Sunday, August 14, 2011

Not Just Another Walk in the Park

Greetings friends! Sorry for the delay ... I've been looking for my writing mojo for the past couple of weeks now. If anyone sees it, please send it back my way. :-/

Regardless of my inability to string together words these days, I figured I better just keep plugging along or I'll be still writing about the Bon Jovi UK trip from June while I'm packing for the Jukes UK trip in October!

Anyhoo, on to Hard Rock Calling in Hyde Park.

It seemed that everyone and their brother was coming to this show and it was fantastic to meet up with so many friends - from the Netherlands to Italy to Australia to Germany. Though entry was a bit of a disaster (NOT the fault of the fan club, but the local security who had no clue/care what the process was) I was lucky to get a spot in the third-ish row surrounded by some absolutely AMAZING ladies from the UK.

(don't forget! you can always click on the pictures to make them larger)

(yeah, that white arrow in front of Jon's mic stand ... that would be me!)

I will not lie. It was a long day. I hadn't really slept well since I arrived and was still quite sick at this point (as could be told from my food intake for the day, which consisted of three french fries and four cough drops.)

But, the weather was absolutely gorgeous and the sun was shining ... good thing, because the red jacket just isn't right without the Michael Jackson sunglasses (sorry, Jonny ... it's growing on me ... really it is. LOL)

But, before we get to Jovi, I must mention that helping the day to move along, we were treated to several other artists prior to "our boys" coming on stage -- including Vintage Trouble (who was the support act for every show I saw) and the legendary Ray Davies, among others. But, the artist that really grabbed me was an American guitarist/singer/songwriter named Lissie.

I'm looking forward to checking out her stuff a bit interesting mix of folk and rock...and definitely that "indie" spirit.

So, eventually Bon Jovi took the stage. By now, most of you have seen videos of the show, the special that VH1 Classic did on the event or listened to the live radio broadcast (either that night or since.) Therefore, you already know that it was a spectacular night. The crowd was fantastic ... of course it helped that you had all the fan club members together right at the front, which simply created this incredible singing force! :-)

And for a guy who was very much in need of knee surgery, Jon Bon Jovi was running around that stage, jumping and "dancing" (haha) for a good three hours. Richie's solos were on fire, Tico was pounding as hard as I've ever heard and David was ruling the keys with his blond curls blowing in the breeze. In some ways it felt like the Lost Highway Central Park show ... on steroids. LOL

Here are just a few of the ridiculous number of pictures I took during the show ...

...the great Ray Davies (if you watch the VH1 Classic footage, you can see our friend @DavidsRosie rocking it out in the front row! Yay!)

...I never get tired of this shot...

...or this one...

...and the photo master, David Bergman, at work...

...and the guitar master at work... of the absolute best moments of the night..."Hey God!" ...enough said... ELECTRIC performance of "Keep The Faith"

Hey, Hugh...don't hide back there!

..ahhh, there he is!

Honestly, I haven't thoroughly reviewed the photos from the second half of the show, but flipping through, this one stood out for sure! Loved that vest, Richie!

Richie really was just incredible that night ...

...and Jon is right...that opening from Tico is all it takes. Speaking of Tico, a few shot of the elusive one ...

...they did play right up until the curfew or within the few minutes after (when they won't be paying hundreds of thousands in fines)...

...but even an amazing night like this one had to eventually come to an end...

I can't really describe the whole experience -- but it felt like you were part of history in some way. It is definitely a night I will never forget - watching a band I absolutely love along with my friends (both old and new) in a gorgeous setting on a perfect summer evening. *sigh*

Well, perfect until you try to get 65,000-plus people out of a park! But, that's a story for another time. LOL

I still have a lot to cover of my trip - there's Bristol and the two Dublins! So, come back ... I promise it won't be so long until the next post. *wink*