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essieness's avatar

What is the best concert you've ever attended and why?

Asked by essieness (7693points) May 22nd, 2009

Inspired by @PandoraBoxx’s recent question.

Mine would have to be a toss up between my first Tool show and my second Fleetwood Mac show. The first Tool show because a) it’s Tool, and b) I was just awestruck with the music, the art, the ambience. My second Fleetwood Mac show because it was the greatest hits tour and I danced, sang, and spontaneously cried through the entire show. It was also emotional because the first time I saw them was in 2003… with my dad who passed away 2 years ago. So, I was thinking of him the whole time. He loved Fleetwood Mac.

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44 Answers

Ivan's avatar

Well, I haven’t been to too many concerts, but TSO puts on a damn good show.

Ivan's avatar

@essieness The Trans-Siberian Orchestra

May2689's avatar

I went to Rockwerchter last summer and watched Digitalism live. It was amazing because it was in a little stage, and everyone there started clapping their hands to the rythm of the band. All at the same time! Neon lights everywhere, not a worry in the world…It was truly a great concert.

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

Ween and the Flaming Lips. It was 400 degrees outside during the day but in the evening it was a pleasant 85 degrees and it was a perfect night on the grass for a show with some friends.

Jude's avatar

Radiohead (last summer). Thom York et al put on an amazing show… I honestly can’t think of one Radiohead song that I don’t like.

I also caught Fleetwood Mac a couple of months ago. Stevie and her multiple costume changes (her outfits all gyspy-like) and the rest, they still sound good..

chyna's avatar

David Bowie in full makeup as his Ziggy Stardust character. Ok, I’m showing my age, as that was in the late 70’s. He came out across the audience above us in a cherry picker type chair. He was directly above me and I could see he had painted his finger nails black. It was fantastic.

SuperMouse's avatar

It’s questions like these that make me even more happy that WTF is back – I can’t wait to see his answer!

The Kinks. Far and away The Kinks. I have seen them four times and they have always been amazing. Ray Davies puts on an incredible show and even though they do the same shtick every time (“I don’t think you’re ready for Lola yet”) it is never boring and is always a great time. I would say George Thorogood is in second place. Most boring: The Police. Absolute worst: Quiet Riot (one hit wonder 80’s hair/metal band).

dannyc's avatar

Black Sabbath in Montreal in the 70’s..30,000 people sitting in a cold outdoor arena, 3 guys rocking it..wow..

ubersiren's avatar

3 way tie:
Ben Folds – because he is without question the best thing on Earth. He’s like the ultimate musical orgasm… the kind that reaches your soul. Once, I yelled “I love you” in the middle of a song to him and he stopped and laughed and said he loved me too. We are forever connected… in a totally non-obsessed stalker way… yeah.
The Presidents of the United States of America- they seriously put on the best show imaginable in a little venue. They never got tired but slammed out song directly after song. They were possibly the most innovative showmen ever. The drummer did a drum solo without his drum set. He used his surrounding surfaces to bang on (including people).
Billy Idol- I saw him at a festival and he played well over his allotted time, in the rain, cutting into Coldplay’s spot. He demanded respect and put on a phenomenal show. He was damn sexy for 55 or whatever he was.

@chyna : Bowie, wow! That sounds amazing!

Jude's avatar

I was going to say, Bowie in his prime. Would loved to have seen that.

lillycoyote's avatar

I’m showing my age here but best concert ever? Bruce Springsteen, 1975, Paramount Theater, Portland, Oregon, front row. Why? Because it was Bruce Springsteen, at the Paramount Theater in 1975 and I had a front row seat. Duh!

eponymoushipster's avatar

I want to see Radiohead really bad. I’d also like to see Daft Punk live.

Probably thus far, it was Decemberists at Millennium Park in Chicago, with the symphony. It poured rain, but it was awesome.

crisw's avatar

First place- the Indigo Girls, on the grass at Oaks Amusement Park in Portland OR in 1992. My first IG concert, it was the beginning of a long appreciation of their talents. Couldn’t be a nicer location…

Second place- the Grateful Dead and Bob Dylan in Anaheim in (I think) 1994. I don’t remember much of the show, and I don’t even do drugs…you couldn’t be in the place without getting a contact high!

