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 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 03:19 am
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HBF



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Inspired by GWLee's post in the old guitar thread.

I saw Billy Squier, at his peak in 1982 or 83, headline a show at the Brendan Byrne Arena over Def Leppard, who had just released a little album called Pyromania.  While Squier was kick-ass and we all loved him, when you look back, it's pretty unreal that he headlined over the soon-to-be kings of rock.

I saw Zebra open up for Loverboy at the same Brendan Byrne Arena.  That was just sad now that I think about it.  Zebra is totally talented, and Loverboy are hacks.

In recent years, I saw Indigenous open up for Johnny Lang.  That almost made me sick, but my wife said "let's go" when Lang started playing. He cannot hold a candle to Mato Nanji.

I'd like to hear some others concert remembrances where it looks totally bizarre today.



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 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 04:13 am
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diamondmd



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I saw Hall & Oates open for ELO. This was just after "Sara Smile" was released. Two years later H&O were the kings of radio and ELO was dead and gone.

Also saw Michael Bolton open for Heart. Like him or not Bolton owned AOR radio in the early 90s.

Weirdest I ever saw was Gallagher opening for Kenny Rogers. The gray haired little old ladies in the front row weren't prepared for the Sledge-O-Matic routine.

Two of the most famous tales of this sort are Springsteen opening for the Beach Boys at Fulton County Stadium in Atlanta around '70 or '71. And Jimi Hendrix started his solo career (after leaving the Isley Brothers) opening for the Monkees.

 



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 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 04:26 am
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HBF



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diamondmd wrote: I saw Hall & Oates open for ELO. This was just after "Sara Smile" was released. Two years later H&O were the kings of radio and ELO was dead and gone.

Also saw Michael Bolton open for Heart. Like him or not Bolton owned AOR radio in the early 90s.

Weirdest I ever saw was Gallagher opening for Kenny Rogers. The gray haired little old ladies in the front row weren't prepared for the Sledge-O-Matic routine.

Two of the most famous tales of this sort are Springsteen opening for the Beach Boys at Fulton County Stadium in Atlanta around '70 or '71. And Jimi Hendrix started his solo career (after leaving the Isley Brothers) opening for the Monkees.

 
Holy fuck. I would have killed to been there just because of how weird it was.  Unfortunately, I was less than a year old during that tour and couldn't honor my parents mandate of being toilet-trained.



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 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 04:46 am
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I don't go back far enough for any really good examples.  I can just talk about some of the better or more interesting opening act stories I've encountered.

Guns 'n' Roses at MSG (2002) - Mix Master Mike, formerly of the Beastie Boys, was the first opener and was a really bizarre choice.  He was doing his famous DJ/turntable routine and this crowd didn't know what to make of him.  He won everyone over and his performance was amazing, ending his set with this insane trick where he was spinning about 4 rock and 4 rap records simultaneously and making it sound amazing.  The second opening act was a new Philly rock band called CKY that I had never heard before but I liked them so much I became a fan and now own 2 of their CDs and a T-shirt.

Metallica at Nassau Colisseum (2004) - Godsmack opened and were obviously a somewhat big name by then, and they came out with egos fully charged.  About 70% of the crowd was still tailgating in the parking lot and the remaining 30% couldn't have cared less.  Their sound was barely turned on at all, even for opening act standards.  Sully the lead singer flipped out near the end of his set, yelling at the fans to treat them with respect and got booed out of the building.  I've heard about so many ugly incidents involving opening acts from the '70s and '80s but this is the only one I ever saw.

Guns 'n' Roses at MSG (2006) - Sebastian Bach was the first opener and his voice has held up so well it's scary.  It was my first chance to see him live and I'm a huge Skid Row fan, so I made sure I got there very early.  Axl just loves this guy so he got a nice set on the stage and good sound with the volume cranked.  Papa Roach was the second opening act and had gotten a ton of radio airplay by then but I got some beers at that point and just wasn't into them.

Heaven & Hell/Judas Priest at Jones Beach (2008) - Testament went on first and literally played 3 songs with no sound.  Then Motorhead came out and it was really sad to see these rock gods get treated almost as bad.  Just horrible sound made worse by the open air atmosphere at Jones Beach and they didn't get the set opened up for them so if Lemmy moved an inch he was falling into the front row.  I actually wanted to see them so I was disappointed (even though Dio was the draw for me and his performance more than made up for it).  Within 3 weeks I saw Motorhead headline at Roseland (the show where HHH and Stephanie stayed on stage the whole show) and they were great.


Last edited on Thu May 14th, 2009 04:46 am by srossi



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 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 05:05 am
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Midnight Oil opening for Social Distortion at the Hollywood Palladium at a time when both bands were virtually unknown.

I went to see the Stones play in the Coliseum in...1981 (?).  It was a four band bill and, to go along with the Stones, J. Geils Band and George Thoroughgood, the opening act was some newcomer named Prince.  About halfway through his second song, the volume of things being thrown onto the stage (remember festival seating?) forced him to leave. So I can say I saw Prince booed off the stage.  He came back to town about 18 months later and sold out something like 11 nights at the Forum.

In 1974 or 1975, Kiss and Rush played my rinky dink hometown in Iowa, along with a series of other small towns in preparation for both bands first major tours.  The opening act was about to come out with their first album and was made up of a bunch of guys from Peoria Richwoods High School who called themselves REO Speedwagon.

