Sunday, July 20, 2008

So… I had a friend take me to see Rush at Hershey Stadium last Thurs. I had seen them before [early 90’s, on the “Counterparts Tour”]. Weird to think about. I wasn’t even married then. I hadn’t seen my friend for quite some time. He had called me up months ago & said [out of the blue] “Wanna go see Rush? They’re playing at Hershey, outdoors [I am allergic to most forms of smoke -& he knows that. Partly because he knew me when I was sick the whole week of my birthday, the year I first saw Rush at The Spectrum –excuse me Wachovia now, right?

-Back to allergies-The less exposure I’ve had, the more severe the allergy. So cigarette smoke is irritating, but takes a bit to start the short breath watery eyes “routine”. Cigar starts the more severe “version” which adds shortness of breath to the list. And “buds” of any kind are life threatening after a very short period. Smoke from the stage doesn’t effect me too much –neither do candles.] Needless to say he bought my ticket, Thank you so much! I honestly went just to hang with my friend. Which was the best part. But got to enjoy a very talented band as a bonus. Perhaps memory is more fuzzy than I’d like to admit, but the show was excellent [better than last time]. Neal Peart [One of my favorite drummers, & a wonderfully literate, poetic, & deep lyric writer] did an amazing solo. He seems to have broadened his soloing over the years. It went from: rock to electronic to subdued to very heavy [almost thrash] to swing to jazz. Though I did not time it, it seemed to last close to 10 glorious minutes. And, as awful as this is to type, I wish I had found a way to bootleg just his solo! Though the whole show left me wishing I could buy it. It was deliciously good. I also could not wipe the smile off my face when Geddy Lee stepped up to his mike & said “We’re gonna go back in time now –at least musically speaking- to a song from Hold Your Fire. This is called Mission.” [one of my all time favorite Rush tunes] after which, the dreamy, ethereal sounds of Geddy’s Mellotron intro the song. That and Entre Nous, are my top 2 favorites [though I love others]. The mix was good, not harsh, not overbearingly loud, but loud enough to be a rock concert. Alex did a great acoustic piece [on a twelve string] he wrote for the latest disc called Hope.

Next up will be Brad Paisley –this Sat. [at my wife’s request. It’ll be great just to see her excitement. And, in all fairness he is a really good guitar player]

Then, in about 2 weeks, I’ll get to see a band I’ve wanted to see for a few years now… King Crimson. Both Paisley & Crim shows will be my first. So I’m listening to the “Happy with what you have to be happy with” Ep [by “The Crim.’s” of course] in anticipation. Planning on pickin’ up the show afterwards. I hope they have some cool shirts, like a P. J. Crook one. [She is the artist who has given some of her paintings to the band for use as covers.] I'll, hopefully, be able to catch up with my friend on the way to The Keswick Theater, in Philly -where The Crim.'s are playing. [if I see any more bands I'll have to print up a shirt to remember who I saw in what order.] That could be fun...

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