9/18/1993, Madison Square Garden...
I was a sophmore at URI and wanting desperately to take my then girlfriend to her first show. I called my late Grandfather who had some connections, asked him if he could do what he could to get me 2 tickets, good seats. He said OK I will try. Well he came through for us and told me to pick them up at the MSG Box Office. I asked how the seats were, and he said I told the guy this is for my Grandson, don't f*&k this up!
We show up at the Box Office and pick them up... and I nearly began to cry. We walked into the arena and our seats were FIRST ROW on the floor, DIRECTLY underneath Jerry's microphone. I nearly cried at this point, but I actually did shed a tear when they came out and he started singing 1/2 step standing right above me. I screamed my head off after the first track and he looked right down at my girlfriend and I and was grinning from ear to ear.
I have seen DOZENS and DOZENS of concerts since this time... but yet whenever anyone asks what my all time best show was there is no hesitation from me... it's 9/18/1993 all the way.
I was just 15 at the time and didnt know the Grateful Dead's music......I lived in nearby Fontana and attended all the concerts at the Swing I could....I dont remember much about the music but I do remember being totally blown away by the crowd!!
I did see a couple of Brent shows, and Brent has and will be my favorite Dead keyboardist.
I actually saw his last 2 in Chicago.
However, the most life changing one for me was in Richfield, OH, 9-8-1990.
I had been in college for a couple of weeks, and just saw the 2 in Chicago a couple of months prior. Couldn't pass it up.
The Second Set was brilliant!
All Along the Watchtower
I have listened to this show, probably more than my 77s.
The crowd was awesome.
The power cut out for an instant in the beginning of Eyes. (17 1/2 minutes!)
Bobby tears it up vocally on Estimated, rushing the edge of the stage. (14 1/2 minutes)
The Terrapin blew the roof off of the place.
46 minutes, 3 songs, enough said.
Def Hampton Show when the DEAD billed as the Warlocks.........seeing the Police and their completely FREAKED OUT look when they realized the DEAD was back...and all the LOVELY FANS...try as they may stop the train from rolling in your town and we will survive...I realized then all things are possible and no one tells us where we can and cant dance...THIS IS AMERICA HOME OF THE FREE..Be Brave Be Kind BE DEAD...I handed out 3 miracles that day....as i was passing one of the GOLDEN tickets to a stranger this cop said you cant sell tickets this close to the coliseum...I GRINNED FULL FROM THE CREEPING CID...no worries good man this ticket has no price..you see its PRICELESS...cannot be bought or sold only shared with nothing expected in return but a SMILE..."DAMN DEADHEADS HE SNORTED" thas us the the damned the dregs of society practicing random acts of kindness and picking up our trash when we leave....sorry to clutter your space with my chaos....HAVE A NICE EVENING OFFICER...true power and grace flows when you know you heart is pure.......MAY THE 4 WINDS BLOW YOU SAFELY HOME.......tony
.... But it was my first show! Of course!
i started listening the dead in the early '80's. i was completely absorbed by their music - my life has never been the same. i wonder how many other heads wonder what direction their lives what have gone if they had never gotten into the music. i never had much of an opportunity to see them, so i am forever thankful of the shows i got to see. i didn't plan on 09-26-91 being my last show, but WHAT A WAY TO GO OUT! the setlist speaks for itself, and the last ever "bid you goodnight" should hold a special place in dead history. take care!
My first concert. I was fifteen. My brother Kevin took me after his wedding that morning. I remember him warning me that not all concert's were like this, and that he might be starting me off at the top of the mountain. Pure magic that night. The music went right through me, right into my essence. It stayed there. How lucky I am. Thank you Kevin. ;)
The first one.
Literally bumping-into the same guy at every show for years during space walks - turned into hugs - never spoke, never knew his name........Finding myself alone on the side of a road in an altered state somewhere in Ohio wearing only a pair of shorts and no shoes, then rescued, showered, clothed, fed, driven, and show-ticketed to the next city by anonymous Heads......let a Head I never met before sleep on my hotel floor, ran into him a year later when I was tour-broke, he bought me a plane ticket home, two years after that, I heard he was in trouble, ended-up bailing him out of jail.....getting stickered by Mikel at shows, writing each other forever, and then not getting to see him again before he died.....lost my ticket, got a miracle, found my ticket, laid the miracle on someone else......
Like never before and never again since then.
hard to say exactly which show... hard to remember which shows I went to, actually. I was never very good at saving stubs, and I never kept records or stuff like that. (much regret in my voice)
but the 'experience' at A show which changed my life...
it might have been my 5th or 6th or 7th show, (might have been the 17th??-- not important) but up until that night I had always been with at least one buddy, or a group of friends. I never liked to eat lunch at school by myself. and I had never been to any concert all alone. I was a youngin' just getting into the scene, just getting into all of the music.
I do not even remember where the show was, (somewhere east coast) but for some reason I went alone. maybe everybody else wasn't willing to make a long drive to go to another show, maybe my buddies had to go back to something; but I had tix, and I was on the road all by myself.
so, point of the story is; I cruise into the lot. all by my lonesome. the CC Joe of yore was actually a very shy guy in real life. but no sooner did I park, was I able to get into the groove with a group of total strangers. and then another group, and then another... naturally we had much in common, and deadheads are an easy going bunch but it was that welcoming quality of heads that really clinched it for me as far as a life changing experience. the music was always the deep reason, but the scene was the spice.
I suppose life/attitude was different for the west coast or Haight heads, but as a child from the harsh, cold streets of NYC, it was a most special experience for me.
this experience generated my life work and my life quest: to stop no less than one stranger every single day just to shake their hand no matter where I am. (and to smile smile smile... while doing so)
"The highway is for gamblers, you'd better use your sense
Take what you have gathered from coincidence"