Live music you have attended that left impact....perhaps better than you expected.

I have seen great symphonies, Chicago, Moscow, Boston and others including some smaller cities performers that were quite good, Madison, Wi, Milwaukee and some other Midwest cities.  Actually did a bike trail with the first chair Cello player from the Chicago Symphony and his girlfriend from the singers and they stayed at my home and I made a very good meal for them....with a excellent Bordeaux...and this made for a great memory. 

As far as Jazz and Pop, the list is long and I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to see these.
James Taylor
Jackson Browne (several times) the best was "Running on Empty" tour. 
Little River Band 
B.S.and T. 
Nancy Wilson
Woody Allen, Jazz bar in NYC
Harold Land (just great)
Julia Fordham (a few times)
Gene Pitney (I was amazed at how good he was and how much he sounded just like his recordings)
Hall & Oats
Peter whatever his name was, Switched On Bach
Joni Mitchell 
Diana Krall, a few times, and once with Elvis.
Wynton Marsalis
and more than are coming to mind...
I wish I could have seen, Chet Baker, Paul Desmond, Ella, Dinah Washington, Blue Mitchell, Art Farmer, Clifford Brown, early Rosie Clooney, and many more that were so great in the 40s through the early 70s.

And I am a bit sorry to say, I have seen more than I have listed and cannot instantly recall them....but all part of being an old fart, my sons call it O.F.S., Old Fart Syndrome.

It would be good to hear from members about your live music experiences. 

Prince. I've seen a lot of shows.. He put on one of the best. Always the best SQ. I saw him 3 time. The first time he was 16-18 maybe. Trench coat and a womens Teddy and knee high leather boots with 6" spikes..

He opened for someone, NO one had ever heard of him.. Prince..

Pink Floyd
Jeff Beck
Tony Williams Sr.
Stanly Clark
BB King
James Brown
The Beach Boys
Led Zeppelin
Merle Haggard
Linda Ronstadt
Al Di Meola
Sly Stone put on a heck of a party too 1000 years ago...
Having grown up in L.A., I had an opportunity to see some great rock acts including many legends.

Tom Petty 1979
The Who 1980
Bruce Springsteen 1980
The Rolling Stones 1981 - The Stones played to a sold out L.A. Coliseum. A then unknown Prince was the opening act in which an unruly L.A. audience booed him off the stage. The Stones were great but I regret that Prince never got to finish his set.
The Pretenders 1981 - This was with the original band members shortly before drug overdoses took its toll.
The Clash / The Who 1982 - The Clash opened for The Who at the Coliseum.
Neil Young 1982
David Bowie 1983
Bob Seeger 1983
Simon and Garfunkel 1983 - This was a reunion concert at Dodger Stadium.
U2 1984 - This was at the relatively small Long Beach arena before they started playing mega arenas.
Lou Reed 1985
Van Morrison 1985 - Van was great and Jazz legend Mose Allison opened for him.
John Fogerty 1986
R.E.M. 1986
Tom Petty / Bob Dylan 1986 - Petty and the Heartbreakers opened for Dylan and later backed him.
Jefferson Airplane 1988 - This was a reunion concert with the original 60’s band members.

I moved to the Seattle area in 1990 where I still live. I saw the following at Bumbershoot (Seattle’s Labor Day music festival) and other venues around Seattle.

David Byrne
The Sex Pistols - A reunion concert
The Lovemongers (Ann and Nancy Wilson of Heart)
Joan Baez
10,000 Maniacs
The Cowboy Junkies
Suzanne Vega
Dr. John
Patti Smith
Los Lobos
Jimmy Cliff
Siouxie and the Banshees
The Philip Glass Orchestra - They performed the Koyaanisqattsi soundtrack live while the movie played on screen.

Paul Simon / Bob Dylan 1999 - Paul Simon opened for Dylan in Las Vegas.

