Well, I took my 11-year old to go see his first real live rock concert last night. That’s right - the biggest “oldies” rock tour of the summer: Cheap Trick, Heart and Journey. we had a blast. plus the weather was unusually cool for an august night which definitely helps when you’re at an outdoor amphitheater all night. I was generally happy with where we were sitting except for the fact that we were located right next to the VIP section. So as you can imagine, we had to sit next to the “privileged” folks who got served food and beer all throughout the night. Not really sure if their primary interest was to socialize/eat/drink at the venue or to actually watch the bands? well, I guess the fact that these VIPs were no where to be found by 3/4 of the way through Journey’s set kinda answers my question. ..anyway, on to the bands.

cheap trick in raleigh
Cheap Trick kicked off the night by rocking hard and loud. highlights were of course - “I Want You to Want Me”, “Surrender” and “Dream Police”. The only downer was that their mix was pretty muddy.

Heart live at walnut creek
The sound mix improved dramatically once Heart got on stage. man, I bet Ann Wilson can shatter glass with that mega voice of hers. wow! They opened with one of my favorites “Wild Child” and proceeded to slay the audience with amazing renditions of “Barracuda”, “Crazy on You” and “Alone”.

Journey at walnut creek
As for Journey. what can I say. Neal, Jon, Ross and Deen are simply phenomenal musicians. I am in total awe of the way their play together as a band. Neal is a monster on guitar. although I have to say that I thought I heard some flubs on some of his leads last night but b/c of the loud & dense mix from the house speakers it could have been my ears playing tricks on me.

Arnel Pineda at Walnut Creek in Raleigh
It was great seeing Arnel Pineda singing for Journey. The man held his own which says a lot especially when you’re having to always be compared to Steve “The Voice” Perry. Needless to say Pineda did us Asians proud!

I was hoping they’d play two personal favorites off their new record Revelation “Where Did I lose Your Love” and “Turn Down the World Tonight” but unfortunately they basically stuck to their tried and true set list. highlights from last night’s set include: “Any Way You Want It”, “Don’t Stop Believin”, “Ask the Lonely” and “Separate Ways”.

the 11 year old with his eyes half open.  sorry for the bad pic.  shoulda took a safety shot! :P
As for the 11 year old. I guess I won’t be able to tell if this had any sort of impact in his life until later on down the road. He definitely got a kick out of seeing Rick Nielsen’s unusual collection of guitars. especially the five neck model and the one named “Uncle Dick”.

I asked him afterwards if he’d go see other concerts with me in the future and he said yes. It wasn’t an enthusiastic “yes” but hey I’ll take what I can get.

purchase Cheap Trick/Heart/Journey music on amazon: