Concerts, Concerts, Concerts – The 80’s

I have been going through this rock & roll trip down memory lane with this blog.  It started with the vinyl records I found in a box and than last week with the posters.  I actually found one more box from my younger days and this one had a ton of concert ticket stubs from over the years.  I also found a couple concert T’s and a couple programs as well.  I still can’t believe I kept all this stuff, but I am glad I did.

Going to a concert nowadays, they don’t give you a physical ticket anymore.  If they do, they charge you for it.  Nope, tickets are on your phone and get scanned in or you print it out on your printer.  Not the same as those dot matrix printers from the old days.

You also used to stand in line for tickets.  You had to arrive an hour or two before the tickets went on sale whether it was hot, cold, raining or snowing.  We did it each and every time we wanted to go see a show.  And we loved it!  Now you go online from the comfort of you home…not the same.

Whether you want to or not, I am going to take you on a journey of my musical concert experiences…at least most of them because I think I am missing quite a few ticket stubs.

The 80’s

Our journey begins back around 1983.  I was only 14 years old.  My parents finally agreed to let me go to a concert, but I had to go with my sister…REALLY!!!  Actually, it was okay.  My sister and I have been to many concerts together and even went to one 2 years ago some 3o+ years later.

The first concert was on July 26, 1983 at the Omni in Atlanta, GA.  The tickets were only $11.50.  Wow!!  I had to do some digging, but the opening act was a duo called The Sparks.  I don’t remember anything about them.  I do remember there were a ton of women there and being a male at 14, that was a good thing!!  I also remember that the show was great and I have been a fan of his ever since.  It was a great first concert!  Thanks sis!

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Just a few months later I was able to go see one of my favorite bands on the first of many concerts.  It was Kiss. The concert was a gift for my birthday and I think it was from my brother who is a huge Kiss fan as well.  My birthday is on Christmas, and the concert was on December 26th. It was a very nice surprise.  The opening acts were Pat Travers and the band Axe. The tour was the Lick It Up tour and was also at the Omni.  The stage was still the Tank stage from the Creatures of the Night Tour.  It was pretty cool.  The lead guitarist at the time was Vinnie Vincent and Eric Carr was on drums. I am glad I got to see that line up.  Vinnie was fired after this tour.

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The next concert was on November 20th, 1984 at the Atlanta Civic Center.  The group was The Fixx in support of Phantoms which was their follow-up to their successful album Reach the Beach.  I went with a friend of mine from high school.  I don’t remember the opening act so guess that means they weren’t much.

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On January 9th, 1985, brought me to my 2nd Kiss back at the Omni.  The opening act was Krokus and they were great.  The tour was for the Animalize Tour and the lead guitarist on this on was supposed to be Mark St. John, but he was fired in December.  Bruce Kulick took over duties for the remainder of the tour and for years later. I hate I didn’t get to see Mark. He is the only Kiss guitarist I have not seen live.  I still have the Tour Program from that show and it still had Mark St. John throughout since they didn’t have time to change them up.

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I started 1985 with a Kiss concert so I had to end it with a Kiss concert.  This one was on December 31, 1985 and where else, but at the Omni.  This show was for the Asylum Tour. The opening act for this show was Black n Blue.  Same line-up as the earlier show so nothing really new.  I had to get another program…of course.

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1986 was a dry year as I don’t have any tickets for the year, but I am sure I remember some concerts at Six Flags during the summer.  The next show was on March 10, 1987 and would be a very busy concert year. The first show was Ratt. Ticket prices have since climbed to $15.50.  The opening act was Poison so it was billed as the Ratt Poison Tour.   Both bands were huge at the time and it was a great show.

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Just 2 weeks later on March 24, 1987, it was back to the Omni to see Bon Jovi and their opening act Cinderella.  Bon Jovi was massive and there were 2 shows and we caught the 2nd one. They were still touring in support of the Slippery When Wet album. I still have a tour T-shirt from the show. Needless to say, it doesn’t fit anymore.

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On July 12, 1987 (for $16), we saw Night Ranger and The Outfield together at the Fabulous Fox Theater.  It is a beautiful theater and an Atlanta landmark.  The concert itself was amazing.  Night Ranger was spot on with their blistering guitars.  The Outfield was also wonderful and I did not appreciate them at the time. Now I am actually a fan of the band.

