I’m not much of a concert goer. I grew up in Anchorage, Alaska, and it’s usually not a regular tour stop. Also, packing into a noisy stadium with thousands of people isn’t my favorite way to spend my evening. So, I’m pretty picky about going to concerts. I want to see a show, a big show. I want to see performers that will play music I love and give me some spectacle. So, my first concert way back on April 29, 1998 was Aerosmith.
A little background on my relationship with Aerosmith: in 1996 my family picked up and moved to Saudi Arabia for fall ’96 through fall ’97. Basically, my 8th grade school year. During that time my main form of entertainment was MTV Asia and my Walkman and cassette tapes that I’d play over and over while wandering around the housing compound we lived on. I had some CDs too but anyone who remembers the pre-iPod era I’m sure remembers no matter how good your Discman was it didn’t take that much for CDs to skip. That year was the year of the Spice Girls, Space Jam, the Macarena, and so much Brit Pop, but that was also when Aerosmith released their Nine Lives album. For the month of March (my birthday month) MTV Asia dedicated their programming to Aerosmith and I became a big fan. Whether it was the Alicia Silverstone starring music videos, the wonderful video with Run DMC, or the darker toned tracks of the new album like “Falling in Love is so Hard on the Knees,” I was glued to Aerosmith on my TV all month. I picked up the Nine Lives album on cassette and I listened to it over and over. I loved almost every track.
Fast forward to spring 1998, I’m back in Anchorage, settling back in, and making some new friends. Friends that shared my Aerosmith enthusiasm. Some who were much much bigger fans than I. Aerosmith announced a show in Anchorage and it sold out almost as soon as tickets went on sale. It was so popular that they added a second show. My parents got me two tickets to that show. Up in the nosebleed seats, but I’m sure still a little too expensive. I asked a friend who also couldn’t make it to the first show if she wanted to come with me. She joined me but, unfortunately, had an early curfew. I don’t remember the opening act but we caught the majority of the show before we had to leave and my dad drove us home. It was a fun show and leaving early I don’t feel like we missed any songs I was desperate to hear, but later I learned that we missed Steven Tyler injuring himself. While that show went on it did lead to some other canceled tour dates afterward.
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