Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Tunapalooza 2006

Sunday night wrapped up the week long Tunapalooza festival. What a party!

Monday Night: The Steve Miller Band

The Steve Miller band was amazing. They played forever and then came out and did another half-hour. Best line of the night was when they returned for the encores and said, "What do you want us to play? We'll do anything!" I was amazed at how great they still sounded. The vocals were tight and not tired, and it was clear that this was a group of people that simply loved what they were doing. It was the biggest crowd of the night, and we would have stayed another three hours to hear them play. Awesome.

Tuesday Night: Bonnie Raitt

Tuesday night was the one night of bad weather. And when I say bad, I mean even ducks were taking cover. It would sputter rain, then it would rain, then it would downpour. Lather, Rinse, Repeat. Our seats got better and better as our butts got wetter and wetter. The last time Bonnie Raitt was in town (several years ago) she got rained out, and it seemed she was going to do everything in her power to do this show. They'd play a bit, then run offstage, come back and play some more, and run offstage. We were afraid they were going to call the show, because the rain was really that bad, and electrocution has a tendancy to spoil an evening, but amazingly she came back onstage and said, "Well, our equipment is already wet, so we're just going to go ahead and play." It was awesome. Not many of us gutted it out until the end, but for those of us who stayed, it was a real treat. And besides, once you're soaking wet, why go home?

Wednesday Night: Cinderella and Poison

Now, you have to understand that this whole idea of Tuna goes to rock concerts is not usual. It isn't exactly standard music fare in my household, and yes I'll admit, I am the kind of person mostly likely riding the dweeb express instead of the cool kid's bus. Knowing my limitations and not wanting to look like an complete idiot, I would spend the day of the concert listening to 30 second song snippets from iTunes. When we got to Tunapalooza Wednesday night the rain was gone (but the tennis shoes were still wet at home) and the heat was back. I was a little unsure what kind of crowd might show up for the concerts, but the answer appeared to be slightly hysterical with an 80 percent chance of overly friendly. To my right sat what appeared to be a 65 year old motorcycle guy. He was short and skinny with a long beard, ripped jeans, leather leggings, black POISON T-shirt and approximately 4.5 teeth. When I finished setting up my chair I sat down and he looked at me, grinned a huge 4.5 toothed grin and said, "HOWDY, NEIGHBOR!" Mr. Rodgers would have been so proud. My newfound buddy went on (and on and on) about how excited he was to hear Poison (WOO!) and they were so awesome (WOO!) and he never knew Tunapalooza existed (WOO!) and he was going to sure come back again (WOO!). It was that kind of night. Later we heard the life story of our neighbors to the left of us -- 48 years old (WOO!), he had a new job (WOO!) in the Ethanol industry (WOO!) and he just passed his drug test (WOO!) wanted to bring his kids here (WOO!) and show them you could have fun without doing drugs (WOO!). We were the Oprah of the head-bangers ball.

As for the concert, I must admit Cinderella did very little for me. But Poison? I had never really heard of them before, but their show was great (WOO!) and I'd go hear them in concert again (WOO!). Who knows, maybe it's not too late to be a cool kid. (WOO!)

Thursday Night: Styx

In addition to being Spanish Inquisition night, Thursday night was Styx. Styx is my era. These are songs I ACTUALLY KNOW WITHOUT PROMPTING. And they didn't disappoint. Still alive, they came onstage and played all the great ones, including.....
Cartman: “No way dude. I can't stand to leave things unfinished. It's like when you hear the first part of that song, Come Sail Away, by Styx? If I hear the first part of that song, I have to finish it.”
Kyle: “Really?
Cartman: “Yeah, I can't do anything 'til it's done.
Kyle: I'm sailing away...

Friday Night: Cheap Trick
Friday night I passed off my tickets, so you'll have to get the lowdown from Mensch because she had my tickets. Best line of Friday night that I didn't hear: "HELLO (... pause pause pause ... read palm of hand ...) LANSING!"

Saturday Night: The Bangles

I purposely did not tell TinyTuna I was going to hear The Bangles, because if she knew I was going to see the REAL PEOPLE who sing "Walk Like an Egyptian" she would have had an unholy fit. Fortunately, I had already shipped her to the southern reaches of the United States so she could do good for others, and I was free to play.

Ahh, the Bangles. I could go on and on for an hour about the Bangles, but THAT WOULD BE LONGER THAN THEIR CONCERT. Seriously. They sang what, seven songs? They came onstage close to 9:30 and when they started Walking Like an Egyptian at 10pm, I turned to Mensch and said, "Well NOW what are they going to do?" The answer was, leave the stage, come back, sing two more songs, and then LEAVE. Although they sounded great, they played with the enthusiasm of someone who booked this concert because they had to make a house payment.

Sunday Night: Ted Nugent

Ah The Nuge. Yes, indeed, I went to hear Ted Nugent. Why? Because I had the ticket. I decided to go for the company (duh) and as a social observer. I knew zero songs, except the remake of "I'm a Soul Man" that I know from the Blues Brothers movie. I spent copious amounts of time text messaging Mensch because I knew she was quite distraught at not having a ticket herself, and I didn't want her to miss a thing. It's no surprise that Uncle Ted and I have polar opposite viewpoints on all things political, but luckily the scary redneck lady behind me screamed "BUSH SUCKS" and I figured she summed up my feelings quite succinctly. Thanks, scary redneck lady!

The best part of the night was discovering we were sitting right next to the evening's media darling, PUNK BABY. He rocked out to Uncle Ted and we played peek-a-boo.

What a week.
I can't wait for Tunapalooza 2007.


mensch71 said...

It was NOT the Spanish Inquisition. That will be conducted TOMORROW night. ;) So sorry I missed Uncle Ted. Because I really would have been in jail...

Bozoette said...

Oh, the Steve Miller Band! Oh, Bonnie Raitt! Oh, 4.5 teeth! Sounds like a great time -- and I love punk baby.

Anonymous said...

Did you forget Ladysmith?