by Stoneface (September 10, 2005) 

Yesterday morning I didn't have a ticket to this show at Soldier Field. There were several reasons I had hesitated; $450.00 premier seats, all the presale/fanclub crap, saw them 3 times during Licks, the greatest hits setlist, the quick sell-out in Chicago, etc. Anyway, Saturday rolls around and the Stones are in town, they've been all over local TV, radio, and print for two weeks, everybody's pumped - my girlfriend is working and I'm going to sit home. Couldn't do it. By 6:30 I was on the el train to Soldier Field.

I get down to the Roosevelt Avenue stop and join the crowds walking to the stadium. I didn't want to deal with someone selling/scalping tickets to far from the field in order to possibly reduce the risk of a ripoff. At the Field Museum a woman asked if I had any tickets to sell and then winked and asked if I needed one. She sold me an aisle seat on the field with a great view and nice close proximity to the B-stage for $140.00 which was $20.00 under face value and no service charges, etc. Later that night I found out the guy sitting two down from me had sold her two tix for 60.00 on the way in. Nobody ever came to the seat next to me so she made 80.00 on her investment. Scalper economy. Wish I knew how it worked cause I might have talked her down - but she was cool and I'm not complaining. It was a GREAT seat!

There's nothing like walking through the tunnels and gates and then suddenly there you are in a Stones concert with all the spectacle and ambience and excitement, first look at the new stage, etc. Los Lonely Boys are on stage and the lights are low. They were actually a good warm-up choice as their sound is warm and their vibe is kind of Los Lobos meets the Bodeans - kept the crowd in a good mood. I found my seat and then walked around which was pretty nice down on the field and on the lower concourse. The new Soldier Field is fugly on the outside but spectacular on the inside. It's deep with an almost sheer canyon wall effect looking up at the decks and boxes above. The spooky steep parking garage Bigger Bang stage only intensifies the effect. As I was walking around I chatted with a couple women with some great Stones stories, one had seen them in Detroit 1972 and the other had a best friend who was Ed Sullivan's daughter and got her in to the 1965 or 66 rehearsals in NYC. At this point I was really happy I'd decided to come down. Great people, a few good beers, 70 degree temps, Stones coming up, Chicago, - life is good.

The Stones took the stage at 8:39. Keith was first out. Boom, fireworks and smoke. Boom Keith. Boom Start Me Up. It's on! Mick's on fire and Ronnie nails a nice solo (more on Ronnie below). Guitars way up.

You Got Me Rocking - skeptical about this one but they tore it up. I was into it and the 50,000 crowd loved it. Keith's first solo blew me away - didn't think he could play like that. Ronnie is on.

Rough Justice - Rocks. Jagger is into it. Ronnie is on.

Tumbling Dice - a classic. Beautiful. Reworked a little at the end with Jagger and the backup singers.

Shes So Cold - Rocks. More controlled than the speedfreak 1981/82 version. Guitars are good. Mick still muffs the lyrics but he's getting there. Cool and fun video montage backs it. This one will stay in the show.

Ruby Tuesday - Wow! A nice surprise. Crowd goes nuts! Keith on acoustic and into it. Everybody is into it.

Shattered - Crowd is into it. Jaggers good. Ronnie is competent.

Bitch - Smoking hot! Keith all the way. Definite highlight!

Nightime - piss break. Doesn't do it for me. That constant "night and day" from the backup singers is about as annoying as Ronnie playing that little chiming phrase over and over and over again during JJF. Crowd loves Lisa though and the song went over so maybe it's just me.

Intros - Hometown hero Darryl Jones gets a big ovation.

The Worst - short and sweet. Beautifully done. Bernard sings with Keith. Another musician stands next to Ronnie at his pedal steel and accompanies him on piccaloe or clarinet. Very nice.

Infamy - Didn't do it for me. I don't get this tune yet. Most in crowd are sitting down. Seems directionless.

Miss You - uninspired. I think they're a bit distracted with getting into position on the moving remote stage and then rolling on out into the crowd.

At this point I move to the remote stopping point about five seconds before everyone else. I am now 10 - 12 feet from the Stones - they're playing straight at me. Closest I've ever been to them. Man they're small and skinny. They look cool as hell though. I didn't even have a ticket 3 hours ago. Afuckingmazing!

One note about the B-stage, that canopy over Charlie must be a real drag for the fans in the upper decks, don't know how they can see em. They must have climate control or something for Charlie inside that caccoon. Also, they ought to mount some speakers on the B-stage because you can barely hear them when you're right up next to it.

Oh No Not You Again - Great! Rocks really hard. Mick is really into it. Crowd loves it. Time trip back to 1978. Definite highpoint.

Satisfaction - Crowd goes bananas. Keith has changed at this point. It's like he just lost himself in the music and wasn't playing for anything else than his own personal passion and love of his band and his craft. Fuck he was into it. What power!

Honkytonk Women - Crowd going nuts. Ronnie sadly has backed off and is spending most of the remaining show clowning around. It was like his right hand was raised in the air more than it was on his strings.

Out Of Control - Surprise. Mick really into it. Takes a while to sell it to the crowd. Closing jam is extended and rocks hard. Mick really blowing and keith and Ronnie turned up loud. Dug it.

Sympathy For The Devil - crowd loved it. Wish Mick would sing the full song. Keith and Ronnie weave a crude approximation of the Ya yas version but are drowned a little by the backing singers and entire crowd going Whooo-Whooo. Nice lighting and dramatic Mick entrance on an upper catwalk. Nice pyrotechnics.

Jumping Jack Flash - Highpoint. Keith owns it. Hammered Ronnies annoying chime into the ground. Charlie is awesome!

Brown Sugar - Crowd pleaser. Where is Ronnie? (He was there in body but not in notes).

You Can't Always Get What You Want - Good encore. Ronnie is back with a nice but abbreviated solo.

It's Only Rock And Roll - Believe the hype! Truly great closer the way they are playing it.

Show started at 8:39 and the last fireworks blew off about 10:36.

Complaints about Ronnie aside as he was actually very good about 3/4s of the show. I had a fantastic time. Tommy is right I think about the possible merits of a more limited setlist - they may really polish and crawl into these tunes as the tour continues. They know how to put across a stadium show. Everyone was pumped. So I took my time leaving the stadium, walked across glimmering Chicago and met my babe at a club for drinks. Perfect night.


Just got back from Chicago. Have to say I really like the new album. After listening to it 7 hours both ways, it grew on me.

I agree with most of Stoneface's review.

The bass was way to loud and reverberated during "Ruby Tuesday".... very distracting.

I thought "Bitch" was a little confusing.

I nearly cried during "Tumbling Dice" it was so wonderful.

"She's so Cold" was perfect.

"Shattered" was the best I have seen it played in a long time, maybe since 81.

"Infamy" was the song I hummed all the way home. Keith's solo songs were very enjoyable.

Good job on "Oh No, Not You Again" Keith rocked playing his fast rock and roll riffs reminicent of "Bye Bye Johnnie".

"It's only Rock and Roll" was a highlight, nice and long, not in a hurry like on the B stage last tour.

Keith missed his solo cue in "Sympathy for the Devil" it was kind of humerous to see him struggle to regain control of his solo.

I thought some of the solos were a little confusing.

I agree "Miss You" was not as great as the Voodoo Lounge" tour.

"Satisfaction" was better than I have ever heard it before. It went a good 5 minutes, not hurried at allo.

All the songs were nice and long, no rushing to get them over.

Keith played his heart out. Once again, he put more effort into this concert than the two times I saw him last tour. Last time I saw them (Denver) he kind of coasted and let Ronnie be the main guitar on several songs..

Overall a very good show.

I know I sound critical... I expect perfection from them I guess... they made a few mistakes.

I would say I have never seen Keith so involved in the concert. He played like he had something to prove.

Mick did not encourage the crowd to sing along as much as he did last tour. I felt last tour he encouraged the crowd to sing too much. I want to hear him sing the words, not the crowd. He did encourage the crowd during "Brown Sugar" and "You Can't Alway Get What You Want." Not much of a singalong for "Miss You" as I have seen before. I missed the "Hey Hey" of "You Got Me Rockin" because I was smoking a joint.

"Honky Tonk Woman" was great. Once agin Keith proved he is the master of the "whompin" guitar.

Mick was great. He sang very well with all the expected intonations. Ronnie had some high points, I agree he coasted a little on some songs. Keith was on, so there was not much room for Ronnie sometimes.

The guitars were loud like we hoped they would be. Very little Chuck levaell (?). He was stuck over in a corner barely visible.

Bobby Keys was not around much. The trumpet on "Out of Control was great. The horn were down in the "mix" i thought.

They sounded like a guitar band, all the "fluff" was mimimized this time.

Good and Loud!

The moving stage was weird, I was closer than Stoneface so I could not see them perform. The sound came from behind me if when I tried to see the band. Keith gave my section of the crowd up close interaction while the stage passed by.

Good concert. I am glad I got tickets to see them in January. It was worth the $450.

A memorable night.

What do you think Stoneface? Am I accurate or way off?


It's nice to read your observations Undercover. Can't argue with any of them. For me the Stones can be kind of overwhelming (a good thing) and I keep trying to watch Keith, listen for Ronnie's interaction/contributions, watch Mick, listen to Charlie, check out Lisa, etc. so I definitely miss things or perceive them differently from others.

I didn't notice the bass on Ruby Tuesday but I'm sure my being positioned in a different part of the field had something to do with it. I was swept away by the crowd reaction and my own associations with this song. I honestly could barely hear them when I was at the B-stage but the rush of being so close made up for it.

When they played Bitch I basically just listened to Keith blast the song, as I could hear his playing perfectly - Mick was good on this too.

Infamy just hasn't hit me yet. Many people with inarguably refined taste have posted about how much they like that song. I've just got to live with it awhile.

Yeah Sympathy was kind of a shambles. Did you hear Keith stop playing early into Honkytonk Women? He just stopped and leaned down to someone in the crowd with a huge grin on his face and greeted them + handed them a pick. He got up walked back near Charlie and then struck a sustained chord which held for a few seconds and was back in the song like he never stopped.

I'm really glad you note Keith's intensity last night too! I looked at some detailed reviews over at Shidoobee and that seems to be the opinion of many who were there.

Good, interesting review. Thanks.

Chicago 99
by Fleabit Peanut Monkey (April 13, 1999)


HOG Butcher for the World,
Tool Maker, Stacker of Wheat,
Player with Railroads and the Nation's Freight Handler;
Stormy, husky, brawling,
City of the Big Shoulders
- Carl Sandburg

Chicago was my last Stones show of the tour, and unspoken beneath this sad-enough-in-itself statement is the dreadful possibility that it's my last Stones show. I pray this is not the case, not just yet, and I do see no good reason for The Boys to stop, so I won't dwell in this morbid thought. Suffice it to say that Chicago 2 was a splendid show, a show with big shoulders.

Dandelion, Ridgely, and (especially!) Marilyn have already brought up the pertinent facts, so pardon me if I repeat their thoughts. It was my first opportunity to see Chicago, and the first thing I wanted to visit was the grave of the great Muddy Waters. Dandelion graciously agreed to search the suburbs of the southside to find Restvale Cemetery. I really expected it to be a simple matter, that anyone I stopped on the street could point me toward this hallowed site. My naivete was similar to the Stones', who expected to hear Muddy & the Wolf on top 40 radio when they came to America. Many people had no clue who he was. I was shocked. We reached Worth, the suburb where the great man is buried. There are SEVEN cemeteries there, acres and acres of box yards, but Restvale was the last we found after an exasperating afternoon of wrong turns, bad direstions and hailstones. And the gate was locked, closed an hour earlier at 4 pm.

We returned the day of the show, bringing a lovely flower Dandelion picked out, a big daisy. We searched and found the tombstone. It was depressingly small, covered with dead grass clippings and mud-stained. I felt sad, and outraged. This giant of a man rests here untended. There should be a goddamned statue here, a mount rushmore sized bust of his noble brow. Instead a 2" black marble marker reads: McKinley Morganfield The Mojo is Gone The Master Has Won and a little guitar, a bass actually, four strings. God damn it, Muddy played a telecaster. We started cleaning the stone, fetching water and tissues and making it look presentable. The first Mrs. Morganfield, Geneva, is buried beside him, and her stone which says "The wife of Muddy Waters" has bird dirt on it. We cleaned it too. Then we went into the office to buy more flowers, but all they had were artificial ones. The director gave us a list of other celebrities buried at Restvale: Earl Hooker, Hound Dog Taylor, Magic Sam, Charlie McCoy (mentioned in "Down The Road Apiece"),Walter "Shaky" Horton, others. We got directions to a florist nearby & returned with an azalea, two geraniums, and a yellow rose, and some carnations for the other bluesmen. Dandelion arranged the flowers, along with the streamer from Milwaukee and some dandelions, around Muddy & Geneva's tombstones. A graveyard attendant came over, and in a gravelly voice said, "you got him lookin' good!" I told him I'd come from PA. He said, "yeah, I guess he was a legend, huh? He gets a lot of visitors." That made me feel better. Muddy is not forgotten. But when we looked for Hound Dog Taylor, we found only a cement foundation, no stone. We left the carnations and went to report the theft at the office. "Oh, he might not have even had one," we were told. "A lot of those blues musicians couldn't afford tombstones." So Hound Dog Taylor, of Hound Dog Taylor & the Houserockers, a vicious slide player who legend has it had six fingers & cut the extra one of in a bar one night because it kept getting caught on the frets of his guitar, who died in 1958, lies in an unmarked grave, remembered only on a xeroxed typewritten list of "famous musicians and singers" buried at Resvale Cemetery, 176 West Adams St, Chicago IL.

Come and show me another city with lifted head singing
so proud to be alive and coarse and strong and cunning.
Flinging magnetic curses amid the toil of piling job on
job, here is a tall bold slugger set vivid against the
little soft cities;

Fierce as a dog with tongue lapping for action, cunning
as a savage pitted against the wilderness,
Building, breaking, rebuilding,
Under the smoke, dust all over his mouth, laughing with
white teeth,
Under the terrible burden of destiny laughing as a young
man laughs,
Laughing even as an ignorant fighter laughs who has
never lost a battle,
Bragging and laughing that under his wrist is the pulse.
and under his ribs the heart of the people,
Laughing the stormy, husky, brawling laughter of
Youth, half-naked, sweating, proud to be Hog
Butcher, Tool Maker, Stacker of Wheat, Player with
Railroads and Freight Handler to the Nation.

