A week after the Alice Cooper and Ace Frehley shows at Charlotte Metro Credit Union Amphitheater, I’m back for another show. This time around we are seeing Switchfoot as they open for one of my favorite bands, Needtobreathe. I had never seen Switchfoot and like a lot of their songs so I was excited to see them as they are a great compliment to Needtobreathe. A great double bill.
Now there was an opening act called The New Respects. They are a family band out of Nashville and were pop, funk, rock and a whole lot of fun. The lead guitarists is a young lady by the name of Zandy Fitzgerald who was mad woman on the guitar. She also had a lot of style and you could tell she had some star potential. She was very likable. The interesting thing about The New Respects is they are the background singers for Needtobreathe during the show so very cool that Needtobreathe gave them the opening slot to shine on their own. I don’t have a decent photo of them, but when you get to the Needtobreathe Concert review, they will pop up there so go check that review out as well.
Back to Switchfoot, the band is a rock band out of San Diego, California and lead singer Jon Foreman has the surfing, hippie thing going that brings a certain charm to the band live that you don’t necessarily get in their studio albums. Seeing him perform is a different experience.
I am so glad to be back to live shows and one of the first shows back is Needtobreathe who are one of my favorite bands of all time. Yes, last week I saw Ace Frehley and Alice Cooper which were both spectacular, but this is Needtobreathe. And being my fourth or fifth time seeing them, they did not disappoint as usual. The played for over 2 hours and right up to curfew at the venue and were ready to finish even if they turned off the power because when Needtobreathe (NTB) come to play, they come to play. They are going to give you all of themselves until the a ready to drop and that is exactly what they did.
The band makes a grand entrance with portraits of themselves on the screen and as each member walks out Tyler Burkum on guitar, Randall Harris on drums, Josh Lovelace on keyboards, Seth Bolt on bass and Bear Rineheart on vocals the roar of the crowd grew louder and louder and then the band kicked in to “Alive” and the band was rocking the place down with so much and energy and power. And then when the went in to the song “Great Night”, you knew it was going to be just that.
For me, it was one classic song after another. You get the driving force of “Drive All Night” and then the rebellious “The Outsiders” which I did video the song for my wife as she was sidelined with a migraine and she wanted me to capture some of it for her so I did. At this point, Bear finally took a breathe between songs and then spoke to us for a brief moment before going in to the church revival feel of “Washed By The Water” which ended with parts of their song “Lay ‘Em Down”. It was like going to church.
At this point, the band showed a movie trailer. Yep, a movie trailer. On November 3rd, for one night only, movie theaters will show the documentary ‘Into the Mystery’ which is about the band and the making of their new album during covid. The band quarantined together in a house for three weeks and recorded the album. They said what would normally take them 3 years, they did in 3 weeks. And after the trailer, they played two great songs from their new album. The first was “Sunshine” and the second was “Into the Mystery” which actually included an opening of “Free Fallin'” by Tom Petty first.
They played a few more songs before they took another break and showed a different video. This one was about the charity they work with called For Others which works with a lot of charities in your own city (Charlotte in this case for me) and NTB asked for anyone that could to please donate. So while they played “Multiplied” and “Difference Maker” you could text the number below that they shown on the screen. They were told that it would never work and people wouldn’t do it, but the band had raised over $500,000 on the tour from the fans for the charities and as I said the money stays in the community in the town they played. Something you wouldn’t expect at a show, but cool nonetheless.
After that, the band did some acoustical numbers with the song “Banks” which happened to have a couple in the front row get engaged during the show. Their names were Ashley and Jeremy as the band saw it happened and commented on it. Bear said that after getting engagements, there can be an awkardness but not for those two as they started making out immediately after. The next song “Carry Me” had a special guest. Jon Foreman from Switchfoot came out and sang with Bear and the Band. It was cool how a NTB Tour was like a family event and this wouldn’t be the last time someone came out and sang with them.
The show then kicked back in to gear with the heavier, more upbeat tracks such as “Hang On”, “Hard Love” and “Ridiing High” which got the energy going again and everyone having a good time. If that wasn’t enough on the next song, “Honky Tonk Women” the mic was turned over to the drummer, Randall Harris, who got the crowd in to a wild frenzy as everyone loved the Stone Cover. It was wild time where each band member got up and did a little something to be highlighted. Lots of fun.
