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Thursday, July 26, 2012

ZZ Top's First Annual Barn Dance and Barbecue; September 1, 1974 at the University of Texas

ZZ Top
ZZ Top

ZZ Top
ZZ Top

Check out these photos and recollections from ZZ Top's First Annual Barn Dance and Barbecue; September 1, 1974 at the University of Texas Memorial Stadium in Austin. The bill was ZZ Top, Santana, Joe Cocker and the Great Jimmy Page w/Bad Company. People have told me that they had expected 20,000 and 90,000+ showed up! What did that expect with that bill o’ talent? Christ, that’s almost one whole day at Woodstock talent. Santana was at the height of his popularity at this time and so was Joe Cocker. Plus, ZZ Top’s only Texas appearance?!! Jimmy Page with Bad Company?!! Omigawd, I would have loved to have seen that and, obviously, so did thousands of others.

Additionally, check out the poster and handbill combo that is now in my collection - Tut's Tomb Phoenix Axillary Site. SWEET!

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ZZ Top

Check out these recollections from people who were there:

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ZZ Top

I remember that, last concert in the stadium due to the destruction, mostly from burns in the Astroturf.

Oh yes. Hotter than a firecracker on the field. But that was one heck of a lineup!

I lived in the Tower View apartments next to the LBJ School and the noise was deafening. Also, the concertgoers trashed the stadium so bad that it stopped being used for concerts.

It was Labor Day 1974. Hot and the concessions ran out early on. I was happy to pay $2 for a 20 lb bag of ice. 1st and last concert at Memorial Stadium

This was the first concert I didn't get to go to (not last either) a guy asked me to go....I asked my dad if I could go....he said come in and close the door.....did he tell you he was married....nope he didn't....did he tell you he has two kids....nope he didn't mention that either......guess I got my answer......I was 16......definitely in over my head!

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ZZ Top
They stopped us from bringing anything inside, then they ran out of water and had to open the doors to the public can you say freeeeeee concert!

Yes I was there with a broken leg n angle, stuck on the 50 yard line with no food n drink for hours, then my brother’s 1959 Dodge Texan car would not start afterwards, it was a long day n night! Leg still hurts today!

Was there. It was billed "ZZ Top's First Annual Barn Dance and Barbecue." First and only. Darrell Royal was not happy with the damage to the Astroturf. The next concert there wasn't till the Eagles in the 90's. I remember the Human Pyramids and blanket tosses. You were not allowed to bring in beverages so other things were smuggled in.

ZZ Top
ZZ Top

I was there!!!!!!!!!!! Awesome to see the picture! Thanks!!

That particular concert everyone is talking about was "Texas Jam" which was the last concert ever to happen at Memorial Stadium. ZZ Top was also banned from playing in Austin from that point for many years.

If this is the same concert as in photo-- I thought it was July of 74 or so-- it was HOT hot HOT!-- & they would not let you bring in any beverages. That was a new thing-- making you buy their concessions. My sister cried and they let her bring in a cooler with ice & amp; water for us.

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ZZ Top
It was 1974. Awesome but so HOT. No water, people were collapsing of the heat and they ended up passing around bags of ice.

I was there, music was great; the heat and lack of water not so good.

50 yard line - and remember friends bringing in bags of ice.

I was there too, hooted it, blanket tosses, human pyramids, amazing show, Santana at dusk and then a tremendous show by ZZ Top... hellishly hot all day, but thrilling none.

It was the "Rompin' and Stompin' Barn Dance and Barbecue," concert, headlining ZZ Top; the largest concert in Austin up to that time. This is not to be confused with the amazing "Texas Jams" series of multi-act rock festivals, starting in 1978, at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas.

It doesn't get any better than this concert July'74. Hotter than Hades that day and I was with friends on the 50 yd line. They went to get drinks and ice and on the way back down, tossed ice to the crowd.

ZZ Top
ZZ Top

I was there in 74 on crutches with a whole bunch of people from Cove. It was no place to be on crutches, let me tell you! ZZ Tops First Annual Barn Dance and Bar-B-Queue. It was also the last! What a blast! Bad Co. Joe Cocker, Carlos Santana, Jimmy Paige, it was a smoking good time!

An airplane flew over, dropping thousands of packs of "French Connection" rolling papers.

I was there with friends in the bleachers. I believe the Astroturf caught on fire, probably from an ember from a joint. I think that's why no more concerts were allowed. The music was good especially Santana and ZZ.

In addition to ZZ Top, Santana, Joe Cocker, Jimmy Page, a new up and comer, Bad Company (Paul Rodgers) tore it up. A lot of people had to leave because of the heat, etc. but if you managed to stick around for the end you were in for one heck of a treat!

