Monday, December 10, 2007

TVD Boards the Mothership

Big Andy and I are rattling toward the USAir Arena in his truck on our way to pick up some very last minute tickets to see the Page and Plant Tour in '95. It's our friend Gary's birthday and as a last minute idea, we're going to pick up any old tickets for the show while his girlfriend takes him to dinner. The show's been on sale for months and at this point -- and on a lark, the rafters will be a-ok. The tinny radio's buzzing with the local rock station playing tons of Zep in advance of the show. We've had a few beers and we're chatting about the Zep and I say, "Y'know man -- sometimes I hear a Zep tune on the radio that I've heard for eons now, and I'm never sure of the title. Like this one -- Bron-Y-Aur Stomp -- I mean, c'mon." Andy's got a cig hanging from his mouth as he's driving, "Dude, so right -- I have the SAME problem." So, we sidle on up to the Will Call and request four tickets. Dude slides four tickets under the glass to us, his hands covering the face of them so we can't see what they us a wink and says, "If you two can name five tunes Page and Plant are playing on this tour, these four are yours -- face value." "Mother f'er," I'm thinking, "we just HAD this conversation! We don't KNOW the song names -- SHEEZUS!" Andy's looking at me, I'm looking at him -- WTF? "OK, OK -- I just saw the Unplugged special on MTV...uh, er..." People in line behind us are are literally fuming as we're standing there, pulling Zep song titles out of our ass. But y'know -- we DID. Andy's on about "Are these obstructed view - are these OBSTRUCTED VIEW??" Guy says, "If you don't want 'em fine" -- slides the tickets in a block under the window and Andy's unfurling the lot and running toward the seating chart posted on the wall. "DUDE," he says "...LOOK." So, Gary shows up after dinner with his then girlfriend. Gary's a truly fantastic guitarist, a hay-uge Zep fan and an even bigger Jimmy Page fan -- literally could be his guitar idol. "Thanks for getting the tickets guys," he says not expecting all that much for the evening's vantage point. We head into the arena where the lights have already gone down. Andy's holding the strip of four tickets as the ushers are flashlighting them up and down and moving us on...lower, ...lower, ...lower.............second row.........f'n ...CENTER. I literally got splashed with Plant sweat, we were so close. And Gary? I think he had a rather decent Birthday.Led Zeppelin will play their first public gig in 19 years at the O2 Arena in London, and their first UK show since 1979 THIS EVENING and yes, I entered the lottery to win tickets and yes, I didn't win and yes, I'm wearing a tie right now getting ready for work. And yes, here's the last gig Led Zeppelin played with Bonzo on 07/07/80 in Berlin. (Smell the Plant sweat? I do.)

Train Kept A Rollin
Nobody's Fault But Mine
Black Dog
In The Evening
The Rain Song
Hot Dog
PART 2 (65 MGs)
All My Love
Trampled Underfoot
Since I've Been Loving You
PART 3 (62 MGs)
White Summer/Black Mountain Slide
PART 4 (86 MGs)
Stairway To Heaven
Rock And Roll
Whole Lotta Love