had been a couple brief notices in the L.A. Times.

That said, I was unprepared for how thoroughly wacky and enjoyable the band was in concert. What a bunch of characters, led by Rick Nielson, the Huntz Hall of the group. It was at this show I first heard "I Want You to Want Me", and even then, in the less-than-perfect acoustics of the Santa Monica Civic(basically a glorified gym), you could tell this was a perfect song for radio. Which made it puzzling why radio wasn't jumping all over this band. Not that other songs measured up to that one. After the concert, I went out and got the "Cheap Trick" album, and I found it very hit-and-miss. But I did make a note to keep an eye on them in the future. How can you not love a band where the drummer nonchalantly plays with a cigarette dangling from his lips?

But the only reason I was at this concert to begin with was the headliners, The Runaways...the Queens of Noise! I had been wanting to see the Runaways for a year, ever since reading about them in the L.A. Times and then getting that first record and hearing "Cherry Bomb". The clincher was hearing Robert Plant was at one of the many L.A. appearances the Runaways made in 1976. For some reason, though, I could never seem to get it together to go to any of their 1976 shows, culminating with their New Year's Eve show at the Whisky with Van Halen opening!!! FUCK! Imagine the rock n roll deliciousness of that night!

So when the Runaways announced the Santa Monica gig, I finally had a chance. It was not on a school night for one thing and money was no problem, as I could swap one of my extra Zep tickets for the show. "Queens of Noise" had been out for a couple months and I was fully primed to see these girls rock!

I was a couple of months away from turning 15, and I thought it incredible, if not impossible, that girls only a couple years older than me were headlining concerts. That was one of the benefits of the punk rock era...you could actually see bands with members that were in your age group. Before punk, it sometimes seemed as if rock was only for an elite few...mostly male, and mostly older. The audience was closer to our age group, too. Save for the odd older pedophile types there to ogle the girls.

Speaking of ogling, by then I had already determined that Jackie Fox was the Runaway I most wanted to sleep with...followed by Cherie Curie. But once the band took the stage, those thoughts left my head and I just reveled in the high energy racket they were making...Queens of Noise, indeed! This wasn't music that was deep or polished. But it hit you hard in the glands and made your juices flow; it was fun. Much like the Ramones.

And like the Ramones, it was over before you knew it.

Finally, on the same night I was attending the Runaways/Cheap Trick gig, a few hours earlier in Dallas, Texas, a momentous occasion took place.

Event Number 2: Led Zeppelin plays the Memorial Auditorium in Dallas, TX. The FIRST concert of the 1977 tour!

After delay upon delay, postponement after postponement...after a 2 year wait, Led Zeppelin was finally back on the road and playing live on a stage. The 1977 U.S. Tour had at last commenced. Contrary to what the earlier article in the Times announced, it wasn't in Toronto but Dallas that the tour started.

No matter...as long as it started somewhere. Being that it was April Fools' Day, I kept fearing that another announcement would come to dash our hopes. Plant would get sick again, or Page would strain a finger. Or Jones would crack under the strain and leave the band to become a professional backgammon player.

Fortunately, no such announcement came. The tour was underway. There were now 81 days to wait until the tour hit Los Angeles.

post-1470-0-73543700-1333360420.jpg

post-1470-0-93068400-1333360498.jpg

Edited by Strider

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Strider   

^ It's 'There Goes Another Love Song'. I bought that album after hearing Green Grass...WTF.

6

+1 re Jackie Fox. Joan Jett a close second, then Sandy, then Cherie (too skanky for me, even back then). Last of all, Lita. Last by a long way...

Thanks for the correction...it's very late in L.A. and I'm bleary-eyed.

post-1470-0-89551100-1333403824.jpg

Edited by Strider

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Strider   

^ It's 'There Goes Another Love Song'. I bought that album after hearing Green Grass...WTF.

+1 re Jackie Fox. Joan Jett a close second, then Sandy, then Cherie (too skanky for me, even back then). Last of all, Lita. Last by a long way...

