Experience Rock History!
Hello Hippies, Hipsters, Rockers, Live Music Lovers and anyone interested in archived rock concert reviews, real-life experiences and observations made during the magical and surreal 1960s and 1970s!
I present true archival reports and reviews on the concerts, music and culture in and around Los Angeles during the Classic Rock Concert Era of the ‘60s and ‘70s.
My life, heart and soul couldn’t have been at a better place in time than in my late teens in the late ’60s in L.A.
These last two in the countdown are published in descending chronological order.
All Time Top 10 Historic Rock Concerts 1972 -1975 #2
Great Western Forum, Inglewood, CA (Capacity: 17,000)
I was a big Alice Cooper fan and in 1971 I was just twenty but could still relate to “I’m Eighteen” from his new “Love It To Death” LP, with the original “thumb” cover.
Alice Cooper caused quite a scene back then; the guys cross-dressed, had scary make-up, performed rock ‘n’ roll drenched in the macabre.and of course, there was the python!
That was then, and this is now, 1975, and I was headed to the Forum to see Alice Cooper Superstar perform what was sure to be a historic phantasmagorical concert that would be forever imprinted in the mind of any fan who witnessed the “Welcome To My Nightmare” tour!
I was fortunate once again to have a great seat, especially for this highly visual concert; up off the floor left of stage but close in with a clear, slightly angled-down view of the stage at all times. It wasn’t just great it was almost perfect!
Since I don’t remember Suzi Quatro’s performance as opening act, it had to have been because I arrived “late”. My group and I had gotten so jaded but excellent at concert-going that we’d squeeze out every drop of hangin’ before jammin’ – that meant sometimes missing the opening act – either deliberately or due to an unavoidable delay. In Suzi’s case it coulda been a little bit of both. You see sometimes you don’t want to taint your headliner enjoyment by wading (waiting) through an opening act.
We knew who was worth seeing and who was not and besides we always timed our drugs to take effect at just the right time; not on the way there, although that could liven up the ride, or too late, by coming on half-way into the concert but perfectly to begin the trip just as the concert begins.. So there was a science and a proper procedure to follow to maximize one’s concert-going experience and we all had it down.
I liked Alice Cooper since back in the days of his association with Frank Zappa (caught a super rare concert; “Zubin and the Jets” – Zubin Mehta, the L.A. Philharmonic and Frank Zappa and the Mothers perform an orchestral version of “200 Motels” at UCLA) and played “Love It To Death” to death. So I had been following AC and the band for quite a while and having memorized “Welcome To My Nightmare”, this show’s featured LP – I was hyped and geared for what I knew would be a Rock ‘n’ Roll Horror Hoot!
The whole set had a huge screen with a haunted graveyard projection / movie from behind that turned the whole stage into a spooky psycho graveyard with low mist everywhere – really cool!
I believe it was just after Alice got guillotined, (and it was indeed very convincing), that they put his body (and head) in a coffin, and when I say they, I mean some pall-bearer ghouls and start to head for the projected screen. Now here’s where it got really cool, there were slits in the screen so when the coffin and ghouls passed through to the other side they had filmed them continuing on through on the real set so eventually they were all off the stage and onto the projected film carrying the coffin off to the graveyard! Very cool effect; really, it was slick with perfect timing!
Oh, yeah if I remember correctly we see Alice with his head back on running from the graveyard and through the slit in the screen disappearing from the screen onto the stage.
I get a full-blown charge outta stuff like that!
Unfortunately, I couldn’t locate any video of this.
One look at the setlist and it’s an Alice Cooper Fan’s Wet Dream and all the original band members were still onboard! Righteous!
A definite Rock History Event – I don’t think Alice Cooper was ever more popular than the build-up to this concert.
Proud of his violent and scary rock songs and persona, Alice (Vincent Furnier) has said, affectionately, that, “We were the group that drove a stake through the heart of the Love Generation.” But how is that possible when he exudes such joy and happiness? Does he know that? Alice, are you aware that we love you? We do.
Alice Cooper (vocals), Steve Hunter (guitar), Dick Wagner (guitar), Josef Chirowski (keyboards), Penti Glan (drums), Prakash John (bass) Tony Levin (bass), Allan Schwartzberg (drums).
Welcome To My Nightmare, Years Ago (partial vocal), No More Mr. Nice Guy, Years Ago (partial vocal), Billion Dollar Babies, Years Ago (instrumental), I’m Eighteen, Years Ago (vocal), Instrumental intro – Some Folks, Cold Ethyl, Only Women Bleed, Devils Food (w/backing vocals only), Band Instrumental, The Black Widow, Steven, Welcome To My Nightmare reprise/(Graveyard Scene)/Escape/Escape.
Instrumental reprise to start Encore: School’s Out/Department Of Youth.
Alice Cooper “Love It To Death” Full Studio LP!
All Time Top 10 Historic Rock Concerts 1972 -1975 #1
Sports Arena, L.A. CA (Capacity: 16,000)
WISHES DO COME TRUE!
I had a Rock ‘n’ Roll Fairy Godmother” and she granted my wish!
The Holy Trinity:
FRONT ROW CENTER
for THREE NIGHTS
of PINK FLOYD!
That’s right; it’s true no one between me and David, Roger, Nick and Richard!
Justifiably these three concerts rank as my single best concert experience(s) ever!
A true once in a lifetime event!
And the story on how I got these tickets is equally as rare and truly magical!