I was there. With my friend Charlie Nickle. ZZ Top, Bad Company, Carlos Santana, Joe Cocker. Did acid, mescaline, and weed. Boy was it hot. Guys tore sinks off the wall in the restrooms.

August of 1974...hotter-n-hell....you could trade a bag of ice for anything you wanted!!!!

I remember the heat, and how quickly all food and drink sold out.

‎'74 seems right to me. They were selling $10.00 bags of ice. That's all they had left. Miserable hot!!!

I was there with Carla Coneway Griffin. That was so much fun. Funny thing is Dusty Hill's mom became one of my patients and I got to know Dusty. I told him I was there that day. Good times!!!

Remember the entrepreneurs selling soda and ice, bread and sandwich meat, snacks through the bars? People were paying a lot for a small bag of supplies but it was worth it.

I remember the tickets cost $5.00 because my ex-boyfriend convinced me that he did not have the money to go, so the dumbass I was gave him the $5.00 for his ticket, allot of money then when I made $2.00 an hr. my mom nearly killed me when I told her I paid for his ticket and mine. Labor Day 1974. Hot but great time my first concert, oh and after I gave him the money for the ticket we broke up a week later. Oh the memories! LOL!!

I remember it well! It was a great concert but hot as hell! My boyfriend at the time left and brought bags of ice back in which saved me from having to leave! I don't know anyone who actually got to eat any Bar-B-Queue!

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ZZ Top
Oooh Oooh ! We were there!! My Brother, Bobby- My B.f. Ricky Mc Nutt, and pretty much "ALL" of our friends..! Sunburned, hungry, thirsty, stoned, and in our teens- It was a blast! Joe Cocker was so drunk he was booed off the stage, as usual- That stadium was horribly trashed from the sheer amount of people alone.. They switched to the artificial turf after that.

Oh my goodness.....my first concert! I went with a group of friends, and then lost them as soon as we entered the grounds......not sure if it was '72 or '73...,but spent the entire concert glued to my bleacher seat scared I would miss my friends if they came looking for me......the guy behind me had on overalls with a top hat.

I heard a rumor that the party goers actually removed the grass in pieces!!, that's why there were no more concerts there and why Astroturf was put in? Anyone else hear that?

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ZZ Top

This was the Fandango concert in 1974. I was 17 there with my husband barely pregnant, hot as Hell. They ran out of everything. My husband fought the crowd to go get a bag of ice so we could have something to drink. Needless to say he did not get back with much ice. He was attacked. It was crazy but awesome. I was at the next concert held at UT field Eagles When Hell Freezes over. Bad ass concert. The weather was perfect for their scene set up. Thunder and lightning but just enough to make it cool. No hard rain.

I was in that crowd, I thought we were gonna starve to death.. Great show!!

The people on the field started building towers to see who could go highest. They would get 7 or 8 circles high and cave in while more were growing and falling. It looked like they were bubbling. Last time they served beer in there.

I was there...hotter than a two dollar pistol...I remember some doods ripping off the sinks in the men's bathrooms and flooding it and there was a group down on the field with huge blankets throwing people up in the air...good times and great music...

ZZ Top
ZZ Top

I got one of those 10$ bags of ice cause the concessions workers had run off and it was a mob. Carried it on my shoulders to cool off. I tossed mine to people on the field too cause they were baking. It was like ducks and bread.

Yeah I bought a bag of ice too for ten dollars...probably saved my life...lol

I still got my ticket stub. It was at least 100 or so, in the blazin' Texas sun. the "Bar-B-Queue" (if you could really call it that) was supposed to be included in the admission, but you had to stand in line for hours to get to it, and the meat was dry, cold and iridescent ....had all the colors of the rainbow. The men's restrooms were a disaster. Some idiots destroyed the plumbing and the place was flooded. Enterprising carpetbaggers were selling bags of ice for 5 and 10 $. And then there were the human pyramids on the field, some of which got incredibly high before crashing. I just knew someone was gonna die that day. I know I'm just repeating what others have already posted, but it was a hoot. I think it was around midnight before ZZ finally played. What a riot. Hell, I’d do it again.....on second thought, maybe not. Too old and misanthropic.

 I was there and man, that was a "barn burner"! What a line up! ZZ opened with "Thunderbird" and it felt like the ground was shaking! I could not believe that my friend from elementary school on had really hit the big time. Billy has always been the coolest. And one of the greatest pranksters of all time. I could tell you some stories. Not all, but some. Ha!
Cool Ray.

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Anonymous said...

I was there, just like everyone else it was hot and close. the only way I had room was to sit under my camera tripod back from the stage about 25ft. Still have my wooden nichel they were throwing out at the front gates. And the picture I took of Joe Cocker saluting me with a Lone Star. Got so wasted that I all most missed formation the next day at Fort Hood.

