The Neville Brothers: 3/17/1989

I don’t have a clear memory of this show. I’ve seen the Nevilles several times, and they were always great.

The Neville Brothers were actually four brothers: Art, Charles, Aaron, and Cyril. For me, they embodied the New Orleans sound. Their music was fun and funky, and it was always a dance party when they performed. Sadly, they officially broke up in 2012

I have vague memories of seeing them at Woody’s, which was Ron Wood’s music club on Miami Beach. I remember the place being packed, and people groovin’ and dancing. But the details of this show are lost in the haze of memory.

I wish I had more to share on this one. The Neville Brothers were awesome, and I’m sure I danced my ass off.

For those of you who have not heard the Nevilles, here’s a cool YouTube video clip from them performing at Tipitina’s in New Orleans.

 

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3 (Emerson, Palmer & Berry): 5/21/1988

I was (and still am) a huge ELP fan, so when I heard that the band 3, featuring Keith Emerson and Carl Palmer, were playing a nightclub in Fort Lauderdale, I immediately scored a ticket.

I don’t remember with whom I went with, but I remember the scene and the show itself most vividly. City Limits nightclub was jam packed, almost to the point of being really uncomfortable. But I was not to be deterred. I squeezed myself into a space where I had a good view of the stage, and especially Keith’s infamous Moog synthesizer.

I had seen Emerson, Lake & Powell a couple years prior, but seeing Carl Palmer pounding away was a treat indeed. And Keith’s playing was mind-blowing. I can still see him twisting knobs and pulling and inserting plugs during “Hoedown,” and laying on top of his grand piano, playing classical piano backwards. All the while, Carl pounding away with a precision that is unrivaled. I was not familiar with Robert Berry, but he was no slouch.

The band broke up after this tour (the only tour they did, I believe). I feel pretty fortunate to have been able to see them. Here’s the setlist.

Setlist:

  • Fanfare for the Common Man
  • Desde la vida
  • Lover to Lover
  • Hoedown
  • You Do or You Don’t
  • Talkin’ ’bout
  • The Fugue
  • Creole Dance
  • On My Way Home
  • Runaway
  • Standing in the Shadows of Love
  • America
  • Blue Rondo à la Turk
  • Toccata and Fugue in D minor, BWV 565
  • Drum Solo
  • Flight of the Bumblebee
  • Eight Miles High

The Radiators: 4/21/1989

Woody’s on the Beach was a Miami South Beach club owned by Ron Wood from the Rolling Stones, and a place where I often went with friends to hear live music and party until the wee hours of the morning. As such, details are often sketchy at best. This show falls into that category. I recall seeing The Rads at Woody’s, and I know I was with a bunch of my friends, but that’s all I can remember.

For those of you who are not familiar with The Radiators, they were one of the coolest New Orleans bands at that time, right up there with the Neville Brothers. I went to see them every opportunity I had, and even had some good bootleg tapes of theirs back in the day when collecting tapes was the thing to do. I have a great memory of driving up to Daytona to catch a free Rads show on the beach with my friend Todd and a couple other folk. Fun times!

Wish I had more to share, but alas, that’s all I got. If anyone out there has a setlist from this show, feel free to add it to the comments.

Donovan: 11/20/1987

Club Nu was a trendy nightclub on Miami’s South Beach, which seemed like an odd place for an old hippie like Donovan to be performing. But several of my musician friends and I went to see the psychedelic troubadour and made sure we were in the appropriate state of mind prior to the show. My friends included Bongo Bob, Greg, and Big Ed (RIP).

As we mingled in the strange scene which was the South Beach nightclub, the lights went down for the opening act. I stood for a bit, trying to grok exactly what it was that I was observing, because it did not make sense to me. Something was… different. Then it dawned on me: female impersonators. We were being treated to a drag show as the opening act. It was surreal, to say the least.

Later, Donovan took the stage, just himself with an acoustic guitar. My friends and I sang along and were truly engrossed in the performance. I had the strange feeling that most of the other people there had no idea who this old guy was or why he was up there singing, but I didn’t care. I was happy to see the musician whose music inspired me and my friends. After the show, we all hung out together and played Donovan songs on our acoustic guitars. It was a great night that lasted till the early morning hours.

Sadly, I could not find a set list online, and the memory of this night is a little too hazy to recall what he played; but I can say with certainty that there were not any songs that I wanted to hear that he didn’t play. “Let us rejoice and let us sing and dance and ring in the new: Hail Atlantis!”