Third place- Joan Baez at the San Diego Convention Center, in 1983. I can still hear her singing “Children of the ‘80s” ::>)

dannyc's avatar

@ubersiren ..I have seen Billy Idol too. and I agree. He was a rocker, true to his roots, in the supreme. very underrated,,

whatthefluther's avatar

I answered this once before…thank goodness for copy and paste:
I, and 200,000 other fans, attended the California Jam at Ontario Motor Speedway on April 6,1974. It was a great festival, very well planned and executed. The fans were fairly well behaved, with few incidents. It helped that the acid was good and clean because there was a lot of it being freely offered up. And of course the entire speedway was covered with a huge cloud of marijuana smoke…even non-smokers couldn’t help but get stoned.
The line-up was incredible. Acts that performed at the festival in order of appearance:
Rare Earth
Earth, Wind and Fire
Eagles
Seals & Crofts
Black Oak Arkansas
Black Sabbath
Deep Purple
Emerson, Lake and Palmer
I thought Black Sabbath put on the best show followed closely by ELP. Deep Purple was also great, but they were not my preferred line-up with David Coverdale (Whitesnake , Coverdale and Page) having replaced Ian Gillian on lead vocals.
Needless to say, traffic (not the band) was a nightmare.

Tink's avatar

I went to a concert from the Paramore tour it was awesome

whatthefluther's avatar

@chyna…I saw Bowie as Ziggy in 1971 or 1972 at the Long Beach Civic Auditorium. Everyone was buzzing after that concert…so much so, many joined me in a multi-car pile-up at the 405 interchange (I totaled a new 1972 Vega…no big loss)!

DrasticDreamer's avatar

Tool concert, hands down. They perform extremely well live, their music is fantastic and they create a great atmosphere in general. I can not wait to see them again.

tinyfaery's avatar

Well, I’ve see DMB 18 times, and Dave & Tim twice. The best concert w/ Dave Matthews was definitely the Berkeley show(s) last year, night 2 in particular.

Depeche Mode in 1989 at the Rose Bowl was my first concert, but it was also one of the best shows I have ever been to. And that is A LOT!

The first Lollapalooza at what was then Irvine Meadows: Jane’s Addiction, NIN, Body Count, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Butthole Surfers, Rollins Band, Violent Femmes, Fishbone.

lillycoyote's avatar

@whatthefluther I wasn’t there, but I was at Watkins Glen, which I would have put as best concert ever if I hadn’t been only 15. If I hadn’t been 15 I think I would have appreciated the musical experience more, but I was more into God, how cool is this? If my parents only knew I was not actually on that ski trip with my friend, this is awesome. The music was just background to the parade of everything else for me. Amazing concert though, I hear. I wish I had paid more attention. I do remember the amazing traffic though. We’re getting old aren’t we? That was all so long ago.

buster's avatar

Judas Priest, Tool, Snoop Dogg, Bloodhound Gang, The Melvins

Judas Priest has on hell of a stage show. Rob Halford rides a Harley on stage looking like Mr. Slave. My first concert at 15 was Lollapalooza 97. Snoop then Tool. Snoop had everyone screaming BEYOTCH and smoked a blunt and passed it to the crowd. Tool is rad live. I saw lots of boobs at the Bloodhoung Gang show. If you have ever stood 10 feet away from King Buzzo’s guitar amp when its a wall of distortion you know The Melvins.

Likeradar's avatar

@essieness I was gonna say my 1st Tool show too. I was with a great friend and we got seats 1st row center of the balcony, so it kinda felt like they were playing just for us. I was so moved by the music and the passion behind it. I got a Tool-related tattoo very soon after.

And #2 would be, sigh, the New Kids on the Block show late last year. My best friend from high school flew in for the weekend, and we screamed and squeeled like we were 12 again. My inner pre-pubescent was having the time of her freakin’ life. It was some of the silliest fun I’ve had in a long, long time.

wildflower's avatar

Bon Jovi (there’s a surprise!) in Dublin 2006. A perfectly sunny day, Gold Circle tickets, just the right amount of booze, Nickelback opening…......and this!!