The only time I ever saw the Dead use an opening act it was LadySmith Black Mombazo, who was nothing short of awesome.



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 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 05:55 am
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diamondmd wrote: Weirdest I ever saw was Gallagher opening for Kenny Rogers. The gray haired little old ladies in the front row weren't prepared for the Sledge-O-Matic routine.

Would have loved to have seen this one! :D



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 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 06:05 am
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I saw Powerman 5000 get greeted by a huge dose of who-gives-a-fuck when they opened for KISS on their first reunion tour in 1996 at the Bryce Jordan Center. 

They weren't terrible, but no one knew who they were then and people weren't interested in giving them the time of day.

Last edited on Thu May 14th, 2009 06:05 am by sek69



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 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 09:34 am
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I saw: the Sugarcubes(Bjork), Public Image Limited(w/for Sex Pistol Johnny Rotten), and Camouflage open for New Order.

 



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 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 01:44 pm
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dogfacedgremlin34
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I saw an unknown Limb Bizkit open for Faith No More circa 1997.

I saw an equally unknown Pearl Jam open for a kinda/sorta unknown Smashing Pumpkins, who both opened for the Red Hot Chili Peppers, circa 1991.

I also saw the Monsters of Rock tour in 1988 in which Dokken, Metallica and the Scorpions opened for Van Hagar.

 

Last edited on Thu May 14th, 2009 02:01 pm by dogfacedgremlin34



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 Posted: Fri May 15th, 2009 12:56 am
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Many thousands to choose from but two stay in my memory.

In November of 1977 Ted Nugent and Skynyrd were coming into MSG as co-headliners. Both were white hot at the time and had played a monster show at the Nassau Coliseum about 8 months before. Of course Skynyrd no-shows the Garden show because the pussies couldn't get over a little plane crash that happened two whole weeks before. Lou Thez would have been there. Anywho, the substitute opener was hack actor and soap opera star Rex Smith. I figured this guy is going to be drawn and quartered on stage by the always hostile and already pissed off 70's Garden faithful. Well lo and behold, Rex came out and absolutely killed. He had a great band, his stage presence and charisma were great, and he had really good songs. We actually liked him. He was completely forgotten about 45 minutes later because Nugent came out and did what was no doubt his greatest show of all time but Rexy escaped with his dignity intact. More than I can say for Sammy Hagar when he opened for KISS at the Garden in February of 1977.

The other one was a 1978 Garden show which was billed as Santana's 10 year anniversary show. Eddie Money was chosen as the opener. Eddie had a number 1 album out and was of course a New York guy. Has to be a home run...right?? Wrong...When we got to the show I thought it was a Pedro Morales title defense judging by the makeup of the crowd. Almost everyone there a hardcore 10 year Santana fan. Money was anally sodomized by 20000 people. The poor prick didn't know how to handle such hostility. He wasn't bad but he wasn't great.



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 Posted: Fri May 15th, 2009 02:28 am
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Great stories guys. That's exactly the sort of stories I was hoping to hear.

I just remembered, I saw the fucking horrible "Great White" open for Judas Priest in 1984.  Can' remember if it was in the Meadowlands in early '84 or in MSG in June, 1984.

DFG, in the single most regrettable social decision I've ever made, I turned down free tickets to see Pearl Jam, Nirvana and the Red Hot Chili Peppers on New Years Eve at (I think) the Roseland Ballroom.  Must have been 1991.  That is almost the same lineup you mention.



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 Posted: Fri May 15th, 2009 04:28 am
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While I mention Billy Squier (who I loved), here's a gem I found on Youtube:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i9nZFTPsjBU



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 Posted: Fri May 15th, 2009 05:26 am
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Alice In Chains was met with complete indifference when they opened for KISS during their reunion tour in Detroit.  Lane Staley tried to get the crowd into it, but they just didn't want to see anyone but KISS.  Staley finally yelled, "Fuck you, Detroit."  and stormed off the stage.



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 Posted: Fri May 15th, 2009 07:35 am
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dogfacedgremlin34 wrote: I saw an unknown Limb Bizkit open for Faith No More circa 1997.

There is insufficient space on the internet for me to express my detestation of Limp Bizkit.

I saw VV Brown supporting Ida Maria last year.  She is going to be ginormous.  Otherwise the only act I have seen as a support that went on to have big success is the Ting Tings, who were very good but reliant on tape machines as they only have guitar and drums on stage.



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 Posted: Fri May 15th, 2009 10:24 am
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The Ultimate Sin wrote: Alice In Chains was met with complete indifference when they opened for KISS during their reunion tour in Detroit.  Lane Staley tried to get the crowd into it, but they just didn't want to see anyone but KISS.  Staley finally yelled, "Fuck you, Detroit."  and stormed off the stage.
I saw Alice in Chains open for KISS in Kansas City in 96. I was looking forward to seeing them but they were flat out garbage. The band was ok I guess but Staley sounded like shit and the crowd let them know it. They were booed off the stage and I remember the drummer said something to the crowd to really piss everyone off. I think this might have been the last show they did for KISS because it seemed like KISS fans wanted no part of a grunge group opening for their heros. It was pretty funny. 

Last edited on Fri May 15th, 2009 10:25 am by Jason Rock

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