After that wild time, the band played one of my all time favorite tracks, “Who Am I” and followed it up with “I Am Yours” which I found rather funny as the titles work well together. Then we get to the final song before the encores and this time the whole family was there. Switchfoot and The New Respects all came out for a wild jam session on the song “When the Levee Breaks”. It was a hell of a good time with so much to look at and let me just show you…
Then we get to the Encore as the crowd were banging the backs of the plastic chairs to make as much noise as they could. The band came out and played “Midnight Special” mixed with “Mercy’s Shore”. They then played a song for the first time on this current tour. Well, we are in North “Carolina” so they player their song “Oh Caroline” and the crowd went nuts. It is a fun song to be played live as it really gets the crowd singing along. As we are now coming up on 11pm and the event curfew, the band was worried they wouldn’t finish and said they will keep singing and playing even if they turn off the sound. They played one of their biggest songs, “Brother” with full crowd participation. What a feeling that must be to have the crowd sing back your song. Luckily the sound was never turned off and the band finished the song with a quick goodnight and over 2 hours of playing and 23 songs. It was another magical night with Needtobreathe.
Here is the setlist…
Drive All Night
Washed by the Water / Lay ‘Em Down
Into the Mystery (Free Fallin’ opening)
Forever On Your Side
Keep Your Eyes Open / Testify
Multiplied / Difference Maker
Carry Me (w/ Jon Foreman)
Honky Tonk Woman (The Rolling Stones Cover w/ the drummer singing)
Who Am I
I Am Yours
When the Levee Breaks (Memphis Minnie & Kansas Joe McCoy Cover with Switchfoot and The New Respects)
Midnight Special / Mercy’s Shore – Encore
Oh, Caroline (first time played on tour) – Encore
Brother – Encore
And did I get some Merch? Yep, I finally bought my first NTB Concert Shirt. I don’t know why I hadn’t before…probably too cheap.
And I took a bunch of pictures so here are a few more to take you out. Thanks for hanging around…
Okay, I’ll leave at that…thanks again for stopping by.
Welcome to Alice Cooper’s Nightmare Castle!! That is how the show opened and what a nightmare it was, but in a good way. This was my second time seeing Alice as I saw him 3 years earlier, almost to the day and I am glad to be back to be terrified, freaked out and entertained by the legend himself. This time around, my daughter joined me as she figured if her mom liked the last show, maybe she will and I think she did, but more on that later.
As we were standing in line to get through the vaccine check (negative covid test check) and the metal detector, we noticed people wearing Nita Strauss T-Shirts. It was cool seeing people that were coming to the show to see her. If you don’t know her, she is “Hurricane” Nita Strauss and she is Alice Cooper’s lead guitar player (one of three), but she is the featured one that gets all the press because she is pretty freaking awesome!!
After watching Ace Frehley Open the show, the crowd was pumped and ready. We only had to wait just under 30 minutes to get the stage transferred over and turned in to this giant 2-Story castle and full of horrifying things. But what wasn’t horrifying, but electrifying was the setlist…take a look at what he has to offer this time around…
I have been a huge Ace Frehley fan since I was probably 8 years old. He was my very first guitar hero. I had only seen him play with Kiss and I have never seen him love as just Ace Frehley. When I saw he was opening for Alice Cooper, I couldn’t click the purchase ticket button fast enough. This was also the first concert I had attended since Covid began around 19 months ago so it was even more exciting.
The concert began at 7:30pm on October 7, 2021. We arrived in plenty of time because I was damn well sure going to make it to see the opening act, because, well, as was the opening act. We stand in line to get stamped with proof of vaccination (or proof of negative covid test) and then go in line again to go through the metal detector and all good so far. I don’t know why I said “so far”, because we ran in to ZERO issues all night. It was supposed to rain…None! The weather was a little chilly, but felt great. We hit the restrooms (TMI) and then went and bought some bottled water…except…they don’t sell bottled water anymore…WHAT!!! Nope. It is now in a can…huh???
