Monday, January 18, 2010


Mid-January Stuff

1/18/87 The Pretenders/Iggy Pop @ Rec Hall - Penn State - State College, PA

My senior year of college. We didn't get many shows in Bumf--k, PA back then, Getting a double-bill this solid was huge. The show was 100% reserved, but as soon as the lights went out a bunch of us rushed the stage. We weren't about to watch Iggy from the back of the basketball arena. There were only a couple dozen of us, so they kept trying to clear us out. They couldn't keep up though, We'd just loop back around and come back when they were clearing put the others. They eventually gave up and let us stay for Iggy's set. I didn't know most of the songs at the time, but it was a helluva show. He was touring for Blah Blah Blah, which I like probably more than I should - probably the result of seeing this show. Iggy Is King. All hail Iggy.

I loved The Pretenders at the time, too, but didn't want to bother trying to go up front again. I just stayed in my seat. I think they were touring for Get Close, so it wasn't the classic Pretenders line-up. They still sounded great though. I remember Chrissie Hynde coming out and saying that before she started, she wanted to kiss the stage that Iggy just performed on (and she did). I thought that was cool as hell at the time. Nice show - lots of hits plus the new record. After the show we went over to the Sheraton (the only decent hotel in town at the time) hoping to meet the band. We were in the lobby when they walked-in, but opted to not bother going up to them. I'm not sure if we were trying to be respectful or we just chickened-out. My guess is the latter.

1/16/93 B-52's/Juliana Hatfield @ Smith Center - GWU - Washington, DC

Juliana may have been billed as "The Juliana Hatfield 3". Not sure. The B's were touring for Good Stuff, which pretty much sucked. No Cindy. Enough said. By far the lamest B's show I've ever seen.

1/14/95 Pearl Jam/Neil Young/L7 @ Constitution Hall - Washington, DC

This was a Voters for Choice benefit. PJ was trying to avoid TicketMaster and did a mail-order-only ticket lottery. I didn't get tickets. I did what any deadhead would do and went anyway - holding my finger in the air and begging for someone to sell me a ticket. I had exactly one offer for several hundred dollars. No thanks. A while later this girl came up to me and said she didn't have a ticket, but was wondering what they were going for. We both agreed that the previous offer was ludicrous. She asked me what I thought was a reasonable price and I answered "face value". She just laughed and asked me if I really expected to get a face-value ticket. I said no, but I'd try again the next night. If I don't find one, then I'll just come back the next time they're in town. Pearl Jam was trying to help their fans by avoiding TicketMaster and by doing the mail-order thing to try to thwart scalpers. I felt it was kind of a slap in their face to spend a fortune on scalped tickets. She agreed. We talked for a while about various other things, then she left to go inside to see the show. About 10 minutes later she came back. She said she had lied about not having an extra ticket. She just wanted to make sure it went to someone who really "got" what PJ was doing. She sold me the ticket for face value. Within 10 minutes I was inside.

It was my first time seeing Pearl Jam. I had tickets to see them in '94, but opted to go see The Grateful Dead in Miami instead. I kind of regret that, as the PJ show was the night that Kurt Cobain died.

1/18/06 We Are Scientists/Oxford Collapse @ Sonar - Baltimore, MD

I think this is the only time I've been to Sonar. I had seen We Are Scientists on 2005, but never Oxford Collapse. I'd see this same line-up several more times over the years. Oxford Collapse was a great band. The played that same slightly-awkward yet danceable rock music that WAS played. They were a great pairing. WAS came onstage for "The Boys Go Home" and looked like they were having a helluva time. I left with a handful of their stuff and vowed to see them again ASAP.

We Are Scientists were, once again, a great f--king time. Having seen them before, my hopes were high and they met them easily. Their first record was finally out, so I was slightly familiar with some of their songs. After this show I was positive they were going to be the next-big-thing.

1/15/08 Editors/Hot Hot Heat @ 9:30 Club - Washington, DC

I posted my thoughts about this one before. I keep forgetting about Editors. Every time I hear them I think "Damn they're good. I should listen to them more often" and never do. Another great band I don't pay enough attention to. They're coming to town in February. I may have to go. You should too, but wait until I get my tickets first.

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