Saturday, August 16, 2008


Another week has flown by, including another birthday. The wife was out of town and therefore I played the role of taxi driver for the kids to ferry them to/from after school activities. Not much got done at home. On one of those evenings waiting for Eric to get out of his martial arts class, I walked around marveling at the beautiful sunset, cauliflower massed thunderheads catching the last rays of the sun.

Curtain of gray rain
Hangs from the tall clouds bottom
Quenches summers heat

Anvil topped pillows
Catch last rays of setting sun
Brilliant yellow light

Clouds that burned orange
Bid a setting sun farewell
Gray against pale blue

A positive development was that I met someone online who has a Van Halen audio collection who appears to be willing to trade bootlegs for donations to charities. He emailed me all of "Random Shot" in exchange for a donation to Breast Cancer UK. I'm hoping this is an opportunity to gain access to unavailable Van Halen shows from the 1990's. We shall see.

A front passed through Colorado earlier in the day, dropping temperatures dramatically and bringing a steady rain. We need every drop that falls considering we are far below the yearly average. The clouds parted long enough to allow me to drive out to remote concert spot sometime after 10 o'clock. It felt like winter standing outside the truck listening to the music. I received the latest copy of Skiing magazine today, all of which is making me think of winter and carving turns. Were it not for the lights of Denver in the distance, I could have imagined myself standing outside Loveland ski area on a mild winter evening.

Middle of August
Night's rain gives way to cold mist
Wears a down jacket

Tonight's show took place at the Oakland Coliseum in California on October 9, 1980 during their Woman and Children First "World Invasion" tour. Dave was especially chatty this evening, rapping with the crowd pretty much between every song. He let the audience know that at midnight it would be his birthday (26), the crowd cheering with approval. I can imagine the party that they had that night after the show! The bootleg recording was a bit rough in spots but overall was a decent audience recording. The band ripped through the song list, Eddie's fingers seeming to move faster than usual, Dave's singing following along.

The Van Halen Encyclopedia reports: "A host of bands filled the opening slot throughout the tour, which had become a very tough gig. The openers were frequently targets for whatever the audience had handy, and were normally heavily booed and otherwise verbally abused by the Van Halen-hungry crowd. Some bands cracked under the pressure while others fared pretty well."

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