Have you ever had vivid memories of something that no one else remembers? I feel like I’m in the Twilight Zone every time I bring up one particular concert I went to in the early 80’s. I can’t even find proof on the internet that this night of musical fun existed. Can you help me?
It was definitely Halloween night at The War Memorial in Rochester.
I think 1980. Maybe 1981. I don’t think 1982, but possibly.
WVOR 100.5 FM was the radio station promoting it. At the time their slogan was about how they were “your Heart Of Gold station”, and at the time had a bunch of oldies music programming. Strangely enough Neil Young’s “Heart Of Gold” wasn’t in regular rotation.
The concert in question had a whole bunch of acts from the 50’s and 60’s doing their biggest hits… the artists included The Brooklyn Bridge, The Association, The Coasters, and four or five others including headliner Chuck Berry.
There weren’t very many people in the crowd. A couple thousand folks at the most, and that’s probably generous, in an arena that held about 9000. I’ll tell you how sparse the crowd was… my dad came to pick me up early so the guard let him in to watch the rest of the show (Berry’s set had just started) and he found me easily even though he had no idea where I was sitting. I have the feeling me being the only 15 year old in the row (maybe the whole section) by himself was helpful….
OBLIGATORY “HAPPY DAYS” REFERENCE ALERT!!!!
…. I was more alone than Richie the time he wasn’t allowed to tell anyone that Johnny Fish and the Fins were staying at his house.
Does anyone else have recollections of this show (the Halloween concert at The War Memorial, not Happy Days)? I’m trying to remember who some of the other acts were. I know most people don’t expect themselves to remember every detail of a random night forty years ago, but I’m truly frustrated that I don’t. I wish Marilu Henner was there… she would’ve remembered.
If that last sentence didn’t make sense to you click HERE.
I once asked the late great Jack Garner if he was there, and he didn’t know what I was talking about. Jack was absolutely the biggest Chuck Berry fan in Rochester (both literally and figuratively), so if he didn’t go… or didn’t even know about it… it makes me wonder if I dreamt the whole thing. Do I have my own Mandela Effect thing happening?
I’ve definitely had weirder (or similar) dreams. Just the other night I dreamt that I was at the Broadway show “Beautiful”, based on the life of Carole King. No, I don’t know why I wasn’t at an actual Carole King concert.
Shockingly, I’m not listening to Chuck Berry as I write this week. If you are in the mood for one of rock’s founding fathers you’ll find nothing better than “The Great Twenty-Eight”. I picked up a used copy on CD for five bucks at The Archive a few months ago. Maybe you’ll get lucky like I did.
What am I listening to? Well, it’s not what I originally asked my supposedly smart device to play for me…
Me: Alexa, play the album “Rip It To Shreds” by The Animals.
Alexa: Here is Rippingtons Radio from Pandora.
Me (sighing): Play the album “Rip It To Shreds” by The Animals.
Alexa: Here is the song “Rip Her To Shreds” by Blondie.
I started walking towards my discs to get my own physical copy of the live Animals album I was craving to hear, but then I realized something… this Blondie song is pretty awesome. My friend Mr. Google informed me that it comes from the 1976 self-titled debut release from Deborah Harry’s band.
My verdict after listening to the whole album:
It’s fantastic, and is now my official recommendation of the week. I think I’m going to put it on repeat and take another listen. Get it HERE.
Alexa wins this week.
Oh yeah, here’s the Animals record I was trying to play.
Remember, you can always get in touch with me via Facebook (Billy D’Ettorre), Twitter (@RadioFreeBillyD), and email (firstname.lastname@example.org).