Thanks for the correction...it's very late in L.A. and I'm bleary-eyed.

Cherie wasn't too skanky until later...and yes, Joan Jett was a close second or third.

If you saw the Runaways back then and know anything about the band, then you know what a complete crock that Kristen Stewart movie was. Forget for a moment about whether Dakota Fanning and Kristen Stewart did justice to their roles as Cherie Curie and Joan Jett respectively(Dakota was okay, and Kristen Stewart's facial expressions and acting runs the gamut from a to a). What really irked me was how they treated Sandy West as a minor character in the band's story, when it was SHE who was the FOUNDING MEMBER of the band. Sandy was the one who met Kim Fowley first, and was given Joan Jett's phone number by him.

Oh, and where was Jackie Fox?

Michael Shannon as Kim Fowley is about the only reason to watch "The Runaways".

A better bet is to pass on that Runaways movie and see the Runaways documentary "Edgeplay:A Film About the Runaways" instead..it was made by former Runaways bassist Vicki Blue, who succeeded Jackie Fox when she left then band during the 1977 Japanese tour.

One of the disadvantages of posting at 3am is not having your faculties at their sharpest. Reading over my latest chapter, I noticed many things I wished I could edit or rewrite. Alas, it's too late as the "edit" button is no longer available for that post. But one thing I forgot that I am posting now is the ad for the Queen Lizzy tour.

post-1470-0-89551100-1333403824.jpg

Edited by Strider

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Hi Strider,

Thanks for the latest entry, great read!

I'm jumping way ahead here, but after your opportunity to see Zep in LA during this legendary, fabulous run of June 1977 shows, did you think about traveling in July, when you were out of school, to see them in nearby Tempe (July 20) or Oakland (July 23, 24)?

What an unfortunate difference that would have made, if you did end up going to see any of those July shows, since they were well below the LA Forum bar they set back in June 1977!!!

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Strider   

Hi Strider,

Thanks for the latest entry, great read!

I'm jumping way ahead here, but after your opportunity to see Zep in LA during this legendary, fabulous run of June 1977 shows, did you think about traveling in July, when you were out of school, to see them in nearby Tempe (July 20) or Oakland (July 23, 24)?

Yes, it is jumping ahead, but since you asked...

No, I didn't really have any thoughts of going up north to see them...I definitely didn't think about going to Tempe to see them.

There were several factors why that was. One was the fact that I was now living in an entirely different situation than in 1973 when I went to see Led Zeppelin at Kezar. My dad was remarried(his third wife) and I had long ceased having any contact with my previous stepmother and her relatives/friends, including the ones that took me to that '73 Kezar show.

Second, after the 1976 Who and 1977 Pink Floyd shows at Anaheim Stadium, I was developing a distaste for outdoor stadium shows. The sound was sometimes dodgy and totally reliant upon wind conditions. The crowds were oversized and overloaded on booze and drugs and it could be an unpleasant experience all-around.

In fact, that May 7, 1977 Pink Floyd show might rank as one of the all-time worst concerts I've ever seen...it's in there with REM/Luscious Jackson@the Forum in 1995 and Marilyn Manson/Hole@the Forum in 1999.

Ahhh, but I'm getting ahead of myself...I'll expound more on the dehumanizing effect that Pink Floyd Animals concert had when May 7 rolls around.

Third was the fact that quite simply, Led Zeppelin was out of sight, out of mind. Remember they were on a long break after those LA Forum shows...Robert even made mention several times during the last show that the band was flying back to England. It was treated like the end of the tour.

Unlike today, where you can check the internet for a band's tour dates, back then, very few outlets existed that carried the full itinerary of the Led Zeppelin tour. I wasn't a regular reader of Rolling Stone anymore and Creem and Circus would only post tour dates for that month's issue.

Most newspapers were only interested in their own city, so once Led Zeppelin came and went, that was usually the end of it. By mid-July, there other things going on and I don't think I heard anything about the Oakland shows until the Times printed a small piece about the fight backstage.