Ron Wood and Bo Diddley: 6/22/1988

wooddiddley_6-22-88

As I mentioned in my previous post about the first night of the two-night stand, my memories of the numerous shows I saw at Woody’s on the Beach are somewhat vague, but this night I remember well. Ron and Bo were particularly pumped and they broke into some classic Stones tunes, as well as some Faces. And while Ronnie Wood is not a great singer by any stretch, watching him sing “Honky Tonk Women” and mimicking the snorting of cocaine with his big nose while croaking out “She blew my nose and then she blew my mind” is a rock and roll image that is forever burned into my memory.

The Faces medley was also quite an experience for me. The first concert I ever attended was Rod Stewart and the Faces, way back when (unfortunately, I do not have that stub). So seeing Ron jam on these tunes connected me with my concert christening.

Finally, the gunslingers closed the show with a smokin’ version of “Hey! Bo Diddley.” I could not think of a better song to wrap up two nights of rock, rhythm and blues.

Here is the full setlist.


Setlist:

  • Crackin’ Up
  • I’m a Man
  • Money to Ronnie
  • Around the Plynth > Prodigal Son > Gasoline Alley > Little Red Rooster
  • Honky Tonk Women
  • Black Limousine
  • Bo Diddley’s A Gunslinger
  • You Can’t Judge a Book by the Cover
  • It’s All Over Now
  • Hey! Bo Diddley

Ron Wood and Bo Diddley: 6/21/1988

wooddiddley_6-21-88

Woody’s on the Beach may have been one of the coolest music clubs ever. Owned by Ron Wood (guitarist for the Rolling Stones and the Faces), it was a place where you could see amazing artists in an intimate setting, and you never knew who might show up.

Ronnie would frequently perform there with special guests, and Bo Diddley was somewhat of a regular. I tried to catch them together whenever they played. This particular instance, they were performing two nights, so I bought tickets to both shows.

Because Woody’s was a nightclub and the performances generally started late in the evening, many of the shows became a little fuzzy. But I have a clear memory of Ron and Bo on stage together, trading licks and basically having a great time.

Thanks to the wonders of the internet, I was able to locate the setlist from this show. Check it out, and be sure to check back for my somewhat less fuzzy memories of the second night!

Cheers!


Setlist:

  • Mona
  • Ooh La La
  • Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On
  • Seven Days
  • Too Late
  • Black Limousine
  • Diddley Daddy
  • Money to Ronnie
  • You Can’t Judge a Book by the Cover
  • Lord Have Mercy

The Ramones: 10/30/1984

Ramones_10-30-84

So as you can see, not only do I have a ticket stub from the Ramones, but I have a guitar pick too! It’s kind of a crazy story, so here goes.

I kind of liked the Ramones, but my friend Jim was definitely into them and invited me to go. I figured I might as well check them out.

The Button South was one of the main South Florida rock clubs at the time, and the place was jam packed with rock and roll crazies. We made our way up to the front and waited for the show to start.

The Ramones exploded on the stage. They were high energy right from the first note, and Jim and I were almost directly in front of Johnny Ramone. They all looked strung out, especially Joey who was skinny with long hair, growling into the microphone. It was pure rock and roll! I also marveled at their equipment, which looked like crap. The cords were patched together with old electrical tape and the amps looked battered. I was surprised that they still produced sound.

Anyway, on to the story of “the pick.” There was a girl who was next to me who had her hands cupped, begging Johnny Ramone for a pick. He kept coming up to her, holding a pick just above her outstretched hands, and then tossing it out to another part of the crowd. This went on the entire show. This girl didn’t dance, didn’t move, just stood there, begging.  Finally, after the last song of the encore, Johnny drops a pick into her hands… and it bounced out and landed right in front of me. So, I picked it up and looked at it. Now, I was a dumb teenager, and all this girl had to do was flash me a sad look and the pick would have been in her hand. But no. She got in my face and started screaming at me, saying that the pick was meant for her. I looked her in the eye and said, “Well, you should have held onto it then,” and tucked the pick into my pocket.

Later on, I felt somewhat sorry. Regardless of the fact that she was nasty to me, I probably should have given her the pick. But I was young and stupid. And “hey ho,” I still have a Ramones guitar pick.