It's Only Rock'n Roll
Street Fighting Man
It's Only Rock N' Roll
If You Can't Rock Me- it was nice to hear this like on Love You Live
All Down The Line - thought we would get an exile set
Love In Vain (Ronnie on Pedal Steel) - cheers went up as the Let it Bleed album cover was shown on the screen
Live With Me
Monkey Man - this got a great reception
Gimme Shelter - lisa sang great, at the end of her solo she sustained the notes longer, she didn't sing it as high as usual
Slipping Away-again this was beautiful
Happy - this is just one place where i would have prefered something different, like Connection or Before the make me run again
Can't Turn You Lose - I enjoyed this more than love train - I recognized this from the blues brothers film
Start Me Up
Honky Tonk Women
Can't You Hear Me Knocking - probably my favorite of the night
Satisfaction - it was amusing on the subway after when someone asked me if they played satisfaction! I told him it was right after Hey Jude
Beast Of Burden
Miss You - no saxaphone solo
Brown Sugar - they exit though the center of the arena - where the hockey players leave
Encores:- the congas start and it is......
Sympathy for the Devil
Jumping Jack Flash
Needless to say after reading some of the great reviews at boston and chicago arenas my expectations were high. Well the show blew away even those expectations. The lights went out at 9:30 keith attacked the stage with a vengance firing off the opening riffs of street fighting man, jagger followed in frenzy belting out powerful vocals that shook the arena. The rest of the band was firng on all cylinders right behind the glimmer twins.
Next was a great version of its only rock n roll, if you cant rock me kicked ass as well. next mick strapped on a guitar and the band gave us the new one don't stop, it was done very well. unfortounatley the boys left out stray cat blues a song i was dying to hear but delivered a bone crushing version of all down the, complete with a great ronnie solo.
Next we were treated to a block from let it bleed that included a soulful version of all in vain, a funked up version of monkey man minus any back up vocals from lisa like on the voodo tour, but it rocked all the same. gimme shelter kept the pace going strong as charlie drove it home like never before. the acoustics of the arena was perfect which helped the crowd enjoy these timeless classics, add that to a possesed jagger, and a fired up band and the results are astonishing.
Next were the customary intros. Then keith treated us to an impassioned version of slipping away, and the best versin of happy in quite a few tours. mick then reappeared, white coat and hat, as the stones did a cover of otis reddings i can"t turn you loose, i wasnt sure were i heard it before, but bobby and the horn section really helped mick turn it into a keeper.
Then we were treated to a powerful assortment of classics, including honky tonk (complete with animated screen) and satisfaction. it might sound like they were on auto pilot, and they have played these songs a thousand times, but that was far from the case. watts drove home satisfaction like i've never heard it before, and keiths solos were delivered in there purest forms.
Can't you hear me knockin litterally knocked the crowed out. micks vocals soared. ronnies solos would of made mick taylor proud. its great to see ronnie looking and sounding better than ever. off to the second stage we wer treated to a great beast of burden, as well as a stripped down version of miss you, complete with a great harmonica solo from the mickster. darrels really great on this one.(as he was all night).
The small stage show ended with brown sugar, a great version. never tiring mick is running from the cat walk to the small stage and back. as the crowd helps mick turn into the biggest party in america this night. the band exits side stage, and returns on the main stage about 5 minutes later. they encore with inspiring versions of sympathy, and jumping jack flash. at last the show we waited over 3 years to see was over. many of us have been to great stones shows over the years, but i feel i speak for most in attendance last night. not only are the stones still the greatest rocking roll band. like a fine wine they get better with age.
Now to the reason we're here. I've seen the boys five times in Philly dating back to the old Spectrum in 1972. Don't even get me started on JFK Stadium in 1978. I'm still traumatized from being in the bathroom, barefoot and ankle-deep in water, trying to take a leak. Be that as it may, I don't know what it is, but the Stones always seem to up the stakes when they play Philly. In terms of sheer intensity, this was one of the most memorable shows I've seen.
Always the consummate crowd pleasers, I was struck by the fact that more so than the last few tours, the band seemed to be playing for themselves, and we were lucky to be along for the ride. With the exception of Chuck, the backup singers and musicians didn't make their first appearance until the "All Down the Line," five numbers into the set, giving an almost clubby feel to the opening four numbers. The video was fun with out being distracting.
I have been waiting thirty-one years to hear "Can't You Hear Me Knocking" live, and it was worth the wait. A lotta of people talk about Ronnie on this number, and he didn't disappoint, but it was Charlie who shone on this one. I could really hear him knocking. Unfortunately the moment was somewhat marred when some asshole's girlfriend asked to borrow my lighter during the jam so her boyfriend could light a joint. Then, he asked again because it went out. Note to smokers: Bring a lighter AND matches just in case.