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I still have 2 more concerts for 1987.  The next was quite memorable as it was Motley Crue. The opening act was a new up & coming band called Guns N Roses.  The price of the tickets was now $17.50. Guns N Roses came out and they were great; however, about 2 or 3 songs in, Axl Rose decided that this fan in the front row was being a little obnoxious so he jumped off the stage and got in a fight with the guy.  This caused the show to stop and naturally, he was arrested.  To make matters worse, Motley Crue came out late because they were pissed or something, not sure.  Then they cut their show short as a result.  They played a little over an hour.  However, they sounded awesome and did put on a great show.  It is a show I won’t ever forget.

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To end the year, I got to see the first of 3 shows I would see over the next year with my favorite band, Def Leppard.  The first show was on December 18, 1987.  They were touring for the Hysteria album and this was towards the beginning of their incredibly long tour.  The stage setup was their very famous “In the Round” stage.  The stage sat in the center of the arena and they were surrounded by their fans.  They used to get to the stage by hiding in large laundry bins and they were rolled out to the stage.  The opening act was Tesla!  These guys were on fire that night as well.  Two great acts and one great show.

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Now we are in 1988 and it is February 10.  This show was back to another of my favorite bands, Kiss.  They were now touring for the Crazy Nights album.  The show was less pyrotechnics and more of a rock show.  Gene did spit fire though.  The opening act, if I remember correctly, was the one and only Ted Nugent.  For me, this was a dream come true as I hadn’t seen him before and I was not disappointed.  He is a mad man.

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Now as we get later into 1988, I want to see Def Leppard again. At the time, they were not coming back to Atlanta, so we went to the closest city they were going which was Chattanooga, TN.  On September 15, we drove an hour and half there and back to see another spectacular show.  The opening act this time was Queensryche.  It was the show that made me go back and listen to their latest album, Operation: Mindcrime.  One of my all time favorite albums.  The show was well worth the drive.

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Of course, after we bought the Chattanooga tickets, they announced another Atlanta show for October 7, 1988 at the Omni.  The ticket price was now $18.50 and I didn’t know if I wanted to pay for another show.  The local radio station, Power 99, was having a contest for free tickets.  I don’t remember the contest, but most likely it was if you hear a certain song or just call when they tell you to and be a certain # caller, you win.  Guess what, I was that caller and I won two tickets.  I believe I took my sister.  Queensryche was still the opening act.  And another great show.

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On November 5th, 1988, it was off to the Fabulous Fox again to see Stryper in support of their album In God We Trust.  The Fox tickets are cheaper than the Omni as their price was only $15.75.  Sadly, I can’t remember the opening act, but I know it was a known band at the time.

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There were 2 other shows in the 80’s I saw that I am completely embarrassed to say that I saw this person in concert.  Going to these shows were not my first choice.  It was only out of the need for a friend.  The girl he was dating wanted to go and he didn’t want to be the only male their.  So, as a good friend I sucked it up and went to support my friend.  Those shows were on July 17th, 1988 and November 15, 1989.  The concert was for Debbie Gibson.  That is right…Debbie Gibson.  Please, don’t shame me.  And what makes it worse is that one of the shows was filmed for a video release and from what I understand is that you can see us in the audience.  We were in the 3rd row so I don’t doubt that statement.  I have never seen it.  The horror!!

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Since I have gone on and on about the concerts, I will end it here for the 80’s concerts.  I will post next about the 90’s to today.  I hope you enjoyed the look back at my concert experiences.

37 thoughts on “Concerts, Concerts, Concerts – The 80’s

  1. Awesome Post! Thanks for sharing….I kept some stubs but many ended up somewhere??! some cool stuff…..HMO loves Lick It Up! Just thought I would share that if you already didn’t know! hahaha…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Nice post. I actually found a bunch of old tickets recently also and had a smashing time looking through them. A great snapshot of a musical journey, aren’t they?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Just recently found your blog! What a trip back through those Hair Metal ’80s! Such a trip those bands could play the Omni, and less than five-to-eight years later, many bands would find themselves without fans, or album sales or ticket sales as grunge took over!