I've done the rock thing since the early 1970's. Have been to more concerts then I can remember.
One that I do recall was skipping out of high school with some friends, heading to Central Park to see Jefferson Airplane/Starship ( whatever they called themselves at that point) with 200k other people. These days I think they suck musically but it was an awesome event. NYC was a great place.
In the 70's in NY you could go out any night of the week and find great music. Every bar had a band. What I remember most are the jazz players. Dizzy at the Village Gate. Buddy Rich and his Allstars at a tiny venue in Hartsdale, NY. - Syncopation was the name of the place
Then in 1976 or 77? we had tickets to see John Mayall in the same little place. We started to drive there and realized all the lights were out....yep the big east coast blackout. We arrived and were told not to leave. Some pickup trucks arrived with generators and parked out back. They played all night long and we walked out when the sun was shining.
Seen Dylan more times then I can count but I remember most was after the old United Palace (Broadway and 170th St?) reopened. Awesome Concert. Awesome venue. Seen many concerts there. And his annual concerts at the Beacon...yep been to many of them
There was (and still is) The Blue Note Cafe in the west village, and yea the Village Vanguard!!!!
Then there was a period in my life where I would just buy tickets to Lincoln center and go listen to  the philharmonic orchestra. I was staving off NY burn out at an early age. Often I would take my than young daughter. We'd arrive, I'd close my eyes and in two hours I am sure I traveled a few million miles and back again. Alice Tully Hall....Really Great music...mostly I remember piano greats.
The Newport Jazz Festival in Saratoga was an annual and always an epic event.
The last concert I attended pre-covid was The Who in Madison Square Garden with my now 32 year old kid. The violin player is one of her clients.
Of course there was always Zappa on Halloween night
Many many more that I'm leaving out.
What I don't understand: where did the live music go? none of the local places have live music anymore
Thank you for your posts.  All of you have seen people I would like to have seen.  Sweet Basil's and The Blue Note in NYC were simply great evenings with great music and friends.

Perhaps the oddest musical experience I ever had was when I was in the Air Force and went to the "club" art a remote base in the middle of nowhere and a group showed up with a pretty blond and brunette that turned out to be ABBA....don't know what they were calling themselves at the time.  Also I was on vacation and one evening at a nice "yacht club/bar/supper club" this young grey haired guy started doing a comedy routine, was Steve Martin in his early days.  Oddly later I was at MOMA in NYC and in a room with a huge Jackson Pollock I was backing up to get a better look and backed into someone....turned out to be Steve Martin.  
So many interesting experiences in my life have very much been unplanned surprises, like when racing at Road America and having contact with Paul Newman.  

Went to hear Jose Feliciano with a friend several years ago at a small venue.  I really wasn't too interested, but we ended knowing the door man, got great seats, and proceeded to be blown away by how good Jose and his band were.  Jose is blind, and so was his piano player. To say the band was "tight" is an understatement.   He can play a lot more than Feliz Navidad!  They even played some Hendrix.  One of the best shows I've ever attended.
I’ve seen a bunch of superb live musical performances in my day. The ones, though, that were truly transcendent and altered my taste were (Speak memory!) are...

Springsteen at the Inglewood Forum.
The Berlin Phil with Von Karajan at (where?) the Ambassador Auditorium.
Television at the Whiskey.
Bizet’s Carmen at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion

Took my daughter to see Harry Styles (pre COVID) was floored the guy is fantastic and has a great band.

We flew down to Dallas (see my son and daughter-in-law) and went to Harry Styles show there. Jenny Lewis opened for him and was wonderful.
Great performer just to many screaming girls lol.
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First show Airplane with twin reverbs & Blue Cheer with a Marshall wall.
Joplin @ Ravinia
Rare Bird
Sha Na Na six encores. 
Little Feat @ Riviera
Ray Chen anytime any place
In the 50+ years I have been going to see "live" music, I have had the pleasure to many fabulous concerts, but for brevity's sake I will only include a few highlights from the 1970's. Most are the first time that particular artist visited Vancouver (Canada).    

Pink Floyd (Dark Side of the Moon Tour) at the PNE Gardens Auditorium on Sept. 30/1972. The Gardens is a small, 5,000 seat venue and the band was mesmerizing. Their quadraphonic sound system combined with a chemically enhanced audience made it lots of fun.   

