Best and Worst Rock Concert Moments


I will start this off. 1975 Jethro Tull concert at the Seattle Center Coliseum. About midway through the show an M-80 goes off in the crowd in the middle of a song and Ian Anderson holds his hand up in the air and counts to three with his fingers and the band stops playing in mid measure all at once as though some one had flipped a switch. The whole place goes dead quiet for about 15 seconds or so. Anderson says something like "Well, that was bloody ******* RUDE! If you want us to keep playing then you better cut that crap right out and have a little more respect for your NEIGHbor. Do you really want us to play some more?". The crowd slowly starts to applaud and then it builds to a crescendo. As the applause starts to die down, Anderson holds his hand up in the air, counts out loud to three and the band cuts back in full force absolutely mid-measure where they left off.

When the song ended I have never heard such intense applause in any arena or hall for any song at any show. I was completely dumb struck by how Anderson handled the situation and by the musicianship of the whole outfit. Maybe it was a staged event, but I doubt it. Either way, it was really something else...
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A couple of bestests, too.
Harry Chapin, 1979-1980, the Granada Theater in Chicago. He played for a full 2 hours, put on a great show and then comes out to the lobby, bs'ing and signing autographs for hours. Great guy.
Uriah Heep, '75 or '76. I'm with a good bud and his friend, who did the driving, is with this smoking hot chick on their first date. As we are driving away after the show, she fakes a yawn and hands me a little note with her phone number...niiiice!
My first worst experience was also at a Jethro Tull concert around '78 in Miami. I went primarily to see UK as I've seen JT several times before. Between acts the crowd acted like unruly children throwing frisbees, balls and toilet paper at each other. A fellow appeared onstage and warned the worthless that Ian Anderson was hit by a flying object at the last venue and would stop the night's performance if such things occurred again. As soon as JT manned the stage, a barrage of junk hit the stage. It's a wonder they didn't pack up and leave.

Two years ago, I saw the Moody Blues at a local venue and seated behind me was a group of aged land apes singing along to Justin Hayward's beautiful voice. Well, this ain't no party; I paid to hear the Moodies not some white trash drunks. In the middle of a serene flute solo, the whole house was hushed, as quiet a rock concert ever got. A guttural "YEAH" was shouted from the middle of the mezzanine, ruining the peaceful setting.

Audients and their assholian ways can make or break a concert for me. Bad seats or sound can be tolerated. And I thank Christ for my stereo.
In 1973, or '74, I went to the Casino Arena, in Asbury Park,NJ. Renaissance headlined, Linda Ronstadt opened. My friends and I were sitting on the floor, close to the stage. I had a camera, and started taking pictures during Ronstadt's set. A bouncer came and started pulling the camera from me. As I had the camera attached to a strap, around my neck, my neck started to be pulled too. Ronstadt was about 6 feet away, singing while this happened. She stopped, mid-song, and told the bouncer, "leave him alone. He's just trying to take a few pictures." She then asked me if I was alright, told me to stand and posed so I could get a few shots. She then started the song again, pointed to me and said, "this one's for you."
Slept through almost an entire Jimmy Buffet concert in the 70's. Cheeseburger in Paradise is a rude awakening.
While I may be in the same decade, I have a best and worst from a lesser known band from a bit different genre - but this musician was like GOD to me!! As a young aspiring trumpet player, I went across the Windsor tunnel in the summer of 1974 to hear a jazz/rock group called "Chase" headlined by master high-register trumpet player Bill Chase. His group had a top chart hit in 1971 called "Get It On" you may have heard.

I had heard Chase in 1972 at Cobo Hall in Detroit when they opened for Ike and Tina Turner. However, this concert in Windsor was at a small college (I believe it was called St Clair College) in the cafeteria so I was geeked about possibly seeing the group in a more intimate setting. My best friend and I show up, are ten feet from the stage and Chase (both the group and the man) played their living asses off - I was simply awestruck at the power, majesty and talent of the group. However, everyone else ignored them and chose to get hammered and socialize instead. It was incredulous to me that all that talent was ignored!! We went back to hear them the NEXT night - same thing. This time we talked to the band and Bill Chase was so gracious and appreciative it was amazing. As an impressionable young trumpet player I felt God had just descended and spoke to me personally. THEN, he invited my friend and I to be his guests that weekend at a dinner club in Kalamazoo called Mr. T-Bones. MY IDOL asked ME to be his guest!! I thought I was dreaming!!

Sorry for the long post but hang on with me a bit longer.

My friend and I make the 100 mile trip to Mr. T-Bones - and just as he said, the maitre de escorts us to the table in front of the stage and tells us dinner is on Mr. Chase and we are his guests. We eat a wonderful meal, hear a FABULOUS concert from the front row and he sits with us during the intermission and talks to us. You could have killed me right then and there and I would have died happy!

WORST STORY?? Tragically, ONE WEEK LATER THAT INCREDIBLE MAN AND MUSICIAN WAS DEAD - he and 4 of his band members died in a plane crash in an Iowa cornfield in August 1974 on the way to a gig.

He was a classy man, a fabulous musician/composer and the world lost a true monster of a trumpet player on that terrible day. I will always fondly remember those precious concerts, his grace and class and his music!!!