August 04, 2009

Fifty Bands

This post was inspired by a Facebook meme that's going around.
    "Test your memory and your love of live music by listing 50 artists or bands (or as many as you can remember) you've seen in concert. List the first 50 acts that come into your head. An act you saw at a festival and opening acts count, but only if you can't think of 50 other artists. Oh, and list the first concert you ever saw (you can remember that, can’t you)?"
I tried to leave out:
  • bands you've never heard of;
  • bands I saw at Lollapalooza;
  • bands I saw for free;
  • and bands whose concerts I have no memory of!
Here's what remains, in pure stream-of-consciousness order:
  1. Red Hot Chili Peppers, Mother's Milk tour, Orpheum 1988? Still the loudest concert ever.
  2. Peter Gabriel is the first concert I saw, at Great Woods in 1987, with Youssou N'Dour opening. My mom went with me. I saw PG again on the US tour, and again on the UP tour.
  3. ZZ Top, the Worcester Centrum...
  4. ...and The Black Crowes opened for ZZ Top on the Recycler tour in 1990!
  5. Paul McCartney 1989 and 2001
  6. The Dead Milkmen
  7. Violent Femmes, Orpheum, 1994? I thought the balcony was going to collapse during "Blister in the Sun".
  8. Billy Joel at the old Boston Garden, on the Storm Front tour; even in 1990 he could not sing the high parts in "An Innocent Man" anymore.
  9. AC/DC, I think it was the Blow Up Your Video tour, with Cinderella opening.
  10. Aerosmith: December 31, 1989, at the old Boston Garden, with Skid Row opening.
  11. Wilco 2002, 2003, 2009
  12. Conor Oberst & The Mystic Valley Band
  13. Ben Folds, 2002- the cover photo of Ben Folds Live was taken at the show I went to.
  14. Letters to Cleo, Avalon
  15. Bob Dylan 1999, 2004?
  16. Natalie Merchant, twice in the 1990s
  17. Liz Phair 1998, 2003
  18. The Breeders
  19. Bob Mould
  20. John Hiatt
  21. Nick Lowe
  22. Sting 1987, 1988
  23. Sinead O'Connor
  24. Bruce Springsteen 1992, 1995, 2001
  25. Fountains of Wayne
  26. The Thorns
  27. The Jayhawks
  28. Chicago
  29. The Beach Boys
  30. Little Feat
  31. Steve Miller Band
  32. George Thorogood
  33. Spin Doctors
  34. The Lemonheads
  35. R.E.M.
  36. Barenaked Ladies twice
  37. Buffalo Tom
  38. New Pornographers
    At this point, I could not think of any more off the top of my head, so I read some old blog posts to jar my memory...
  39. Lucinda Williams
  40. Squeeze
  41. John Wesley Harding
  42. Pearl Jam at the Orpheum, on the Versus tour, maybe the best show I have ever seen.
  43. Ellis Paul
  44. Robert Plant at SXSW is the closest I have been to a Rock & Roll Hall of Famer- me, my wife, and our friends were all up against the barricades for this show.
  45. Prince
  46. Hall & Oates
  47. The Cranberries
  48. Alison Krauss & Union Station
  49. Indigo Girls
  50. Guster

  51. and many more...