Johnny Winter And, featuring Rick Derringer at the Pacific Coliseum on April 2/1971. The band also included Edgar Winter along with bass and drums by Double Trouble, who went on the join Stevie Ray Vaughn. Although they were backing up John Mayall, the concert died when they left the stage. Probably the highest tempo concert I have ever seen.    

Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers at The Commodore Ballroom on June 15/1978. The first tour by a music legend. The Commodore is basically a music nightclub with a dance floor installed over a layer of rubber tires and Tom and the band had it rocking. Because he only had one album at the time, there were a lot of cover versions and the 3rd encore was the Bobby Fuller Four classic "I Fought The Law".   

Edgar Winter's White Trash at PNE Agrodome on July 23/1971. One of the most underrated bands ever. A combination of funk, blues, R&B, and rock & roll, including great vocals by Winter and singer Jerry LaCroix and a killer horn section, they absolutely ripped it up.   

Elton John (1st tour) at the  PNE Agrodome on April 23/1971. I saw Elton 5 or 6 times between 1971 and 1984 and during his heyday he was the gold standard of keeping an entire arena on its feet for 3 hours.  This was before all the theatrics and the setlist was completely the "Elton John" album and Tumbleweed Connection.    

Bruce Springsteen (Darkness on the Edge of Town Tour) at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre on June 26/1978. Simply the best live show I have ever seen. Over 4 hours of vintage the Boss and the E Street Band. The had two sets with a 15 minute intermission. He was back playing in 10 minutes and went on the play everything you wanted to hear, bought the show up the aisles into the audience and Clarence Clemons was phenomenal.


I' kid and have been seeing Concerts since the 60's.But I have to say a Bruce Springsteen's concert is always a fantastic show.He said he plays like it was you the concert goes was seeing his first concert....
I can't possibly list them all but;

The one that made me cry, Carmina Burana, The Cleveland Symphony Orch and Choir.

The loudest one, Peter Gabriel, The Security Tour

The most intense one, NIN, With Teeth

The first one, The Allman Brothers Band when Duane was still alive.

The one that made me dance, Tower Of Power

The one that totally blew me away. RTF just after Where Have I Known You Before was released.
There have been far too many to list here, blues, jazz, folk, classical, disco, reggae, soul, hard core, crooners, punk, rap, electronic, techno, electronic dance music,  rock-includes psychedelic, blues rock, garage rock, Top 40 type bands, progressive, glam, art rock, soft rock, and some others fit into sub genres I won't go into.
Surprising, I'd have to say Neil Diamond, mid 70's. While I enjoyed his early Top 40 hits, I was into more complex sophisticated music in that period, considered him kind of cornball at this point. My gal at the time convinced me to go, I was so wrong about Neil. Great band, great sound quality, covered a lot of territory, and what a showman, how a real professional does it.
Shawn Phillips, again another gal convincing me to go to show, I'd never heard of him at this time, early 70's. Another great show, man, what a voice, magnificent!
Television, small venue, mid 80's, really good friend sound man for show, audiophile as well. Great band, two lead guitars, great sound, perhaps best ever for rock band. That friend now works in sound reinforcement in the Caribbean doing reggae shows.

Another great surprise was enjoying hard core mosh pits in mid 80's, some were too violent for me, Black Flag being one, blood was flowing, including one of my friends.  Circle Jerks were one of the nice relaxed ones, lots of physical contact without provocation. Some of the hard core bands promoted violence, others, were more about feeling alienated, yet elicited a sense of everyone being together in that alienation, I could relate at the time. Most hilarious hard core memory was Black Flag bloodbath in Pontiac Michigan, same night the Pope came to Silverdome, hard core people with spiked hair, rings in nose, ears, tattoos, leather walking on same streets in opposite direction of the righteous and pious going to gaze upon the  Pope, what a study in social demographics!
You are so right about Edgar Winter's White Trash. Absolutely one of the best live bands ever.
For me it was Doug McLeod playing Blues in coffee house about 10 feet from me. I was sitting on an old flee ridden second hand sofa, and the coffee house was pretty much Salvation Army furnished.
“The New Panama Limited” made one heck of an impression.
+1 for Syncopation club on Central Avenue.

