First live concert?

Speaking of lame concerts (someone above mentioned seeing the Captain and Tennile....), when I was in college (I think 1974), my girlfriend (now my wife) and I were prevailed upon to take her little sister to go see the Jackson 5. It was in a "theater in the round" venue in the Chicago area, with a rotating stage (Mill Run Theater, I think). I'm not certain how old Michael was - but he was basically in his early to mid-teens. LaToya was also in some of the numbers, and Janet was maybe around 8 or 9 years old, and brought out for a couple of songs.

At the time it seemed incredibly lame to me, but in retrospect, it now seems kind of cool to have seen the full Jackson 5 live. And they WERE pretty good....

Later edit - in looking at some listings of Jackson 5 tours, it was a one week engagement at the Mill Run Theater, in June of 1974. In all of their other tours, from 1970 to 1976, the J5 played larger venues, typically. In 1974 they played longer engagements at smaller theaters, often "theater in the round" venues.
Last edited:
1988 Jerry Garcia Band at Poplar Creek outside of Chicago. I had tickets, but I took some stuff in the parking lot, and never made it inside. :)

First show I went inside was the next night. Same gig, same venue. Amazing show as always.
Judas Priest on the Defenders of the Faith Tour in 1984 at Charlotte Coliseum. My parents wouldn't let me go see Van Halen but didn't flinch when I wanted to see Priest. That's OK. A couple of years later I got my dad to the David Lee Roth show on the Eat Em & Smile Tour.

Probably my most memorable show was Stevie Ray Vaughan opening for Huey Lewis & The News on the Sports Tour. That's the one where I decided I wanted to learn how to play.
Aerosmith in 2004 in Peoria, IL. Honkin' On Bobo tour. Cheap Trick opened. Sadly it was before I really appreciated them or played music.
Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels in Central Park in 1966 ( I was 15 yrs. old) and the next week (Central park) I saw Ultimate Spinach (warm up band) with Iron Butterfly.
Neil Diamond, Coming To America tour. Yeah baby!

First show without parents? Beastie Boys with Murphy's Law and Fishbone. I wish I was musically sophisticated enough at the time to appreciate seeing Fishbone...
Last edited:
Rush... Power Windows tour...
(though my mom dragged me to both Kenny Rogers and Neil Diamond when I was really young, she refused to let me see the KISS Dynasty tour)
July 1981, KIX opened, followed by Iron Maiden (pre Bruce Dicikinson) and headlined by Judas Priest. Wanted to see Styx, but they were sold out.
May 29, 1989 Cinderella, Winger and Bulletboys... I uh, only went because my girlfriend wanted to go. Yeah, that's it, girlfriend wanted to, that's the ticket...
Boston Pops at Detroit's Ford Auditorium. They played music from the movie, "Exodus."

Hey, you said, "concert," not "rock concert." ;)

OK, that's ironic. In 1978, I wanted to see Boston in Indy. Being 14, my mother agreed as long as my father took me. When I asked him, he said "SURE!". Not believing my ears, I waited a couple more days before confirming his commitment. Again, he said "Yeah! Love the Boston Pops!". *sigh* Needless to say, I didn't see that show. But years later, we were both at summer NAMM and passed the Scholz R&D booth. I got revenge on Dad by telling that story to Gary Pihl, who laughed his a$$ off! Dad turned purple with embarrassment.

The first concert was Santana in 1979, Market Square Arena...seventh row, center/right. Too many stories to share that might be read by my kids, so let's just say, it was a life/mind altering experience. ;) THAT'S why my parents didn't let me go the year before. Smart people.
Thanks for the memories

YES 1983 at Madison Square Garden. The opening act was a few Bugs Bunny cartoons. The one I remember was with the mad scientist and the ether. Come Back Here You Rabbit. :D

Another twist for this thread could be how many times have you seen a particular band.

I also saw that Yes tour (90125 tour??) that year, with Bugs and far as number of times seeing a single band...Rush, 40 times...started back in Hemispheres '77-78.
Phenominal show...and lucky enough to catch Queen 6 times with Freddie. Yes, he was the best Showman I've ever seen.
First ever concert.....Bob Dylan at MSG in 1972. I was a freshman in college and had never been to a concert before. I was a slow starter. this was his tour with The Band....the tour that first popularized holding up lit lighters to show homage to the artist while waiting for the encore.

From then on, it got to be a regular event for me. One of the most memorable....Blue Oyster Cult at the New York Academy of Music....1974 New Year's Show in which Carmen and Camel opened at midnight and the Cult came on at about 3 AM. Eric Bloom's "New Year's Resolution" was to shave his beard on stage. I saw people nodding in the hallways and staircases, and needles lying around everywhere. It was "A Happening".

Eventually became a "BOC head" and saw them over 30 times.

First concert I took my "girlfriend, now my wife" to was a General Admission show in Long Island way out in Suffolk County....the "Long Island Arena" in Smithtown. J. Geils opened...Styx followed....and BOC closed...Summer of '76. I was SHOCKED when my girlfriend accepted a toke off of a stranger's hash pipe. I declined. I was so holier than thou back then. Just goes to show...late starter....never finisher!

But....the award for "Best Concert....Ever" has to be the February 1980 performance of "The Wall" by Pink Floyd at Nassau Coliseum. One of only 8 shows performed in the USA. Slightly outweighs the July 1977 "Animals/Wish You Were Here" show at MSG in which Roger Waters went nuts 5 minutes into the show after someone blew up an M-80 in the audience. he threatened to walk off the stage....cursed the audience for several minutes...and obviously sowed the seeds for his discontent leading to "The Wall".

These friends ask me to join them for concerts....and I ask..."what day of the week is it". Can no longer function at work the day after I've been to a concert the night before. :biggrin: