Thursday, June 12, 2008

School Of Rock: Didja Get Tickets ? Part 1

The concert ticket.
Dare I say the Holy Grail of the young rock fan's life ? I think I dare. you may dare to disagree.

I'll talk about the actual concerts at a later time. Today, I would like to spend some time on the concert ticket. And of course, the procurement of the concert ticket. In fact, I guess this will mostly be about the procurement(or non-procurement, of course) of the concert ticket.

I remember the first concert I went to : The Kinks:State Of Confusion Tour-I'm guessing it was the fall of 1983. maybe spring '84 or could possibly Spring of 83. Damn you, demon weed !!!
I'm pretty sure it was 8th grade. I don't really remember why I wanted to go see the Kinks. I think "Come Dancing" was fairly big at the time, and I remember hearing some of their tunes on WNEW-FM, 102.7, but I was not a huge fan. I do remember my friend Dave having tickets,and wanting to sell one to me, but for some reason, he couldn't or didn't, I honestly don't remember the specifics.
A bit of an aside here, I do believe that the tickets to this concert cost somewhere around 12 dollars. This was for an arena show. it's amazing to me how quickly the cost of concert tickets skyrocketed in the 80's and 90's. Okay, that's my crotchety old man bit for today.
Anyway, the Kinks tickets. I was talking about the concert at the dinner table and one of my older brothers said that he was going to the concert. My Mom immediately asked if he had an extra ticket. he did. She also asked if I could go with him. He agreed. I was pretty excited, I thought my older brother was pretty cool. The concert was good. But, perhaps more about that later.
That's probably the best way to get tickets, someone else already has some, and they give/sell you one. It's not necessarily always cool to have your Mom ask for you, but sometimes that is unavoidable.
Then there's waiting in line. This one may be completely obsolete by now. I did it a few times in high school, but I don't know that anyone really does it anymore. it was kinda on it's way out back then, what with the new-fangled invention called the tallyphone, and now, with the computers and their Tubes, I don't know that anyone waits in line for anything anymore.

But I did, dadgummit ! I remember me and my pal Glenn standing in the rain on a Saturday morning behind a place called Collector's World, I do believe, to get tickets to see Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers on their Southern Accents tour. A successful morning.We bought four tickets, so that my brother(the same one as the Kinks concert) and his girlfriend would drive us. A small price to pay for "going to the concert".

I remember standing in the sun in FRONT of that same store in order to get a bracelet so that I could gain the PRIVILEGE of standing in line to get U2 tickets(for the Unforgettable Fire tour- I eventually saw them on the Joshua Tree tour). That mission was not so successful.

Then the worst one of all- winter of '87-'88. My friends John, Michele and I go out at 2 a.m., to stand in the freezing cold(and some snow, I believe) to buy tickets to the Spring Tour for the Good Old Grateful Dead. Normally, we would have Mail ordered for tickets, and we did try, but our failure is a story for Part 2 of School Of Rock:Didja Get Tickets ?

Anyway, we trudge off in the cold and snow to nearby Closter, and arrive to a line, but not a huge line, so we think our odds are not too bad. We're probably somewhere in the teens.It's a pretty pleasant(and fairly loaded) group, and the time passes as quickly as is possible, standing out in the cold and snow. One thing that made it go faster was having all these folks who are tripping their balls off come back from using the bathroom in the Municipal Hall across the street, and regale us with their tales of trying to act "straight" amongst the cops in there. One girl talked about trying to read the "Community Information Board", but "the letters wouldn't stop moooving around." Good times, good times.

So we get closer to 9 a.m., and all of these people start showing up and getting in line ahead of us. we inquire as to what they are doing, and we get the following reply:"Oh, they signed the book." and a spiral notebook is produced that, I don't know 20 or 30 people signed at some time before we arrived last night, stating that they have spots in line. After using my hand to scoop my jaw up from the cold, snowy ground, I was really prepared to go very "un-Deadhead" on these folks, but then I realized I just didn't have the energy. We did, of course, end up being about 6 people from the door when they announce that the shows were sold out.Not cool, not cool at all.

Okay, so that's it for today, I think.
next time, Mail Order and the Old Re-Dial Button AKA-Didja Get Tickets ?, Part 2.


Miss Ann Thrope said...

I followed The Dead for an entire summer in 1982.

There was this time that involved these yucky tasting mushrooms, losing my shirt, literally...and almost having to wear one of the guys stinky, smelly, sweaty t-shirts for the ride home the next morning but Jerry himself gave me a concert tee. I did not know who he was. I'm pretty sure I didn't even say thank you. Seriously. I was kinda um, far away.

So, yeah. This would be the dirty little secret in an otherwise conservative girl's life. I danced around in circles in a paisley broomstick skirt and no top.

All I gotta say about that is: thank God they were nice and perky back then and also that everyone else was naked so nobody really cared.

Michele said...

Am I the Michele you are referring to who was with you and John, and if so, why can't I recall one bit of that event? Please tell me that isn't me, because if it is, I really have fried my brain on too many, ahh, substances...

Paticus said...

miss ann- What is a broomstick skirt ?

michele- You are, in fact, the michele that I am talking about in this tale.

Paul and Michele said...

Thank you, Paticus, for confirming the fact that I indeed have blown out more brain cells than I thought. No matter how far back I reach into my memory, I cannot recall even a hint of this excursion.

Paticus said...

michele- I didn't mean to be the bearer of bad news.I will check with our third co-hort to make sure I am remembering it properly.
But perhaps,you could look at it this way: your life has just been more interesting than mine, so there is no room in your memory banks for this particular memory ?