-Springsteen Born to Run tour.  He played 5 nights at Palladium Theater, NYC.
-Blondie, 1st album at the Village Gate, 1977.
-Blondie again, 1978.
-Elton John, 1974 at MSG with guest John Lennon.
-Tom Petty, 1st album, Palladium Theater.
-Buddy Rich, The Felt Forum, 1977.
-Sisters of Mercy, 1984, The Ritz.
-The Creatures (Siouxsie & Budgy) TLA Philly.
-Zeppelin, MSG 1977.
-Roxy Music, Final show 1983, Tower Theater.

My first concert was Jimi Hendrix and I worked my way through the rock bands of the 70's.  I now enjoy smaller venues with jazz etc. and really focus on the music instead of the "event".  I was at Benaroya hall this last Sunday and heard a wonderful performance by Ray Chen of the Tchaikovsky violin concerto.  We were in row O center.  

The one thing that was confirmed again is that live acoustic music doesn't have any etched, brittle high end.  it would not even be considered ultra high resolution in my opinion.  When I hear a system that is voiced for that upper detail and it does get brittle, I'm out.   
Thanks for the mention of  David Byrne, how did I ever leave him out.  

Think I need to run through my memory and take some notes.  Seeing Diana Krall live outside while having a few local brews and a Brat was a slice of heaven and local culture.....and yes, the Brat did have sauerkraut!

Vladimir Horowitz
Arthur Rubinstein
Glenn Gould
Rudolf Serkin
Myra Hess
Leonard Bernstein
James Taylor

and many others.

Here are a few concerts that I attended and forgot to list in my previous post. 

Bad Company 1979 - My very first concert towards the end of High School.  
ARMS Benefit Concert for Multiple Sclerosis 1983 - This was a charity concert in honor of Ronnie Lane who suffered from MS.  The performers included a superstar lineup of British Rock including Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck, Joe Cocker, Bill Wyman, and Charlie Watts.  I can't believe I left this one off my initial list.
Los Lobos / X New Years Eve 1985 -  Los Lobos opened for X while X rang in New Year's day 1986.  
Steve Winwood 1988 - Winwood performed his 80's hits along with key songs from the Spencer Davis Group, Blind Faith, and Traffic.  
Michael Franti and Spearhead 1997
The one thing that was confirmed again is that live acoustic music doesn't have any etched, brittle high end. it would not even be considered ultra high resolution in my opinion. When I hear a system that is voiced for that upper detail and it does get brittle, I'm out.  

+1  @goose .

Jeff Lyne's ELO 2019 amazing show and his voice hasn't faltered), EVERY Gogol Bordello concert.  
Boston symphony orchestra holiday at the pops.....otherwise none....most Rock concerts sound absolutely atrocious....there have been some small acoustic ensembles that I’ve heard that sounded relatively good...
There's been quite a number of shows in all sorts of places, but I'll hit a few high points instead of a list...*s*

A warm night in late August of '69, parking the fringe of Griffith Park to sneak 'n slide downhill to the back wall of The Greek.
Joni Mitchells' set had just started when we got comfy just right of center.  Love then was a willowy blonde with a voice like a goddess...
CSNY followed acoustic only to end the night with a 'TaDa!' opening of curtains to all the electronics, glowing like cats' eyes....
Stills thanking the audience, and a shout-out 'to all the creatures in the forest!' who responded with their own light show of lighters 'n flashlights.

A full third of the audience...was in the trees beyond the walls.....'ta da', indeed...;)

- Talking Heads @  The Greek, Berkeley; The 'Big Suit' tour....
- David Byrne attending the debut of 'Stop Making Sense', the Movie in April '84, SF at the Castro Theatre in ('natch) The Castro; Had to go, lived in The Mission, 3 blocks from 'The Mission', 1.5 from Dolores Park....
- Twice here in AVL, balcony center, first row once...

