2005 - Sasquatch Festival - The Gorge
Finally a chance to see Wilco along with The Arcade Fire, Modest Mouse, Bloc Party, Jem, Pixies, Kanye West and Ray Lamontagne. The Pixies were the headling band. It was scorching hot – over 100 degrees but we survived. The bad thing about this festival, the SOUND WAS AWFUL. No one sounded good. I felt like a million miles away from the bands. I remember getting up and leaving during Kanye West. I had NO idea who he was. Bloc Party played before Wilco and they booed Wilco.
I remember Jeff Tweedy coming out in a suit (it was 100 degrees) and saying something about “thanks for the warm welcome.” Their set was riddled with sound problems and later I saw on YouTube Glen Kotche saying he will never play that festival or the Gorge again. I was not ready to give up on a live Wilco show, I told my husband. We were both disappointed and hope the band wouldn't break up because we knew they could put on an amazing show.
The show steelers were the Arcade Fire and Modest Mouse.
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="180" caption="My husband, the gorilla"][/caption]
2006 The Flaming Lips/Beck/Ween Les Schwab
When the summer line-up was announced and were pulling two of my favorite artists from the Sasquatch Festival - Beck and The Flaming Lips, I was ecstatic! My husband immediately went out and found a gorilla costume to rent and we tagged along with some friends. Imagine rolling down the road in a convertible Mustang with a man in a gorilla suit. Pretty wild. Anyway, the show was amazing. There were santas and animals bouncing around on stage and of course, the crazy balloon action in the crowd. They played the stand-bys and I didn't want to the show to end of until they played "war pigs" by black sabbath. What a downer to end the show on.
I can not remember but I think Beck played the next night or maybe the night before the Flaming Lips. Anyway, this was the tour with the puppet show which was really cool and trippy. This was a way different more energized show than the one in the years past on the "Sea Change" tour.
A couple months later, we went to see Ween at LSA. Ween is one of my favorite bands that I don't listen to much anymore. I think I need to change that. I sat in the VIP beer garden with Kina while our husbands went off to get into the crowd. This was my first Ween show and I didn't know what to expect. I had a chance to see them in 1999 but I can't remember why I didn't go. The show was pretty mellow until the sun went down where it got all sorts of crazy.
2007 - Arcade Fire Arlen Snitzer Portland Oregon
The Arcade Fire was so amazing at the Sasquatch Festival (minus the horrible sound) that while having a weekend away in Portland, we got tickets to see them perform with Electrolane. The energy this group puts out in their songs is amazing. We were on the balcony and it was shaking up there so much we thought the balcony would come crashing down! Ooops.
[caption id="" align="alignright" width="240" caption="Wilco amps at Edgefield show"][/caption]
2007 - Wilco, Edgefield Portland Oregon
Have you ever been to Edgefield? Its an adult amusement park -- a brewery, distillery and winery all in one. In the spring when I found out Wilco would be indeed playing Edgefield I reserved our room before we got the tickets. We showed up at 2 p.m. and Wilco was doing the sound check. We sat on the side porch of the building and listened, later to find out we COULD HAVE WENT INTO THE SOUND CHECK. Lame. I had one too many drinks before the show but I do remember it as we were only feet from the stage. This was the first time I yelled Breedlove and I did say something in my drunken stupor about if I get pregnant that night I'm naming my son Jeff or Glenn. Wilco didn't disappoint. They made up for the poor show at the Sasquatch Festival and that night played a show with Minus 5 in the bar on the Edgefield property. Too bad I had passed out from too much Black Rabbit Red. I felt horrible the next day but it was worth it.
2008 Wilco LSA Bend Oregon
I totally have an excuse for not seeing many shows in 2007/2008. I had my son in May 2008 so I knew that my travel would be limited this year. Have no fear, LSA announced the day my boss walked outat work that Wilco would be playing in my home town (what a great way to pick up an 8 month pregnant woman). Yay! Just needed a sitter. Two people tried to get us back stage but the band wasn't staying after the show and were headed to SF for some festival. BLAH. The show was magical. We were just feet from the stage. I was sober this time and even got to yell Breedlove. I remember requesting "Summerteeth" on the website and being delighted it was played. There wasn't too much Jeff Tweedy witty banter but he did make a comment that Bend's weather was amazing and he wouldn't give a plug for Breedlove guitars.