The fourth and last factor in my lack of interest going to the Oakland shows, was the simple fact that I was grounded that weekend...in fact, I'd been grounded that whole week. So even if I had kept up with the tour schedule and gotten tickets, I couldn't go anyway. Besides, nobody else I knew showed any interest in going to see Led Zeppelin in Oakland. We seemed to have had our Zeppelin lust sated by those Forum shows.

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Oh, and where was Jackie Fox?

A better bet is to pass on that Runaways movie and see the Runaways documentary "Edgeplay:A Film About the Runaways" instead..it was made by former Runaways bassist Vicki Blue, who succeeded Jackie Fox when she left then band during the 1977 Japanese tour.

Jackie Fox is now a Lawyer. She threatened to sue if her name or likeness was used in the film..

Lita Ford also wanted nothing to do with it... and seemed pretty pissed after the fact that she was a minor character.

Sandy West should have had more attention in the movie. She was my favorite in the band. But, even with her role being small, you could tell she was loyal and protective of her bandmates.

Edgeplay was excellent.

Good reading Strider... I would have loved to have seen Led Zeppelin 5 times in 1977.

Almost Impossible living near Boston.

Edited by the chase

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Strider   

Post #12: Happy Easter! Led Zeppelin Resurrected

My computer is dead and my phone stolen, so I've been distracted a tad...and then, there was Easter last weekend, so I've missed a couple dates in my timeline. Until I am able to retrieve some of my lost materials, I won't be able to attach any images for the time being, as I don't have time to go back digging through my storage to find everything again...it's all buried.

Anyway, carrying on...

Date: Easter Sunday April 10, 1977

It was Easter 35 years ago today and I didn't do much that entire weekend...saving my money and my energies for the week to come. Led Zeppelin, on the other hand, was just over a week into their tour, and was on this very night playing the last of their 4 shows at Chicago Stadium...the "Stormtrooper" show.

Led Zeppelin had definitely resurrected, and earlier in the week...on Tuesday April 5, 1977, to be exact...there was a Los Angeles Times article about the opening show of the tour in Dallas, written by the Chief Pop Music critic for the Times, Robert Hilburn. This was kind of a big deal, as usually Hilburn only reviewed out-of-town shows for acts that he considered legendary: the Stones, Bob Dylan, Elvis Presley.

For Led Zeppelin, he would typically review the LA gig and that was it...and usually he would harp on what he felt was the band's lack of imagination and excess. For him to go out to Dallas for the opening of the 1977 tour was a big surprise to me and other long-time readers of Hilburn's work with the L.A. Times. The Concert Timeline section of this site only has part of the article in its Memorabilia archives, so I am reproducing it in full now...EXACTLY how it was written, not a word or letter changed.

Los Angeles Times Tuesday April 5, 1977 View Section IV Page 1

Led Zeppelin Lands Safely in Dallas

By Robert Hilburn

Times Pop Music Critic

DALLAS - Led Zeppelin, generally conceded to be the world's most popular rock 'n' roll band, has fond memories of this Texas city.

It was here at the Dallas Pop Festival in 1969 that the then-recently formed English band climaxed a triumphant U.S. tour that established it as a major new force in rock. It was also in Dallas four years ago that a local oil man's daughter hired a private jet to follow Zeppelin's plane out of town.

But neither those or other Dallas memories begin to match the importance-or emotionalism-of Zeppelin's appearance last weekend at the Dallas Memorial Auditorium.

The band, whose future has been in doubt since lead singer Robert Plant severely injured his right foot in a near-fatal 1975 auto crash, returned to live shows Friday night with a stirring performance that reassured both the group and its fans about Zeppelin's ability to continue.

There were lots of rough spots in the band's first appearance in nearly two years, but there was only jubilation on the faces of Plant, guitarist Jimmy Page, bassist-keyboardist John Paul Jones and drummer John Bonham after the three-hour show as they raced to limousines for the ride to the airport.