- Laurie Anderson, anytime in range. Twice in Berkeley, 2 again in Houston, once here in AVL.  Second performance in Houston, got front row seats stage 1/2 left.  Oncore 'bow', offered an accepted white lily bouquet.

Days, gone by....for sure.
Waiting to see what's next on the venues worth the 'risk' of us'all...*L*
See ya, J
...a small thing in Houston, 5 concert harpists for 'an evening of Jazz 'n Harps....
...Harpo taught me early to love the harp, esp. in the hands of great.

Ought to sound great thru those fire bottles, but pity you don't have omnis'....;)
For the ss crowd...

...and if you just want a nice, basic,pre-classical eve with 'some modern enhancement'....

( to see that group walk into a Walmart...)

...or just dust the subs....and the walls....
Bonnie Raitt, Sweet Forgiveness Tour. Late 70's. Final show of the tour and Bonnie and the band were red hot. She really strutted her stuff, showed she was much better than I'd ever realized.  At the end, her dad came out and sang "Oklahoma" !  

Richard Thompson. . .early 90's. I thought I'd seen some great guitar playing. . . but man, with just a strat and a black face Deluxe, he blew the roof off the place. . . and we had seats about five rows from the stge. 

SRV. Same time period, also in Portland Me. Another incredible display of "guit-artistry". At that point, he was coming from a very spiritual place and this was reflected in his playing. Pure bliss !  

Les McCann.  I'd never heard him so I was unprepared. Worked the room like a preacher. Incredibly soulful performer. 

Dave Holland Quintet, Yoshi's, Oakland, CA. some time in the 90's... I'd already seen them twice, but this gig was special. A real shame they didn't record that performance. They were all on fire. 

Freddie King, 1974. UCR gym. The most intense blues performance I've seen, and I've seen B.B., O. Rush, Son Seals, Albert Collins, Buddie Guy, Phillip Walker, SRV  That guy was intensity, incarnate. That vibrato!   

Los Lobos-- Bowdoin College Gym, "Will the Wolf Survive?" tour. I'd heard the single on the radio but had no idea how great they were. 

Rush on the Moving Pictures tour in Hollywood Florida. Actually got tear gassed lol!! 

Ozzy's first solo tour with Randy and a very young Def Leppard! Randy died shortly after. Still one of the best I've ever seen!!

Pink Floyd at Tampa Stadium was amazing!

Van Halen on the Women and Children first tour!ind blowing!!

Chris Botti a couple of times. Unbelievably great band and the sound was perfect!

Steven Wilson a few years ago! Another great band fill of elite players!! I hear Porcupine Tree is touring next year! Hope they tour the States!!

@asvjerry -- I had a proper ticket to that Joni Mitchell/CSN+Y concert at the Greek. Famously, that's where Joni met Graham. I had disliked CSN prior to the concert and I went to it specifically for Joni. I was impressed enough by CSN's acoustic set to become a fan. Then Neil Young showed up. Then they plugged in... Yeah, my fandom took a decided hit, but that didn't keep me from buying their record from a guy selling 'em on the path that led to the parking lot.


- Leonard Cohen at The Universal Amphitheater in the early-2000’s. Very dramatic, sophisticated, and musical.

- In the early-80’s I went to see The Plimsouls at a little "club" on Ventura Blvd. in Studio City named The Garage (it was an actual garage, a converted former car repair shop). The opening act was anounced, a name unfamiliar to me. When Los Lobos started playing and singing I was gobsmacked. Fantastic!

- The Lyres at Club Lingerie on Sunset Blvd. I liked this Garage Band’s albums, but seeing them live in the mid-80’s was a whole ’nother experience. Monoman on Vox Continental organ (right hand) and tambourine (left) and his tough 3-piece band was a mindblower. Intense, man!

- The Beach Boys at The Fillmore Auditorium (or was it Winterland?) in ’73 (I believe it was, though it may have been a year earlier). I had already seen them in the Summer of ’64 (my first concert), when they were just a semi-pro Surf Band. By ’73 they had evolved into something else entirely. Dylan himself was surprised and impressed seeing them at that time. His response was "Hey, they’re really good." They were, even without Brian.