We were sitting right near the B stage, about seven rows off the floor. However, this part of the show was plagued by some sound mix problems, and (this is just my opinion) a weaker song selection. "Beast of Burden" and "Miss You" are two numbers that still underwhelm me, despite they popularity with the crowd. It wasn't until "Brown Sugar" that the sound problems seemed to get fixed, and the band drove it home in style (Although, I'm pretty sure Bobby Keys played his solo in the wrong key). I saw Keith give a "what the fuck" shrug during the third verse as everyone got back onto the same page musically. All in all, though, it was a night to remember.
One more thing about the bathroom. I kept my shoes on this time, and there was no water on the floor, but the men's room at intermission looked like a commercial for that bladder control drug Detrol. Endless lines of old men trying to take piss. But when they were finally done... they were ready to rock.
I've seen so many shows (and have become very critical during the decades), but this one for sure was one of the best ever! Why? Well, the Stones just rocked the house, like the 70's MSG shows. Musically perfect, performance excellent, emotionally dreams coming true. Maybe they shoudn't do any stadium shows anymore, just arena's.
Mick was excellent. For two hours long he was jumping, dancing, laughing and acting like crazy. And his voice was very good; actually the sound was perfect. Okay, they made some mistakes. Like Ronnie doing the solo in Tumbling Dice while the amplifier didn't work, so he pointed out to the audience like 'sorry, I can't help it'. Or when someone (a fan?) got to get on the stage and shouted something in the mike before taken off by security. Or Mick playing the crowd, while Charlie had to repair his drums. Those mistakes make you realize that's it's all real. The Stones are no machines at all, definitely not in arena's.
Keith you know, was just rockin like his life depended on it. Charlie really had a good time so did Lisa. She was dancing and singing like on a first night, so excited.
Highlights: If You Can't Rock Me, Monkey Man, and ... Love in Vain with great acoustic guitars, great pedal, and great singing. I saw the playback of the show afterwards and could enjoy it again. Other highlights: Beast Of Burden and Miss You, yes also Miss You, this version is so damned bluesy with Mick almost swallowing the harmonica.
Mick kept on jumping and dancing around, there wasn't any spot in the house he didn't reach with all his special poses. And last but not least: great compliments to the crowd, they were rocking like crazy, ready to let First Union Center explode.
What do you want more? Actually nothing, but there's one more Philla show left: the Tower gig and I happen to be one of the lucky ones to have a tick. I wouldn't sell it for a million, I just rather die.
Whoo, whoo; Whoo, whoo ...
I didn't mention Can't You Hear Me Knocking. I tried to describe the excellence of the show, and managed to find some words for it. I just could't find any for this song. Just come and see one of the shows and you'll know what I mean. Or come and visit me, so you can see the expression on my face, when thinking back of this masterpiece! "
In December I'll be a fan of this band for 39 years, I am so grateful, thank you STONES for all the music, it has got me thru some tough times.
Nice crowd, ready to rock too! The F. U. C. ROCKED!
Opening SFM was good, even tho I'd like to hear RIP THIS JOINT in the first slot. Love DON'T STOP, ALL DOWN THE LINE and LOVE IN VAIN, (with RONNIE) was great!
MONKEY MAN was my fav of the evening, brings back memories. GIMME SHELTER, wow LISA! Keith did HAPPY, loved it and SLIPPIN' AWAY, that made the fans real Happy!
Got Brown Sugar, HT Woman, It's Only R&R, JJ Flash again, looks like those are standards in the set. But they alwys are great to hear, ok by me!
Street Fighting Man: Cool way to open a show. It just has that opening song vibe to it. The mix was a little loud at first, but that can be blamed on the boomy sound of the FU Center (awful acoustics). This song had Blondie Chaplin playing acoustic guitar while hidden behind Chuck's amps.
It's Only Rock And Roll: Never really been too fond of this song, but found myself enjoying it nonetheless. It had the typical live arrangement with the Chuck Berryesque intro. You could tell the band was tight tonight. Even the old warhorses were given energetic workouts. The audience was really into this one.
If You Can't Rock Me: Nice to see they dusted off this gem from the It's Only Rock And Roll album. Much better performance than the versions I've heard from '75. The band seemed to be having a blast playing this one, but it took some time for the audience to catch on.
Don't Stop: The new song in the set. This being the first time I've heard it, it gives me an Exile On Main Street/Voodoo Lounge feel. Much better than most of the crap from Bridges To Babylon. Still, while it is a nice song, it's nothing to write home about when taken in the context of the band's catalogue. Mick played some guitar on this one and the performance was solid. The audience was accepting.
All Down The Line: Absolutely smoking version of this song. The band rocked and boogied their way through, and the audience loved it. It was a pleasant surprise to hear this one.