Against her better judgement and innate sense of decorum, I insisted that Dandelion take my picture in front of Muddy's grave. But I AM a tourist, I protested -- why shouldn't I act like one?
We drove into the city to Chess Records, 2120 South Michigan Avenue. The only address in the city I know by heart. We had missed the last tour of the studio; the nice receptionist of Blues Heaven told us she'd given eight tours that day due to the Stones concert that night. It didn't matter to me; I wasn't in the same room, but I was in the same building, where Little Red Rooster, Hoochie Coochie Man, Around and Around, and a thousand other incredible songs had been recorded between the 40's and the 60's. I took a picture of the address above the door. Tourist!
We made it to the Billy Goat at 6:30 and immediately met Marilyn. It is so WONDERFUL to meet board friends in person. Marilyn showed us the incredible photos she'd taken in Florida in '99 AND '97, and I showed her the ones I took in Pittsburgh. Ridgely joined the party. A gang from Undercover posed for photos bestrewn with yellow security tape. Some nice folks from Pittsburgh told me how much they liked my review of that show, which made me feel great (if a tad full of myself!) Ridgely, Dandelion and I spent a pleasant hour chatting, then we went to the United Center.
Our seats were great, 16 rows up from Woody's side of the stage, looking down on the left end of the omega ramp. Jonny Lang was already playing when we sat down.

Jonny is the best opening act for the Stones I have seen yet. If you haven't heard him, he sings like Joe Cocker, plays guitar like Albert Collins, and is all of 19. This kid has a brilliant career ahead of him if he avoids the pitfalls of fame; he is one of the few new performers I can picture lasting decades instead of a few years. Besides being supremely gifted musically, he's tasteful, doesn't overplay, gives his band room to stretch out, and is handsome (although his face hasn't completely cleared up yet.) He spoke about how honored he was to open for the Stones, said they would be out to "blow the roof off the place" soon, then introduced some special guest stars for his last song, Leah Wood and "Lizzie Jagger". Looking and sounding really great, the girls danced and sang backup on Jonny's hit, "Lie To Me". Dandelion has long wanted to poll the posters here about whether or not I am a DORK for getting Leah Wood's autograph in Pittsburgh, but I think I'm just ahead of the game. She sounded great Monday. "Lie To Me" earned Jonny a resounding ovation as he left the stage, and the road crew began to change the equipment for the main event.

Beside us, the annoying pig woman of Dandelion's post was replaced by a friendly lady in her 40's who asked us what to expect. She wanted old stuff, she said, not new songs, but she said it in a nice way which didn't make me hate her for being a prole. Oh, we said, you'll get plenty of classics. We traded stories about other shows. She'd seen them 5 times. Dandelion and I tried to read the setlist on Charlie's plexiglass baffle with her opera glasses, but to no avail. I would just have to wait to see whether they did "I Got The Blues" or not.
Soon "Ball of Confusion" started playing on the pre-show tape and we knew it was TIME. The lights went down and the crowd went nuts, immediately. Everyone was on their feet, from floor to rafters. The intro film started and the fever pitch of anticipation was raised. That film is SO good. As the Stones on the screen approached and became flesh and blood, the United Center EXPLODED. There is just nothing to compare to that first moment, when anticipation gives way to realization, when everyone's expectations are met. I looked around me and saw the same expression on everyone's face. Whether it's your first show or your one hundredth, the RUSH of being in the same room with them is overwhelming.There is a sweet satisfaction in knowing that there is NO PLACE on earth that you would rather be.
After all of the horror stories about the abysmal sound at the UC, I was glad that I could clearly hear all of the elements - Keith & Woody's guitars were balanced , Charlie's drums pounded in my temples, Darryl's bass massaged my spine, and Mick's vocals, an arrogant sneer in JJF, riding over top of the maelstrom. With a few momentary lapses, the sound was good throughout the show. The horn section filed out onto the ramp and I knew Bitch would be next, as it was in Pittsburgh. As mentioned elsewhere, there was a bit of confusion in the middle, I think caused by Mick. He turned and looked for the horns to play the mid-verse riff earlier than he should have; they reacted and played it, 4 bars late; Mick started singing "feeling drunk" when he shouldn't have, and stopped; none of these flubs hurt the song a bit, and just revealed the Stones to be human after all. They all made eye contact and got their bearings, ending the song like a well-oiled machine, Mick's hand fluttering over the crowd, directing the music and conveying a benediction at the same time.
The show progressed, too damn fast, and it was obvious that (bitched-up Bitch notwithstanding) the Boys were in rare form. I started sneaking down to a landing a few feet away from Mick's stage-right preening platform and snapping pictures; I was careful not to obstruct anyone's view and to return to my seat after I got the shot, and all seemed well. Dandelion has already mentioned that blatant obnoxiousness from a drunk in front of us caused security to get tighter mid-show. The big guns were called in to replace the laid-back staff of the first half. A middle-aged woman, let's call her Ilsa, She-Wolf of the SS, started turning back everyone who tried sneaking down to the little landing. I followed her down as she busted people, hoping to elude her by staying behind her, but she caught me....however, KEITH was heading toward us at that moment, on the ramp a few feet away. I ignored her, politely, and took a picture of Keith as he smiled and laughed at us.

"Under the smoke, dust all over his mouth, laughing with white teeth,
Under the terrible burden of destiny laughing as a young man laughs,
Laughing even as an ignorant fighter laughs who has
never lost a battle,
Bragging and laughing that under his wrist is the pulse.
and under his ribs the heart of the people,
Laughing! "

It's hard to believe that Carl Sandburg did NOT write those immortal lines about Keith as he threw his head back and howled on the landing.

The show went on. Mick donned a long silvery jacket and announced "a sort of soul ballad called "I Got The Blues". The tempo was a bit rushed, and the sound changed a bit, but it was still achingly beautiful. Mick's vocals were perfect-- pained, soulful; at the bridge Keith chimed in: "every night you've been away/ I've sat down and I have prayed/that you're safe" - it was another moment of transcendence. "In the silk sheet of time/ I will find peace of mind". Incredible.

The show continued. The best "Some Girls" I've heard, "Paint It Black" incredible as always, Keith's set a down-in-the-groove JOY. The B-stage sound was unbalanced for Rt. 66, Keith WAY too loud in the mix, but it was dialed in by the galloping end of "Imagination" (during which Keith SIGNED AN AUTOGRAPH!!!! How cool is THAT???) and was perfect for "Midnight Rambler". The song was, as always, astonishing. Mick & Keith stood shoulder to shoulder as it shifted into overdrive for the end, and they walked to the front of the stage together.
The end of the show went by in a blur. Dandelion and I very carefully & stealthily edged back to the landing, blending in and arousing no attention; a girl followed us down and got busted by Ilsa, and, in a very grade-school manner, said "THEY don't belong here EITHER!" What a BITCH! We returned to the aisle, and as soon as Ilsa turned her back, we RAN to the landing and into newly-vacated seats. We watched "Sympathy" from this lovely vantage point.

Ah, what a great show, what a great tour, what a great band. Here's a fervent prayer for more moments like this to enrich our lives.

Columbus, 2005
by Nothing Blues
(Septemebr 25, 2005)

My thoughts on the Char Bar, Buckeye Fans, and oh yeah, did you hear they played Sway?.............

*Checked into the Crowne Plaza early afternoon and was told the Stones crew had stayed there all week, but they checked out that morning. Downed some adrenaline beers and then headed out to explore.

*Great vibe from all kinds of transient Stones fans (even though the town itself was kinda dead. Big OSU game and apparently to them that was the only thing going on in town..."Oh there's a Stones concert tonight?")Quite the opposite of Cleveland, which make no mistake, when there's a Stones concert in that town, you fucking know it as soon as you park the car. Met some cool people.

*Checked out the Char Bar, as we did in 2003. Great old place with the original oak bar that it's had for eons. Opened the place and had the first draft of the day, as the old man tending bar politely informed me. If you're ever in Columbus, check this place out, great juke box and a downstairs restroom that, to get to, you have to go down some steps and navigate a scary old room that looks like something out of The Shining.

My thoughts on the show:

*Late start, but nice surprise with Brown Sugar as the opener;

*BOMH sounds great with Ronnie and Keith sitting on Charlie's drum riser, and then after the second verse they join Mick out front and the song turns into a full gallop;

*ONNYA and Shattered really lit up the B-stage. Played beautifully. In my opinion, this "sliding stage" gimmick is nothing but a distraction. There's like 30 people walking behind it, pulling cables and carrying equipment as they make their way out to the center of the arena. Kind of took the magic out of it for me. For fucks sake, just walk out there and slap hands with the fans.

*Virtually no interaction between Mick and Keith.

*As I posted earlier, Sway was great. Short and to the point, which was probably good for the first attempt. No lengthy jamming, which was probably a good idea, all things considered. The Columbus crowd was dead flat for it, and like the supposed "diehard" next to me asked.."Is this off the new album???"

*Miss You sounded spectacular and for once, I was glad they played it. Sounded raw and dirty, much like the version on the LSTNT movie. Captured that gritty NYC vibe.

*Blondie played quite a bit of acoustic guitar offstage and out of audience view;

*Many bitch about why they play YGMR. Well the fact is, they know it very well, Mick don't fuck up the lyrics, and Keith and Ronnie hit all the breaks and solos perfectly. It sounds great in concert, and that's probably why it remains.

*The band didn't start until 9:45 which caused me some major bladder problems, but I survived.

*late phone call to 2000 Man, right before showtime, who informed me of the Sway rumors. Damn, that guy got his shit together huh?

*Charlie kicked some serious ass tonight, as did security, to the poor fucker who jumped up onstage and was grabbing at Lisa.

*Columbus crowd was pretty apathetic. They didn't really get into it until the b-stage stuff,and then for the warhorse segment.

*I loved this FUCKING ROCKED like a Ramones show. Aside from "the Worst" there were no ballads...and that's fine with me. Don't feel the need to patronize me with the token ballads, country, or reggae tunes. Rocking out works well with me.

That's about it...I'm letting the liver dry out for three days until the Pgh show. Safe travels 2K...Rolling Rock Brewery added an extra shift this weekend when they heard you were coming to town!

To read the entire thread, click here:


MSG, 2006
by Turner (January 18, 2006)

This was a very enjoyable show due to the fact (which has been reported here many, many times already) that The Stones have turned up their guitars! Hallelujah! In some ways it felt like seeing them for the first time. While The Stones still play it safe in terms of arrangements, the loud guitars made this a night to remember, and I am more than glad to eat some black crowe.

I cruised into the city around 7 pm and headed over to Stout's just to see where it was in preparation for Friday. I called Love You Live but got no answer. For all I know there were a bunch of Gassers in the bar when I was there. We headed over to the Garden around 8 and took our seats. I was expecting The Stones to come on at 9 but it took until about 9:40. They opened with a solid version of JJF and I could tell the guitars would be loud. The guitars disappeared in the next song however, LSTNT. I always love hearing this one, whether it's guitar drivcen or piano driven. Next up was ONNYA, and it was pretty kick ass! It just felt like The Stones had some extra energy on this one because it was new.

I was wishing they wouldn't play You Got Me Rockin. Be careful what you wish for! I was afraid of YGMR when I should have been afraid of Love Is Strong! Well, I knew several Gassers would be happy with this tune, but I was left kind of scratching my head. Mick did play a mean harmonica though. Next up was Rocks Off, which I don't think I'd heard since the Voodoo tour. It was, of course, awesome. My wife was psyched as she loves this one. I did notice one thing though. This was the laziest bunch of white people I'd ever seen! My section was pretty dead, and it looked from my high vantage point like there wasn't much dancing going on below either.

When they pulled out Mick's electric piano I got ready for Memory Motel, but instead we were given Worried About You. I was fine with it cause I've heard MM many times and I don't think I've ever heard WAY. I felt bad for my sister-in-law though because she really wanted MM. I loved Mick's singing on WAY, and Ronnie ripped off a very respectable solo. So far it felt like the whole concert was the Mick Jagger show. Ronnie and Keef really seemed to be in the background in terms of stage presence. But who cares as long as their guitars are turned up!

Next up was Rain Fall Down, one of the few songs I really love from the new record. (I really lucked out with the new songs, they played my 4 favorite ones!) Very Funky tune. After that was a great performance of Midnight Rambler. Even Chuck's piano was great sounding on this one. You could just tell The Stones were well greased after so many months on the road. Then we had a solid version Tumbling Dice on which Ronnie had another great solo. The first part of the show ended with a very groovy Gimme Shelter. Actually being able to hear The Stones' guitars makes a huge difference.

Keef came on for his two songs and did an awesome This Place Is Empty and a solid version of Happy. You know The Stones when they play Miss You and I'm into it! It was a very tight version which didn't seem to go on as long as previous years, and that made it much better for me. Rough Justice and Get Off My Cloud were great choices for the b stage and both rocked. Honky Tonk Women was another one that was great simply because I could hear the guitars.

After the b stage retracted came the warhorses which were all very solid. I could definitely live without Sympathy, but we all have songs we feel that way about. YCAGWYW and Satisfaction wound up the show and I sprinted out to 8th Ave just minutes before my parking lot closed!

So the bottom line for me is that The Stones have made a major improvement simply by turning up the guitars. It kinda pisses me off I saw so many shows without that, but that's life. I don't have many complaints about the setlist which I thought was pretty interesting even for a hardcore fan. And it was great to hear Ronnie solo! I did come away with the impression that Mick is the whole show now though. Keef just didn't seem to be much of a presence on stage. This isn't a criticism, it's just an observation. The only real criticism I have is that The Stones still seem to be trying to recreate records onstage instead of being more creative, but that didn't really detract from my enjoyment. Even my fourth level seats were pretty decent. So all in all I had me a real good time.

