Aplscruf's Music Blog

Diary of a Married Groupie

Rod Stewart at the Gorge 9.12.1998

Rod Stewart

The Gorge Amphitheatre

September 12, 1998

Once again, we saw a terrific concert at The Gorge.  Rod had the place rockin’!

I purchased five tickets through Ticketmaster about two month earlier.  Our friends M & J and a neighbor of theirs wanted to go with us.  The tickets were about $58 apiece for reserved seats.  There were other tickets available, but this was the best I could do for the price.  I was tenth in line and still had to settle for Row 30.

One week before the concert, M called to say J couldn’t go.  We scrambled all week trying to find someone who not only liked Rod Stewart, but who also could afford the tickets and had the weekend off.  This was not easy.  Finally, Friday afternoon, M found a co-worker who convinced her three boys that their parents needed to attend this concert, even though it meant cutting their soccer game short.  D and D were excited to go.  M delivered the tickets to them Saturday morning so they could leave when they wanted and meet us at the show.  [2010-I have since learned after this show and later Bob Dylan’s to never, ever agree to buy other people’s tickets. ]

It took us about three hours to get to the Gorge, park, use the Honey Buckets and finally weave our way through the throngs of people to our seats.  Row 30, Section C wasn’t too shabby.  We had a left-of-center view of the stage.  At about ten minutes to 7:00 a band of about 10 Scottish bag pipers began playing some tunes to entertain the audience.  I believe they were supposed to open right before Rod came out, but the roadies were having some technical difficulties with some of the lights, and Rod didn’t actually appear until about 7:30.

The sun had set over the picturesque hills, nestled above the Columbia River.  The stage sits right on the edge of the cliff on the eastern side, with the reserved seating area fanned out around it.  The festival seating consisted of a grassy terraced hillside.  People brought lawn chairs and blankets for comfort.  There is also a VIP section which had their own boxed area with four chairs and a table for drinks.  No one was in front or behind to bother them. [Although, these seats are way in the back of the reserved section.]

Rod entered the stage and everyone cheered, as the show was finally underway.  He started the show with a song from his latest album entitled “Cigarettes and Alcohol”.  This was a great, rockin’, rowdy opener.  Rod was wearing black spandex tuxedo pants that had rhinestone glittering on the side stripes.  One of our friends who turned down tickets exclaimed they did not want to see an aging Rod in spandex.  Well, they would have had to leave right then! The pants cut short, above his ankles, and he wore bright yellow socks with black boots.  His silk shirt was checked black and blue.  His trademark blond hair was spiked in all directions.  He has a great head of hair!  His band consisted of two guitarists, one bass, a keyboard and an excellent drummer.   He had three male vocalists who could sing harmony like nobody’s business.

The next song, I believe, was “Forever Young”.  then came “Hot Legs”!  On the large screen behind the stage were 20′ legs!  That is such a fun song.  I could not keep from moving to the music during the entire concert.  I’m sore today!

Other songs included:

Young Turks

Infatuation

Some Guys Have All the Luck

Losing You

In My Heart

Ease My Troubles

Ooh La La

Tonight’s the Night

Rocks Off

Ol’ Motown Records

This Ol’ Heart of Mine

Maggie (one of the two encores)

and of course, his disco hit If you Want My Body

The three other vocalists also sang “Everyday People”, which was wonderful, while Rod took a quick break and costume change.  He left one other time while his awesome drummer banged out a five-minute solo.

Rod changed outfits about four times.  He kept the same pants, but wore a red silk shirt with white polka-dots, a couple of brightly colored jackets with different shirts, and two different hats:  one black with a brim, the other with black and white checks.

He was quite the showman.  He had a variety of greatest hits and some slow ballads.  On the slower songs, he requested the audience take a seat, giving our feet a much-needed break because we stood for most of the 2 1/2 hour show.

The only drawback was our lovely neighbors seated behind us.  Most of the crowd were between the ages of 30-50, except for the four girls behind us who were most likely college students.  They were drunk when they sat down, about 10 minutes into the show.  As the concert wore on, they continually pushed all of our folding chairs forward, hitting our calves.  They wanted more room to dance around.  I had to keep moving my chair back forcefully so I wouldn’t bonk the person in front of me.  I felt trapped most of the concert.  I tried to ignore them and concentrate on the fantastic show, but after a while, I really started to get annoyed.  The apologized when we gave them dirty looks.  One of the drunk girls actually peed behind us –squatted, while her sweet friends held up a jacket for modesty–because she didn’t feel like walking the few yards up to the Honey Buckets.  [Looking back, I should have found security and had them thrown out; but the show was so good, I didn’t want to waste the time arguing to get them removed.]

Besides the bashing chairs and peeing incidents, we thoroughly enjoyed the show.  Rod is a true entertainer and had us singing along the whole night.  We drove home that night, singing the songs–out of tune, of course.

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September 11, 2010 - Posted by | 1998, Music, Rod Stewart, The Gorge Amphitheatre | , ,

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