I was sold one limited view ticket for the 25 years of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame concert. Limited view – I thought – how bad could it be? :-)
Well ..........my view was substantially better than the folks seated directly behind the stage. I saw side of stage and the screen in the ceiling and on the side. Seriously it was a fine view considering the talent I was being served – and what a feast that was!
Tom Hanks introduced the evening. Tiny neat little man – well spoken – clean – slight – he read from the autocue facing me very succinctly. He looked much shorter that I would imagine. He introduced the first act, Aretha Franklin – a larger than life character resplendent in her bright red sparkled full length gown – divine up swept hair. For a woman in her 70s, she is incredible. And her vocal range would put a girl 1/3 of her age to shame. She sang all her famous hits and was joined on stage by Annie Lennox and Lenny Kravitz. Finishing with R.E.S.P.E.C.T. she introduced her band and most of them were related to her in some way and all looked well fed and of normal size. They were the exception to the rule.
From the grey haired roadies on the ground directing bump in and bump out to the stage hands, techies and backing musos to finally the rock stars themselves – being 50,60 and 70 doesn’t necessarily mean looking older. Either the drugs they have done over the past few decades have mummified them at an eternal 30, they have their plastic surgeons on retainer or they are secretly robots programmed for our entertainment (ya never know) but these dudes looked healthy, fit and sensational.
Jeff Beck and his band were up next and were exceptional. Jeff is in his 60s I think and looked 30. It looked like perhaps his daughter – couldn't be anymore than 20 years of age – was on bass guitar – and her playing brought tears to my eyes. John Pattitucci eat your heart out – she was the stand out musician of the evening. Jeff had several special guests – Sting – one of the beared old dudes from ZZ Top and Buddy Gay.
Metallica – the best front man ever – performed all the song I know from Alex and Niko playing Guitar Hero :-). Enter Sandman was just fantastic!!! They connected to the crowd in such a personable fashion - I really appreciated them. They gigged with Ray Davies from the Kinks and Ozzy Osbourne - I know - who would have though right - Ozzy friggin Osbourne!!! Ozzy looked fantastic – tiny, slim, healthy – he was literally bouncing on stage with his consistent – "Come on F**kers!" to the crowd (Eerytime he yelled it I thought of you Kate – he he) Topped off with U2, (Bono - by the way who needed the autocue to sing his own songs - what the?) Bruce Springsteen, Fergie from Black Eyed Peas mixing it up on stage, the night was a perfect way to introduce me to MY KIND of New York.
All the guys performing on stage (with the exception of Aretha and her band - they looked human) looked like gods! After the show I took off in the last song and exited with the staff and noticed all the agents and managers looking exhausted old and fat. Interesting mmmmm???? Food for thought. This concert reminded me how much I missed being a rock chick. I would have performed most of the songs that I heard tonight myself while gigging and it certainly brought back memories of life on stage and on the road. Since ending that incarnation and focusing on being the mother and/or corporate bitch characters, I have shut down the Rock Chick, stuck her in a cupboard and locked the door. Yet tonight I really wanted to let her out and rescue her from the deep dark recesses of suburban have tos!!
I work in the Music Industry yet rarely go and see a live show as it is too much like work. Tonight reminded me of the joy that rock and roll brings. It seriously does - how can you be angry and depressed when your heart beats in time with the drums and bass!:-)
Observing the audience I saw a mix of Armani suited Wall Street Guys – Bud in one hand and head banging with the other – families dragging their early reluctant teens with them – invariably Dad wearing his tattered daggy original Metallica T Shirt plus the standard groupies – albeit older – still killer bodies however with the faces of grannies.
Dodging the end of concert crush I escaped in the final song, raced out through 7th, took the block down to 34th and weaved in between paparazzi, stretch limousines waiting for their masters to emerge, screaming fans and police and security everywhere. As I dashed down the street, I tripped on the footpath and fell to within an inch of Annie Lennox freshly emerged from one of the sidewalk autograph signing areas. I apologized and told her I loved her in the Wizard Of Oz – (no idea where that came from) she giggled and wished me a good night.
Back to the room home in time for my Skype call with Alex and Tim – clearly more important than star watching across the road with the Papparazzi.
The Rock Chick safely back in the cupboard for now - had a blast! Thank You New York!