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A different kind of concert review.


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A Different Kind of Concert Review


Ok i pulled out all my ticket stub books to see where and how "I" felt Led Zeppelin and Gomez ranked. First let me say I,ve seen THOUSANDS of shows....The Grateful Dead for example I've seen more Than 100 times ......so with that said, I put together my favorite 15 shows of my lifetime!!!!!

1. Led Zeppelin May 26 1977 Capital Centre MD FRONT ROW. My first of four front row shows in a row by the mighty Zep.

2. The Who Aug 6, 1976 Capital Centre 2nd row...with Moon...my hearing has never been the same since.

3. Led Zeppelin May 30,1977 Capital Centre Front Row....The first was the first just for the sheer excitement of seeing Plant inches from me....this one was because the performance was .....well get the boot and see.

4. The Grateful Dead July 13, 1984 Greek Theatre Berkley,CA..this was the boys 15th B-day party.

5. GOMEZ Oct 18, 2004 The Handlebar,Greenville,SC HOLY SHIT!!

Really and truely the boys garner the 5th spot on my list!!! What a performance...too bad the sound system was so wimpy there.

6. Roger Waters Sept 12, 1988 McNichols Arena Denver,CO This show blew Pink Floyd away.....I can't believe I just said that in public...but it was one of the best things I've ever seen Roger do.

7. Robert Plant Sept 14,1990 Red Rocks Morrison,CO....I,ve seen Plant SO many times, but this was a very special performance....mind numbing.

8. Queen/Thin Lizzy 1976 Cole Field House University of MD....shitty acoustics.....but phenomenal performance....I saw Queen 4 or 5 times...this was by far the best. Lizzy tore it up as well.

9. Little Feat w/Lowell George....March 78 Warner Theatre DC I was at 7 of the 14 shows...this is where they recorded Waiting For Columbus, so I need to list all 7 shows I saw as #9.

10.GOMEZ Aug 12, 2004 Orange Peel,Asheville,NC....Truely Gomez are in my top 10 shows TWICE!!!!!!! I believe they will keep bustin' my list!

11.Grateful Dead July22, 1984 Ventura<CA...The Dead played on the beach for two days.....we camped and swam in the ocean to the Dead!!! Just pure magic.

12. Yes/Donavan Aug. 16, 1977 Capital Centre MD...great show I got to sit on stage next to Steve Howe for this show.....

13.Talking Heads 1983 Red Rocks,CO...this was incredible....they played Burnin' Down THe House TWICE....

14.Grateful Dead Dec 31,1983 San Fran Civic Centre....New Years Eve turning 1984......4 shows....so much fun...this show ended at 5:00am with Bill Graham giving ALL in attendance a bagged breakfast of bagel and apple to leave with.

15. Lenny Kravitz Oct 16,1999 ABQ Convention Centre...I can't believe Lenny made it on my list either...but THIS show was stellar.

Led Zeppelin are and always will be my favorite band of ALL TIME! I wish I was going in 10 days.

So I post this list to show how IMPORTANT I feel this band Gomez is! OK now let's do a Zep cover for the next tour guys.

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I thought other folks would like to come up with their own top ten or 15 shows ever. My list has changed since I wrote this. I don't think Lenny would still be on this. My Morning Jacket, Wolfmother, Dungen, are shows I've seen in the last few years that would probably bump it.

So come on Zep heads let's see your top 10 or 15.

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Top 15 shows ever... ok, ten, I've probably played as many shows as I've seen, but I won't be counting any of those.

Despite seeing nowhere near a thousand shows I've forgotten most of them... and I don't have any ticket stubs from anything earlier than 7 or 8 years ago. I mostly go to club shows where there often aren't any tickets anyway, just a stamp you wash away at the end of the night.

1: John McLaughlin Trio with Trilok Gurtu and Dominic DiPiazza: Montreal Jazz Festival 1989. This was a life changing experience. I was transported to another plane of existence during this show as I levitated several inches above my seat. I'd never seen anything like it and I still haven't. McLaughlin was using his midi acoustic to full effect, looping samples of himself, creating layered sounds or backdrops for melodic lines. This was 1989, mind you! That sort of thing is the norm now, but it was incredible back then and McLaughlin was in full command of it. At other times he was comping and the bass player was taking solos that sounded like guitar solos... without a pick, either. Trilok Gurtu left a huge impression on me too. His multitude of percussives fanning around him as he knelt on one knee with a short high-hat he could actuate from that position while maintaining complete free range of motion. He had no kick, his drums were just rims and what would be his kick was mounted as a tom which he hit with a stick. This was also the first time I heard the Hindustani practice of vocalising phrases as if performed on an instrument. The crazy thing was that until this concert I'd never heard McLaughlin's music. I'd only read about him in guitar magazines. When I saw him on the schedule I went straight to the venue which, naturally was sold out. Incredibly someone was waiting by the gate looking to get rid of an extra. One ticket.