2009 Wilco Britt Pavillion Jacksonville OR
I have a blog post about this show so I'll let you read what I said then about this amazing show. I don't think anything could ever top how amazing this show was ...
We left Lil B with his aunt to spend the day and night. This was hard and damn it, Wilco is a band I would leave my child with his aunt so I could enjoy. We also hired a Britt Sitter (someone you pay $20 to stand in line for you so you can be one of the 150 ppl they allow to sit in the front) to stand in position until we arrived. After a game of shuffleboard in which Ryan and I killed my husband and Ethan, we headed up the hill to the Britt Pavilion. In 4th position was our faithful sitter -- there was no way we would not get front row. We listened to the sound check, Brian tell his "Pearl Jam story" and game of quoting "Anchorman" while waiting 90 mins for the gate to open. In preparation for the hot Southern Oregon climate, I drank a lot of water and had to find the bathroom. On my way back, I spotted the emo looking dude from Wilco (Pat Sansone, at the time I couldn't remember his name) walking down the road. I wanted to stop him and get a photo but I was alone so I told him "have a great show" and he said thanks. A little starstuck, I went back to my #5 position (Ethan had #4, Brian had #6) and waited.
The Britt folks take care of their members. They lined us up outside the venue and prepped us so we could run and grab our spots. We ran and grabbed front and center!!!! The cool thing is the stage is only raised a foot above the ground which meant we were pretty much gonna be eye-level with Wilco!!! More waiting, through the open act and then the prep for Wilco and then, they entered the stage. I said to Brian "um, Jeff Tweedy isn't very tall" and there were many exchanges about his Breedlove Guitars (which Brian plays and are made in Bend).
Words can't explain how cool it was to experience the show from front and center. The songs were amazing as Wilco knows how to put on a show. Twice, Jeff Tweedy was inches from me, within reach. The first time Jeff Tweedy came down during Spiders (kidsmoke) and had the kid RIGHT NEXT TO ME play his guitar. I was a little awestruck that a guitar playing legend was with in INCHES of me. After the show, he came up to the kid, STILL RIGHT NEXT TO ME, and handed him the guitar pick. The kid is one of the many Britt Sitters you can hire. He was #3 in line with us (I was #5) and was really excited for the show. One last thing, this show was so awesome that it knocked the Radiohead show I saw at Red Rocks in 2001 out of the #2 spot.
My friend Ethan, who went with us, asked me the other day "Are you sure your favorite band isn't Wilco?" If U2's album this year would have been good, I don't think I'd be into Wilco so much right now and my husband agrees as he's seen me even more fanatical over U2 and Radiohead. BUT the next show will probably put me over the edge on the fanatical side as now we're flying to see a member of Wilco ...
2009 Son Volt Domino Room Bend OR
I'm not a Son Volt fan as you can read the whole post here. I went to this show really without an open mind but I ended up enjoying it though everyone around me was talking about the Tweedy/Farrar rivalry. I was a little mad about this because how rude is that to the artist preforming? Pretty fitting that just a few weeks later, I'm seeing his rival's live solo show. Anyway, Son Volt's sent went like this ... a few slow songs and then a rocking song. A few slow songs and then a rocking song. This almost inspired an Ignite presentation on the Monsters of Alt Country Rock but I'm pretty sure everyone in Bend is sicking of hearing me talk about it.
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="240" caption="Jeff Tweedy solo show"][/caption]
2009 Jeff Tweedy Orpheum Theatre Phoenix AZ
I'm not going to say much about this show as I have a whole post coming soon. I'm letting this show marinate and I'm thinking about it. A Jeff Tweedy solo is not to be compared with Wilco. You sit down. He makes it feel intimate (even with 2000 people around). And it's almost a comedy show. Now, I had heard this and but never experienced it. Jeff Tweedy doesn't tour much as a solo act and when he does, it's only for one or two shows. Lucky for us, his sister lives in Phoenix and he decided to do a show while visiting. I definitely have more to say so stay tuned.
So this raps up the decade of shows I attended. In 2010, I've already purchased U2 (June!!) and Wilco (February) tickets. If Wilco plays this summer, we probably won't go unless it's in Bend. I'm holding out for Radiohead to play this and maybe the Flaming Lips! They definitely won't come to Bend to play so we'd have to travel. There are definitely bands I'm interested in seeing like the Avett Brothers and Phoenix but traveling is going to be out of the question for a while until the little one can attend concerts and enjoy them (maybe when he's 10?)