Looking forward to attending the summit on Friday at Stouts. LYL I will keep in touch with you. Anyone who has any details about the summit would be doing me a great favor by e-mailing me the info.

PS - TM I went to your seats but you weren't there!

Travellin’ Man

The experience of taking in a Stones show at MSG and just as important, doing the pre show partying with cool Gassers like Keefer, Human Riff, and Payphone Al etc. turned out to be very much like I thought it would be. An unforgettable fucking blast! Ah but there would be some great surprises in store before the night would end. Hell. At times I would surprise myself.

I flew from D.C. to New York after getting a total of 3 hours sleep at a crappy Manassas motel. Keefer had already arrived at the Ramada. So I met him on the 33rd floor around 1pm. First impression of Keefer: He looks amazingly like a 29 year old version of the front man for the World's Greatest Rock & Roll band! No shit. He could easily go to Vegas and make a living as a Jagger impersonator.(I have photos to prove it.)

Had lunch with Keefer, Human Riff and his friend Matt near Times Square.

By 3pm Keefer, Human Riff, Payphone Al and I were drinking some cold ones and trading stories at the Hotel Penn, 'Joe O's'. (It would be nearly 12 hours later when the constant flow of our favorite liquids would end.) My God did we have a glorious buzz by the time we left Stouts, just before the Stones were to come on. Stouts turned out to be the place to be for the pre show Stones party. Lots of Stones fans, Cyber and otherwise,were there. They had 'Rock And Roll Circus' playing on the multiple large TV screens. Or Stones music. I fell in love with our waitress. Enjoyed flirting with her for hours. We must have arrived there about 5 and left for the show shortly after 9. Talked to the Irishman Gaza(sp?) Thanked him for his setlist page at Rocks Off. He said it took him 2 months to set that baby up. He smiled big in appreciation for my appreciation. Talked to Love You Live who was wearing a cool 'Stones' red baseball jersey. A nice guy as expected.

Everybody was having a good time. And thanks to Payphone Al (my smoking buddy for the day) the first of several cool surprises took place on the sidewalks outside Stouts. The buzz had a new Super form by the time we returned to Stouts for more beverages. Pay Al is a great guy. Thanks for the 'sidewalk of dreams' stroll, Al. And the good conversation all day long.

Time came for us to leave for the show. It was at that time a hand came towards me and the owner of the hand announced he was, 'Torn And Frayed'. Wish we could have talked longer T&F. Still it was good to see you.

I was double fisting two beers, walking back to our seats in sect. 202 when Keith riffed JJF's opening chords. A great opener.

So many have already reviewed the songs I will keep it short and sweet. Love Is Strong was a cool surprise for me. Anytime Mick is on the mouth harp I am happy. And it was a first for LIS this tour.

It made Keefer and Human Riff's night that WAY was played. I was hoping for some more fast paced surprises and I am not really a big fan of 'falsetto Mick' songs. But their excitement made me happy for them. I would have been acting like them had 'Bitch' or 'Respectable' made the setlist.

Midnight Rambler gave me some dirty guitars I was hoping for. Very welcome after WAY and Rain Fall Down. It was a fine version of MR. I could not keep a smile off my face from that point on.

Keefer was "the man with the plan" for the highlight of the night! While Keith was setting up for ,'This Place Is Empty'. I followed Keefer down to the floor and the B stage. How we got past security/ushers I am not going to reveal. But the plan worked. And the disposable camera in my coat pocket suddenly became priceless rather than disposable to me. Oh security would tap me on the shoulder about 3 times to make me show my ticket during the B stage performances of Miss You, Rough Justice, GOOMC and HTW. Then have me move on. They did the same with Keefer. I lost sight of Keefer after awhile. But I remained in the B stage area at times no more than 15 ft. from our Rock Gods!

The moment of the night for me was after being distracted by an usher and moving over to a spot with less people. SUDDENLY and surprisingly (because I was gloriously wasted by now) I looked slightly to my left to see Keith Richards and Mick Jagger only a few feet above me and no more than 20 ft. from me. Keith looking in my direction. That image I do not need a camera for. It is etched in my memory forever!

I would snap some decent shots from down there (remember the type camera though) Still, some fine personal souvenirs.

After the B stage. I was dissappointed to find the the sale of beer was discontinued. Went back to sect 202.

(BTW I remember talking briefly with Jack Flash. At what point of the show that was I don't know.) But he needs to update his Gasser photo. He now looks like he should be in a Rock band. Long wavy blonde hair. And could pass for 18. Good to see you Jack.

So I'm back in 202. But somehow I am not with the rest of my party. There were 6 empty seats. I'm assuming those are the ones. My memory gets fuzzy from here on. I remember some wild young lady kissing me over and over as the concert continued. She would tap me on the shoulder. And when I turned around she would kiss me. This would happen about every 5 minutes. I remember people were laughing and having the time of their lives. I remember dancing and really getting into the final songs. I remember initiating some loud outbursts from our part of the Garden before the encore with a loud southern WOOOOOO! I was high fived for leading a couple of rows in singing the last five songs. Again, details are fuzzy at this point on for me. But I know my section was having a great time! I was in Rock And Roll Heaven. * And I was getting kisses too! I hated to see the show end.

My bite of the Big Apple was a sweet and one I will never forget it. Hope all of you going to tonight's show have as much fun and get a similarly great setlist.

To read the entire thread, click here:


Rentschler Field
by Pavlov’s Dog
  (August 26, 2005)

Just got home from the show, No free wi-fi in the hotel so I am writing 15 hours after the end of last night's concert: first I gotta say WHAT A BEAUTIFUL BUZZ!

Rentschler Field is a brand new football stadium set down in the middle of an old airport. The Stage stuck above the West Endzone like an intergalactic spaceship. By the time time we got to the stadium at 6PM onsite parking was filling up fast..We were about as far away from the field as you get , but that worked out in our favor when the show ended. Not in a tailgating mood, my wife and I headed right to the gate where we were one of the first to be waiting for the gates to open. On the way in we saw the Shidoobee people with their Stonesdoug van Shortly thereafter we heard the Stones do warmups and soundchecks. First of all, from outside the stadium they sounded great. The sound was clear as a bell, the band sounded tight and Mick's voice sounded fresh. I deliberately chose this date over Fenway thinking they would get any bugs out at Fenway You could get a glimpse of the corner of the giant video screen. They ran through Miss You and Homky Tonk. They also did Ruby Tuesday and then incredibly for this Exile worshipper they kicked into ALL DOWN THE LINE. I thought no way are they gonna play that, they’re just checking sound and gear.

The gates opened and we were among the 1st in. Quickly we bought our merchandise and a good thing too. By the time we paid for 2 shirts and 2 programs there was a mob behind us waiting to buy. Beers were $ 7 so I decided to go thirsty and we headed for our seats. Ours were Field seats, Section B5, about 50 rows back from the stage. To our right one section over was the runway for the moving stage. The night was perfect, temp around 80 but low humidity, a light breeze and only a few scattered wispy clouds. Being this was Hartford I was not surprised when Steve Berman from ESPN walked past us.

Maroon 5 went on around 810 PM. I didn’t know these guys or their music. They were ok but that’s about all. They cleared out and then the real anticipation began, After about 45 minutes the lights went out suddenly and the crowd roared to life. Then a small pinpoint of light appeared on the giant video screen which grew and grew and then became a video montage and then BANG! Giant Flames, fireworks and a blaze of light, the first notes of Start Me Up and I am numb. The crowd is going wild, however. Mick is wearing a glowing fuschia tux jacket and matching fedora. They launch into You Got Me Rocking. Mick is ine fine form, dancing and swaying. The crowd is clapping, already really into the performance. Mick says hi to the crowd and says that they love Hartford and that they usually played at the old Civic Center but they were glad to be outdoors. They launch into She’s So Cold. They really did this song well, better than I would have expected. In fact EVERY song they did last night they did extremely well. Nevertheless it’s not one of my favorite Stones songs. Three songs into the show and they’ve done nothing I really love. I’m actually feeling a bit of a letdown. They next did Tumbling Dice. I began to shuffle my feet and clap my hands. I’ve heard lots of mediocre live recordings of this so I am pleased with how groovy and catchy it sounds. Then Mick says they’re gonna play some new songs, some old songs, some rare songs, something different each night, which is promising. They then kick into Rough Justice. I’ve played the song many times, thinking it was OK but within a few beats I was yelling the words. In concert this song KICKS. I’m expecting Back Of My Hand next and have been savoring this song more than anything else. I was surprised when they launched into Ruby Tuesday. My wife and I looked at each other with bittersweet joy as it is one of my 6 year old son’s favorite Stones tunes and we decided not to bring him. In retrospect that was a very wise move. I saw only a small handful of pre-teens and the crowds, the wait and the late hour would have been too much for him. Everyone is singing this and Mick is doing a far better job than on the Flashpoint CD. Beast Of Burden was great and then they launched right into All Down The Line. I am screaming, yelling jumping. I cazn’t fucking believe it!!! Then Mick comes up with a guitar and says they’re gonna play a song they’ve NEVER played live before. I get goosebumps. He says it’s in memory of an old friend and then surprise, surprise they launch into Get Up Stand Up. WOW! The Stage is lit up in yellow, green and red and fittingly I get first my wiff of reefer in the air. The Stones do the song credit, really getting the crowd into it.

Mick starts introducing the band. I can’t believe we’ve reached the halfway point. I kind of realize Back of My Hand is not going to happen. Keith comes up and mentions that he’s one of the locals, as he lives in Connecticut. He plays Infamy, a song I hadn’t heard. Jury’s out for me, it sounds promising with a guttural guitar sound. Believe it or not Blondie Chaplin plays a 3rd guitar on this tune. Next Keith does The Worst. I liked this song the 1st time I heard it on Voodoo and he does a very nice job with it.

Mick reappears with the wireless headset and I know what this means. They launch into Miss You. The crowd goes wild as the stage begins moving forward. The band is nailing this musically, not rushing it at all, but vocally, of all the songs Mick sang last night this is the only one I felt he kind of phoned in. Anyway who cares, the stage is moving and there is pandemonium. People are swarming the aisles, standing on chairs, screaming and waving their arms. They are now at the far end of the stadium and the people who in Section 110 who paid $ 99 have a front row view for Oh No, Not You Again. They next tear into Satisfaction. This is a lean muscular version and no way can you be bored of this song with this performance. The crowd is in a frenzy. Behind me are a couple with their teenage sons. They are really enjoying themselves. Across the way is aold timer with ZZ top beard and long frizzy white hair. It’s heartwarming to see generation after generation of fans all singing in unison. The stage then begins to retract to a solid Honky Tonk. Mick modified the lyrics slightly and I still don’t exactly know how. The crowd is really pumped up and then the lights go down. Then they come back on with a really cool blue and purple motif and quietly commence Out Of Control. Until you’ve heard this performance don’t prejudge the song. This is a GREAT live tune.;crunchy funky keyboards, muted bebop brass and wailing guitars. The crowd didn’t quite appreciate the performance as much as they should have, as the song is not as well known. This song sets up Sympathy really well . Mick is perched high atop Charlie’s drum kit,. They really bite into this. Massive flames shoot into the air and you can FEEL the heat a hundred feet away. I now know they’re winding up and I don’t want it to stop. They plow into a solid JJ Flash and then pause then they erupt into Brown Sugar. I never thought this song could be much without Mick Taylor but man they blow it up. Mick is running all over the stage getting the crowd into round after round of Woos.

Mick thanks Hartford and they leave the stage. I am screaming, whistling yelling. The crowd is howling. They come back on and the brass section introduces You Can't Always Get What You Want. I thought I was sick of this song but somehow the Stones can make their warhorses sound fresh when they want to. Finally It's Only Rock'n Roll. Not a song I’ve ever loved but after hearing it last night I’ll never listen to it the same way again. Keith and Ron are ON FIRE. These guys in no way look like they are ready to retire. Mick is smiling and waving; 40+ years of this and they still LOVE being the Stones. They take their bows and it’s over. I am wiped out. Fireworks go off and I am thinking how can I afford to see them again in Albany on September 17th.

In the parking lot I hear a young girl say to an other: they looked like they were in their 20’s. I feel truly blessed!


Good Times in Tampa
by Keefer, 
(October 25, 2005) 

October 2 Hershey

My wife and I arrived at the pre-party gig around 3:00. Shortly thereafter, some friends of mine arrived that I had met at the opening show of the Voodoo Lounge tour. It was pretty cool because the only time I ever see these people is for a Stones gig, but we always party like old friends. This was a Shidoobee pre-party, with a RS cover band playing (btw 2000 man, they did serve pizza there but It’s not the Shakey’s you referred to) . First of all, I AM NOT A SHIDOOBEE (I have shared a few beers with Stonesdoug in the past, a very nice guy, as are the others that I have met, but I’m just happy to be around other hardcore Stones fans ), and I usually do the tailgate thing, but this was an easy place to meet friends and we did tailgate later. Anyway, I was standing at the bar, waiting to get a drink and the band starts their 2nd song. I could not believe that they started playing YGMR. I yelled, “They do this fucking song in the number 2 spot too?? WTF”. Anyway, they tried, and I did get to hear a pretty cool version of Gimme Shelter.

We left for the parking lot around 5 and were settled by 5:30, as we met up with some other friends. That left 2 more hours of hard partying, as we did not go in to see Beck. We could hear their set, so I turned up my Stones music even louder. No offense to Beck, but I’m there to see the Stones and by that time I was in rare form!!! I’ll skip the rest of the boring shit and get to the show.

