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Everything posted by pablok

  1. My most memorable concert experience? Easy. Elvis Presley at the Rochester War Memorial on May 25, 1977. I was 12 years old and the King was going to be six short blocks from my house. He was going to ride in a limo through my neighborhood streets – the same streets I walked every day on the way to school. He might see where I lived. He might even comment to those with him that he bet a real nice boy lived in that house. Elvis!!!! Every day I pleaded with my mother to take me. “We’ll see” is all the reply she’d give me. As the day approached I couldn’t focus at school, I couldn’t sleep through the night. I could not wait to see the man whose face I’d seen on all those album covers and who looked so cool in all those movies. The big day with Elvis came…and went. Though I didn’t realize it at the time, we were a poor family and a $15 ticket was more than my mother could ever afford. I missed the Elvis concert. Miss him singing “Hound Dog” and “Teddy Bear” and “Heartbreak Hotel.” I missed the hip shaking, scarf throwing, stutter talking, King of Rock and Roll. I didn’t get even to see a limo drive by my house. I didn’t get to see anything. And then Elvis up and died a few months later. The most memorable concert for me? The one I never saw. But wait…this story has a happy ending! All was not lost. When my son was young and showed the same interest in music that I had at his age, I determined to do everything in my power to help him avoid having a similar Elvis moment in his life. He’s now 19 years old and has been to well over 300 concerts. Some of the many great performers he has seen: Black Sabbath, Neil Young, Jack White, Willie Nelson, Kiss, Buddy Guy, The Darkness, Roger Waters, Gogol Bordello, The Pixies, Frightened Rabbit, Glen Campbell, Paul McCartney, The Who, Placido Domingo, John Fogerty, Josh Ritter, Robert Plant, My Morning Jacket, Rancid, Rodriquez, Weird Al Yankovic (!), The Rolling Stones, Screeching Weasel, Motorhead, Bob Mould, Foo Fighters, Bob Dylan, The Flaming Lips, Los Lobos, Rammstein, Arcade Fire, Beck, Childish Gambino, Jerry Lee Lewis, Bill Mallonee, Black Keys, Neutral Milk Hotel, Wynton Marsalis, Gordon Lightfoot, Green Day, The Proclaimers, The Monkees, Jim James, Danny Elfman, The Fratellis, Joan Jett, No Doubt, Blink 182, Owl City, MGMT, Dead Weather, The Scorpions, Weezer, My Chemical Romance, Eric Johnson, Lady Gaga, Todd Rundgren, Death Cab for Cutie, Nick Lowe, Chuck Berry, Blondie, X, Aerosmith, Cheap Tick, Bruce Springsteen, The Killers, Smashing Pumpkins, Soundgarden, Swamp Dogg, Alice Cooper, B.B. King, Kraftwerk, Spoon and…U2! And do you know what? All of them were memorable. All of them were special in some way. And the spark that lit this fire was a 12 year old boy missing the first concert he ever really cared about. Sometimes life’s greatest disappointments do turn to beauty in the end.
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