@edcyn ...."Far out, man..."*L*  The 'improper tix' holds a certain element of risks, but the house looked full up...and we were just broke enough for gas...*G*

...but a Good Time seemed to be had by all. was an Era all it's own, fur chure....;)

Cream.  In Sutton Town Hall (south London).  An 'intimate' small venue.

Who could believe three guys could make so much music?  Indeed, so much noise with the small 100 wat amps of the time.

Seemed like there were about five of them.

Beatles--August 15, 1966--DC Stadium (RFK now)

Rolling Stones--July 4, 1966--The Dome, VA Beach (Long gone, alas...)

Ray Charles--June 29, 1963--The Dome, VA Beach

The Monkees--July 8, 1967--Jacksonville Auditorium (JIMI HENDRIX was introduced as "a guitar player from England" and was SECOND BILL.  Micky Dolenz fell off the stage at one point.

Jimi Hendrix--May 9, 1967--Charlotte Coliseum--(CHICAGO (Transit Authority in those days) was introduced by Jimi as a "great new band)

Eagles, Fleetwood Mac, Loggins & Messina--Tampa Stadium--July 4, 1976

(Hotel California/Rumors tour--pretty amazing).


Lots more, and I keep ALL my ticket stubs, but these are memorable.  At my school, UNC-Chapel Hill, we had $2.00 concerts during the week sometimes at a small venue (Memorial Hall, I think) and we saw James Brown and the Famous Flames and Little Anthony and the Imperials.  I think it sat about 400 people.


James Taylor 

Linkin Park

Cat Stevens

Pink Floyd / Roger Waters solo


The Smiths

I also saw the Eagles but was not aware of it as the concert was a Linda Ronstadt one...and they sounded great.

I've seen a lot of shows but I have to say I'm beyond impressed with some of these lists. Here are a few of my memorable nights--not necessarily the biggest bands but the shows that stay with me:

X (1981, I think; I've since interviewed John Doe a couple times)

Husker Du (also around 1981, when they were hardcore and LOUD and ferocious)

Stevie Ray Vaughan (early 80s, in a club; absolutely smoking)

The Dead (1978, my first of countless Dead shows)

Jean Redpath, late 70s; beautiful

The Takacs Quartet (Bartok cycle; NYC; brilliant)

Trey Anastasio (with classic TAB, small club; jam city)

Bill Monroe (the man, the myth, the legend)

The Furors (anyone from New Haven?)

Gang of Four (1982?)

The Stones (2012, Boston Garden, my son's first concert!)

Lou Reed (small club, with Robert Quine; Lou made lots of eye contact with everyone)



Perhaps an unusual venue, but I have seen many and much at SumerFest in Milwaukee. 


Went to a show at The Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake IA. Wasn't expecting

much but what a good show it was. Diplomats of Solid Sound, Kandy Kane,

and Kelley Hunt. Steve

Thaniks Steve.  The Surf Ballroom is a legend in the world of music.   As a man named Don sang,  "the day the music died"


Fleetwood Mac 1976  Stevie Nicks and Co. Awesome

Santana at same concert

Return to Forever. Probably #1 for me. 5th row center in our small concert hall.  Excellent sound and acoustics.  Four top musicians!

Weather Report(2X)  another fantastic concert.  Jaco Pastorious was worth the ticket alone. Good seats and sound.

Frank Zappa Adrian Belew on guitar also.  Fantastic sound

Grateful Dead 1984.  Seemed like it was one 3 hour song.  LOL.

Police.  Great performance

Hall & Oates  Fun concert

Tool.  Possibly best sound system in 8000 seat arena.  Impecable playing

Doobie Brothers, Marshall Tucker Band

Led Zeppelin.  Playing Presence.  Jimmy got sick only played 45 min.  But such music.  Crowd nearly rioted!

Roger Waters 2X  really good audio visual show.

King Crimson 2X  Odd public relations.  Leaned on the stage watching Adrian Below jam away while Fripp hid in the dark.  Both shows flawlessly played

Herbie Hancock.  Great piano

Talking Heads.  Nice small auditorium.  Worst sound I have heard at a venue