Another thing about birthdays is the ever present reminisce factor. Recently I got a bad case of the reminiscents while traveling for work. I was going to spent 3 hours driving to see a customer and knowing I would have lots of time on my hands, I pulled out a stack of old cd's for the trip. At some point, I ended up listening to Metallica's "Kill'em All" and within a short time I was doing my best Wayne's World impression to "Jump in the Fire." That is one of the few songs to this day still make me do a car boogie! And, for the record, "Jump in the Fire", followed by "Bass Solo", followed by "Whiplash" is still one of the best three song combo's ever. I've got goosebumps just thinking of it.
ANYWAY, it got me thinking of some of the more infamous concerts I attended back in the day…
There was the show from the Megadeth, Peace Sells tour. This is memorable because I took the Future Wife (FW) to the show. I went to see them at a place called "The Living Room" in Providence RI. Now you have to understand, the Living Room was Dive Extraordinaire for seeing concerts. It was in the old warehouse district, had the old wooden floors and a sign on the wall that said "Fire Limit 257 Persons Max." The stage was at one end of a room and wasn't quite chest high. Security, at best, was negligible. It was great because there was unfettered access to future superstars.
Anyway, as I was saying, some friends, the FW and I went to the show. What's important to note is FW, who was raised on Bruce Springsteen and Billy Joel's "Only the Good Die Young", actually agreed to go with me much to my amazement. I believe she said "Who? Sure, why not? How bad can it be?" Anyway, the show completely sold out, and it was a mad house. There were people everywhere and once the mosh pit started I ended up with my back to the pit and my arms on the wall trying to shelter FW from the crazed masses. It worked out but I came home with bruises. AND, just to let you know, afterwards FW said "That was kinda fun." Yep, Princess had a grand ol'time and I could barely walk upright. But at least she had fun.
Another great show was King Diamond on the Abigail tour. Oddly enough, this time no one would go with me to the show. Once again, I'm at the Living Room but this time it's maybe half full. Because I'm by myself, I decide I'm getting as close to the stage as I can so I can see. I elbow my way to the front and I'm able to get three warm bodies from the stage. As the lights go down and King Diamond comes onstage, the guy next to me raises his arms and screams… at the top of his lungs… "SATAN! SATAN RULES!" I looked at him. I looked at the stage. I looked at him again and moved about 10 feet back. Of note in this show, at some point the lead singer pulled out a doll, as in small child's baby doll, that was as dirty and filthy as can be. He sang to it for a second and then threw it into the audience… which promptly tore it to pieces and threw them back at him to much cheering! It really was a show for the ages.
Besides these classic moments there was Metallica from And Justice for All, when they built a miniature Statue of Liberty on stage then blew it up at the end of the show. A NiN show when FW and I went all Goth'd up before Goth was "hip." There was Joe Walsh when the opening act bailed so Joe opened for himself acoustically. One of the few missed show that I still kick myself for not going to… Gravity Kills with Republica opening. There were even a couple of shows that I should have missed. But that's a post for another day.
I saw all these shows for $20 or less. Recently, the Police were on tour and came close by. I was excited to go see them until I learned it was $93 for the pleasure of seeing them with 18,000 of my closest friends.
Honestly, I miss the days of cheap concerts.