Later, inside the luxury Boeing 707 that the band has chartered for its U.S. tour, the group embraced with the emotionalism of a high school team that just won the state championship.

"Sure, it was emotional," Plant said, relaxing in a New Orleans hotel room the next afternoon. "We had just cleared the biggest hurdle of our career. It was a chapter in my life that I never really knew if I'd be able to see.

"I tried to keep a positive attitude in the months after the accident, but even after I was able to walk again I didn't know how the foot would holdup on stage. Even the rehearsals didn't prove it to me. I was so nervous before we went on stage last night that I almost threw up. I could feel the tenseness in my throat for the first couple of songs. I kept telling myself to loosen up.

"The whole show possessed an element of emotionalism that I've never known before. I could just as easily have knelt on the stage and cried. I was so happy. I don't think I've ever sung better in America. I mean I'd have liked for everybody who ever wanted to see us to have been there..."

Plant, 28, was vacationing with his wife and their two children when the auto accident occurred on a small Greek island. Doctors said he wouldn't be able to walk for at least six months. There was even a chance he would be crippled.

Though touring was still out of the question, Plant had recovered well enough by late 1975 to record the "Presence" album with the band. But he had to sit on a stool during the 18 days of recording.

With doctors warning another serious blow to the foot could leave him crippled, he went through a terrifying moment during the session. Caught up in the excitement of one of the tracks, he slipped and put his full weight on the foot for the first time since the accident.

"Jimmy (Page) flew through the air and tried to hold me up, but I just sank. They took me to the hospital to make sure I hadn't reopened the fracture." In light of the incident, the band titled the track "Achilles Last Stand".

With doctors' assurances that Plant's foot could stand up to the strain of his flashy, stallion-like prancing on stage, Zeppelin finally scheduled a U.S. tour for this spring. It was to have begun Feb. 27 in Ft. Worth. But it had to be canceled. Ironically, Plant was again the reason. He came down with tonsilitis just before the band, which had been rehearsing for weeks in England, was ready to come to the United States. The illness added to his frustration.

"We had rehearsed right up until the week before we were due to come over here, which, I can see now, was probably pusghing things a bit too much," Plant said.

"After the rehearsals, I went to Wales. I was in the hills when I woke up one morning with a soreness in my throat. I thought, 'Oh, good Lord, isn't there any end to this?' I had a fever that went clear off the thermometer.

"I felt even worse because it was me again causing the problems. I haven't been away from performing this long since I was 14."

On the first two legs of the rescheduled tour, Led Zeppelin will be seen by more than 700,000 persons in 40 shows. More than 108,000 will see the group in its six sold-out shows starting June 21 at the Inglewood Forum. It's the first time a rock group has ever played six nights at the 18,700-seat facility.

Because of the delays, Plant, understandably, was the first member of the band to come to the hotel lobby Friday night for the ride to the auditorium. He chatted good-naturedly with a few fans and posed for pictures for amateur photographers.

When the band stepped on stage just after 8, the audience roared its appreciation. Though much has been written about the aggressive nature of Zeppelin's audience in responding to the band's high-energy musical assault, the tone Friday was one of warmth. The audience, one sensed, was simply glad to see its band.

"I was afraid we'd never be able to see them again," said Carol Morett, a 17-year-old from neighboring Ft. Worth. "When the tour was canceled the first time, I was afraid it was something wrong with Robert's leg. I thought the thing about tonsilitis was just an excuse. I'm so glad to see he's OK. He's the greatest. This whole band is the greatest."

Never a critic's favorite, Zeppelin, too, played with an eagerness and joy that was contagious. I still think they'd be more effective-considering the limitation of much of their material-to cut an hour out of their set, thus shedding some of the excess.

But the audience-even after two encores-seemed ready for more. The applause could still be heard from the hall as the limousines pulled onto the street after the show.

"You can't pretend last night's concert was the greatest we've ever done, but there was something between us after that long gap that enabled us-in certain songs, where we really got hold of it-to go far beyond where we had been before," Plant said Saturday in New Orleans.

