5. My Man Friday & Attaboy Skip - The Bread Factory - Provo, UT
Just thinking back on the many My Man Friday concerts I went to makes my sad they are done...those were great days. Ska was alive and well in Provo. The reason My Man Friday was so good is their swing-ska style made for great dancing. Markham and I have some great memories at those concerts. This concert was particularly good because Attaboy Skip opened. I just remember leaving the Bread Factory dripping in sweat and exhausted. Great stuff.
4. The Suicide Machines - Youth Center - Smithfield, UT
Although I really like the Suicide Machines, this concert was more memorable for the facility than the band (although credit must go to the Suicide Machines for playing after seeing the venue). Smithfield is in the middle of nowhere north of Logan, Ut. The Youth Center in Smithfield used to be an LDS church (probably 50 years ago) and the concert was held on the basketball court. There was no stage set up, so the band just played on the court. Once the concert got going, the crowd basically surrounded the band, so there was a circle around each player (they couldn't really even see each other). There were wires going everywhere underneath everyone's feet and of course, partway through the concert, somebody pulled out the plug on the mic, forcing the band to say..."you guys all know the lyrics anyway...you sing it." Incredibly memorable.
3. The Pixies - Kingsbury Hall - Salt Lake City, UT
When I went to this concert, I was not expecting it to be as good as it was. The Pixies have a unique sound, that was awesome to see in concert. They rarely spoke to the crowd between songs, but it didn't matter...their songs more than made up for it....and they have so many great songs that there was never a let down.
2. Toad the Wet Sprocket - Abravanel Hall - Salt Lake City, UT
What can you say about this concert. One of the greatest bands ever, in one of the greatest venues ever. I have seen Toad a few times since, and they have been good, but hearing them in Abravanel Hall was an experience I will never forget. To make things even better, they played one song from each on of their CDs and then cycled back through the discography over and over again, so I was able to hear plenty of songs of my favorite CD - Coil. A funny sidenote about this concert is that their old drama teacher was attending the concert and they explained how they were on a Mormon mission and they received permission from their mission president to attend the concert. Out of respect, Glen edited the lyrics of the few songs they have containing swear words.
1. Elliott Smith - The Ogden Theatre - Denver, UT
I had the privilege to see Elliott 4 times throughout his career (DV8, the Fillmore in San Francisco, the Ogden Theatre, and at the University of Utah campus). The other 3 times, I saw him in smaller venues and was able to see him much closer than I did in the Ogden Theatre. In the Ogden Theatre I was in the upper deck, but the concert was amazing. Elliott had a bigger stage and it was more like watching a symphony than watching a garage-band artist. The Ogden Theatre is kind of like Kingsbury Hall. I remember one song vividly - Everything Means Nothing To Me. The spotlight was on Elliott and he was playing the song on the piano with incredible emotion. I loved this concert...I wish I could see it again.
Honorable Mentions (in no particular order)
Live - The Delta Center - Salt Lake City, UT
Right after Throwing Copper. Damn at Otter Creek was awesome.
Pietasters & Mustard Plug - Bricks - Salt Lake City, UT
Everybody left for the Pietasters (because Bouncing Souls played before them). It made for some great skanking.
Big A Show (1995) - Stretch Armstrong, Moonpools & Catepillars, Cake, Primus, Neil Young, Ben Folds Five, Everclear, Howard Jones, Bush - Wolf Mountain - Park City, UT
1st concert ever. Great lineup. A guy got stabbed right in front of us during Bush and then a drunk lady proceeded to tell us that is why we should never drink.
The Aquabats - Omni - Provo, UT
A water main broke, flooding the venue. A kid broke a big window in the riot that pursued. Long wait for the Bats, but it was worth it. The Bats played Christmas Roll (Pinch & Roll) and had the whole crowd sit down for Captain Hampton. On a side note, once, while I was at a volleyball tournament in Kaysville, I was getting a drink when Ryan Millar and Casey Jennings (husband of Kerri Walsh) walked up to the fountain to get a drink. I was wearing an Aquabats T-shirt and Ryan Millar acknowledged it and asked Casey if he had seen them in concert. Casey said no and Ryan proceeded to tell him what a good act they are and that he had to go see them in concert.