Remember, this was 1975, and while automation set-in with Ticket-Tron booths (precursor to Ticket-Master) in major department stores; the personal handling of tickets through the mail was still in effect. Tickets for these PF concerts (check the prices on the poster!) were handled this way and required the usual info; number of tickets requested and payment, they also required a SASE (self-addressed stamped envelope) to be included for the tickets’ return.
That meant that someone would physically have to open the envelope and read the amount of tickets requested, then verify the amount paid, enter the data, print out the tickets and mail them back in my SASE.
I saw this as an opportunity and I decided that I’d include a short letter stating my PINK FLOYD “obsessed fan status” followed by how much it would mean to me to have the best possible seats for the first three shows.
My intent was to see if I could appeal to anyone who still might have the power to grant my wish, er, request. I ended my letter with a sincere thank you, and sent the envelope.
When my SASE arrived I opened it like it was a Wonka candy bar with a possible golden ticket inside! Slowly I opened the envelope half-expecting to see at least decent seats (seats back then were sold on a first-come first-served basis) and pulled out twelve tickets: Row 1 – Seats 1,2,3,4 for all three nights!!
FRONT ROW – CENTER – THREE NIGHTS of PINK FLOYD! ECSTACY!
I was stunned, I just stood there staring at those tickets making sure I wasn’t hallucinating (I wasn’t) I really had them! Better seats (well, the BEST seats!) than I could have imagined! My “Rock ‘n’ Roll Fairy Godmother” really granted my wish! And you gotta know that whoever she or he was, they read the letter and thought, “Sure, what the heck, I have the power to blow a kid’s mind, I’ll grant his request because I can!”
I’ve said it before and I’ll continue to say it; those were magical times, truly magical. From the mid-’60s up to about the mid-’70s it was in the air, it was with the people you met, the clothes you wore, the music you heard, the life you led and the belief that anything was possible – and proof that it was.
To insure the truth of this unbelievable event, I made sure I had evidence – I took photos. The photos themselves are proof, as I was so close that I could only fit one Floyd per frame at a time!!
Here’s how close – it was hard not to make eye contact with David and Roger as I was the same guy wearing the black neon Pink Floyd DSOTM logo t-shirt every night in the same seat – in the front row – in the center. Nick and Richard were set a bit farther back so I never made eye contact with them. On about the end of the second night David acknowledged my presence with a smile to the guy who just kept yelling, “The Best! The Best!” Hey, I’m a fan, that’s what fans are for!
By the third night David acknowledged me early on with a smile and that was, well, beyond cool.
Between sets some whacked-out fans in the cheap seats (rows two through twenty) thought that since I was front and center (with my long hair and lookin’ all Official Roadie-like) that I was somebody who could get them Gilmour’s guitar – crazy fans, gotta love ‘em!
Behind the band was a huge round trampoline-shaped movie screen that rear-projected the entire video to DSOTM synchronized as Pink Floyd performed the whole LP.
It was truly like a dream was taking place. With a deja vu dream the next night and then another deja vu dream the following night – I was in Pink Floyd Heaven!
I had a pretty good PF bootleg collection and was familiar with Raving and Drooling and You Gotta Be Crazy from, I believe, the Screaming Abdab LP. The Wish You Were Here songs became instant favorites – I especially loved WYWH and is easily one of my Top Five Floyd Faves.
I was just in awe, it really was all too much and after the first night the thought that I was allowed to go experience it all over again the next night was unbearably cool. I was in a perpetual State of Floyd
So, I’m sitting there in a Pink Floyd-induced rock ‘n’ roll stupor between sets on night two and I get an epiphany; I have another opportunity, another chance of a lifetime, right before me!
I needed to get a note to David about doing their next album cover! I’m an artist, a good artist, he’ll go for it!
Yeah, I know, … but remember I was high on so many levels that it seemed like a perfectly reasonable idea. So, on the last night, the third night of their five night gig I had it all planned out; I’d take my professional note and secure it into one of the brand new super exclusive unlicensed black and neon Floyd shirts I wore (a new one) and take it to the concert with me so at the very end I could toss it up on stage to David.
The concert concluded and the whole place was going insane and as David, Roger, Nick and Richard were smiling and waving, I pulled out the neatly folded and compact-tucked t-shirt containing the note, took aim and fired off my t-shirt and watched as it flew right past David’s head and into a mass of cables near Nick’s drum kit – I over-compensated. I didn’t allow for the invisible yet interactive vibe level that was emanating within the Sports Arena and from Pink Floyd – damn, these were calculations I forgot to include in my throw. I knew better..
Anyway, I never heard from David or Pink Floyd’s management, .. don’t give me the Duh!-snicker. Soon after though, I found out that Hipgnosis had a contract with PF to do their covers. From then on I could rest assured in the belief that if there hadn’t been a contract – I may have had a shot!
And who knows, I may have, much stranger things have happened – like sitting FRONT ROW CENTER for THREE NIGHTS of PINK FLOYD!
The set list was also historic, truly – Beyond Belief!
The Concerts include WYWH elements and Animals previews.
Set 1: Raving and Drooling (Sheep), You Gotta Be Crazy (Dogs), Shine On (part 1), Have A Cigar, Shine On (part 2).
Set 2: Dark Side of the Moon (with a continuous synchronized video on a huge round screen behind the band.)
I have always held good vibes for my Rock ‘n’ Roll Fairy Godmother – wherever she/he is.