Yes, he said, he had thought about not being able to return to the band. "I wouldn't have compromised. I couldn't have gone on a stage and sat on a stool all night. I've got to be able to move around.

"As much as you can develop a wonderfully warm rapport with people, the natural thing is to watch someone's weak point, particularly when so much has been written about my foot. It would be just, 'Aw, look, he ain't doin' it right; he's slowed down.' And I just wouldn't have been able to take that.

"I just kept kicking the foot down on the stage real hard last night to show myself I could do it. In fact, I paid the price. It got a little sore. But it'll come around. I'm just out of condition.

"There are a few things I won't be able to do because of the foot. I can't play soccer because the contact could reinjure it. But it's not something to brood about.

"After two more years off, there's nothing in the world I want to do more than get on that stage. If every night could be like last night, then I'll be overjoyed. I just can't wait."

Zeppelin Song Book

Led Zeppelin's opening-night song selection (subject to change on future dates): "The Song Remains the Same", "Sick Again", "Nobody's Fault but Mine", "In My Time of Dying", "Since I've Been Loving You", "No Quarter", "Ten Years Gone", "Battle of Evermore", "Going to California", "Black Country Woman", "Bron-y-ar", "Kashmir", "Moby Dick", "Dazed and Confused"(instrumental only), "Achilles Last Stand", "Stairway to Heaven". Encores: "Black Dog" and "Rock and Roll".

Copyright Los Angeles Times.

There was a photo of Robert Plant from the Dallas show, taken by Neal Preston, accompanying the article...the caption said "ROBERT PLANT...a joyous return to concerts."

Now, the most important thing I took from this article was for the first time since I started going to see Led Zeppelin in concert, I had advance notice of what the setlist would most likely be. Previously, I could only guess...sure concert warhorses like Stairway, Rock and Roll, and Dazed and Confused were a given, and I had a few bootlegs of older tours. But the 1977 tour was the first time I knew going in what was going to be played, and in what order...I knew the opening would be TSRTS and what the acoustic set would entail. I was ecstatic that "Achilles" and "Ten Years Gone" were in...but somewhat bummed that yet again, no "The Rover" or "When the Levee Breaks" or "Immigrant Song".

I was intrigued by what was meant by "Dazed and Confused"(instrumental only)...would they only play the fast solo part? The whole song but with no lyrics? What the hell did that mean?

I have a feeling Mike Millard also read this article, and that it helped him plan on when to make his tape swaps...if you listen to "Listen to This, Eddie", it is remarkable how perfect he timed his flips and didn't miss much music, considering it was the first night.

Oh, and this wasn't the only Led Zeppelin item in the Los Angeles Times that day...in that day's Sports Section, in the Morning Briefing on Page 2, was this little curio:

Los Angeles Times Tuesday April 5, 1977 Sports Section III Page 2:

Morning Briefing

This week's Stanley Cup first-round playoffs between

the New York Islanders and the Chicago Black Hawks have

sent none other than Bugs Bunny hippety-hopping out of the

Islanders' home rink.

The Nassau Coliseum had been leased to a Bugs Bunny

Easter extravaganza Thursday night, when the second game

of the best-of-three series is scheduled. The Islanders bought

out the show.

Thursday's game was supposed to have been played in Chicago,

but the Black Hawks had a scheduling problem too: a Led Zeppelin

rock concert. Apparently, that show must go on.

Copyright Los Angeles Times.

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Post #13: "STAR WARS" ARRIVES...ONE MORE MONTH TO GO

DATE: Saturday May 21, 1977

It had now been 110 days since we bought our Led Zeppelin tickets for the run of Forum shows that long ago day in January. And there was still a month to go before June 21 arrived! Almost half a year would pass between the time of purchasing the tickets and the concert transpiring. That is a helluva long wait for anybody, let alone a 15-year old.