Yes, they sell water in a can now so I guess non-drinkers don’t get harassed for not drinking as it looks like a beer can. I have to admit, it looks pretty damn cool for water. We then hit the merch table and there were a ton of Alice stuff and only a little Ace, but I saw Alice 3 years ago almost to the day, so I went with the Ace Shirt. They were already out of XL size, so I went 2XL and I hope it shrinks…
In my crate digging, I keep running in to Tour Books and of course, I keep buying them because I think they are cool time capsules of a band. This time around, I found 2 Alice Cooper Tour Books. And these are vintage as they were both from the 70’s and they look it. The first one we have here is from Alice’s biggest and best album, ‘Welcome to My Nightmare’, from 1975. The next one up is the Tour Book for the Guilty Tour also known as King of the Silver Screen Tour which began on June 19, 1977 at Anaheim Stadium, Anaheim, California and ended on August 30, 1977 at McNichols Sports Arena, Denver, Colorado
The Band had a cast of characters and included the following host of people:
Steve Hunter – Guitar
Dick Wagner – Guitar
Prakash John – Bass
Fred Mandel – Keyboards
Whitey Glan – Drums
The tour was in support of the Lace and Whisky album and featured a stage set designed as a giant TV. The TV had slits in the screen where Cooper and his dancers jumped in and out along to filmed choreographed sequences during the songs. They even went so far as to have hilarious mock commercials screened in between some songs. When you go see Alice Cooper you definitely get a show!
The average set list on the tour was as follows:
Under My Wheels
Billion Dollar Babies
Is It My Body
The Black Widow
You and Me
Only Women Bleed
I Love the Dead
Go to Hell
Wish You Were Here
I Never Cry
It’s Hot Tonight
Lace and Whiskey
King of the Silver Screen
School’s Out (Encore)
Are you ready to see the pictures? Well of course you are…And remember this is Alice Cooper and that is what you get in these pictures…a lot of Alice…
In my crate digging, I keep running in to Tour Books and of course, I keep buying them because I think they are cool time capsules of a band. This time around, I found 2 Alice Cooper Tour Books. And these are vintage as they were both from the 70’s and they look it. The first one we have here is from Alice’s biggest and best album, ‘Welcome to My Nightmare’, from 1975. The Tour began on March 21, 1975, in Kalamazoo, Michigan, making its way across the States and even in to Europe where it ended on September 17 in Antwerp, Belgium.
The Band had a cast of characters and included the following host of people:
Steve Hunter – Guitar
Dick Wagner – Guitar
Prakash John – Bass
Jozef Chirowski – Keyboards
Whitey Glan – Drums
Vincent Price – Spider Voice
Sheryl Goddard – Ethyl
Robyn Blythe – Bat Woman
Gene Montoya – Voodoo Man
Uchi Sugiyama – Frog Man
Yes, it is a cast as Alice doesn’t just put on a concert, nope! He puts on a show. A creep show and this one is all about his nightmares. But the concert is always important and the set list, on average, looked something like this…
Despite not having any new albums in years, Kiss was touring. In 2000-2001, the band was touring the so called “Farewell Tour” which was supposed to be the end of Touring. Well, in 2003, the band announced The World Domination Tour where the band would be co-headlining with Aerosmith. Ace Frehley believing the Farewell Tour was the final tour, did not want to do this tour if they were the opening act for Aerosmith. Well, Ace was now gone. Because apparently the Farewell Tour was really the Farewell Tour for Kiss playing with Ace. Peter Criss came back in to the fold and did the World Domination Tour.
When that tour ended, Kiss decided to do another tour in 2004 called the Rock The Nation Tour. This time around, Kiss was the main headliner and the opening acts were Poison and Z02. Before the tour started, Peter Criss’ contract with the band had expired. According to Peter, no one contacted him about signing back up with the band for the next tour. Now, Peter was gone, yet again. Kiss was back down to just Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley with the hired guns of Eric Singer on drums and Tommy Thayer on guitar. This is the line-up that would stay in existence for the remainder of the Kisstory. The Rock The Nation Tour, was the start of a new era of Kiss. One where people either still loved the band and didn’t care who was in it or a group that hated Tommy for being in the band and wearing Ace’s make-up. Sorry folks, but so what. Tommy was hired to do a job and Tommy does that job very well. No one seemed to care too much that Eric was in the band and wearing Peter’s make-up and maybe that was because Eric had already been a big part of Kisstory before and he had earned his cat whiskers.
