Saturday, April 12, 2014

The Best

I've seen very few big concerts in my life. VERY few, especially compared to everyone I know. They can't even count the number of shows they've seen. I can. Easily.

1. Blue Oyster Cult. The headliner was The Moody Blues...but I didn't make it that far. I was about seven and my mother was going to the Kansas Coliseum with friends. She tried to leave me off with my grandparents and I pitched a titanic so epic that my grandparents were like, I'M OUT. So she had to drag me along. She was pissed for sure, but didn't know the extent of how pissed she was about to be until the first chord struck. The noise was thunderous death. I started crying hysterically. My mother spent the entire concert with me in the outer ring area of the stadium. Enraged, I am sure!

2. Rush! This concert was special for three reasons:

a. My 8th grade science teacher asked me to go with her. In 8th grade. I went with her and my friend Julie. Julie was a teeny tiny rock chick with feathered bangs, black eyeliner, and one very special jean jacket. I had only just met my half sister--she had just turned 18 and found my my mother and I maybe a month before--so it was a crazy coincidence that we saw her and her friend on the way to the very same concert and waved screamily to each other between cars.

The funny thing was that I wasn't really into Rush. I knew "Tom Sawyer," but that was pretty much the extent of my interest in the band. What I was very interested in was going to a concert with my adult ass science teacher. I wish I could remember her name. I idolized her. She used to put Far Side cartoons on our tests. How cool is that?

Oh, the third thing, I looked way too old for my age (13). An older guy in the crowd hit on me and offered me a hit from his communal joint (drugggs!) which I of course politely declined whilst giving him SEXEYES but still I had to say no because my freaking Science teacher was standing right there giving me OH NO you DON'T eyes. Still, he had cool, dyed rock-star hair and was the most awesome thing I'd ever seen so I flirted like a foole. Of course I remember that guy. We all have one of those, right?

3. The Best. Tina Turner was 46 years old when she visited Wichita during her Private Dancer tour. My friends and I were dropped off by a concerned mom, and we made our way to our seats way in the way way far back. Until my friend Alma was like NOPE, and dragged me to about the third row. We stood on chairs with two annoyed guys who clearly paid to be there, but were then lost in the magic of the spectacle. HOLY GOD. There are people who come and go in the world of fame. But Tina Turner? JESUS. She was something otherworldly. You've never seen a woman work so hard, sweat so much, sing so fully. I loved that album, but I never really knew what a powerhouse she was...not until I saw her in concert. There are people, before her and since, who wish they could inspire that much admiration. Those boys with the stolen seats? We were right up next to them, shrieking hysterically, and I remember their faces even to this day. Awe. Joy. Transcendence.

I honestly feel so bad for you. You'll never be in 1985 watching Tina Turner at the Kansas Coliseum.

4. Aerosmith in 89 or so. Meh. It would take chains and whips to get me into a coliseum type venue again, honestly. Now that I am in NYC, I've had plenty of chances to see my idols from yesteryear (Duran Duran, Stevie Nicks and even with Fleetwood Mac) and it's all been one big NO THANKS. Like my grandpa, I truly hate the crowds. Though I should probably rethink that. It's sad to think that my one and only transcendent musical experience began and ended in 1985. Right? Even if it was Ms. Tina Turner.


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