I was constantly nervous and paranoid about the concerts...would something happened to the band on tour? Would the dates be postponed again? Would I lose the tickets...or misplace them? Never before or since have I had to safekeep concert tickets for 5 freaking months. Have you? It's positively nerve-wracking.

The other nerve-wracking thing with the wait, was having to make sure I kept my nose clean so as not to fuck up and get grounded and miss the Led Zeppelin shows. No parties, no sneaking out to shows on school nights...in fact, I curtailed my extra-curricular activities quite a bit in the months before the Zep concerts. I didn't want to give my stepmother any excuse to ruin my summer.

But I wasn't a complete hermit. Fortunately there were a few good shows scheduled on the weekends that I could get permission to attend. I believe the last concert I posted about on this thread was the April 1 Runaways/ Cheap Trick show. I'll take the opportunity now to catch you up on the timeline since then.

Friday April 15, 1977 Iggy Pop w/ Blondie @ Santa Monica Civic

Having been a fan of The Stooges, I was already interested in seeing Iggy's first tour since the "Raw Power" days. But when word came out that David Bowie was playing keyboards on the tour, this concert became a must! "The Idiot" had been released a couple months prior...to almost no mainstream radio airplay...and I knew that Bowie was involved in the album's production. But playing in Iggy's band? That was a trip.

The album was okay...not as good as any of the Stooges records but it featured "Funtime", "Nightclubbing" and "China Girl", which David Bowie later covered to much success. In my opinion, it would be the next album, "Lust for Life", released later in 1977, that would firmly establish Iggy's comeback.

Unfortunately, I couldn't find anyone who wanted to go to the show...and I needed a ride. At the last minute I cajoled my dad into giving me a ride. The Santa Monica Civic wasn't sold out, and it was far from full for Blondie's opening set. I had just recently seen Blondie open for the Ramones at the Whisky, and nothing I saw this second time changed my opinion of them. If it wasn't for the presence of Debbie Harry, there wasn't anything of note about them.

Iggy, however, was Iggy...and well worth the wait. Mixing in a few choice Stooges cuts amongst the songs from "The Idiot", Iggy spastically rubber-banded around the stage from beginning to end. If the overall effect and sound of the band wasn't as corruscatingly charged and warped as a Stooges show, Iggy was still a magnetic and feral presence on stage.

Oh, Bowie handled his keyboard and backup vocals with aplomb, but another interesting tidbit about Iggy's band on this tour was that it featured the Sales brothers, Tony and Hunt, on bass and drums respectively. Tony and Hunt have played with lots of people over the years...Todd Rundgren was probably their first gig of note...but if you're of a certain age, you recognize the name Sales from their father, comedian Soupy Sales, who I would always see pop up on television in the 60s and 70s. I never really found him to be funny, and I doubt anybody under 50 recognizes his name.

Saturday April 16, 1977 Television @ Whisky a Go-Go

The good news about this show was that I was able to cross another "New York" band off my list. I had already seen the New York Dolls, Patti Smith, and the Ramones in previous years, and 1977 had offered up Blondie and Television so far. The Talking Heads would come to L.A. later in the year.

I had read rave reviews(including Nick Kent's famous one in N.M.E.) of Television's debut "Marquee Moon", which convinced me to buy the album a week or so after its release. It took a while for me to get used to the vocals, but what was instantly clear from the opening track "See No Evil" was that both Tom Verlaine and Richard Lloyd were better than your average punk guitarist. More importantly, their approach to riffs and solos and texture was so refreshing and different than the usual blues-rock cliches that were getting stale by 1977.

These guys were definitely more arty and cerebral than the Ramones or the English punk bands...which wasn't always a good thing. But they had guitar solos, which made it easier to convince an older friend who had a car to go to the show. There was another lure for my friend...one of those new-fangled punk bands that everyone was hearing and talking about, but few in the U.S. had actually seen.

You see, originally the opening band was supposed to be The Damned...one of the original English punk bands. In fact, it was the Damned and not the Sex Pistols who released the first punk record and were the first punk band from the UK to play the U.S.

