music revolution – full circle

the first concert i attended was at madison square garden on december 23 1972; the bill was grand funk railroad (opening act freddie king…hint hint).  let’s see…december 72…11th grade…16 years old.  being the sheltered suburban kid i had an innate (and unreasonable) fear of new york city.  my older sister went with me as she was in college and knew all about concert etiquette. you can stop laughing now.

Upon entering the massive MSG I noticed more than a few television cameras, including a long boom monster that looked like a mechanical giraffe on steroids.  Each of the cameras had the distinctive ABC television network stuck to the side.  They were filming the concert for “In Concert”, one of the first taped concert shows created by Don Kirshner (who passed away this past week)

Anyway, it was great.  all my silly fears were unrealized and my early christmas present was kewl.  Somehow, the opening of the In Concert broad cast has found its way onto you tube…obviously a bootleg and taken externally from a broadcast monitor.  the video quality is horrible and the sound is a bit out of synch with picture, but there aren’t many of us whose first concert was in ’72 that have a recorded archive.  This was after the release of the Phoenix LP…

Now while GFR was selling out the Garden, Shea Stadium and the like, they did not achieve massive commercial success until the release of We’re An American Band in 73.  By this time I was working at The Music Staff (see last Friday’s post) and was able to snatch a gold vinyl pressing of the album.  Now the concert master, i had two tickets to see them, again, at The Garden.  Problem was it was a weeknight during the school year and my choices for a concert-mate were going to be limited.  My buddy Mark F. agreed to go so off we went.  The bill this time was Suzi Quatro (complete with gold lame jumpsuit), Wet Willie and of course GFR.  Here is a clip from that tour.  You may not be able to tell but the blinking lights behind the band were arranged into a giant American flag.

footnote: suzi quatro is still recording and touring, mostly everywhere except the US.  And…

she can still KICK ASS….


Filed under music, YouTube

3 responses to “music revolution – full circle

  1. Loved GFR and I WANTED to be Suzy Quatro… remember her guest starring on “Happy Days?” At least I think that was her. Whoa. Thanks for the flashback! MJ

  2. Totally laughing my ass off at your warning. I may have to borrow it sometime as I get readers who have no clue to the meaning of simpler words such as snark, sardonic, and/or irony.


  3. cool cool cool! awesome videos! I wasn’t even born that time, but I love the music!

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