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top 5 concerts and reason's why (Tony's idea)


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1. KISS- Tiger Stadium Detroit, MI June 28, 1996

The official kick off to the reunion tour, I never thought I'd see the day when my heroes would reunite with the makeup. All of the footage and documentary of the infamous night is true. In true fashion (like the movie 'Detroit Rock City'), I drove up the day of the show from Cleveland and managed to score a ticket. I snuck down the middle of the field to the 20th row where I screamed, smiled, cried, and hugged complete strangers for more than 3 hours as they absolutely performed the most magical show I've ever witnessed. The band has even stated so in many interviews that it's their favorite show they've ever done. Truly amazing.

2. Van Halen- 1984 Tour Richfield Coliseum Richfield, OH This was my first ever rock concert. I was sitting in the loge on Michael Anthony's side of the stage. The show was electric, the band was amazing and Edward was at the top of his game. I'll never forget what the place looked like during "1984" as Eddie played that cool keyboard intro. I see of Bic lighters lit it up beautifully as the band launched into it's hot new single, "Jump". David Lee doing the splits high atop Al's riser. Vintage Van Halen at it's best.

3. Rick Springfield- Tao Tour 1985 Blossom Music Center Cuyahoga Falls, OH. I was a MAJOR Rick Springfield fan growing up. Every Christmas, I got his new cassette in my stocking. Sang and played 'Jessie's Girl' in my 5th grade talent show, the first time I was on stage. The show was a record attendance crowd at the time (23,000) on a beautiful summer night. He sounded amazing and performed as only Rick can. Awesome.

4. Night Ranger- 7 Wishes Tour 1985 Blossom Music Center Cuyahoga Falls, OH. Say what you will about 80's music, how cliche it could be interpreted, but in my mind, no other band could touch the dual guitar power that Brad Gillis and Jeff Watson delivered in this power rock ensemble. Jack Blades to me was the pinnacle of 'cool'. He looked cool, he didn't care what anyone thought, what I loved about him most is that you could tell he really LOVED performing for an audience. A true entertainer and damn good songwriter. Add Kelly Keagy's beautiful high tenor voice coupled with Jack's lower rougher baritone and there was a great 1-2 punch vocally. LYRICAL guitar playing at it's best, not shredders that is so typically thought of when referring to 80's rock.

5. Bryan Adams- 18 Til I Die Tour 1997 Blossom Music Center Cuyahoga Falls, OH. Another 'Day-of' trip by myself. I drove to Blossom, bought a single ticket in the orchestra pit and was one of the first people to get there. As I'm standing directly in front of Bryan's mic stand, I can't wait until the show starts. His band is one of the greatest ever. Keith Scott, one of the tastiest guitar players was feet from me. Hit after hit after hit, it was how Ken and Bernie feel at a Raspberries show. Couldn't get enough. Behind the band was a set of risers with fans who had won contest tickets from the radio station. Cool idea. I recognized a friend of mine from where I was and she smiled and waved. Then...halfway through the night, Bryan says, "We got any musician's in the audience?" I'm waving my hand like a fool, haha, and he looks down at me and says, "you play?" I go, "Yeah". He says, "Come on up here". I'm freaking as the bouncers help me over the barracade. Bryan asks me my name, hands me his Strat and puts it on and says, "let's jam". Keith starts 'Summer Of '69' which is one of my all time favorites. As the band launches into it, I think they were a bit surprised that I actually knew it. I'm pretty sure they were doing this in every city but Keith and Bryan smiled at me and Bryan egged me on to sing a verse. I've always performed this song in cover bands going back to my first when I was 14, sort of a signature song. Now I'm onstage with one of my heroes singing it in front of my hometown and friends that I recognize behind me. What a feeling, I was on cloud 9 for about a week after that.

Anyway, been to many more shows. Too bad the list is only 5 deep.. haha

Seeya Saturday!


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Bernie, it was a very cool night indeed. 'Summer Of '69' doesn't have a lead per se, just a couple ad lib fills at the end of the tune but I could hear my stage volume through Bryan's amp. Not sure if they piped it into the house system but I know I played the right changes. ; ) I also have the guitar pick that Bryan used that night as a keepsake. Just a plain ol' Fender Medium but I have it labeled in my collection.


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My top concerts....

Paul McCartney (Fleet Center, Boston. October 2002) I was in the upper level but we were really close to the stage. Great show.

The Replacements (Toad's Place, New Haven CT) The only club show they did that tour. They played 2 hours SOBER! Unbelievable.

The Raspberries (B.B. King's NYC) we all know why of course.

Paul McCartney (Madison Square Garden, NYC December 14th, 1989) The Flowers in the Dirt tour!! I was in the back of the Garden and I think I still owe somebody money for that one.

Cheap Trick (Too many times to count, not all of them were good but dammit I love them!!).

I've also seen;

Matthew Sweet

Material Issue

The Posies

The Ramones

The Smithereens

Fountains of Wayne

...and a few more I can't recall at the moment.

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Paul got me thinking about this experience: In 1980, a co-worker *forced* me to come along with him to see a concert at the McGill University ballroom - a very small venue that seated 200 people at the most. In my friend's words, "this guy is going to be the next biggest thing." I went along to the show, there could not have been more than 125 people in the small room, and the artist literally blew everyone away with his performance. The very next year he was playing the Montreal Forum in front of 15,000 people, opening for Foreigner. The artist? Bryan Adams.


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Here is my wimp list:

1. Kenny Loggins - San Diego Bay 1996:

He played all the hits and my favorites. His band was top notch, including Mark Rivera. The sound was so clear and Kenny's voice was in top form. "Conviction of the Heart" mesmerized the laid-back SoCal crowd. 3 encores for a mellow guy is pretty good. "Forever" was the last encore. When he hit that last high note strong and held it...I was in pop heaven.

2. Bee Gees - SD Sports Arena 1979:

At the height of their popularity, screaming fans, tight band, great harmonies.

3. Ringo and Eric Carmen - Humphrey's by the Bay 2000: Great All Star Band. Eric had the most energy, even with a cold. I couldn't believe how he nailed every note in the piano solo on the long version of ABM

4. Yes - Yessongs SD Sports Arena 1979?: These guys were all master musicians and made great melodic progressive rock. Rick Wakeman rejoined them for this tour and he had about 10 different keyboards surrounding him. Don't try to figure out Jon Anderson's lyrics...just sit back and enjoy.

5. Little River Band - Humphrey's 1985

With awesome lead singer John Farnum, the band was so tight and played all their hits.

Sorry, no Ramones or Sex Pistols blowing their nose on me in the front row stories...

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My top concerts:

Paul McCartney, 1989, Anaheim Stadium (saw Brian Wilson in the restroom there) eek

Shoes and Material Issue, 1991, Bogart's, Long Beach, CA (power pop nirvana!)

Rubinoos, circa 2001, International Pop Overthrow Festival, Los Angeles (Tommy Dunbar is a rock and roll God!)

Elvis Costello and Nick Lowe, 1984, Universal Amphitheater (great double bill)

Ramones, circa 1988, Hollywood Palladium (punk pop at its best!)

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#1 Raspberries at BBKings Sunday night--hands down, the best concert ever for me...I'm still high from it!

#2 Raspberries Reunion Concert Nov 26, '04 in Cleveland. This was a miracle I had prayed for since 1975 and a total dream come true. It's almost better than #1...okay, they tie.

#3 McCartney--you just can't see him and not be totally in awe.

#4 Led Zeppelin--They were amazing. I was mesmerized.

#5 Can't decide on #5.

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