Aa a kid who for the past year voraciously read all the stories coming out of the U.K. about these "punk" bands, I was highly anticipating my chance to see an actual live UK punk band in the flesh. Would they spit on the audience? I realize that this sounds dopey in hindsight, but I was 15...whaddya expect.

Television and the Damned were scheduled to play 4 nights at the Whisky...Thursday April 14 thru Sunday April 17. Since Friday was already taken by the Iggy show, Saturday was the only night I could go.

Well, we get to the Whisky Saturday night only to find the Damned aren't on the bill. No explanation given either...at least nothing more than vague excuses. Right off the bat, my spirit was a little deflated. I had been curious about the English punk scene for so long and felt superior to my MOR schlock-loving classmates because I was gonna finally get a peek at one of these supposed scourges of society.

But no...no Damned. Instead we got...hmmm, I'm not entirely sure who we got as the opening band. Probably The Quick...they seemingly opened for EVERYBODY in 1977, especially at the Whisky.

So, being a little annoyed about the Damned's no-show, I reminded myself that I was still getting to see Television...and I was spending a night away from my annoying stepmother, which was always a plus.

I'd love to say Television knocked my socks off...and indeed, there were moments that gave me goose-bumps. "Marquee Moon" for example was all I wanted it to be and more...guitars ringing in my ears for days. But their stage presence left a lot to be desired, and the vocals were definitely an acquired taste. I don't know exactly why...but I was kind of expecting more, you know...like I was going to be blown away. And I wasn't.

Still liked the album, though.

Later I found out that Television had kicked the Damned off the tour...apparently the band had offended Television's delicate sensibilities. After much last-minute scrambling, the Damned were offered two nights at the Starwood club the following week, April 18-19. Unfortunately those were school nights so I couldn't go. Damn Damn Damn!

Yes, this was the same Starwood where Van Halen and Quiet Riot played early gigs, along with many of the first wave of LA punk bands. It has a seedy backstory thanks to its Eddie Nash connection...which I will expound upon when I have more time. But among its pluses was the fact that it was all-ages.

Sadly, now it's a mini-mall.

Saturday May 7, 1977 Pink Floyd @ Anaheim Stadium

This will probably ruffle some feathers...good thing Electrophile isn't here to see this...but this was one of the most dreary, soulless concerts I've had the displeasure of seeing. And it had nothing to do with the rain.

Pink Floyd was playing two nights at Anaheim Stadium(baseball stadium for the California Angels), a first for any band...me and my friend and some stoner pals of his went to the second night. It was a rainy weekend in May, but most of it stopped by the time Pink Floyd began playing. Still, it was wet enough to think about heading into the stands for shelter...the stands were reserved seating while the field was general admission...but we stuck it out on the field for most of the show. I think I retreated to the stands during intermission. I'd had enough of the animals in the crowd.

Yes, this was the "Animals" tour...which is not exactly my favourite Pink Floyd album. Musically it is boring in many stretches...about 5 minutes of good ideas stretched to a 18 minute snooze-fest. Thematically, the idea of taking on Orwell's "Animal Farm" is intriguing, but in actuality it comes across as a cold and remote subject. It's a hard album to wrap your arms around.

Which, given Roger Waters increasingly misanthropic manner, was probably the point.

But apart from the fact that I disliked "Animals", I still was looking forward to the concert. I hadn't seen Pink Floyd since the first time I saw them at the Hollywood Bowl in 1972. They played a bunch of stuff I hadn't heard of, which we later discovered was their yet-to-be-released new album "Dark Side of the Moon", and a second set of their early glories: Echoes, Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun, Careful with that Axe, Eugene and more. It was a great show and the special effects enhanced the concert without overshadowing the music.

I missed the April 1975 Sports Arena shows due to being grounded for three months. These shows became infamous when the LAPD went crazy arresting hundreds and hundreds of kids at the concerts...Pink Floyd and lots of other bands vowed never to play the Sports Arena again. Oh, and the people that went to the '75 concerts also talked about the plane crash.