In 2014, Kiss toured their 40th Anniversary World Tour and the opening act was none other than Def Leppard. Yeah! That is right. The 2 bands I have seen in concert the most were playing together in the same show. Wow!! My family and I had just moved to Charlotte, NC that year and my brother, my sister and her husband drove up to Charlotte to see them with me. That meant a lot that would come up and see us and go see a show. I would’ve driven down to Atlanta to see that show, but it was a weekday which meant work. My sow on July 19th, 2014 in Charlotte was a Saturday!!
If I am being honest about the show, Def Leppard was absolutely amazing. Probably the best show I have seen them do. They actually blew the doors off Kiss. Kiss has become a well organized, choreographed Las Vegas show and it felt forced. It did not have the excitement as did Def Leppard’s. There was an electricity type energy in the crowd for Leppard that was not there for Kiss. Don’t get me wrong, Kiss was still great and it was still an awesome time. I am also so glad my family came up to see it with me. I can’t find a stub, but I have a shirt and some pictures!! My pictures are pretty bad as my camera was an old iPhone that took shitty pictures.
It has been over a year now since I have seen a live show and it could be another year before I get to see another one. I started thinking back on all the shows I have seen and the memories came flooding back. Now back some time last year, the LeBrain Train: 2000 Words or Less did a live stream on the Nigel Tufnel Top 10 Favorite Live Shows of all time. Each guests gave a list of their 11 favorite shows and I had a list for the show. I thought why not spell it out here for everyone to read in all its glory and add some pictures and extra information, if I have any. I hope you enjoy.
11. Motley Crue – Girls, Girls, Girls Tour (1987):
November 22, 1987 at the Omni in Atlanta, GA. The opening act was Guns N Roses. The lineup alone makes it a favorite but what happened at the show is why it is on the list. It was not a good show at all which is why it is down at 11. It is only on the list for what happened at the show. During GNR’s set, Axl jumps off stage at about the 2nd song to grab a security guard who pushed his friend. Axl is held backstage while the band plays a couple songs (“Communication Breakdown” and “Honky Tonk Women”) with one of their roadies and that was all got from them. Motley delayed coming on and then put in a half-ass show and left early in protest of Axl’s arrest (at least this is the rumor we heard). It pissed me off so much I stopped listening to both bands for awhile. Ticket prices at the time were only $17.50.
If you read this blog regularly, you would notice that I started collecting Kiss Tour Books and this collecting is a very recent thing. As a result, I have suddenly had numerous Tour Books fall in to my lap almost literally. First were a couple of Bon Jovi Tour Books and now I stumbled across not 1, not 2, not even 3, but 4 Rush Tour Books. It is like the Tour Book Gods are speaking to me. I grabbed all 4 as the prices were really great and made it worth owning. This here is the final of the 4 Rush Tour Book posts that have been done. The place I found these was Hardy Boy Records in Mint Hill, NC. I always seem to find some cool stuff from him as I have found numerous Kiss Bootlegs at his shop. His shop is quickly becoming my favorite place to go.
We’ve already covered three tour programs for ‘Power Windows’, ‘Roll the Bones’ and ‘Counterparts’. We are now the final one in this set of tour books I picked up and it is for the Test for Echo Tour which was the band’s first tour without an opening act, and was billed as “An Evening With Rush.” The tour kicked off October 19, 1996 and ran until July 4, 1997. This was the only concert tour in which Rush played the song “2112” in its entirety. The set list was broken in to 3 parts and it is the best yet…
“Dreamline” “The Big Money”/”Wipe Out” (Replaced with “Limelight” for the second leg) “Stick It Out” (Second leg only) “Driven” “Half the World” “Red Barchetta” “Animate” “Limbo” “The Trees” “Freewill” (Second leg only) “Red Sector A” “Virtuality” “Nobody’s Hero” “Closer to the Heart” “2112”
“Test for Echo” “Subdivisions” (Dropped from the second leg) “Freewill” “Roll the Bones” “Resist” “Leave That Thing Alone” “The Rhythm Method” (drum solo) “Natural Science” “Force Ten” “Time and Motion” (Moved around the setlist before being dropped on 9 Nov 1996) “The Spirit of Radio” “Tom Sawyer”