Everyone has probably seen the setlist by now, so you all know that I told Mick before the show to drop YGMR and the cover tune. After we had a long argument, Chuck decided that we would compromise. So IORR was number 2 and Nightime stayed. I’m not going to detail every song, but I will say this. If your skeptical, like I was, about the sound mix, don’t be. It is true about the guitars being way up in the mix. The sound was AWESOME!! After years of hearing the warhorses done in the same manner, it was really cool to hear them actually play & sound like the Stones we know on a lot of them. No setlist complaints from me. When you get PIB, GOOMC, ADTL, Midnight Rambler (as predicted) all in the same night, you feel very lucky!! I was on the floor, right next to the catwalk, in the second row of the second section back (right at the back of the B-stage when it was fully extended). Great Seats!!! Only (LOL) $175 for those. I imagine they would be the top ticket price at most other venues. I thought the B-stage worked very well! They were right in front of me as they played Miss You on the way out, and HTW on the way back. I couldn’t see too much of GOOMC or ONNYA but Mick and Keith did come around back a couple of times. I had a perfect view of Chuck at that point, and he played very little during those two songs. He just smiled a lot, waved a couple of times and tried to be noticed. Mick is still unbelievable as a frontman. Constantly moving, and lots of energy. Ronnie & Keith were Hot!! Excellent work between the 2, and Charlie was on as usual. Outside of a few rough spots ,(nothing serious or anything I really remember) an outstanding performance!!

A few notes about the venue. They were not prepared to handle a crowd this size . With only one way in or out (that I saw) of the main parking lot, traffic was a fiasco. Much more so on the way out. The beer situation inside sucked. Instead of waiting in line for an hour, I hopped the fence of the “VIP” area and tried to buy a few in there; only to be escorted out and told that the next time I was going to be thrown out of the stadium. (I really was hurting noone, was inconspicuous (so I thought), but the 2 young guys weren’t happy, so I didn’t have to be told twice.) I just went back and sipped on my trusty flask. Forget about any type of concessions or using the bathroom unless you waited for an hour. Everyone I met, including the staff at the venue, was top-notch. Are there any unfriendly people in that part of PA? Sadly, I did not have the privilege of meeting any gassers. Oh well, still plenty of time for that. MCI anyone????

I’m still on a high from last nights show, and the thought of tomorrow while preparing to root for the Redskins this afternoon. Does it get any better than that?? I feel very fortunate to be able to go to these shows and I did think about the “Gasland Gang” from time to time.

October 5, MCI

I left for the 2 hour ride to Washington, DC around 2:30 Monday afternoon with ABB blaring and the anticipation of another great show. This one was going to be very different than any other show I have been to because I was going solo. My wife, the ultimate Stones partner (not quite in our league here, but pretty darn close), had to stay behind, but enthusiastically wished me a great time. I have a couple of good stories about some cool Stones fans that I met, but I’ll save those for another day.

Anyway, after a heated discussion with Mick about the setlist, it was apparent that he was dead set on playing YGMR. I was expecting some help from Chuck on this, but he wasn’t around (according to another post, he was having dinner w/a friend). Sensing that the battle was being lost, I informed him that the only way YGMR could stay was if he agreed to play Bitch. A few minutes later, the deal was done and I was on my way to my seats.

The MCI Center holds about 20,000, so this crowd was about 2/3 the size of Hershey on Sat. night. My seats were on the floor, Keith’s side right at the back of the B-stage, but 1 section over from the catwalk (or B-stage track). The stage was stripped down from the stadium show as you would expect, but still had the big video screen. The crowd was full of energy as the lights went down, the screen lit up, and the opening riff of SMU ripped through the arena. I’ll just list some random thoughts and observations. YGMR was played well, but the crowd was no more enthusiastic on this one than they would have been on most any other (within reason). SSC was on fire again!!! I don’t know if anyone has mentioned that when they played this, they simultaneously played old video clips of the band on the big screen (it was a pretty cool effect). BOB and Bitch back to back. Awesome!!! That’s when I called my wife and let her listen, and record on my answering machine (not bad either).

I have to interrupt here and tell you about the 2 women sitting next to me. Can you believe they were sitting down during Bitch??? WTF are you doing at a Stones show on the floor if you are going to sit down at all, let alone during a classic like this one. Buzzkill!!!! I couldn’t look at them the rest of the show.

Right after Bitch, came Mr. Pitiful and the intensity of the crowd immediately dropped. This was the low point of the show (if there was one) because they followed that w/ Keith’s set, and so you had 3 in a row that the crowd really did not respond to. But, Mick returned and they began to play Miss You. That is when I made my move for the side of the B-stage. What a great move that turned out to be, because I wound up 20 feet away from the side as they played ONNYA and a killer version of Shattered. That was the highlight for me, as Mick, Keith, and Ronnie all took turns coming over to my side. I must say that after that experience, I really didn’t care what happened the rest of the show. That was amazing.

As far as the band goes, they were on fire throughout!! I can’t describe it any better than many others have in posts about other shows. Excellent all the way around!! Anyone who has a chance to go to a show, DO IT!! You will not regret it. Yes, it is a lot of money, but well worth it IMO. Next stop Philly 1 & 2, hope to see you there.

October 25, Tampa 

Man, talk about a fast trip. The minutes in Tampa were equal to seconds in everyday life. Well, I’m tired as hell, as we did some hard partying, but it was a fuckin’ awesome experience, and I’ve already decided to do it all over again in Memphis. As usual, I met many cool people to party with; a few of which happen to be Gassers. After quite a few hours of heavy drinking, I stepped outside for a moment, only to bump into Payphone Al, Queen of the Underground and Jump Back (I must not have been too fired up to remember all this) . A drink or two later and Josh comes over for a few, and the next thing I know, it’s time to leave for the show. We did manage to sneak in 1 more at a place across from the venue (Newk’s, I think), but it was lame w/ no Stones music playing, so we hurried up and went inside. (WTF they were not playing Stones music on a night they were performing is beyond me).

Upon entering the building, I went to find Mick to make my setlist recommendations. Now, he was not expecting me to attend this show, so I knew it would be a surprise for him to see me. I was a little surprised myself at the warm greeting I received, as we had not spoken since our little conflict in Philadelphia. Perhaps it was a trick on his part, to soften me up before I was to find out his plans for the B-stage, but it didn’t matter, as I had other plans myself. You see, I was nowhere near the B-stage, so after I got him to agree to play Dead Flowers for some new found friends, I didn’t argue w/him about YGMR. He must have appreciated this, as he through in Bitch, knowing it is one of my favorites. While going to my seats, I bumped into Payphone Al & friends getting a peek at the setlist from Charlie’s glass. Never did find out if they knew what was coming, but a few min. later we all scattered for our seats.

My seats were very different than any of the shows I have been to so far, but were also very good. We were on the extreme side of the stage (Keith’s side), 5th row about even with Charlie; a very unique perspective of the whole show. There was a walkway about 15 feet away that both Mick and Keith took turns coming over to a couple of times. You can really pick up a lot of the interaction between band members from this vantage point that would not be seen from most locations. Anyway, here are a few notes about the show:

From where I was sitting, the sound was fantastic! I don’t know if my location had anything to do w/that or not. SSC continues to be a song they play well and should be done on the B-stage a few more times. What can I say about Dead Flowers & Bitch besides AWESOME. 2 of my favorite songs, and I’d be happy as hell to hear them every night! I had a very good view of the crowd in front of the stage, and IMO a lot of stiffs out there. I mean, when they play gems like these, you have to be on your feet dancing (or at least moving). Night Time is not a crowd pleaser, and Keith continues to put people in their seats or send them to the pisser by continuing to play The Worst every night. He needs to come up w/another tune. As I said once before, when they play the cover tune followed by Keith’s set, it takes a lot of the electricity out of the crowd. They do pick it back up w/Miss You going out to the B-stage, but why lose any crowd enthusiasm at all? I think most any song would go over well on the B-stage, but shouldn’t they do something special out there? I hardly call YGMR, HTW, MY or ONNYA something special. Why not throw in a couple of gems in place of YGMR & MY? Out Of Control sounded good, but personally I would prefer another tune. PIB works much better IMO, and I thought they were on to something when they did PIB & TD together late in Philly, but I guess Philly was the exception. The last four were predictable (songs; not order) but all sounded great and I knew what to expect. Maybe it was just me, but Ronnie seemed a little reserved to me. It didn’t seem as if he was playing much on a lot of songs, but just the opposite for Keith. He seemed to shine on every one! Mick was Mick, I mean this guy just brings it every night! I had an awesome view of Charlie banging away. Not that I didn’t appreciate Charlie before, but I do even more now after having such a good view of him all night. I was a little disappointed in only getting 20 songs, but overall a very fine performance.

This concludes my 5 shows in 19 days dream come true. I will go back to all of the responsibilities of life that I have put on hold for almost 3 weeks now, but I’ll be thinking of my next show while doing so! Payphone Al, sorry we couldn’t have that post-show drink. I’m holding out hope that you’ll make an appearance in Memphis, as it was a lot of fun hanging out. Josh, thanks for the drinks & I will hold out hope for your presence in Memphis as well! Special thanks to everyone I’ve met and partied w/along the way, and to my sister for talking me into coming to Tampa for the icing on the cake (she didn’t have to try very hard though).

10 people away at the Forum-my review
y Out of His Head
(March 9, 2006) 

Yeah, the Forum on Monday...Where to start, where to end?

saw the Stadium show in Anaheim, both Hollywood bowl shows, saw the movie thing, and now the Forum. A few thousand dollars later, I'm thinking this has been the best 6 months of my life.

OK so I'll start with the highlights of my evening. I hooked up with a buddy, I used to work with and we rolled a couple joints, smuggled in a bottle of Jack, and for the first time in years, did a good size line (with much reluctance). I was so incredibly excited by the time we got to our seats, they were amazing. Against the rail on the lower level, right in front of the fucking b-stage, in a relatively small forum (my favorite kind venue for them).

Queens of the stone whatever did the worst opening performance I have ever heard, they even brought out one of the ZZ Top guys for a song. He played blues with a quiet amp, they played...I don't even know what kind of music you call it, but it sucked, and didn't mix well. Thank god I was fucked up in the best possible way about to see god (keith), and Mick is like better than any year I can think of going back to 63!

OK first big surprise after it really set in how close I was (I had similarly good sites at the Bowl), was "Sway". I wen totally apeshit, Sticky was always my favorite album. In my more troubled days, Sway was my, well getting really high song. That was an experience. It never ceases to amaze me how well Ronnie can play Mick T's material but in a less elegant, more dirty stonesy way. Yeah, ROnnie is every bit the god Mick T is regarded as.

Worried About You...yeah Mick has NEVER sounded better, period. Same with Night Time at the bowl.

Far Away Eyes, in my druggie days Sticky was my bag, then it was Exile, now it's Some Girls, and that's one of my fav's never thought I would be treated to it live, sam ewith LIV and my old namesake dead flowers. Again, Ronnie is a god on the slide.

OK now the B-stage, MISS YOU, RJ, and Respectable. 3 of my absolute fav's, and I counted... I was 10 people away from the band. 10 people. I've never been that close to anyone but Dylan. I actually made fucking eye contact with Mick Jagger, twice (first song and 3rd song). I was watching a collection of performances the night before of '64 and I started with London Years, Englans Newest, RS Now...I grew up with them album by album starting when I was 17, I'm now 28. I don't know how to put in words, what that was like. Needless to say, I was falling over the railing screaming with my hands in the air. I've never had an experience like that before at a concert. It was exhilirating.

Great Midnight Rambler, another fav. Good Sympathy and everything else, but I was in a daze by the end, in fact my post b-stage memory is pretty fuzzy. I couldn't post for the past few days because my job is never ending, and I've not had time to really sit down and come to the full realization of what an experience this was.

Only thing that could've been improved was if they did Paint It Black. This tour is so hardcore on that one, it's like Metallica doing it.

I want to share this with all younger fans, if you have na opportunity to see them this tour, whatever the cost, whatever you have to do hell knock over a liquor store, just get there and spend every penny. If I had it to do over I would've dropped 10K to get closer on the bowl shows and I was already in kickass seats.

To read the entire thread, click here:

Thanksgiving Show - Denver
by Keno
(November 2005)

Part 1 - Preshow

Well, no, I've never spent a Thanksgiving like the one I spent this past holiday weekend, for more than one reason, and you all know the main reason why. True, if you read this board enough, you know I was bitching about the Stones playing on my favorite holiday. I still wish they hadn't, but by about a week before the show I truly was over that, as my family did accept the fact that I could not miss the only Stones show to take place within about 600 miles of where I live. I also started to realize that the Stones planing a show on this day wasn't as much as big deal for the people who lived within an hour's drive of Denver, and that is who they are really putting on the show for anyway. Those of us who lived far away were really the only ones affected (other than those locals who had to work it). But hell, the locals could still have their turkey dinner with their families in the afternoon, and then head on out to the show as a bonus afterwards. Hell, I could have done that too if I lived closer, and then even brought some of my family to the show with me. But that wasn't the case for those of us who live far away from Denver.

Thanksgiving morning didn't start off too good for me at all, as I awoke sick. Since I wasn't able to get to Kalistongue's home the night before, I planned to leave around 9 in the morning on Thanksgiving, as I wanted to get to her place with at least an hour to spare before the Bronco game came on (I guess most of you know that I'm as big a Bronco's fan, as I am a Stone's fan). Denver is 4 hours from my house, but Kali lives on the western edge of Denver, so that saves a half hour off my driving time to get there. But I'm a slow driver, and I take it easy when I drive anywhere in Colorado, and enjoy all the great looking different mountain views out there that you pass on this trip. Whenever I see somebody on the road racing by me and speeding 10 to 20 MPH faster than I, I can only wonder what their rush in life is. But because I was so sick Thursday morning, I wasn't able to leave my house till well after 11 AM, so guess who became the person driving up and over the mountains passes like a nut in a rush? I made it to Kali's place in record time, driving a good 15 MPH over the limit at times, as I listened to the pre game show over the radio. Still, by the time I did get to her joint, the game was already started - and I was still feeling sick.

Kali had some meds she gave me that helped me out big time, it took the edge off how I felt, and watching my team win helped too. But the game went into overtime, and Kali wanted to hit the road, as it was getting close to 6 PM and we were suppose to meet LoveYouLive, Payphone Al and a few others at the Brown Palace in downtown Denver, about a half hour drive away. I told Kali that as long the Bronco's won the coin toss that they would win the game within minutes and we could head out the door. Of course I was right, the game was over within 5 minutes after OT started. We got to the Brown with plenty of time to spare, as we had no plans to catch the opening act at 730, and we stayed there to after 8 PM, as the Brown is no more than a 5 minute drive from the PCenter.