2) Nohshintoh: Nagoya 1999-present. Every show is one of the best shows I've ever seen (barring a few overly lubricated or fatigue marred outings). This is the feel-good band of the century... well, of Nagoya, at least. I'm getting some justification now that they've finally made connections in other parts of the country and have built up a legitimate following from coast to coast (this is Japan, now, that's not such a big territory... hahaha). It's like The Slits with guest appearances by the members of Plastics produced by Lee "Scratch" Perry.

3) The Grateful Dead: 1992 - 1994. None of the shows I saw were classics, but they were some of the greatest events I've attended. Camping for both nights, road-tripping to the site, cruising 'round the parking lot, hooking up with friends, running into people I never expected to be there, getting hooked up, hooking other people up, fire jugglers in the woods, veggie burritos, anticipation for the opener, listening for the song calls, dancing to that peculiar groove that is so infectious, watching the sun set over the desert from the top of the stadium, the beam, the light show, taking a moment to appreciate the huge mass of people of which I am just one part, looking for tapes of the show on the newsgroup.

4) Billy Cobham: Graffiti, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 1991?. Cobham sat house right facing center stage. I arrived a little late, not being so familiar with Pittsburgh streets at that time. The only table left was to the right of the stage behind Cobham. I sat right behind him, less than a meter away. It was like a live drum instruction video. I don't remember anything about the show other that just how utterly amazing he was. I'd never seen anyone switch between their left and right hand on the high-hat, let alone do it with no apparent handicap at all. I have no idea what he played, though I'm sure Spectrum was in there somewhere. I know I recognized at least one song. I don't know who was in his band. I don't even remember what instruments there were. One thing I do remember is that the man came out into the club about 10 minutes after the show was over and gave a mini-lecture on drumming as he signed autographs and posed for pictures.

5) Katsurei: Tokuzo, Nagoya Japan, 2 November 2005. Before this I still didn't know what the big deal about Katsurei was, but everyone I hung out with in Nagoya treated them like returning champions. Some old friends of Koji Shishido, the band leader, drafted me into a band to open for them. After cooling down from our set there were no seats left. The place was standing room only. I was forced to sit on the floor between the front row of tables and the stage, right at Shishido's feet and just in front of his amp. I was converted. This is one of the best bands I've seen in Japan. It's amazing that all their albums are now out of print. I may have to take matters into my own hands on Demonoid... Deliberate guitar balladry mixed with feedback ladden guitar solos and powerful drumming. Psychedelic love songs that would put anyone in a peaceful mood.

6) Rusted Root: The Nayabingi Club, Morgantown West Virginia, New Year's Eve 1992. This was one of the best New Year's of my life. Hanging out with my best friend from High School his brother and sister and other old friends. A man, who will be known simply as Reagan, brought very nice gifts from California and Rusted Root made sure our legs were utterly devastated the next morning. It looks like this place doesn't even exist anymore.

7) Rusted Root: The Great Blue Heron Music Festival, Jamestown, New York 1993 This whole festival was just a really great experience. This quote from the stage by Mike Glablicki, vocal/guitarist of Rusted Root, "Turn the tabla up as loud as they'll go," I think pretty much says it all. :)

8) Phish: Metropol, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 30 November 1992. The first time I saw Phish. There were still lots of songs I didn't know, but suddenly my friend appeared out of nowhere, knowing it was my first show, pulled her backstage pass off her best friend and stuck it on my T-shirt and said, 'c'mon let's go meet Jon Fishman' hahaha.

9) Steely Dan: Star Lake Amphitheater, Burgetstown (Pittsburgh) PA, 17 July 1996 This is the only concert I've ever been to where not only did no one stand up, but the majority of people enjoyed the music while lying flat on their backs in the lawn. Some very kind fans noticed me sitting all alone and invited me over to their blanket and shared their cool vibes too. This one really has nothing to do with the music, which was excellent, but just the general atmosphere.

10) Air Supply: Wheeling West Virginia 1983?. I don't know what Air Supply was thinking playing some place like Wheeling West Virginia, it's a wonder they didn't get killed, but this was the first 'rock' concert I ever went to and it really set the bar in terms of stage settings and over-the-top laser shows. Smoke machines, rotating red rock formations within a fully integrated stage concept and just lasers everywhere doing all kinds of stuff. Pink Floyd at Three River's Stadium in Pittsburgh is the only thing I've seen that comes close! and the Air Supply show was in a little basketball/ minor-league ice hockey arena.

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