The View From The Cheap Seats

Sometimes life gets hard. It’s relentless and often not fun.

2015 unfolded with some huge personal challenges that quite frankly, sucked.  After 5 years of no vacations, relentless work schedules and empty pockets, we decided we needed to do something that would fuel us to keep going. That’s when The Cheap Seats Tour was hatched.

Jon and I both love music. My earliest memories are of listening to music – my dad was really into big band music and rock and roll.  There was a picture of me when I was a very small kid reading Downbeat magazine on the toilet – magazine in hand, feet dangling far off the floor, totally engrossed in the pictures. I distinctly remember, as a young kid, discussing the break up of the Beatles with my brother as something gravely serious and sad .

Throughout my life music has been part of the landscape of my experiences and now is in the playback of my memories.  It’s always there as sense memories of how it shaped my frame of mind, consoled me, stirred my heart and carried me with the beat.

I’ve always loved the Foo Fighters and was enthralled in Sonic Highways – it prompted Jon to get me tickets to the Foo Fighters concert in DC on the 4th of July as my birthday present last November – a concert festival that was far off in time. There was no intention at the time to go to other concerts. It was a great deal – 9 bands for $78 – general admission at RFK (Jon’s old stomping grounds). With kids that have attended Bonaroo and the Dragonfly Festival – this was our first foray into music festivals but not our first day at the rodeo for rock concerts.

When an opportunity to see Bob Dylan came up in the winter, I really wanted to see him in person after years of listening to his musical poetry.  I thought it was going to be too much money, but looked at the tickets available anyway.  Digging down to the cheapest seats, I could afford two tickets, but they were in the back row  – the furthest point away from the stage. My heart was racing and I didn’t care.  I just wanted to be in the presence of Bob Dylan – just once.  I didn’t care if I couldn’t see him and I expected that his gravelly voice wasn’t going to be the same as the early years – just being realistic.  So with much sweat on my upper lip, I pressed buy and got two tickets.  I told Jon about it and he was amenable.

One thing led to another and now we had a line up of concerts to attend and the Cheap Seats Tour was on! Here is the order of events. The criteria was that tickets be the cheapest available. We have binoculars and don’t mind going super early for general admission – it’s part of the adventure.

11/18/14 – Foo Fighters Tickets Ordered – July 4, 2015 RFK Stadium Washington, DC

2/22/15 – Bob Dylan Tickets Ordered – April 25, 2015 – DPAC

4/8/15 – Rolling Stones Tickets Ordered – July 1, 2015 – Carter Finley Stadium, Raleigh, NC

4/26/15 – Robert Plant Tickets Ordered – June 15, 2015 – Booth Amphitheater, Cary, NC

6/18/15 – Tedeschi Trucks Band; Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings; Doyle Bramhall II – July 18, 2015- Booth Amphitheater, Cary, NC

6/18/15 – Peter Frampton and Cheap Trick – August 12, 2015- Booth Amphitheater, Cary, NC

6/18/15 – Doobie Brothers and Greg Allman – September 1, 2015- Booth Amphitheater, Cary, NC

7/5/15 – Foo Fighters  – October 4, 2015 Atlanta, GA

7/21/15 – Jackson Browne – October 7, 2015 – DPAC

So this blog is a journal of this journey. It’s a way of putting down in digital words what it meant/means to hear this music live and how it’s having an effect on life here in the Cheap Seats.


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