No, because of the holiday, most of the out-of-town Gassers who normally show up for the Denver show and our pre party, didn't make it this time. In fact only LYL and PA did, and for Mr. Al it was a last minute deal (at least some of us guys are real good at explaining to our woman/families why we can't spend a major holiday with them - and still get away with it!). We made it to the Brown Palace around 610 and ran into Payphone Al outside on the street. We then headed into the fancy lobby where LoveYouLive was waiting for us with drink in hand. Since their two bars were jammed packed (almost everything downtown was closed) it was suggested that we have our drinks in the middle of the hugh lobby, which is set up more like several different living rooms with sofas and comfortable chairs and tables. For me this was excellent, since I have lousy hearing, which makes noisy bars a hard place for me to hear conversations with others. But the Brown Palace is a cool joint to hang out in if only for its history. Built in 1882 and once owned years ago by the "unsinkable" Molly Brown (you all know who she was, right?), it's fancy - as noted by Kali, but since it's also real old it's cool to look around at how it was built and all. LYL noted that they had a old menu on view from Thanksgiving Day in 1920, back when a full turkey dinner went for only $2.00! But so many of the rich and famous have stayed in this place throughout the years including several US Presidents, and the great Beatles, too. But even more important, the Stones stayed there on their last tour. We already knew they would not be staying there this tour and that wasn't why we choose to meet there, as none of us from this group of Gassers are into chasing the Stones around, that just isn't our thing. I always felt doing that to a famous person was rude, let them live their private life without being hassled by fans. If you run into them backstage, well, that is a different story.

Me and Kali had met PA last tour, but this was our first meeting with LYL, yet it didn't feel at all like a first meeting (I'll get into that bit about hanging with fellow Gassers in Part 3). Awhile after we were hanging with LYL's friend Jullien (she posts at Shidoobieland once in awhile but I can't now recall her handle there) and 3 of her friends in from Breckenridge, Colorado joined us. Jullien is from California and has seen the Stones over 90 times now. Of course that is the way most of the Shidoobieland posters are, they truly are the Deadheads of Stones fans, no question. I wish I could have made it over to their mini party at Brooklyn's, as their party last tour was a blast. But there was no time to get over there, and again, because of the holiday it wasn't a true planned event like the last pre-show-party they had.

Because I was still sick before the show, I didn't have a single drink at the Brown, other than a coke. In fact, I didn't eat any food at all the entire day (how many can claim that on Thanksgiving?). I only drank some ice tea when I watched the football game, yet I wasn't hungry at all, even after we went up to one of the rooms at the Brown just before we left for the show and smoked a joint.

We got a chauffeured ride to the PCenter in a stretched SUV. LYL was sitting next to the driver and asked him if he was busy, he said he was very busy, as the show was a sell out and the fan club was staying at the hotel.

When we got to the PCenter it was already pushing 830 and I was getting nervous that the Boys would hit the stage early (like they did in New Mexico in '97). But it turned out they were late and the show didn't start till around 9 PM. That gave us time to get to know the fans around us a bit........ (continued on to Part 2)

This would be my second Thanksgiving rock show, the first one I attended was in NYC at MSG, with Elton John (in 1974?). That was the night that John Lennon surprised everybody and came on out to play - his last public show, and nobody knew that night beforehand that this was gonna happen. So there wasn't anyway I felt the Stones could top that Thanksgiving concert - and they didn't, as I love Lennon as much as I love the Stones. The only real bummer with this year's show was that the Stones didn't do anything special things for their fans on this special night, in fact we only got a mere 20 songs to hear. Why they can't play somewhere around 30 songs each show I'll never understand.

Our seats were in the third row from the B stage, which also was the last row of that section. The mixing boards were right next to us, so as LYL pointed out, we were in the best place sound wise. This also made it excellent since no seats were to our right, and me and Kali had end seats. So for the first half of the show I was able to stand in the aisle leaning on a barrier with a great view of the main stage (I moved up to the front railing next to the B stage when they played there and didn't move back from that point for the rest of the show).

The Stones were running late, so we chatted with the fans around us in the sold out PCenter. LYL was in front of us to our left, next to him and directly in front of us was a couple, who like me, moved to Colorado many years ago. They were from the UK and it is always fun to heard about the old 60s and 70s shows that took place in the UK. Next to Kali was a father and his 15 year old son who we also rapped to a bit. This dad told me he was not there because he was a Stones fan (he wasn't), to him they were just "okay", and he had never seen them before nor wanted to (yet after the show ended, there was no question that he was a Stones fan now, too). But his son was a total Stones freak and this was an early birthday present for his kid, and it was the boy's first show also. "He's just crazy about the Stones, plays their music all the time" said his dad. I passed my business card over to the kid and told him to check out our Stones Board, and LYL told him that we had several young kids like him hanging there..... Finally, the lights went out and soon after that the Stones were on stage!

Not so Great

Let me get the few negative things that happen out of the way first. Out of the 20 songs they played, two didn't sound right. The first one being the opening number, "Start Me Up". I'm not one of those who thinks they should not open with this number, in fact I think it's the best spot for this song. Yet of all the songs they played on this night, this one was close to stinking up the house. They didn't sound right, when they first started to play it I could not even tell after the first few notes played which song it even was, and it didn't sound any better as they went along. Guess they needed to warm up at bit. But after they got passed that, all of the rest of the set sounded a lot better. Yet there were still a few disappointments. "You Can't Always Get What You Want " also was missing something - and it was that great guitar playing riff you hear upfront in the beginning of the song and then through out most of the rest of it, played by Keef. He barely played it at all in the song's beginning, but he sure was not out front with it, and then the riff wasn't heard again for the rest of the song. Mick still sang the song great, so it was an enjoyable tune to hear even without that great riff.

The other disappointments were in the songs they selected to play and some that they didn't. I knew beforehand there wasn't anyway they would play the two songs I badly wanted to hear - "Sway" and "Moonlight Mile", but where was "Paint It Black"? Or even worst, where was "Back of my Hand", the one new song I wanted to hear over all of the other new ones. Instead they played "Rain Fall Down", which sounded okay at best, but nothing at all special, either.

Getting back to Keef and his guitar playing again. Him being my favorite Stone, it is the Riffmiester who I watch most of the show. After the show was over, those who had seem several of this tour's shows, all felt Keef had one of this best days of the tour on this night. The two newspaper reviews I read the next day also felt Keef had the best of shows, too. So how come that wasn't the case for me? Was I watching him too closely? Shit, I always watch him the most! One thing I do know for sure, of all the Stones shows I've seen in the past, he played his guitar the least for this one. When he was playing, yes, it sounded fine, I even said to LYL that I felt he played his acoustic very well for "Ruby Tuesday", but then LYL (who was one of those who felt it was a great nite for Keith), noted that was one song where he would stop playing for a bit of the time. There was one song where his guitar playing did shine bright, "Satisfaction", and I'll report on that one later on. But everybody else felt Keef was at this best, so maybe it was just me, let me just blame it on those damn plugs I wore!

The last thing to bitch about was that I used a new brand pair of ear plugs for this show and damn if they were not a good brand. I usually don't use my plugs for the first and last songs, even though I've been warned by my doctor that just listening to one song without them could do my hearing more harm, but sometimes you gotta take chances in life and to hear at least two songs 100% clear is worth the risk for me. But thanks to these terrible plugs I had, which totally ruined the sound, as soon as the the Stones hit the B Stage, off came they came for the rest of the show. Lucky for me, my ears were not ringing too much after it was over!

The Great Stuff

Overall, it was one great concert, no question about it! Like all great shows, there are several highlights that stick out. Since we were right up front by the B stage, well no question, that was the best part of the show for us. I wasn't that overwhelmed when they started out playing "Miss You", another song I rather not care to hear yet again, but then about a third of the way through it, the stage started to move towards us! In no time at all the B stage was right there in front of us, about 10 feet away, and suddenly "Miss You" didn't sound so bad!

This was the second closest from which I've seen to the Stones play, but the closest that the entire band was to me all at the same time, since Charlie was always way in the back behind his drum kits, so it was the closest I've ever seem him play - what a treat indeed!

Again, my eyes were on Keef for most of the time they played the B stage, but yes I took a long look at all of them from time to time. I also looked behind me at Kali at one point, and from just reading her review, I guess she was so frozen in excitement that she didn't even realize where she was standing at that moment. She noted she moved up to the second row for the B stage, when she actually was standing in the first row, as those folks in that row were all up at the front railing alone side of me. I also noticed the kid behind her with a gigantic smile on his face, with his dad beaming from ear to ear (dad and son were having a blast at this point).

There really is a special energy you feel when you are this close to the Stones. They do go out of their ways to play to the people in front of them (perhaps more so while on the B stage). Too bad Kali missed it, but Keef damn sure did look our way - right at the end of "Miss You". Yet I never saw Ronnie look over to us, yet Kali did, but you know how it goes, there are 5 guys playing right in front of us and you can't look closely at all of them at the same time. Right after "Get Off Of My Cloud" (what a trip to have this one played from 10 feet away!) Darrel Jones looked right at us with a big smile on his face and pointed at us. I believe he was pointing at Kali's red tongue tattoo above her left breast, that she was trying to show off to Ronnie at the time.

During the B set I was as close as anybody could have gotten to them, and it brought back those wonderful memories of the Albuquerque show in '97. Mick was of course running all over the place, but he didn't look our way at all, not till when the stage started to lift up and move away. At that very moment he look right at us and I held up my right hand and waved good-bye to him, and he waved back!

Yes, nothing could top the B stage for us, but from that point the entire concert just seemed to get better. In part perhaps because the few songs I didn't want to hear were already done with, and maybe because I was plug free at this point, too.

Other show highlight were: 1) "Night Life" - the cover I didn't want to hear. Don't get me wrong here, I still would have rather heard a Stones number instead, and the band didn't play this song in any special way at all. But it was Mick and Lisa who make this number work - big time. 2) "Honky Tonk Woman" - the fact it started out being played ten feet in front of me helped it to be one the best songs of the night. 3) Ron Wood - Holy shit! Ronnie is 100% back, he could not have played any better, period! I've seen Ronnie play live since his days in the Faces, and I don't think I've ever seen a better show put on by him. He played most of the lead guitar parts for the show and sounded great on most of these songs. He added a acid like guitar riff to part of "It's Only Rock n Roll", that I had never hear before. Since he wrote most of this song, could it be that was the way he at first want the song to sound, before Keef added in his guitar to it? More than likely no, since I've seen him play this number before in the past, chances are he just added this bit in at the moment, as he didn't play it for too long - but I did like it, yes I did! 4) "You Got Me Rocking" - they didn't play this song! I believe that they have skipped this one only two or three times on this entire tour and maybe only a handful of times in the last several tours combined, but they skipped it on this night at the PCenter!! Yes!!! You all know how much I've been bitching this tour about this song being overplayed - so they skipped playing it for me on this night - I thank you Mick for doing that, you are the man! 5) Mick Jagger - This guy hasn't changed at all since when I first saw the Stones back at MSG in '72. He still is all over the stage and he is still the best thing about the Rolling Stones. He is the main reason why the Stones are still the greatest today. 6) Kalistongue and Keef - This was one of those things that you had to be there to dig. When Keef had his chance to sing his two numbers, the first one up was "Slipping Away", and not a favorite of mine. So I looked around at my fellow fans at this point. Yes, the usual beer and bathroom runs was on by many, but you had to see Kali when Keef was singing. Holy shit, the look of love was all over her face, I don't think any other humans on the planet Earth were so at peace as she was at that moment, she was most definitely in Nirvana and that look she had shinning from her was so strong that even I loved this song that was filling my ears for once. 7) The crowd - Yes, from what I was hearing, the show was actually sold out a few weeks earlier and only some behind the stage seats were left at show time. Yet I was worried that after everybody was filled with turkey, that nobody would feel up for a rock concert - but I was wrong and I should have known the Denver crowd would not let the Stones down. Yes, everybody stood the entire show (okay, a few did sit for Keef's second song) and many of us did a lot of dancing, too. Being in the aisle was great and I could dance that much more - plus - while the concert was on my sick body didn't feel any pain at all! 8) Keef Richards and Satisfaction - "Satisfaction" was the very last song of the night, and Keef came to life on this one, more so than on any other song he played. He looked like he did in the old days in the way he played his guitar for this one, talk about hitting a grand slam! I'm not sure what it is with this song, but every time they play it is sounds better. It was the band's all around best played song of the entire night!

Then it was all over. Way too soon, but still, everybody at the PCenter was feeling fine! Yes, we all had something to be thankful for on this holiday! (Part 3 is next..)

After Kali got a $35 T shirt, me, her and LYL left the arena and headed where Payphone Al and Ari were waiting for us in the parking lot. The air was crisp but not too cold (except for PA who was in from Florida) and we decided to walk on back to the Brown, via the 16 Street Mall. I always loved this street mall and I've never seen it so empty, with almost everything closed for the holiday. We got back to the Brown and sat again in the lobby. I could not help but notice all the families with preteens (wearing Stones shirts) who were there and had been to that show, it really was still a family holiday for many Stones fans after all.

Yes, the show was great, and as I said to a person after the show who asked me if I had a good time "A Stones fan cannot go to a Stones concert and not have a good time!", well, that is fact! But as great a time I had at the show, hanging out with my fellow Gassers was just as much a blast! Us Gassers are all so alike that it is scary in a way and it don't matter about other issues and how we might feel about them. Whenever I meet a Gasser for the first time, it never seems like it is the first time. There is none of that awkwardness you sometimes get with people when you first meet them. There really is that Stones family connection there that makes your time together so much fun.

Friday morning me, Kali, LYL and PA went out for a late breakfast. The food was great (maybe because I hadn't eaten anything in two days?) , the waitress was very talkative - Let it Bleed was her favorite LP and "My Sweet Neocon" her favorite song on the new album - because of Mick's harp she tells us, and the service was very slow. That turned out to be a good thing, as it gave us extra time to talk. We talked a bit about our board and how it was different than the other boards and why we dug that fact, and of course while talking about Gasx3, several of you came up, including the two dogs here, our only rat, our only admitted Gasland Republican, the board's Elvis freak, and that teen jumping flash kid, just to name a few of you (were your ears ringing?). PA asked me who was the oldest Gasser, and I didn't have an answer for him, other than to note that there were several of us grandparents posting at the board.

