The Beach Boys still sending out a lot of good vibrations
I can’t believe I haven’t blogged about this before now.
It must be because shortly after attending this, I got into that blog challenge in July and didn’t have a place to fit it. Alas, it’s never too late to make amends.
For those who know me, you might know that it’s quite rare for me to go to a concert. Mostly because they are too expensive. Also because I hate dealing with crazy people in an environment like that. Finally, it’s because there aren’t many people I’ll pay oodles of dollars to go watch.
Therefore, when I see a concert, they are one’s I’ll remember.
I’ve seen Bon Jovi twice. Matchbox Twenty (with one of the opening acts being Maroon 5 before they were known) was an excellent concert. Kenny Rogers was incredible. I saw Meatloaf back when he was making his comeback tour in the mid-90s. Some country acts at local places — Lonestar, Martina McBride and others have been quite good.
I didn’t think seeing Brooks and Dunn about five days after 9/11 would ever be topped, considering they opened with “Only in America” and one of them had a guitar shaped like the US and all painted up.
I do have an eclectic taste in music. I love 80s music. I’m not against current Pop 40 music. I’ll dabble in country, rap, movie scores and classical. But it takes a lot for me to pay money to see a concert.
Since I was a tot, one of my favorite bands has been The Beach Boys. I’ve always loved their music. In fact, in the early 2000s, the Beach Boys (with Herman’s Hermits opening) were in Cooperstown.
It was painful to do so, but I decided against going because Brian Wilson wasn’t with them (and, I believe, one other wasn’t, either).
This year, however, it was announced The Beach Boys were doing a 50th anniversary tour. I figured I’d wait and see where they’d be. But I waited too long and I missed a couple of shows I could have attended. There were still two close, however. One was at Bethel Woods (the original Woodstock) and the other at Saratoga Performing Arts Center.
The SPAC date was already screwed as I had plans. But that Bethel Woods date — a Sunday night — was open.
I had never been to Bethel Woods for a concert. I had grabbed the geocache that is there a few years ago, but I had never looked at or walked the concert grounds. A friend who knows the place pretty well told me the decent seats (of those that were left) and we opted to sit under the pavilion, rather than get lawn seats.
My only regret?
They didn’t search bags too well and I could have easily gotten my good camera in. I normally wouldn’t care about that, but this is the Beach Boys. And Brian Wilson was aimed at us. So my camera and the zoom would have been awesome. Alas, I didn’t bring it in and I was relegated to photos with the iPhone from a distance.
That also might have been a blessing as I was more into the concert. If I had the camera, I might have been looking for the “perfect” shots.
Anyway, the first part of the show was solid, but with daylight still beaming down, the screens weren’t on. They also played some of the slower songs and it was almost dragging. Parts were solid, but others were “meh.” They took a 20-minute intermission, which was good as it was a good time to get up and stretch the legs and walk around a little.
We got back to our seats as the second half got rolling and this part was where the Beach Boys came alive. They way they went at it, you wouldn’t know they were in their late 60s/early 70s. They rocked, got the crowd going and seemed to love it. Most of their big hits came in the second half and with the sun down and the lights going, the screens up and everything else — it felt like a concert.
And I waited and waited until my all-time favorite Beach Boys song came on…
I think you can tell from that video that the crowd was into it.
It’s funny because with the Beach Boys doing other New York shows, me and a couple of friends were wondering what kind of crowd they’d get at Bethel Woods. I’d estimate 9,000-10,000 people were there. It was pretty impressive. Even with that, getting in and getting out wasn’t that hard.
As for the show?
The Beach Boys did 45-plus songs. Several were covers, but most were their own great hits. Mike Love still sounded pretty solid, as did Al Jardine. Brian Wilson wasn’t the same as the young Brian Wilson, but he’s, to me, The Beach Boys, And I was stoked to see him still performing.
I liked that they broke it up into two sets, followed by a three-song curtain call.
In the end, the concert ran about 2 1/2 hours, which was awesome. I’d pay to see them again without issue. I hope they decide they can continue to do this, get along and maybe have another tour. Good times, indeed.
It’s a night I’ll remember for sure. And I’m glad I had the chance to check The Beach Boys off my must-see concerts. It was well worth the money.
I’ll leave you with a couple of other videos from that night:
Fun, Fun, Fun:
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