    Liked by 2 people

          1. Oh man the worst one was one time we got there late, and the only two seats left were halfway down the room and way over to the right, against the wall. Every time roberts smiled in close-up her mouth was two miles wide…

            Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh man! My heart is racing. My face is flushed. What a great post! 😀 I can’t thank you enough for sharing these awesome memoirs. You have seen all my favourite bands, and to see the tickets was sensational. Where do I start? That Bon Jovi and Cinderella show sounds unreal. Oh, to have been there! Then, GN’R and the Crue in ’87! Wow. Unbefuckinglievable. My favourite band is also Def Lep and I saw them once in 2015, but to have seen them in their heyday and catch their Hysteria tour would have been phenomenal. I was a child in the 80s so missed out on all the fun. Thank you for letting me live it through this post. You have a new follower.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am so glad you enjoyed it. I had a blast doing that one plus the other two in the series covering the 90’s and 2000’s. looking back at all the shows brought back so many great memories and can’t believe I kept all the tickets. thanks for following and for stopping by.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Dennis. I have never thought about selling the selling the tickets, but I don’t think I can part with that one as it was the only Crue show I ever saw. Thanks for asking and for stopping by the site.

      Like

  5. Hey man.

    I’m from east-metro Atlanta and about the same age as you. I saw a few or more of the same concerts back in the day but it seems some of the dates are different from what I remember.

    Mainly the Ratt/Poison tour. I was sure it was sometime in the winter of late ’85 or early ’86. The reason I say that is because I wrecked my 71 Chevy C10 truck the morning after the concert while driving to school and I graduated in ’86. I had on the Ratt shirt I bought at the concert the night before. I wonder if they came to Atlanta twice on that tour?

    I also saw both those Def Leppard concerts. I think one wasn’t in the round house though, but I may be mistaken. I Don’t remember which one it was either. That was right after the drummer got his arm cut off and started playing the electronic drums (or whatever they called them). I still kick myself for getting there late and missing Queensryche.

    I also saw the Lick it up and Animalize Kiss concerts on Christmas, I remember I bought a Kiss shirt at one of them that said ‘If it’s too loud, you’re too old’ in big red letters on the back.

    Saw Motley Crue and Ozzy, not the Crue show you mentioned though. I saw the tour for Shout at the Devil and Bark at the Moon albums. I missed Randy Rhodes a couple years earlier on Diary of a Madman tour and I had the chance to go too. Kick myself for missing that one as well.

    Anyway, hope all is well with you. Nothing like the early/mid 80s metal in my opinion. That was before they got labeled as hair bands. I hadn’t heard the term anyway ’til sometime in the late 80s.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Mike! Pretty cool we saw a lot of the same shows and I have to say thank goodness for the tickets stubs or I wouldn’t have remembered half the stuff. And thanks to the internet that helped me research a lot of the opening acts.

      I would have loved to have seen that Ozzy & Crue show. That one had to be great especially with Crue only on their 2nd album.

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  6. Just wanted to add-

    I’m not saying your dates are wrong, I saw your ticket stubs . I guess I just misremember some of them or there is a glitch in the Matrix, HaHa.

    -And my first concert was the Rush Moving Pictures tour. I think I was in the 7th grade and it would have been around 1981-82.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am good, I did double check most of the dates with the internet despite what the tickets said and they matched up. LOL!

      My first Rush concert wasn’t until 1996 or so. One of my favorite concerts ever!

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  7. Thanks for the reply.

    I wish I had kept up with my ticket stubs too. Oh well.

    -And yea, that Crue/Ozzy show was good. I remember they had just showed a documentary at school a few days before about Devil Worship/Suicide caused by Heavy Metal, and I wore my Motley Crue shirt to school the day after the concert, HaHa. It had a big-haired demon that looked sort of like Eddie from Iron Maiden on the front.

    Got a lot of side-eye that day.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I looked up that Ratt concert on Wiki. It was the Infestation Tour I saw and it was Dec. 3rd 1985- I thought I was losing it for a minute there!

    I was thinking it was the RattPoison tour but I was wrong. I knew I didn’t remember seeing Poison but I thought I may have just gotten there late. It says Bon-Jovi opened for them. I forgot about that too.

    Thanks for jogging some good memories.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Hey this was a FANTASTIC read. I was at the 10/7/88 Leppard show with Queensryche. That was Friday. My brother was at the Sunday show, 10/9/88. My best friend actually was at the show at the Omni on the first leg in December of ’87 when Tesla opened. We weren’t friends until several years later. I am seriously interested in those 2 ticket stubs if you would be willing to part with them. I live in middle Ga. Either way could you email me at wrbookooseller17@gmail.com and let me know. I’d love to at least chat. THANKS again!!!!! Charles.

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