After breakfast we said our good-byes in the parking lot and a sadness came over me. As a kid growing up I had two best friends who were Stones freaks like me. Within two years of moving away from New York both of these guys died and that was it for me as far as having close friends who were total Stones freaks like me. Until 1996 anyway, when I started to meet people online who were as addicted to the Stones as I was. Then I started the land of Gas in '98 and it was never the same again! Now I have all kinds of fellow Stones junkie freaks like myself to talk to - even if it is only online. I guess that was why I felt a bit sad in the parking lot as LYL and PA headed to their rented car for a sight seeing drive up in the mountains. Talking online to you fellow fans is cool, no question, and why Gasland is still going so strong after all of these years. But still, nothing beats hanging in person with these kind of special friends. So whenever I get to do this, it is a special thing to me and as enjoyable as the show itself.

After I got back to Kali's place I was ready for the long ride back to my home, gave her a hug good-bye and wondered when we would get together next. On the drive back I wondered some more, on when my next show with the Stones would be. I was offered a free pass to the upcoming MSG show on January 20, 2006, but it is highly unlikely I will be able to make it. Yet so many many Gassers will meet there before that show, and that alone is a strong reason for me wanting to go, real bad.

To read the entire thread, click here:

Some thoughts on the vet.
by FilthyMcNasty
(September 19, 2002)

Some thoughts . . . .

1. Ken Kep is a prince of a man.

2. Tickets were horribly oversold for the front half of the floor. The seats represented on the tickets I purchased didn’t even exist! No fault of the guy I bought them from. He sold his to me because he had the opportunity to “upgrade”, and the new tickets he bought were double sold! Horrible events apparently ensued. I ended up 24 (!) rows back from where I should have been, but at least I was in the middle. This is no way to run a high gloss entertainment corporation. That said, I suppose I should add the obligatory “I doubt it was the Stones’ (per se) fault”.

3. One of the souvenirs are these flashing Rolling Stones tongue necklaces with little red lights in them. When the stadium lights go out and all these little lights are going off over the stadium, Crowd as special effect!

4. There could not have been a better night to attend an outdoor show. The temp was perfect and there was an awesomely bright 3/4 moon and only the barest whisps of clouds to the back of the stadium.

5. Start Me Up is a really really great stadium song. People who bitch about the Rolling Stones playing Start Me Up in a stadium are crazy. If I go to a stadium to see any band ever again they better play Start Me Up.

6. Don’t Stop is pretty damn good. It had an extended coda with extra Mick vamp vocals and a real Tumbling Dice rising kind of crescendo.

7. Wild Horses was surprisingly enjoyable and touching, with great Keith guitar. One of the two or three best performances of the evening.

8. Stadium shows are an acoustical nightmare.

9. Here’s a surprise: Midnight Rambler was the best song of the night! Imagine! REALLY long, really evil, nice extended change from the slow part to the final chorus - Mick harmonica in all the right places except for the slow section. Midnight Rambler, as usual, had all the answers. It made me do the hoodoo monkey dork dance.

10. Ronnie is a bad ass. He did this really funny hop in the middle of his solo on Let It Bleed that got him halfway across the b-stage. Ronnie sober is a joy to behold - he looks like he just woke up from a Rip Van Winkle nap and realized, “Hey, this is not so bad, I’m in the Rolling Stones!” Hearing Ronnie was a problem, but that’s not his fault. For my money, next to Mick he was the most vibrant of the bunch. Go Ronnie! You rock!

11. Love Train is just so damn cool. Brotherly love indeed!

12. I can think of no musical reason on Earth why Blondie HarryChapin (ha! cradle cat) should be playing guitar on stage with the Rolling Stones and I would like somebody to explain it to me.

13. Slipping Away is great. For Keith to take off his guitar and just stand there and sing is an utterly Keithian thing to do - It is arrogant and defiant and his entire personality comes through while he sings, which is almost impossible to achieve at a show this big.

14. I don’t see how they can play on the b-stage. The sound gets pumped out from the main stage and there is a delay between watching Charlie hit the drum and hearing the sound. Except, where we were standing, you could actually hear Charlie hitting the drums acoustically, so the beat was crazy double off-kilter. And the sound would bounce off the back of the stadium, so it was like standing in a giant echo chamber. I cannot imagine being a musician playing under these circumstances. It gives me all the more respect for Charlie - he is a leaving breathing maestro maetronomae.

15. I got the feeling they really love to play Like a Rolling Stone. The crowd loved it, too. Although crowds at Rolling Stones concerts apparently don’t know the words to Like a Rolling Stone too good - singing along, they’d always drop “Like a rolling stone” in a line too early, when it was supposed to be “Like a complete unknown”. Ronnie lip synched along with a lot of the lines. I really like Mick’s harp solo on that song.

16. Charlie was wearing blue sox tonight and has a huge bald spot.

17. Keith throws out more guitar picks than Rick “Trick” Nielson.

18. When Mick Jagger is 10-20 feet away from you dancing and singing it is almost impossible not to clap your hands and yell.

19. Keith and Ronnie really dug into the end of Gimme Shelter and I think they played longer than Mick expected them to. He kept looking over at them and then making up more funny dance moves. I could be wrong - was the end of Gimme Shelter really long tonight or was I just high?

20. The topless dancer riding the pierced lapping tongue is funny. It harkens back thematically and conceptually with the “I’m black and blue from the Rolling Stones and I love it!” campaign, which we should all be reminded of from time to time for its message of peace and goodwill towards men (and chicks).

21. When the little red circular streamers blow out of the cannons during Jumping Jack Flash at first it looks a little bit like Rolling Stones tongues and then it looks like rose petals. Eventually the “petals” cover the stage. It's probably my favorite special effect ever at a big gig, because it was so simple but beautiful. But it must have been really bad for the environment.

22. Satisfaction is still the best song ever written.

23. I liked the Philly crowd. Everyone seemed to be having a good time, when people tried to steal my seats they were really nice about it, and no one on the floor sat down the whole night.

24. Despite our hassles with the seating, the lousy acoustics, and Blondie Chaplin playing guitar on stage, watching the Rolling Stones plow through 15 or so of the best rock and roll songs ever written, some other pretty damn good ones, and a Philly soul classic, is a completely solid megaprofessional entertainment experience. Natch I’d rather watch them in a smaller place with more realistic sound, and I will be pretty disappointed (and utterly stunned!) if I don’t like the Tower show a whole lot more. But this was definitely as authoritative an entertainment spectacle as can be delivered by a rock and roll band playing in front of (say) 40,000 people and I say good job.

25. Having met several Stones fans face to face here at the Glimmerfest today, I am once again affirmed in my belief that Rolling Stones people are among the finest examples of humanity a poor boy could hope to come across and I’m happy to be vaguely associated with each and every one of you. I am in Philadelphia and I am filled with the spirit of brotherly love!

Somebody give me a quarter. Do the Ronnie hop!

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Vancouver Review
By Currie,
(November 25, 2006)

Allright, so a few generalities before I go into a song by song breakdown.I had a fucking fantastic time last night. A great show, and I was given a couple real surprises, which you can probably see from the setlist.

I was going with my best friend, who's not really a Stones fan, but I told him he was in for a damn good show, and so he was along. Funnily enough, his mother was going with mine in a different section, so we all went for dinner and drinks before hand, then after that just me and him went for a couple more martinis at a bar. We didn't bother going to see Bonnie Raitt, because the line-ups were so obscene at that point there was little point in going in.

I almost didn't see the concert. I was, as any good Stonesfan would, standing during JJF, when I received a tap on my shoulder and a very rude sit down motion from some guy behind me, figure 45-50 years old. I gave him a "stand-up" motion, and turned around and ignored him. He tapped me again 30 seconds later, and he started yelling at me, at which point I told him just to bloody well stand up. He then gave me an open palm to the forehead (he was quite likely drunk.) The second he did it, mind you, he could see he'd made a mistake, because I think he tried to hold up (it was more of a glancing blow), and the second he did it he took a couple of paces back from me because I was quite ready to hit him. His son (20-25 ish) stepped in and immediately apologised, and seemed quite polite and asked me to sit down, politely, explaining that there were also two girls (his sisters, roughly 20-25 behind me too.) He was friendly enough until I told him to tell his father if he touched me again he was a fucking dead man, at which point our relationship soured slightly. But what could I do? They could ask security to get me to sit down, and any physical altercation would have had me thrown out immediately, and I'd already almost lost my temper once.. So I bit the bullet and sat down, but told my friend that as soon as the Stones hit the B-Stage, we'd stand right up and not sit down after that, because security probably wouldn't give a shit after that point. Ayway, on with the show.

JJF- Always a damned nice opener. Was slightly distracted at this point.

IORR- Sound was very muddy.Some nice weaving here, with Ronnie playing some leads at times too. Heard SSC in Montreal, and so it was nice to hear this one here.

ONNYA- Very well done. This was the Chuck Berry section, and the rhythm really cooked. Sound still pretty muddy.

SWH- Also very nicely done. Loved this one. Keith's solos came in a little late, but were great.

Shine A Light- Big surprise here. Bonnie Raitt really impressed me. Ronnie botched the first solo pretty good mind you, but still a great number. He was playing a new custom guitar on it, shaped similar to a Tele. It was a bit rough, but still very cool to hear.

SOL- You know, this one does sound very good live. Works much better than on record, with Keith on acoustic and Ronnie handling the soloing, with some very nice lead work at the end. Mick did drag on the ending a bit long though, but really worked hard at this one, trying to sell it.

Midnight Rambler- well, it was incredible, but I probably don't need to even tell you that. Mick started singing "She broke my heart" during the "don't do that" section.

Tumbling Dice- Yep, another great one. Keith running out to the wings of the stage and playing his solo during the break there, for the fans.

Introductions- INCREDIBLE ovation for Keith. Just kept going and going. He tried to quiet the crowd down at times, saying "I've got a gig here!," but it was damn loud. He made a joke about not remembering which number he was doing, on account of the brain damage.

You Got The Silver- Ahhhh, this song. If there was a song they were doing just for me that night, this would be it. Absolutely beautiful. Theoretically it would be nice to hear Keith play guitar on this one, but really Ronnie is so sublime on this one that there's no real need. Keith had all the lyrics and all the cues down. Just fantastic.

Slipping Away!- Surprise No.2. I fucking love this song live, and wanted to hear it, though I didn't have much hope. Again, beautiful. keith playing a custom Tele rather than his ES-355 But two ballads in a row from Keith? Normally it's one softie, one rocker.

Connection!- yeah, surprise no.3. 3 keith songs? As far as I know, that's never been done before. Still, I thought this was the weakest number of the evening. i don't know why, but I felt it lacked something. Oh well, what the hell. It was a "freebie"

miss You- Man, this one gets trashed, but I thought it was done really well tonight. Probably actually gladder to hear this than Under My Thumb, after listening to some bootlegs.

GOOMC- Good, but Mick's vocal delivery sounded a little rushed. He hadn't shown any signs of throat problems, but I was worried a little bit at this point. Still, the chorus was great, with the "Hey, You!" part sung by the crown.

SMU- Place went nuts, also great to hear. I should of course mention I was standing by this point, and so were the daughters behind me. (They were total bitches, btw. But more on that later). Ronnie twice interrupted his solo to kick a beach ball that the crown threw on stage. Crowd loved it.

Honky Tonk Women- I don't think this number is ever bad. Keith's tone on this and SMU is awesome.

SFTD- Ok, so by this time the girls behind me are sitting down again, and bitching at me to do the same. But I'm not. Fuck, they're not old or infirm, and they were just standing up a minute ago! So fuck them. If their brother or father wanted to try something, they could go ahead. They did not. So the most amusing part of the night was listening to these girls. I was ignoring them, and due to the high volume, couldn't really hear them except for snippets. But let's just say they were hurling abuse at me for a good ten minutes (throughout ALL of SFTD and PIB) It was damned funny. I'd only hear snippets like "Ohmygodsitthefuckdownyoufuckingfaggotbitchfuckyouyoufuckingcuntfuckyou!" and then the volume would drown them out. STFD, was damned good, with some very cool guitars at the end. Keith's solo in the middle was a little spotty, but this tour it's been all about the end of song guitar jam.

PIB- Oh yeah. missed this one in Montreal. First verse was a little iffy because I couldn't hear Ronnie's "sitar" but it really picked up towards the end.

Brown Sugar- Solid again, but a little drawn out at the end. Still good though, but cut a couple of minutes off this one and it's better.

YCAGWYW (encore)- Surprise no.4. Thought they'd go straight to satisfaction Loved it, beautiful. Ronnie's solo sounded wonderful.

Satisfaction. Best song of the night? The end of it was unbelievable, mick sprinting up and down the B-Stage path (being followed by sprinting security guards) and Ronnie and Keith playing duelling leads. Outstanding, powerful. Great way to end the concert. Gave a smile and wave to my "friends" as they were leaving. They seemed less than charmed.

All in all? Great time, great performance, pretty good (very young) crowd. Loved it all. Heard many songs i hadn't before (8) and there wasn't really a badly performed number. Would do it again a million times, and as i say, easily worth double the ticket price. And all it took was one death threat!

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Pittsburg 2005
by Nothing Blues and 2000 Man
(September 29, 2005)


In a word, this show "ROCKED."

The onstage seating experience was a bit like rock and roll itself....chaotic. But in the end 2K and I made it up to our seats...unsteady legs and all. The best thing...we literally did not have to move to get a beer. It was literally an arms length away. Did not have to miss any of the show to grab a beer.

The show itself was FANTASTIC and I highly recommend the onstage seats. It is a very cool-and different-perspective. For the $80 per ticket, I thought it was a steal. Unfortunately, as we were on Ronnie's side, roadies were constantly mopping up the drool on the stage-that 2K, he's got a thing for Lisa Fisher ya know?

The setlist was great (I feel extremely fortunate-in the 2 shows I saw this year, I got SWAY, WILD HORSES, ROCKS OFF,PIB, and GOOMC. I thought the cover was great-Ill take an inspired cover tune any day. Ronnie and Keith both played great, and LOUD I thought. Wild Horses worked, and I didn't think Vedder was all that bad, certainly MUCH better than Dave Matthews-even though ole Eddie botched some lyrics (guess he couldn't see the teleprompter).

The crowd was really hot for this show. I think the good weather inspired a lot of people to come in to town, and it looked like the walk up sales were strong. Not an empty seat in the house.

All in all a great day. Got to meet an internet legend, met some cool people in our box, met some Shidoobies, and, oh yeah, Thanks GUAW for the ride home. GUAW and his lady are a real class act.

I thought this show blew away Columbus. Rick, anything to add? Oh yeah, Rick brought this guy Nosferatu with him. Scary.

2000 Man 

So I stopped at the record store to grab a T shirt cuz I agree wtih Pdog that you don't wear a shirt from the band you're going to see (we are in the VAST minority at a Stones show), and in a discussion with the owners of the store we agreed that at a concert your T shirt should be for a record store, radio station (not the "classic rock" station, either), a band even more obscure than the one you're seeing or when all else fails, a Ramones shirt works for any type of show you're going to see. So I grabbed a blue T shirt that says Music Saves and as plain as they are, some chick said she liked it. I asked her if she bought records in Cleveland, but she said "no," so I told her she should. Then I think we started chaotic bullshit, but I'll get to that in a bit.

When I left for Pittsburgh to Nothing Blues' house I stopped and grabbed some Cleveland goodies, Great Lakes Burning River Pale Ale and some Nosferatu, which only comes out for a few weeks a year. I think if you drink six of them you'll see Jeebus, 12 and you'll see god and watch the walls melt. We just had one cuz we had to drive and it was getting a little late.

NB had to sweet talk his boss and work out a deal to work late the next day. It was a masterful display of management manipulation, and we were good for crashing at a Holiday Inn. So that's where we went. I have no idea where this place was. Pittsburgh is a mess as far as streets go. It's a really pretty town with tons of trees and lots of communities with a lot of character. Every street is apparently 60 mph and every entrance is a short turn that you can only navigate at ten mph, so getting on the main roads is simply, fucking nuts. But NB drove pretty good with his boss in one ear and all that mess. We got to the Holiday Inn, spent exactly four minutes getting ready (guys can do that) and went to the bar to determine a plan of attack. Bartender Smitty informed us over Guinness that we could have No Neck Timmy give us a ride in the hotel van, and we had called Yellow cab and found out we were 12th in line. We had another Guinness and told a guy from heaven (that's Latrobe to the rest of you) that he wouldn't have any troubles getting tickets, so he sent more Guinness our way. Fully enabled by Guinness and Nosferatu, we talked to No Neck Timmy and he said he had to piss or something, and these other guys were trying to check in and hold him for a few minutes to wait for them to get ready. This was unacceptable, so a Yellow Cab pulled up and we said, "Dood - you gotta take us to PNC."

Cabbie says, "I gotta see if this guy's here for the airport."

We says, "Dood - Fuck 'em."

He looks in the lobby and says, "I don't see them, let's go."

At this point, I'd like to say sorry to the guy that probably missed his flight on account of us hijacking his cab. Yes, I'd do it again, and I firmly believe that the extra time we alotted this guy forced him to come to his senses and see the Stones. So it was a favor, really.

We went to meet a few of NB's friends at the corner of Sandusky and La Cock street. I won't go into the details of Jen (I think it was Jen) totally not understanding that no matter which direction you approach the corner of Sandusky and La Cock, you'll be at the same corner. It was funny as hell. But they let us tailgate a bit, and then gave us a road pop, called us shitheads and sent us on our merry way, into the land of backstage clusterfucking (or "onstage seating, if you like).

They told us to go to will call. So we did. It's a long assed walk through a virtual sea of humanity and people standing in lines to nowhere. It's also closed. So we ask the dude with the megaphone, where do we go? "Go to Roberto Clemente." So we do this. It's a long assed walk back in the direction we came from. We get up to a window and describe our plight. They tell us to go to Honus Wagner. It's not that bad a walk, but it pretty much completes an entire circle around the ballpark. Finally we're at a window where they aren't idiots and we get our tickets and go in, to some "special" area.

I say "special" because only those dumb enough to pay six bucks for a goddammed hotdog are allowed back there. We were starving to, as drunks take longer to get moving than regular people. For six bucks I loaded up every condiment I could, and one lady said, "Do you know those are jalapeno peppers?" I said, "For six bucks I'm putting as much of everything extra you have on here no matter what it is."

My breath was minty fresh!

A one ounce bag of chips was 2 bucks. They got no takers on that one, and said they weren't surprised.

We got to watch Pearl Jam on a nice flat screen TV. They ran through a qucik set of their bigest hits, so it was kinda like, "Here's Ten, and a few covers." Eddie was drinking red wine out of the bottle. I'm sorry, but that strikes me as just anti rock n roll to the extreme. They sounded pretty good, but the behind the head guitar shit had us in the backstage fan sty laughing. We saw Stray Cat Dave and TomL there (Dave lives around here, so I was hoping to run into him). We hung out a bit, had five dollar beers and waited until they told us we had to get in line. We figured it wouldn't hurt to try and be first in line just in case it was first come first served (believe me, this was so disorganized that it was a fifty/fifty crapshoot). They actually walked us all through the crowd (you CANNOT piss or get another beer while the guy that looks like one of Mick's bastard kids is wandering you around or blabbing into his megaphone while reading off of some sheet about how lucky we are), in a big, convoluted circle until we wound up right back where we started, but now we were THE LAST IN LINE!

God fucking DAMN!

So we're talking to security guards (who were really, really cool. First class and as informative as the Stones would let them be), and he's telling us they have to make sure backstage is cleared out. So I pointed up and said, "Cleared out from guys like those that are climbing in the scaffolding?" He goes, "Oh, SHIT!" and takes off. I thought it was funny.

But it didn't mattter, you stayed where your tickets were. So we finally go backstage, where everyone looked longingly at the porta johns set up, and wished to hell we could go there first. They dragged us up, and I mean up, at least to a drunk, fat guy like me. You start out lower than the satge, and it's like fifteen steps just to get there, then you gotta go up! We were in the second level, but the first box, which about puts you even with a lot of the first level. We were directly above the backup singers, and right next to the bar. That luxury can't be overstated or overlooked. That was really great.

I should get to the Stones. Man, they were just on fire. I wondered what it would be like to sit back there, and It's really pretty neat. We had a rocking booth. Only about six people can get right up front, so we'd kinda switch off and on. Security didn't care where we stood around at, and I'm not really sure the other booths knew where the bar was, because we never waited even a second. We had a mom and her kid and a dad and his kid in the booth. A good liberal chick that gave me shit for not making sure Ohio won (deservedly so, but I told her Bush lost my county by over 100,000 votes). She cried and they took her up front to see Pearl Jam. It was pretty funny. The kids were really into the show. I think the dad had second thoughts about having his kid be around the drunks from the Internets, but I got news for him, that kid already smokes pot, so get used to it. Moms was pretty cool and that kid had a smile on his face that made him look like a muppet. Lots of revelry and dancing in our booth.

Youse guys have seen the setlist. It rocked. Guitars way up in the mix. From three feet away that giant video screen looks like a giant lite brite, with pegs the size of your fist. From twenty feet above Lisa Fisher I can now consirm beyond all doubts (ALL doubts) that she has indeed, a world class ass. I started clapping on one song really loud (I was proud of myself, I can't usually clap in time or loud and I was doing both at the same time!). Lisa looked up and smiled and waved and tapped Bernard to get him to wave, too. The kid next to me was like, "Wow, that was cool! They can hear us!"

Eddie Vedder fucked up a line on Wild Horses, but he's smart, he just didn't sing and picked it up again a line or two later. He looked at Mick like, "Oh man, I fucked up your song!" and Mick was just laughing and didn't seem to care. Overall, I was glad I got to see Eddie come onstage. He was understated and not a hindrance (like Dave Matthews or Lenny Kravitz).

Paint It Black was a thumping, pounding good time. Totally a surprise and you should hear a sold out Pittsburgh audience let loose when they start something like that. It jjust about takes your breath away. I don't know how the Stones don't stop playing and just go, "whoa..." Rocks Off - see, here's the thing. The Stones KNOW when I'm around. They serve up extra helpings of Exile, and they nail them. Rocks Off was killer. Rocks Off is amazing. Rocks Off had NB saying he'd sign the papers to transfer ownership of his soul and swearing that he'd make somebody "disappear" if need be just so he could join the Exile Mafia.

I think he's in.

Other silly shit - We were right in the fireworks. RIGHT THERE! They were LOUD. They were cool, and I got fireworks in my hair. Evey flash pot that went off was very warm where we were at. The night was perfect, the stadium is a gem, and I liked everyone I met in Pittsburgh. It's a really cool, one of a kind town. That river in the middle of things makes things pretty, but it truly makes driving hell, I think.

When we got to our booth, NB called Grown Up All Wrong and asked if he could see us. my job, wave like an idiot. GUAW spotted us, I did my job well. After the show we called and hooked up with GUAW and his fiancée and they gave us a ride out of Pittsburgh, which was so cool! I think we'd have been down there a long time otherwise. We went ot a bar called the Ugly Dog (the places around the stadium were overflowing with people, we wanted to find a place we could actually talk to each other in). The Ugly Dog is open until 3:30, so that sounded good to us. I got Rolling Rock on tap (not many places in Cleveland sell it on tap), and those guys drank Iron City in a bottle shaped can. I've had one. I call it a Kbottle. It insures that the Iron City inside tastes even worse than I remembered. It has a picture of Dan Marino on it. The bartender laughed when I ordered Kbottles (I was gonna ask for Kbottles of piss and see if I got the right beer, but I was a guest and I thought that might be rude), but she knew what they were. We listened to Handsome Girls on the way to the bar and we all decided that from where we were, Ron Wood sounded great on that bootleg and also at the show we just saw. Fucking Keith was sweating a lot, he did not fuck around and had two hands on the guitar at all times. All in all, it really kicked ass. It was worth every penny and more and I had a great time. Pittsburgh totally kicks ass, and they are great hosts and killer rock and roll fans.

Again, it was really great to meet Nothing Blues and hang out and drink beer. We had that instant connect that you seem to get with everyone you meet on the boards. It's like they're old friends you've neer met. GUAW and his fiancee are great! Really easy people to talk to, funny and just fun to be around. I felt right at home everywhere I was, and I think that says a lot. Rock on, Pennsylvania. Rock on!

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81 Stones
Wayne, (September 10, 2001)

I think the Rolling Stones of 1981 proved that they were still the greatest rock-n-roll band with the album " Tattoo You ", but fell short when it came to their live performances during their tour at that time because the band SOUNDED too professional & too polished. I think Tattoo You is an excellent album with stellar songs from beginning to end from " Start Me Up, Little T & A, Waiting On A Friend " without any filler which is what you got with " Emotional Rescue. " I think the Stones should have NEVER released Emotional Rescue because there are only a few excellent tracks on it, the Bee Gees inspired title track sounds ludicrous today unlike " She's So Cold " which is what the Stones are all about. The Stones were smart enough to release some leftover tracks from the " Some Girls " sessions that became part of the album Tattoo You. The movie of the 81 Stones tour " Let's Spend The Night Together " isn't that great compared to their concert film masterpiece of their 69 tour " Gimme Shelter. " Mick Jagger seems to think he's a Las Vegas entertainer like Wayne Newton or something instead of one of the greatest frontmen of all time in rock in the concert documentary. IMO, the Stones were NOT the Rolling Stones that I know in that concert movie of their 81 tour which is disappointing. I think the band were a little bit insecure about their status as rock legends for some reason at that time since it seemed like the band had lost its focus live. The live album " Still Life " of that same tour comes across as MEDIOCRE compared to their classic live album from their 69 tour " Get Yer Yas Yas Out. " All you have to do is listen to the track " Let's Spend The Night Together " from that live album to know what I'm talking when I say the Stones came across as too professional & too polished. The Rolling Stones of 1981 WERE a mixed bag at that time looking back on it from the album to the tour that followed.

Moonlight Mile

I also dissent in part from Wayne's exceptionally well reasoned, yet flawed analysis. Tattoo You showed that the Stones were still at the top of their game and the '81 tour, at least what little I've heard from it, did nothing to dispell that.

The Hampton '81 boot that I recently got is rapidly becoming my favorite over the few other live ones I have. Even over Brussels Affair. I don't what it is, but that show just seemed like it was more coherent and the band well practiced and rehearsed (which is not the same as "polished" which I take to mean going-thru-the-motions). Surprisingly, I really like Going To A Go-Go now, after hating it back when it got airplay in the Still Life days. Love that thumping backbeat and even the horns, which I usually could care less about. That whole showed rocked.

Am I crazy to love Hampton '81 so much? Man, I don't know jackpiss about these friggin' boots. I'm 2000 light years behind all you CD-burnin, trade list exchanging, boot-talkin, clever bootstards.

Sir Stonesalot 

Well Wayne, I agree with some of what you said. If the only live music from the '81 tour that you've been exposed to is Still Life & the shitty "Let's Spend The Night Together", then I can understand your conclusions. You are right about the Stones being spotty on that tour. Prolly had something to do with the incredible amount of cocaine being consumed on that tour. Same thing with the '78 tour. But let me tell you, the story doesn't start and end with Still Life and LSTNT. The Stones played some fantastic shows on the 81 tour. Thanks to Marko, I have a bunch of great 81 shows. IMO, the best is Hampton.

I like Tattoo You a lot, but disagree that there's no filler. Yes there is, it's just really good filler....Neighbors, Tops, Slave, Heaven, Worried About You, heck even Hang Fire. It's all good, but filler none the less. The difference between Tatoo You and ER is that ER is ALL crappy filler...Where's the beef? She's So Cold is the only thing on that record that I like even a little, and even THAT is just a tossed off filler track.

