Remember that time when…we were 7th row for David Bowie?

David Bowie and NIN on the Outside Tour 1995-96

David Bowie and NIN on the Outside Tour 1995-96

Simply, welcome to a new rotating author column entitled “Remember that time when…”.
How it works:

1. I’ll start with a story from my past which happens to be the one and only time I saw David Bowie in concert
2. I’ll leave it open to the next author (whomever would like to continue on) to recall “That time when…” Perhaps then we can nominate? I leave it to the authors and my co-publisher Shawn Baker to decide.
3. The only catch: it has to relate somehow to the previous story. It could in a number of ways. For instance the setting for this story takes place at The World Music Theater in Tinley Park, Illinois in October of 1995. So a number of thing could spin off…the location, the year, Trent Reznor whom shared the stage with Bowie, or even Bowie himself. But there should be no repeats in your relations from story- to-story.
4. Continue our stream of consciousness.

When Bakes and I first started Joup about 4 years ago, I was overseas in Australia and he lived in San Pedro, CA. We corresponded about three to four times a month and the idea popped in my head about starting Joup. For those not in the know or just haven’t gotten around to the “About,” maybe have a look to understand the scope a bit better. As I read back that introduction I am immensely proud of the direction(s?) of Joup, it’s authors and especially one Mr. Shawn C. Baker. You da the best Bakes.

Everyone has them now. I’m reading them online, watching film clips, hearing interviews and just feeling them. I guess it started on the jukebox after The Late Open Mic at The Gallery Cabaret in Chicago. Much talent at this tucked away corner bar in the heart of the Bucktown neighborhood in Chicago. We stopped our musical ramblings to honor quite possibly the most iconic individual artist in Rock ‘n Roll history. Dare I say music history? Well…that’s another discussion for another day. We played all of his songs on the jukebox: Ziggy Stardust, Suffragette City, Life on Mars, Jean Genie, Modern Love, All the Young Dudes, and of course Space Oddity. Too many songs to even name now. And then they started. “The time I first heard David Bowie…”,”The time I listened the Ziggy Stardust album for two months straight”,”The time I saw David Bowie walking down the street in New York.” We all have them. We all have our stories about David Bowie. This one’s mine…

Sunday October 1, 1995. The New World Music Amphitheater in the Chicagoland south suburb Tinley Park, IL Nice evening weather-wise. Fall in the midwest had just taken effect. My girl Lisa at the time had looked forward to this date for awhile. She wasn’t much of a goth but she obsessed over Trent at times. I think it had to do with Nine Inch Nails that OPENED for David Bowie on The Outside Tour. Me? I was into Bowie for at least a few years. The University did that to me. I was opened up to so much wonderful music from different parts of the world at this time. She was into Bowie as well as I liked my NIN…who doesn’t even if it’s to get a bit of aggression out. We bought pavilion seat tickets for the show about 45 rows back angled audience left.
They were terrific seats actually and we actually saw the show quite well and the sound was terrific, which those in the know will tell you The World can be hit-or-miss for sound quality. NIN went through a good amount of their catalogue and at the end of the set Bowie actually joined them for a few of their tunes. That was sweet, as you would imagine. Trent went through part of Pretty Hate Machine and Broken and focus more on The Downward Spiral and man did he bring it. They all brought it and my thought the whole time was, if this was that good, Bowie is gonna blow of the roof of the place.
Then comes intermission. So we sit and I noticed something…people were actually…leaving? WHAT? and not just a few like to goto the toilet or grab beer or both. No…They were LEAVING. As in leaving before Bowie even brought his band out. As I type this, I still couldn’t believe it. I give you that it was a Sunday…no fuck that, I won’t even give that. There are moments when you realize that you are suppose to be in a certain place at a certain time for a certain reason. Maybe it’s like 20%, probably less, but this was one of those times.
Lisa and I observed the mass exodus, looked at each other and just started seat hoping. We were able to move a section closer to the center as well. We kept decending down rows…35, 30, 25, 20, 15, 10 (WTF?) and we made to right around the 7-8 row..CENTER. And as we squeezed in with everyone else that had the same idea, he walked out on Stage to grand applause to those that stayed. Now granted It’s not like EVERYONE left (the lawn was still packed) but it did thin out. We were there…RIGHT IN IT. And it was awesome. He did mostly modern songs from his catalogue especially from his at-the-time recently release album Outside. Eventually Trent came out and sang on “I’m afraid of Americans” (which he laid music down on that tune) and even played Tenor Saxophone on a couple of tracks. What a treat. What a night, and I have all of those jokers who split to thank.

I never saw him again, live anyway. I’ll take it. Thank You Mr. Davie Jones you really made the grade. Planet Earth is blue mate and there’s nothing you can do. But you really gave us stories for thousands of lifetimes.

Joe Grez

Joe Grez

Joe Grzesik (JGrez) is still an artist developer trying to keep up with new technologies. Photography still has been one of his strongest passions. However, now his main focus has led him back to music where he teaches guitar, piano, saxophone and percussion privately. Music education can never be short changed.

2 Responses to Remember that time when…we were 7th row for David Bowie?
  1. KJ VanWormer

    KJ VanWormer Reply

    Beautifully written! I can’t wait to contribute to this….

  2. […] inaugural edition of the new column I recall a story from the Outside tour; you can read the piece h...

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