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QotD: Live

Question: If you had to name the best live musical performance you have ever attended, which would you pick?

My Answer: I saw Natalie Merchant from about ten feet away play in Chautauqua, NY. That's about 45 minutes from her home. She'd spent a week relaxing on Lake Chautauqua and was in a great mood. She sung for nearly three hours. It was intimate, it was exciting, and she had an incredible voice.

You are encouraged to answer the Question of the Day for yourself in the comments or on your blog.

13 Responses to "QotD: Live"

  1. Chris Duarte at Stebs in Cedar Falls in like 1993 or 4. I stood there watching him for hours, about 3 feet away.

  2. The Matt Sharp (of Weezer and The Rentals fame) and Goldenboy show.

  3. Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra at Heinz Hall.

  4. Pink Floyd at the old Tampa Stadium (the Sombrero) in 1994. Fantastic show using their "quadraphonic" (sp?) setup that had speaker stands on all four sides of the stadium. But for some reason, during the whole concert, there was this weird smell. I couldn't quite place it. 🙂

  5. Without question, U2 on April 20, 2001 in San Jose. There was something absolutely indescribable about it. After that, it would have to be one of the times I saw Live.

  6. For the record, I hate you. 🙂

    My home town is just a half hour from Chautauqua. (Fredonia, to be exact), and I am so annoyed that I missed her concert when she was at Chautauqua Institute. She's probably my favourite female singer.

    To answer the question though. Guster, Ben Folds, and Rufus Wainright in Buffalo, NY, earlier this year. (For free, no less). That was just a great show. Each band/artist brought out the others for a couple songs, which was very cool.

  7. My Bloody Valentine, touring for Loveless in 1991 (I think), with Yo La Tengo opening, IIRC.

  8. For me it's a toss up between the Bowie/NIN show in about '95 or Tori Amos touring Boys for Pele. Bowie was just a flat out amazing show. Him and Trent performing together was great. Tori was in a symphony hall that seats about 1000. I had 2nd row seats, piano side. So it looked like she was signing to you the entire show.

    D.W., I'm jealous over the MBV show. I would have love to seen it. Loveless is still one of the best albums ever.

  9. That's a really tough one because I've been to lots of great concerts. How about this:

    Most Memorable (for many reasons): Eric Clapton in Pittsburgh in 1998.

    "Best": Steve Taylor in Erie in 1995.

    "Coolest" (as in, I'm hip because I went): The White Stripes in Columbus in 2004.

    Best Trip Down Memory Lane: Toad the Wet Sprocket in 2003.

    I've also seen a handful of local and no name acts over the years that have blown all of the above away, I just can't remember any of them right now.

    All of this will no doubt be supplanted by U2 as I plan to go see them on their next tour.

    PS To the person who lives in Fredonia, Natalie Merchant grew up in Jamestown and the 10K Maniacs did their early recording work in the '80s in Fredonia (some of it at the college). I used to take violin lessons at SUNY Fredonia and play in an orchestra in Jamestown and have performed with orchestras and choruses in the ampitheatre at Chatauqua so I'm a little familiar with the scene in Chatauqua County.

  10. That was definitely a great show, Erik. for those not Erik, I was right there with him. One of the really cool things about chataqua is that if you show up early you can stand outside and watch the soundcheck. I remember we watched Natalie run all around the amphitheatre testing the range of her wireless mic. I have to say though that the best show for me was being 10 feet from u2 in cleveland. I've seen U2 5 times now and have paid a whole lot of money and everytime it was worth it. I've seen Natalie 3 times but now I'm just bragging.

  11. Coachella 1999. Rage Against the Machine, Tool, Ben Harper, and about fifty others.

  12. Ween in Girdwood, Alaska. I've seen them there twice. This last time, my best friend jumped on stage and handed Gene Ween my business card during L.M.L.Y.P. (before being pushed off the stage by security).

    I also loved watching Ben Harper and Jack Johnson perform in Portland, and G. Love in Anchorage. Cat Power also puts on a good show.

  13. Oh, and James Brown (Anchorage). I went to the show, and then actually saw him outside a gas station afterwards. It was funny.


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