whatthefluther's avatar

@lillycoyote…yes,we’re getting old, but one is never too old to rock n roll. My first was Chicago (then Chicago Transit Authority) in 1970 making me 15 or 16. I believe it was at the Universal (City) Amphitheatre, well before they ruined the place by enclosing it (it is still a fine venue). Terry Kath, lead guitar/vocalist (their very deep voice) was still alive (died in 1978 by an accidental gunshot wound inflicted by himself while screwing around with a pistol). Jimi Hendrix once said of Kath, who like Hendrix taught himself guitar and played by ear, that Kath was a better guitar player than he. Unfortunately we weren’t afforded the opportunity to see the level of greatness each would attain. That CTA concert was incredible, got me hooked on live music and I’ve been to hundreds upon hundreds of concerts since (living in Los Angeles and having connections in the music industry does have its rewards)!

whatthefluther's avatar

@wildflower…Great clip but alas, much too short. But it looks like there are many more clips on youtube so I’m headed back that way. Warmest regards…wtf

ru2bz46's avatar

If I had to name one, it would be day #2 of the “1983 US Festival”. The lineup?

Quiet Riot (unknown at the time, but had #1 song in 1984)
Motley Crue (unknown at the time)
Ozzy Osbourne (legendary)
Judas Priest (See @buster‘s description)
Triumph (at the time had only headlined any indoor venue)
Scorpions (perhaps my favorite long time band, formed 1966)
Van Halen (with David Lee Roth)

The price? $25

As far as fun concerts, nobody can beat Primus. They have the best mosh pits, and the heavy slap bass forces you to jump around the entire show. I have to see them every time they come around.

casheroo's avatar

Front row seats to Lou Reed. you’d think that would be “showing my age” but this was only a few years ago It was amazing.

I’m trying to think, and no concerts really stick out. I’ve been to a lot of them, and usually my friends and I had more fun together than listening to the music.
No Doubt was great, they performed with Garbage.
Gwar was my first concert, I was 14, so of course tht was quite an experience (fake blood being shot at you…fun times)
I’ve gone to a couple Ozzfest’s, which can be really fun. My first was in 2001.

Jack79's avatar

Most of the concerts I go to, I sing. So my perspective is a completely different one, and what makes a good concert is not so much how well I may perform (though of course this helps), but what the weather is like, how the people react, how the whole atmosphere develops, and whether I’m actually “there” or wondering whether I left the lights on at home (yes, I’m that type of rock star).

In that sense, I always enjoyed playing in Meissen (Germany), because there were always thousands of people, and it’s a beautiful city, and we always got to play at this veranda (can’t think of a better description) overlooking a square, and you can see the people better from there. And for some weird reason I always play better there and there’s some railings I can climb on and do my stuff and people seem to enjoy it. Oh and it’s not as hot as other places.

janbb's avatar

Bruce Springsteen, 1976, Carlton Theatre in Red Bank, NJ. I wasn’t a fan of his before (my brother had an extra ticket) but I sure was afterward! I’ve seen him about three times since and he always gives 150%. The first time was in the smallest hall and it was definitely the best.

Aethelwine's avatar

It’s hard for me to decide between Lollapalooza 1991 and 1993. The first one because my husband and I just met and it was our first concert together. Also Jane’s Addiction is my favorite band of all time.

I liked the lineup a little more for Lollapalooza 1993.

Primus
Alice in Chains
Fishbone
Tool
Rage Against the Machine
Babes in Toyland
Front 242
Arrested Development
Dinosaur Jr.

It was a warm humid day in Chicago with a chance of storms and when Arrested Development started to play Raining Revolution guess what happened… thunderstorm! The moment was surreal.

Mamradpivo's avatar

I saw String Cheese Incident with maybe 500 other people in a small club with concrete walls in the Hague. Drugs were legal there, and it was such an amazing collective experience. Even Billy, the lead guitarist, had a little too much and almost passed out during his big steel pedal solo at the end of the second set. It was so much fun and I’d never seen the band with such a small crowd.

kelly's avatar

1968 Chicago Amphitheater: Terry Read(British), Chuck Berry and The Rolling Stones. It was just a few weeks after the Democratic Convention in Chicago with the police riots and the crowd loved Street Fight’n Man.

Jeruba's avatar

Joan Baez. Boston Arts Festival, August 1964. Outdoor stage, warm night, sold out. She had several albums out by then, after creating a sensation at Newport in 1959. Her voice was clear and strong and beautiful, and with her music and her style she embodied the young spirit of the time.