Anyways, I did like Dark Side of the Moon and Wish You Were Here...even if I thought the tempos were getting a little sluggish. I didn't think Nick Mason was all that great a drummer. So I was hoping to hear copious amounts of both albums at the Anaheim Stadium show, along with the "Animals" material.

Well, as it turned out, the '77 setlist was the "Animals" album played first, an intermission, then "Wish You Were Here" in its entirety, followed by an encore of "Money". The sound suffered the usual problems that plagued outdoor shows...the quality, loudness and depth of the sound came and went with the wind and the elements. Sometimes you could hear the vocals, othertimes not. And even with the addition of Snowy White on second guitar, along with Dick Parry on sax, the sound was lacking a physical presence. It certainly wasn't a force like the Who show the previous year at the Stadium.

Which helped give the Pink Floyd concert rhis cold, distant feeling. Not to mention, the demeanor of the band itself, which seemed as if they would have preferred being anywhere else that night. But then, Pink Floyd never was a band that gave the impression of enjoying playing on stage.

I could go on and on...but I'd rather not at the moment. I'll just say that it was this concert and subsequent Pink Floyd interviews that led me to reevaluate my feelings about Pink Floyd and their music's place in my life.

The pig catching fire and burning up was pretty amusing I must admit.

Saturday May 21, 1977 "Star Wars" @ Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood

The movie had come out the day before on May 20, but my dad wanted to take us to see it at the Chinese Theatre, so we waited for the weekend to make a day of it. The 70s was a decade full of films that became huge social and cultural events...each one pushing the envelope further and further regarding what a "blockbuster" meant money-wise and how long people would stand in line for a movie. There was "Love Story" in 1970, "The Godfather" in 1972, "The Exorcist" in 1973...and even "Deep Throat".

But the stakes really changed when "Jaws" broke the $200 million barrier in 1975. When "Star Wars" followed in 1977, the transformation of the idea of a "summer blockbuster" was complete. Henceforth, the studios pretty much abandoned the adult-market during the summer to focus on catering to kids and their repeat-business.

That's what I remember most about "Star Wars" that year...the constant and endless lines of people waiting to buy tickets and then waiting to get in the theatre. Theatres were screening the film nearly round-the-clock...I think the first screening at the Chinese was at 8 am.

In fact, so many of the showings were sold out in advance, we had to get tickets for a late-night screening. We ended up walking around Hollywood and then had dinner at the Tick-Tock restaurant on Cahuenga Blvd. They had a great turkey dinner and to-die-for cinnamon rolls.

"Star Wars" was pretty nifty, a fun popcorn movie. But to tell you the truth, 1977 will always be remembered by me more for "Annie Hall" than "Star Wars". "Annie Hall" had a much more profound effect on my life than "Star Wars". I saw "Star Wars" about 8 times that year...I saw "Annie Hall" around 20 times.

But one lasting effect "Star Wars" did have was that it provided me with a way to describe Jimmy Page's theremin part of his guitar solo on the '77 tour. I always said it sounded like a light saber battle.

Edited by Strider

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Strider   

Oh, and there's only one R in coruscating. But nice word.

Drats! There goes my chance for an A+.

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I've been away too long. I have to commend you Strider for providing the members here with such an enthralling read. Your stories from '77 are truly transporting. I'll stop now before I inflate your ego anymore!

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Strider   

^^^

Ego? What ego? I haven't the foggiest notion what you're talking about. :shifty::whistling:

Welcome back by the way! This place has missed being filled with your magic for too long!

Edited by Strider

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Not sure how I missed this chapter when you posted it a few days ago.

I remember when Star Wars came out. The ex-hubby and I went to a drive in at Beach/22 fwy to see it. A couple of our friends wanted to come with us but did not have any money so they snuck in by hiding out in the trunk of our 57 Chevy.

Not the best place to see it as we couldn't get the full effect of the sound. Later went to a theatre to see it.

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