Concert Bucket List Band Checked Off!
July 27, 2016
For all of you who don’t know, Sweet Child O’ Mine by Guns N Roses is our “song”. We also love 80’s rock, so we were thrilled when we found out GNR had kissed and made up to go back out on tour! I wish I could have seen them back in their heyday, but I was way too young at that time. Tom had a young child and couldn’t afford luxuries like concerts lol. (For those of you trying to do the math, there is 20 years between us. #oldguysrule )
We have been on a concert bender the last couple of years. Our favorite bands are getting older and great musicians seem to be dying off at an alarming rate. If they aren’t dying, they are “retiring” (at least retiring until their next “last” tour). If they come anywhere near us and we can get tickets, we’ve been trying to go. We were lucky enough to see one of the Eagles final shows before Glen Frye passed and that experience is priceless. It was also one of the best concerts I have even been to, stay tuned for a future post.
Thankfully, GNR scheduled a date in Atlanta at the Georgia Dome. We were online ready to go before the 10am ticket sales began to score our tickets. Thank you music karma and preplanning! Happy Early Birthday to me, the show was July 27th, about 10 days after we returned from our Epic Pacific Northwest Road Trip! It was on a Wednesday night but you only live once right?
*Spoiler Alert: travel fail coming up*
Hey I played in a rock band, and Tom was quite the hell raiser in his day as well. We try to get the most of our vacation days so we figured we would get off at lunchtime on Wednesday and be back at work Thursday morning. Great plan! FYI – ATL is about a 6 hour drive from Myrtle Beach.
Turns out maybe that wasn’t such a great idea. It’s been quite a while since Tom and I were out all night then had to be at work the next day. We overestimated ourselves this time lol! It was worth it though read on:
The music gods were looking out for because we got out of town on time headed to Hotlanta! Tom HATES traffic so we decided ahead of time to park on the outskirts of the city and take the MARTA downtown. I LOVE public transportation and we take advantage of it whenever we can. It can be $20-30 to park in large cities so it is usually more cost effective to take the trains anyway. MARTA from I20 station to Georgia Dome: $15 round trip for 3 people, Score! Even if it’s not a money saver, it’s a sanity saver and you can’t put a price on that.
The train goes right into the Georgia Dome, you can’t get more convenient! Entering the grounds around the stadium was entertainment in itself. We saw the hedges moving around where some chick fell IN the bushes. When her friend tried to get her out, she fell in too! I felt pretty safe in betting they will never remember the concert, if they even made it inside.
I guess it had been too long since I went to a NFL game because I was unaware of their purse policy and that it extended to ALL events in an NFL stadium or dome. If you have anything bigger than a small wallet or NFL approved clear bag, you have to check it. I had what I though was a tiny purse and still had to check it. They give you a clear plastic bag. Talk about a fashion show lol.
*Travel Tip* If attending an NFL game or any event in an NFL venue, leave your purse at home and/or purchase a clear NFL approved bag to carry in with you. They are about $10 and well worth it.
The Cult opened the show, and they was decent. I’m not exactly a fan of the goth rockers but have nothing against them either. It was a solid performance, the crowd was just waiting for GNR. We had waited too long for this moment.
I hate to sound like a bad fan, but I really wasn’t expecting to be blown away with the quality of this concert. I was beyond pumped to be there, but more in the sense of the whole experience than the sound quality.
Axel may not have looked exactly as he did 20+ years ago (who does?!) but the rest of the band looked great. The show started on time, actually a few minutes early. Axel, in a t-shirt and with a flannel tied around his waist, started the show with “It’s So Easy”, and Slash delivered a blistering solo. Axel sounded good, flowing easily from his signature nasal sounds to the big wailing notes of “Welcome to the Jungle”. Axel was very energetic as was evidenced by his multiple t-shirt changes. Thankfully there were no underwear only moment, those day are best left in the 80’s.
Slash and Duff looked great, probably healthier than they were 20 years ago, especially in Duff’s case. Slash stood cool and collected in his classic guitar pose and the chemistry between Axel and Slash was like going back in time. Maybe even better. They dominated center stage, passing back and forth and thrilling the audience. Duff and Ferrer kept the backline in time and going strong, driving the songs and slowing down Axel’s sometimes rushed vocals. I especially appreciated Duff’s tribute to the fallen with Prince’s symbol on his guitar.
They went through the bulk of their Greatest Hits catalog, surprisingly including “Chinese Democracy”. It was an evening of thrilling guitar riffs coupled with incredible melodies. Never the one trick pony, their awesome power ballads were also sprinkled in and as well done as ever. Axel, at the beautiful grand piano, gave a killer performance of “November Rain”. Tom and I also grossed Rhiannon out dancing to Sweet Child. I was admittedly skeptical but thankfully was proved wrong. They crushed it for over two hours.
Apparently time can and does heal all wounds and old rockers really can grow up. The band looked healthy and actually seemed to be enjoying themselves. They were incredibly professional, which is kind of the last thing you would expect to say about GNR. Their past was filled with drugs, drama and strife, but it looks like their future may hold something completely different. Growing up, at least a little, isn’t always a bad thing.
Until next time, Live Your Adventure!