It does little good to compare the 81 Stones to the 69 Stones. Different band, different style...apples and oranges to me.

And as for Mr Jagger thinking he's Wayne Newton....I don't see that at all. I see a guy hopped up on coke, and jumping out of his skin. It all has to do with the size of the crowds he was playing to. The bigger the crowd, the more animated you have to be to get your energy across.

Mick did that, and in SPADES! Especially in 81, IMO. He was a whirling dervish. Too professional & polished? I really disagree '78 and '81 the Stones played some of the sloppiest, raunchiest rock & roll ever played. Some nights it was so sloppy and raunchy that it was awful. Other nights it was so sloppy and raunchy that it was perfect, if that makes any sense.

I guess what I'm trying to say is don't judge things by the officially released output. There's much better available. Seek and ye shall find. 

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Holy Fucking Shit!
by Steady Rolling Walkman
(October 12, 2006)

Wow, what a fucking awesome night. Ok, let's start from the beginning

Michael (my mom's boyfriend, he's really cool) and I took the train to Soldiers. I had purchased two floor seats, C2/row 11/seats 19&20. I didn't know how the security would be so while on the train I had tapped with clear packaging tape a large flask of Wild Turkey, and my mom's digital camera (she really is the coolest) slightly above each of my ankles. We got in and had a few beers. I was telling Michael I really hope I hear Sway. And that it would be the perfect opportunity to break out "Winter" or as another gasser predicted (can't remember right now who called it) "She was Hot"

We went to check out our seats about a quarter till 7. Goddamn was it cold. we decided to head to the corridor until Elvis stopped in. When he came in I stayed until his last song started and I couldn't stand the weather. I had no gloves at all. I went in, used the porta-potty, went in between a 10ft gap in between the toiley line and ripped off the tape around my legs. It hurt but it did feel kinda warm! Michael joined up with me after a few shots of turkey. I started hearing sound checks and I said "about 5 more minutes."

A lot of noise started and I told the cute chicks we were talking to "see you later" in a real I got more important things to do kind of tone. We get up to where they check for wristbands, and tickets and I hear the opening notes of You Got Me Rocking. I couldn't find my ticket! I must have lost it while getting a cigarette. Michael went ahead not knowing the hysteria I was going through. The security guy said "I need your ticket" I stepped ahead of him still looking for it. I couldn't find it all. I turned around and he was busy checking others so I just kept on trucking. As soon as I got on the floor and the Stones were playing, I completely forgot about the swift, freezing wind. I forgot completely about being cold at all.

I'm singing at the top of my lungs and then the first bass note of Live With Me rings out and I was cheering loudly.

When Monkey Man first rang out, Michael and I looked at each other with much delightment. I was very pleased. Ronnie really kicked it out on the slide. Keith did a very good job on the riffs.

Mick said something about well if you we here last time we played here, we got something different for you. This one's called Sway. I may have ejaculated right in my pants. I was overwhelmed. Ronnie really stepped up the the plate and hit a home run. The ending wasn't sloppy at all.

They busted out She was Hot and you could tell who the diehards were. Awesome version. Everyone really rocked on this, especially Mick.

Streets of Love started out really good, but I think it kind of dragged on a little too long.

Midnight Rambler was a mother fucker! pounded out really hard. I did notice right about then that Keith really was having a hard time getting the notes out. I've played outside in 50 degrees weather and I can't even move my fingers because my hands are so cold. Not to mention his arhritis. I really felt for him. He pulled it off well though. And the "Muddy Waters say Oh Yea!" part really kicked ass.

Mick mentioned something about it being an early or cold winter (can't remember exactley) and I thought they were going to bust out Winter. A few seconds later, I heard a few blurts from Keith's guitar before the song started, and then saw which guitar it was, so I wasn't disappointed to hear Tumblin' Dice. It was pretty rocking

Ronnie did a fan-fucking-tastic slide on You Got the Silver. I was impressed. Keith sang with all his heart

Little T&A fucking rocked. I like how they are doing the horns with it too. I always love the Keith set. He did an awesome job

Under my thumb was awesome! I couldn't believe my ears. But I thought they had another song before I hit the B-stage. I was horrified when i saw the stage moving. I ran up as fast as I could. I was way back and it was packed. There were two hotties behind me and I said to them "You know, they let the cute chicks right up front, just say excuse me a lot and your beauty will get you through." They had half full beers in their hands so they were open to suggestion. I followed them and one person said hey and I told him that was my girlfriend. It worked. I got up nice and close.

I was very please when they pulled out Rough Justice, another song I was looking forward too.

Start Me up was fine. Mick was dancing all around and I got a real good shot of him

When the stage went back during Honky Tonk Women, the ushers were saying "Back to your aisles, back to your aisles." I didn't feel like it so I decided to sneak up. I waited until the ushers checking tickets in the aisles were busy with other people and I snuck behind them. I got way up to where the rich bastard seats are and there were 4 ushers in a chain. Needless to say, that was as close as I got to the front stage. When Keith finnished his awesome solo on Sympathy, I went back to get Michael up front.

Jumpin Jack Flash was very strong.

Sastisfaction kind of had false start to it but really rocked out. Michael and I got up close about mid-song.

Brown Sugar started out really thick. Bobby did an excellent job

Synopsis: The Stones really came through. Keith struggled, but put out every ounce of energy he could muster from his frozen, arhritic fingers. Mick was in fine form, very humorous throughout the show. Charlie is always awesome, he never has a bad night. Ronnie really shined. He filled the gaps that Keith left and really was the hero of the night. His lead guitar was in fine form. Awesome seats, awesome fucking setlist, great playing. It couldn't have been better. I didn't feel cold until "the train came in the station"


First of all I need to take care of some old business, there were a lot of beautiful women in downtown Chicago and they were all headed to the show. I was fortunate to be at the Stones band of gypsies’ pre-show party but that is not my department so I will let Keefer cover that if he wants to. All I can say it is great to be surrounded with resolute Stonesfans.

We went to Chess Studio during the afternoon of the show. The place has lots of exhibits from the Blues Era. We watched a video that gave a very good intro to the famous artists of Chess history. Ronnie has four sketches on exhibit there. I got turned onto Otis Spawn. Little Walter is my favorite from the bunch (even as a kid). He sure knew how to go in style. He took a lead pipe to the head during a crap game on the sidewalk and was dead in the morning. Brian was a very good harp player but Little Walter blows him out of the water on the high end notes (bending the 8-9-10 holes).I was not overcome with awe while in the building but as I drove home the studio passed legendary and attained the status of myth. Imagination is always stronger than reality. Now I have an actual building to pin my imagination to.

I was able to sneak in a fifth of Rebel Yell. Most people did not know the significance of Rebel Yell but I had two shot glasses and shared it with the people around us anyway. I don’t think any of us felt cold.

I knew something was wrong from the very beginning of the show. They rushed through the first three numbers. There were very few “Hey Heys” in YGMR and LWM flew by. MM was not as hurried but still a little shorter than usual. They settled down and played “Sway” and “She was Hot” for as long as they should be. Whatever was wrong with Keith he overcame it for these two songs. Long before we expected Mick was giving the introductions. The rest of the show was not as hurried.

Yes, Keith faced Charlie for a lot of the show. There was little strutting around. He stayed in the background most of the time. He was wearing a baseball type of cap that hid part of his face. Travellin’ Man said that his face looked like he was in pain when he was featured on the big screen. I was not watching the big screen so I don’t know. But I will defend Keith in that the places in songs where he is essential he was always there. He gave us a very spectacular solo during Satisfaction. Anybody who has ever badmouthed Ronnie would have to eat dirt if they were at this show. It was nearly the Ronnie Stones on Oct 11, 2006. I have always loved Ronnie, if you trust my judgment at all, he was “out front” as much as in the 70s. He had the amplification too. I am not taking away from Mick, Mick was Mick. I bet he was very thankful to Ronnie.

I will have to wait for the boot but I think JJF and TD sounded different with Ronnie being more prominent. The opening deep “whompin” sound, as I call it, of TD similar to HTW and BS, was not as deep. JJF also struck me as having more of a twangy sound similar to the studio recording. I am sticking my neck way out there by writing about JJF and TD. Only the boots will show if I am right about these songs. It was subtle, not overwhelming by any measure.

I could see Ronnie and Keith’s hands on the fret boards of their guitars; Ronnie played most of the lead. Keith kept that good solid rhythm guitar, not as intricate but still solid, regardless if he was hurting or not. He was there with his lead when we needed his special touch.

Granted with my altered state of mind the show may have just seemed fast to me. My perceptions may have been limited. I hope this is not my last show because I want to see Keith parade around like he owns the stage again.

We nearly got in trouble after the show when a policeman chased us away for our “we piss anywhere” attitude.

Both TM and Keefer are cool people. I am happy we were able to see a show together. We even skipped the post show parties to go back to the hotel to talk about the Stones. We are lucky to have them posting here.

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 Rebel Yell and Three Gassers on a Cold Cicago Night
by Travellin’ Man (
October 14 2006)

Great reviews by SRW and Undercover have already been written on Wednesday nights' show in the Windy City. I will add only a few extra thoughts on the show itself, because I find their reviews "captured" the essence of the Chicago show so well.

Mainly I want to express my gratitude to Keefer and Undercover for making my time in Chicago such an interesting and enjoyable experience. Undercover brought a "Whiskey River" of 'Rebel Yell' with him for our consumption. It is delicious stuff, btw! A slightly sweet aftertaste. Similar to Crown Royal in the smooth department. (We enjoyed the stuff all day and consumed extra greedily as we walked to Soldier Field!) Keefer expertly choreographed travel and Hotel arrangements. He was waiting for me at the gate in O'Hara when I stepped off the plane. Doing things like that make him second to none in the "classy" department. I really cannot say enough about Keefer. One unbelievable guy who enjoys nothing more than a good Stones party and will take on the headaches of making it happen anytime... anywhere!

Those two Gassers even came to Chicago bearing gifts for this ol' Road Warrior. I will "get them back" in time. The gifts were incredibly generous. Finding two better Stones fans to take in a Stones show would be impossible. I have found the company you keep at the show can make a difference in the enjoyment factor. I can be a Lone Wolf when it comes to making a Rock show. That's still fun. Taking in a Stones show with two die hard Stones fans is as good as it gets.

We three found ourselves at 2120 S. Michigan Ave in the very studio the original Stones recorded so many of their great songs from 1964-65. With the magic flask being passed about, it was easy to picture a young Brian and the rest of the Stones "ripping it up" during recording sessions. The old Chess Studios! I felt privledged to be there.

Some of Ronnie's artwork is hanging on the walls in that old studio room. Keefer took a picture of 'Undercover' and myself on either side of a self portrait of Ronnie. At the time I was wishing the painting could have been of Keith or the entire band. Yet by the end of the night's show I thought how perfect it was that Ronnie was the one above and between me and 'Undercover', in that shot for posterity.

Some quick impressions: O'Malley's was small and very crowded. It was difficult to buy a round of drinks. One guy looked like a 40 year old Keith. Even had the eye make up. A shiddobee was handing out Mardi Gras style Stones beads to everyone. He was decked out in all green. Including his Stones baseball cap. Incredible positive Stones energy flowed from this smiling Stones fan of 44. Keefer would later give him an extra ticket to see the show. The guy was elated. Saying he tries to spread a few ashes of his brother at every Stones show he rolls to. Thanks to Keefer's generousity he would be able to do so at Soldier Field.

*Laughing and joking with other fans walking towards the Stadium.

'Undercover' offering anyone and everyone a drink of Rebel Yell. One "scalper" was particularly pleased with the "warm up" properties which came from the bottle.

It was cold and very windy. But thanks to Undercover and his Rebel Yell we barely noticed the elements at all that night.

The Show itself. We found ourselves 20 rows from the stage. A4 Middle section slightly on Ronnie's side. The wind was not that bad for the Floor crowd. Yet on stage the scene was positively surreal!

White smoke made it easy to SEE the swirling, gusty cross wind moving from right to left. It seemed the wind was trying to blow the Stones off the stage. The boys stood firm with their clothes and coats being ripped at by the powerful gusts.

Keef was wearing a light gray ball cap with black skull and cross bone insignia. He looked colder than the rest. Smiles did not come so freely this night for Keef. The weather seemed to make playing difficult for him. Particularly in the early going. Yet I would call his performance on this night, "courageous". He forced his stiff fingers to do the right thing when his input was essential. The grimace on his face revealed certain notes and chords were quite painful for him to play. He didn't walk around with his normal energy either. Yet he was smiling more and playing better as the night progressed. A gutsy performance by Keith.

Ronnie seemed to play better in the cold. For me personally. He went from the status of Rock Star to Rock Super Star. He played more fluidly than I had ever seen him. His hands and fingers cover by red and orange clothe drivers gloves, were working expertly the entire show. MAN did he ever step up for his friend Keith. When Keith needed him most! Ronnie looked sharp in an Admiral's long coat and turquoise scarf. He played 'Sway' about as fluidly as MT. Seriously!

Keith was able to deliver when he was needed the most. I felt privledged to witness the the live debut of 'She Was Hot'. Keith's Berryesque solo in the middle of that one was exceptional and added something to the song the studio version does not have. That was one great version of that song! The finest of many highlights the show would offer.

I was lucky enough to get past security and plant myself 4 rows back at the B stage on Ronnie's side near the front.

What an awesome view from there. I tell you. Ronnie Wood looked and played the part of an absolute Rock God from there. No unecessary showboating and taking "small breaks" on this night. He was in complete control of his instrument like it was a part of his body and he played the thing with exceptional flare! Simply perfect. To do it under those weather conditions amazes me.

I thought to myself then and there. I will defend Ronnie with zeal if anyone ever puts down his "abilities" again. He was a master that night. I now know completely, "what he can do".

Ronnie B. Goode indeed!

I became a GrandDaddy at 11:47am the day of this show. If that beautiful little 9 lb. girl, I would be holding in my arms the following night, had been mine. I would have named her, RONNIE! But Makayla is a fine name too. lol.

I bet the Stones never schedule an outdoor show in October again. Not up North

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