In the second half of the concert, she brought a virtually unknown Bobby Dylan onstage and introduced him, and they performed several songs together. She was the queen of folk music at the time, and she used her access to a huge audience base to help him gain a following.

lillycoyote's avatar

@whatthefluther no, we’re never too old to rock and roll, at least I hope not. I too got hooked on live music, and I couldn’t begin to list how many great concerts I’ve been to, though I don’t go to many anymore. I can’t even remember the last really great concert I went to or even the last really bad concert I went.

Garebo's avatar

I am old.
Santana and Derek in the Dominos, after Clapton came out of his shell with “Layla”. It was 79 my high school bud and I spent the summer with his sister in S.F. We had the good fortune to see ” It’s A Beautiful Day” in Golden Gate State Park was quite an experience, and taste of the hippie aftermath. Then, coming home and here my two favorites rock musicians at the time-Clapton and Santana, it was an awesome summer.
Later, Roxy Music in Great Woods was up there; the Newport Jazz Festival was very memorable time as well.
Seeing Lynyrd Skynyrd open for Jefferson Starship was funny, because at the time; there was only a small zealous crowd that realized the opening act was bigger then the headliner.

whatthefluther's avatar

One concert was memorable in two regards, both who I saw and who I attended it with. It was Queen with Freddie Mercury at the peak of their success. I attended the show with two soon to be famous rockers in their own right, Eddie Van Halen and David Lee Roth. Eddie, as well as a much lesser known rocker and I, were there on dates with three sisters. David was the odd man out. It wouldn’t be long after that that Eddie, brother Alex, David and Michael Anthony would release their self-titled debut album, headline at The Whiskey on the Sunset Strip, and burst big-time on the music scene. I was not in the business. I had just graduated from UCLA and was a near full-time party animal (I worked with, dated and lived with one of the sisters). I did, as I do now in my old age, have the hair thing going, though…think Brian May, full, thick, naturally curly, but even longer! Good times!

OpryLeigh's avatar

Barbra Streisand at the 02 Arena, London in July 2007. It was a dream come true for me to see her live and she didn’t dissapoint.

Judi's avatar

Bachman Turner Overdrive. (at least I thought so at the time.) That was back in my drug days and My friend and I ended up under the stage getting high with the warm up band. In retrospect (now that I am a mom) I get a little freaked out. We were only 14 or 15 years old. With all the dangerous positions I put myself in in my youth I am lucky to be alive.

justus2's avatar

Definately Greenday last night in Las vegas at the Mandalay bay, the lighting and fire and stuff was awesome, and of course greenday is awesome, and I loved the way billie joe mooned the crowd a lot and all the stuff he said, totally awesome! I love their distaste for authority

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Only138's avatar

The first time I seen Ozzy with Anthrax, and when the Misfits opened for Megadeth. Awesome!

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

@chyna and @whatthefluther Saw David Bowie in ‘87 on his Glass Spider tour. It was wonderful and a pleasant surprise to see Peter Frampton again.

Paul McCartney and Wings, but only because I can say I’ve seen a Beatle perform live.

Seal, Sting and Harry Connick, Jr., who all performed at an intimate, outdoor amphitheater that is limited to 2500 and in the middle of the Mississippi River. Each sang as if they wanted to seduce the audience. And they did.

YoBob's avatar

I was just about to ask this very same question when Fluther pointed me to this one.

For me, it depends on what you mean by “best”.

I saw Dan Fogleberg in the late 1970’s at reunion arena in Dallas. There was no opening act, there was no pyrotechnic display, there was no stage trickery. The show started and a man walks out and says: “Ladies and gentleman, Mr. Dan Fobleberg.”. The lights then cam up with a barstool surrounded by a simi-circle of around 6 guitars and a grand piano to the side. Mr. Fogleberg walked out, sat on the stool, and proceeded to completely enrapture the full arena for a couple of hours. AWESOME!

Then there is just plain raw rock and roll show finesse. I have to give this one to Emerson, Lake and Palmer. It was an experience that is really hard to describe in text. Definitely the best drum solo/light show combo I have ever seen.

Then there is the whole overall showmanship, light show, and production value aspect. To me this is a tie between (believe it or not) DEVO and (much as I hate to admit it) Kiss.

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