Wednesday, January 22, 2020

EP158: Concerts I’ve Attended: Seeing the great and not so great

Ken recalls some of the music concerts he’s attended down through the years.  From Sinatra to the West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band he’s seen ‘em all, or at least some of ‘em.

Listen to the Hollywood & Levine podcast!


Karan G said...

Ok, gotta take issue with your Bob Dylan comments. My husband has probably been to 30 Dylan concerts. (I’ve been to almost that many.) I’ve got to admit that I wasn’t a huge fan until I saw a tribute concert with a group of people, with beautiful voices singing Dylan songs. The songs are poetry, and musically great. Somehow…if you open yourself up, you start to appreciate “the voice.” Although it isn't currently what it once was. He likes to tinker with the songs and change them a bit each tour...on his endless tour. There is a substantial group of people out there that study every breath he takes….follow the blog ExpectingRain. When you watch his interviews, he really is a genius. Saw one of his concerts in Bloomington, IN, where John Mellencamp was watching from the sideline. That was kinda cool. They are good friends. On another note, any thoughts on why no one ever mentions the name Dan Fogelberg anymore? He was huge and belongs in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, (also a great poet and musician) but no one ever talks about him anymore.

Karan G said...

Another observation about the audience attracted to Dylan: We notice a lot of folks in the audience that we know who are lawyers, judges, Poet Laureates, etc. Folks who enjoy an interesting turn of phrase, articulating a unique and insightful perspective… One doesn’t go for the great vocals. There have been judges who quote Dylan in their rulings. Keep an open mind Ken….if you are so inclined and get to know his catalogue, not just the hits. You’re a word guy.

iamr4man said...

A friend of mine told me he went to see the Doors at the Fillmore in San Francisco. They came on very late, which as you said was pretty normal at the time. The band started to play and then Morrison came waking out to the front of the stage and pitched over the end of the stage into the orchestra pit area. That was the end of the concert. So I guess your experience wasn’t exactly unique. My friend was pretty pissed off but it was a great story.
The Sports Arena was, of course, where the Lakers played before Jack Kent Cook bought the team and built “The Fabulous Forum”. I’ll bet you were at the Sports Arena many times. I saw Pink Floyd perform their first live concert of “The Wall” at the Sports Arena. At the beginning of the show they set off some fireworks, embers of which settled in the curtain that was rolled up above the band. As the show progressed pieces of burning curtain drifted down. It appeared that most of the crowd thought it was part of the show. Eventually they had to stop the show and the fire department took down the curtain and put out the fire. The fire department banned fireworks from the remaining shows.

Lemuel said...

Great podcast, Ken. You remind me of a friend who grew up on the west coast who would tantalize me with memories of Captain Beefheart at the Whiskey, Love, the Doors etc.
I saw a rerun of Mannix last week which included Buffalo Springfield at a club, and I don't know if they were miming but "Bluebird" sounded like a live recording and it would have been incredible if it hadn't been drowned out by dialog.

YEKIMI said...

Think I told this story before, but anyways......Back in 1982 I was working at a Florida radio station and a competeing station was sponsoring a concert by Bertie Higgins, who had a hit with "Key Largo" at that time. Even though he was from that area [Tarpon Springs] he was staying in an RV [guess it was his touring vehicle] and knew where it was so drove by it a few times...even on the night that he was supposed to be playing. I noticed quite a few people running around and in and out of the trailer. Thought maybe he was being ripped off while he was doing the concert. Anyways, next day come to find out that he was drinking his ass off with some friends in the trailer and no amount of cajoling could get him to move. He was supposed to take the stage at 8 PM and didn't make it onstage till 12. Since it was about a 45 to 60 minute drive to where he was playing, I assume that sometime around 11 someone finally was able to get him into a car and get him across Tampa Bay to play. I know our competitors were bitching on-air about it the next day so I wonder if lawsuits where threatened. I think they did have to give some money back to some pretty pissed-off concert goers and had a free make up concert from some other up and coming star whose name I cannot recall. That's the only really bad concert thing that I can recall but glad it was our competition that suffered it and not my station.

Anonymous said...

Hey, Ken. McCartney came through Florida about five years ago. He and his band were an hour late arriving but delivered an extraordinary (nearly three-hour) show, postponed about five months due to Sir Paul being treated for some illness (I think the flu).

It's an event I wish I could preserve under glass as it was everything a McCartney/Wings/Beatles fan could hope for and more. Unlike many popular artists from yesteryear he doesn't adjust the keys of his songs (no matter how high) as it's his belief that the songs should be heard the way the fans remember them.

Mike Barer said...

I grew up in Walla Walla, so except for artists that would visit the small Whitman College, usually upcoming unknowns, attending a Rock concert was a thing of dreams. Since I have lived in the Seattle area for about 30 years now, I have seen so many concerts, most of them, excellent, that I have lost count.
I have seen Paul McCartney and Ringo in separate concerts, Elton John, Billy Joel, Santana, etc. Same with professional sports.
I also saw Dionne Warwick, who is kind of near the plain that Sinatra was on last November. Probably one of the more unique concerts was Steve and Eydie, which we saw with my Dad (may his memory be a blessing) in Palm Desert many years ago. Comedian Mort Sahl was another memorable act that I watched there.
Brandi Carlile, who is from here in Maple Valley, has many of Linda Ronstadt's qualities of a great voice, down to earth style, etc, would be a concert that I think you may enjoy.

Mike Barer said...

Thank you for bringing up the Happy Together Tour. I always enjoyed seeing the bands of my childhood and always enjoyed the music of the Turtles. I've seen that show twice, both times at the Snoqualmie Casino.
Last one that I saw also had the Association and the Cowsills. In the audience was Merilee, who released "Angel Of The Morning" with the Turnabouts.

gottacook said...

I also saw the Happy Together tour, the 1984 one that claimed to feature the Turtles, the Association, Gary Puckett & the Union Gap, and Spanky & Our Gang. In fact there was just one backing group for all the individual vocalists: Volman & Kaylan ("Flo & Eddie"), Puckett, Spanky McFarlane, and at least five original Association members. But no one felt cheated - it was great fun. I had no idea until now that there have been other such tours.

sueK2001 said...

Great podcast...and great to hear memories. I was enthralled with your MT/Frankie Valli one..that would have been a killer show.
So, folk music was never your thing? Harry Chapin counts though. That man is a legend in folk circles.
I've been to a few shows but concerts were spendy for me when I was a kid..saw The Kingston Trio a few times in the last 20 years....Saw John Denver three times and had tickets to see him in '98..sadly, he died before that show. John's greatest shows were just him and his guitar and I feel sad for those that never got that experience. I recently saw Avett Brothers and they put on an amazing show. They blew me away...and even though I've seen a lot of lesser known acts over the years, I still enjoyed it...There is nothing like great, live music.

DwWashburn said...

Best concert ever -- Don McLean. He performed here in Vegas in 1990 at a little 150 seat venue. 2 shows. I had tickets for the early show and at the end an announcement was made that if anyone wanted to stay for the second show they could for free. He didn't repeat ONE SONG. Lots of good album tracks. Of course in one show he did "Vincent" and in the other show he did "American Pie". Ticked off people who didn't see both shows.

Worst concert ever (sorry, Ken) -- James Brown. I had won tickets to see him at the Sands on a boxing night. The bout went long and Brown was 2 1/4 hours late. But he made up for it by shortening his show. And, yes, he had a member of the band constantly yelling into the microphone "Let's hear it for James Brown" about 10 times. Show up on time and you'll hear it.