Friday, August 14, 2009

Warren Zevon 'Sentimental Hygiene'

Have you ever seen Cheap Trick in concert?

If you haven’t, please be advised that you will need hearing protection. Take some ear plugs. If you didn’t have time to stop at Rite-Aid to purchase some, find some bathroom tissue before the lawn crowd deplete the supply for their own frivolous activities. Make sure to take any means necessary to find something to protect one of your five senses.

Cheap Trick are generally loud in concert.

I’ve heard them being to compared to other loud and sudden noises… One phrase I’m particularly fond of is Jeff Kay’s “louder than Cheap Trick”.

But this wasn’t the case last Friday night. I guess being low band on the totem pole meant that Rick Nielson wouldn’t be able to split the atom with a five neck guitar and a checkered amplifier.

I could hear more of the mix from the speakers directly in front of me than from the band just a few feet further away. I’ve been that close to Cheap Trick a few times and I wasn’t able hear my own thoughts even with ear plugs.

I was only interested in seeing Cheap Trick. I couldn’t care less about Poison and I have seen Def Leppard many times. No offense to age affected vocals of Joe Elliott, but I saw them when he could scream instead of sing.

I wanted to hear some of the new Cheap Trick songs performed live. I wanted to hear the classics. I wanted to hear which gem would be dusted off and thrown into set.

I wasn’t disappointed when I heard “Way Of The World” from the ‘Dream Police’ album. I sang along like it was 1979, baby.

Jamie also found out that she could lose another one of her 5 senses whenever Rick Nielsen wrist flicks a guitar pick into the audience. She was struck on the cheek with one when she was looking away from him. I told her that you could lose an ear and an eye at a Cheap Trick concert.

She was a little bummed when she couldn’t find the guitar pick that blindsided her. I reassured her that she would get a souvenir when Nielsen would toss handfuls of guitar picks into the audience.

We were fortunate to acquire four guitar picks and I gave one of them to the woman behind me that wasn’t so lucky.

Jamie also made eye contact with Robin Zander. That seemed to have made her day.

This was the first time Jamie had been that close for a large concert with bands that have sold millions of albums. We ventured back to the beer gardens and found people there that were like-minded. Jamie and I spoke with a few guys that loved Cheap Trick and Def Leppard, but they hated Poison. I said that it was like a big sandwich with “suck” right in the middle.

In hindsight, I wish I had added a slice of melted cheese on that “suck” patty.

Jamie and I ventured back to our second row seats so she could get the experience of flash pots firing off directly in front of her with Poison’s show. Our seats were so close that we could feel the heat from the flames flaring up from behind the row of their amplifiers.

Three songs into Poison’s set and Jamie’s good sense of taste and will to survive kicked in. She said that she had had enough. We found the car and made our way to Durham for a visit with Allyson.

For some reason, security weren’t allowing anyone with a cell phone to snap a picture. That’s why I only have the one picture from our perspective. Although I’m sure Clay Howard got some beautiful shots during Cheap Trick’s performance.

Stay tuned. More on that within a few days.


  1. Yes, Cheap Trick still rocks and their new CD, The Latest, is incredible. Glad you had fun at their show. I'll see them on the 24th in Denver and then at a few of their Sgt. Pepper's shows in Vegas.

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