Theme Set: Well, given my seats, I had no clue that the cover to Let It Bleed was showing on the big screen, so when Mick said " We're going to play some songs from our Let It Bleed album." I was surprised and ecstatic. I was hoping for a Let It Bleed set, but was unsure if it would happen as they did four songs the night before. A lap steel guitar was brought out for Ronnie, as Keith took up an acoustic guitar. From there we were off to...
Love In Vain: Amazing version of the song. Mick sang the blues and Ronnie played an amazing solo. What more can be said?
Live With Me: The band then kicked things back into overdrive with a rocking version of Live With Me. Mick was really getting into this one, dancing, shouting, and all around working the audience. One of the horn players (was it Bobby Keys), whom I couldn't see, had a killer solo. While the delivery wasn't as raunchy as on the album, it was still a fun song.
Monkey Man: Chuck and Darryl lead things off on this one. I was surprised by how big of an audience reaction this song had. A very solid version with Chuck delivering some nice key work over the bridge.
Gimme Shelter: Monkey Man and Gimme Shelter back to back, that there is an amazing 1, 2 punch. Easily my favorite Stones tune, I was hoping to hear it, but didn't think it would happen as it was only being played at the stadium gigs. Great version of it too. Lisa did an amazing job with the vocals. Mick was really getting into the song at the end too. This song saw Blondie playing his acoustic out in view, rather than hidden.
Tumbling Dice: A solid version of another old warhorse. Although for some reason the band paused early in the song. Keith had a look of "What the f___?" on his face. They recovered real quick though. This was the first time Mick ran out on the catwalk between stages. The band and audience seemed to enjoy this one.
After Tumbling Dice, Mick began to introduce the band. When he came to Ronnie, he introduced him as being "On the cigarette." Ronnie gave a "Who, me?" expression and then ran to the front of the stage. He really seemed to be on top of the world last night. His newfound sobriety may have a bit to play in his jovial state and phenomenal performances. After the intro's, it was time for Keith to do his thing. He was greeted by the audience roaring his name.
Slipping Away: There were times on this one that Keith almost sounded like Dylan. It's a great ballad, but it lost a lot of people. I would have preferred Before They Make Me Run or, if a ballad was in order, You Got The Silver. Still, a very solid performance.
Happy: What a fun song. Keith was full of smiles on this one. The audience too started to rebound. Again, Ronnie played the lap steel to great affect. It's nice to see Keith brought this one back after it's hiatus on the last big tour ('97-'99).
Can't Turn You Loose: As Keith was thanking the audience at the end of Happy, Mick came back up to the stage and hid behind a stack of amps. Then as the band kicked into a fiery version of this Otis Redding classic, he ran out to the center of the stage. I never heard Otis' version, but the Stones version was hot. The audience was very receptive as well.
Start Me Up: Keith teased the audience with one or two licks of the song before launching into it. The audience went ape for this song. As the show was winding down, it was time for the big hits, and the band delivered. It seemed like the whole band was having fun with this one.
Honkey Tonk Women: Another showstopper that sent the audience through the roof. A very solid version.
Can't You Hear Me Knocking: Why has it taken 31 years for the Stones to play this song live? It was simply amazing. After the straight up rock of the first half of the song, the band loosened up for an amazing jam. Keith and Darryl held down the rhythm and Charlie threw in some nice fills as Chuck and Bobby (?) took nice solos. Then Mick came to the front of the stage and blew some harp. Finally Ronnie took an amazing solo to wrap the song up. Simply amazing. The audience seemed to lose the plot on this one. It's a shame too, since it isn't often the Stones open things up this way. Maybe they should have played it before Start Me Up, as to keep the show's momentum from being interrupted.
Satisfaction: Anyone that lost interest during Can't You Hear Me Knocking got back into the game here. A smoking version that had some great fills by Charlie. Needless to say, the audience loved the song. At the end of the song, Mick, Keith, Ronnie, Chuck, Charlie, and Darryl made their way out to the second stage.
Beast of Burden: This was a surprising opener for the second stage. I've always liked this tune. I was expecting I'm A Man, or some other blues cover instead (as was par for the course). Beast of Burden probably went over better with the audience though.
Miss You: This one featured a stripped down arrangement as compared to the Voodoo Lounge and Bridges To Babylon version. No horns, no vocal duels, just the Stones delivering a solid version of Miss You. It reminded me of the '78 version. Mick played guitar and harp. While never a personal favorite, the audience ate this one up. It would have been nice to hear Neighbors or You Got Me Rocking here instead.
Brown Sugar: The band wrapped things up with a tight, high-energy fashion. Bobby Keys (whom I could finally see) came up on stage for a killer sax solo. A smoking version, and great way to wrap up the set. By the end of the song, the audience was at a fever pitch, and the band strolled off the second stage, into the crowd, and then back to the locker/dressing rooms.
The encore break was a short one. It lasted about as long as it took for the band to walk back down to the main stage. The audience was pretty rabid at this time, and then the backing tape for Sympathy For The Devil started. The band returned to the stage, and we were off.
Sympathy For The Devil: Mick was dressed all in black, which was an interesting contrast to the all white outfit worn during I Can't Turn You Loose. Instead of a white hat though, he had a black hood on. How fitting. There were tons of red lights flashing during this tune. Keith and Ronnie were firing off some killer licks throughout the song. The outtro was extended and it seemed like the whole band was having a blast with it. The jam on the end just kept building, until everyone froze and that ended the Symphony.
Jumpin' Jack Flash: The big show stopper. The audience was still on fire as Keith took the band into Jumpin' Jack Flash. The lighting rigs pretty much lit up the whole arena as fans blew confetti all over the place. The song was a high energy ending to an amazing show. The band then gathered at the front of the stage and took a collective bow. Then they started to walk away, but Mick, Keith, Charlie, and Ronnie all came back to the center of the stage for another group bow. As they were leaving the stage, Charlie went back to his kit and grabbed two sticks to give to two people up front. Shortly after he left the stage, the house lights went up, and that was a wrap.
A big thanks goes to Mr. Burns for hooking me up with the primo seats. Next up, Gov't Mule at the Electric Factory.
I had US$ 300 floor tickets and I was in the 14th row. The lights went out at 21.30 and the show started with Street Fighting Man; a perfect opener and performed really well with Keith doing his famous riffs, Jagger jumping from the left to the right, Ronnie looking good and playing even better and Charlie just Charlie as always.
Next song was It's Only Rock 'n Roll, not my most favourite song but the audience loved it. If You Can't Rock Me, often played during the 1975/1976 tour, was back in the set and was great to hear. This song was followed by the new song with Jagger on guitar.
All Down Line was great and I thought that this was the first song of the Exile theme but after this song the Let It Bleed album cover was displayed on the screen so we got three versions from Let It Bleed: Love In Vain, Live With Me and Monkey Man and Gimme Shelter.
During the Voodoo Lounge tour they played or Monkey Man or Gimme Shelter with singing Lisa her lungs empty during these songs. Now she did it again but only with Gimme Shelter and the crowd went absolutely nuts. Tumbling Dice was next followed by the band introductions. Jagger announced Ronnie as "Ronnie Wood on Cigarette".
The two Keith songs were the ones we heard many times before: Slipping Away and Happy. According to the Let It Bleed theme, You Got The Silver would be a better choice. The Keith songs were followed by I Can't Turn You Loose with Jagger wearing a white hat; I really like the horn section on this one; just great. During the first riffs of Start Me Up someone jumped on stage and shouted something through the microphone and ran away.
After Honky Tonk Women we got Can't You Hear Me Knocking which was just amazing from the beginning to the end. After Satisfaction they moved moved to the B stage were they performed Beat Of Burden, Miss You (without saxophone but with harmonica) and Brown Sugar. They didn't walk back on the same catwalk but they seemed they found their way to the mainstage because within three minutes Sympathy For The Devil started. Jumpin Jack Flash was the last songs and red confetti was blown all over the place. After two bows they left the audience at the First Union Center with a great experience; thanks!
The ticket situation outside was decent. There were tickets floating around if you knew what you were doing. I know people that got $300s for under $150 from scalpers. The box office only had $300s available at show time.
I had a decent lower level seat, a few rows off the floor in front of the b stage. The sound was very solid throughout the show where I was at, although it was marginal during the b stage set which was odd considering I was closer to the b stage.
Street Fighting Man is a sweet opener. The highlight of this show was obviously the Let It Bleed set in the middle which included amazing versions of Love In Vain, Monkey Man, and Gimme Shelter. The crowd loves the hot rocks but then we shift back and get Can't You Hear Me Knocking which just knocks your socks off!! Ronnie rules and Mick's harp solo is fun to hear!
I like having the b stage set near the close of the show. It really brings the energy level up! Beast Of Burden was sweet and Brown Sugar went on and on forever. Mick and Keith kept challenging eachother to see how many "woo"s we could do at the end. It's also cool how they exit the b stage by walking right thru the people on the floor on this tour then they come back out on the main stage for the encores!!
This show proved to me that the Stones can still make these basketball arenas feel like a small club. This show was a very solid, high energy show. It also taught me, that at least on this tour, the arena shows are where it's at...unless of course you can get your hands on a theatre show ticket.
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It's Only Rock'n Roll 2002 -
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