Anonymous said...

I was there with 3 friends. we drove from College Station, awesome show everyone was great. We sat in the stands to the right of the stage. The visual I most remember was them turning on the light and all you could see was smoke coming up from the field .Had to get back to A&M for the first day of class the next morning. What a great time.

Hookman Brown said...

My name is Hookman Brown. I was there.
My friends and I drove up from Texas City.
I experienced everything everyone else has mentioned.
The music was great. The memories are...um...a little hazy.
That was the 2nd hottest outdoor concert I was ever at. The 1st hottest was the Celebration of Life Music Festival in Louisiana in 1971.The 3rd hottest was also a ZZ show.It was at Jepperson? stadium in Houston in the mid 70's.While waiting in line to buy tickets for that show, a friend, Teddy Dimitri, passed out from the heat.

But this is Texas.

Anonymous said...

I was there. It was 4 days before my 21st birthday and I was considering it my personal b-day party.

I'll never forget when Jimmy came on stage with Bad Company.

Most of us were just walking around on the field trying to find other friends that drove up from Corpus when Bad Co said "We'd like to introduce a friend of ours----Jimmy Page".

The entire stadium went kinda quiet when everyone was asking the person next to them "Did he say Jimmy Page?"

People were dropping like flys from the heat and the scalpers selling ice thru the fence for big bucks.

A lot of people were giving their ticket stubs to their buddies outside the fence so they could get in. So for a while if you left the stadium you couldn't get back in. They finally gave up on that idea.

And yes Joe Cocker sucked but Carlos put on a good show.

We were so burnt from this show we spent the entire next day at the rope swing in San Marcos jumping in the water.

DOR said...

It was my Freshman year at UT Austin. My friends and I were amazed that we would get to see a concert like this right across the street from our dorm. We sat stage right in the bleachers since more and more people began to crowd into the stadium. It cost us $5 per ticket... a lot back then but eventually they just let people come in without tickets. Hot as hot could be. 90,000 people showed up. The stadium had just had Astroturf out in and the Longhorns had yet to play a game on it. People in the crowd went crazy wild. SOme people cut out a chunk of the astroturf in the shape of the State of Texas. Because of that and the destruction in bathrooms it was the first and last concert held in the stadium until around 1990.

Steve Stinson said...

As most everyone has said, it was HOT! I was there with 2 friends and about 90,000 other "friends"! The funniest thing happened while we were waiting to get in, though. When they told us that no food or drink would be allowed inside, there was this guy in front of us in line with a bottle of Wild Turkey. I heard him say that there was "no way they were going to take my bottle" so he proceeded to drink the entire bottle while in line...in the heat...in about 30-45 minutes! By the time he got to the front of the time to get in, he was howling drunk!! I'm surprised they even let him in the stadium! I remember them running out of concessions, opening the gates to the stadium and allowing you to come and go at will. People were sitting outside on the lawn without even bothering to go back in because of the heat and the crowd. Good luck getting your seat back once you left. About 7PM, we went out to get something to eat and drink at a nearby 7-Eleven. It looked like the place had been looted!!! There were no drinks in the coolers, snacks of any kind were gone and the clerk was just standing there with this blank stare on his face, like he was in shock or something! Ah...the good old days! We sure do miss 'em!

James Hernandez said...

My name is Jim Hernandez (Householder). Drove there from Pasadena Texas with Joe Wood and Gary Wynn I believe. Had a great time. Got stoned of course and stayed till the concert was over late that evening. I have no recollection of the heat. I do remember people lined up on blankets like a triage under the shade of the stadium while the medics took care of them. I had thought they were tripping on acid, but maybe it was the heat. The music was great! the people were awesome! Nice to see these pice and read the stories. What a great time in my life.

Anonymous said...

I had been discharged from the USMC that winter and had become a ZZ Top fan. Like everyone else, it was HOT!!! And I had worked all summer in the oil patch in S. Texas and served my tour in the USMC in Yuma, Az. Santana was awesome and Bad Company blew me away! ZZ Top started last and dehydration had given me a head-ache which rendered me miserable. Always wanted to hear them at a better venue...july daytime concert not best in Texas. Glad I went & survived but Manor Downs in October at night w/Greatful Dead more positive experience, if only because temperature 30 degrees cooler.

Anonymous said...

I was there with friends from Mineola Texas , Page played a couple of songs with Bad Co , smokin and drinking . Hell of a time.

Anonymous said...

Four of us came down from Fort Hood Texas, We were some of the first to get in spent the night sleeping in our car for good seats. They gave us a plate of bbq ribs, potato salad and baked beans upon admission. MY old army buddy still has on of the wooden nickles they dropped from the plane.

Dick Stafford said...

Great recap of a fantastic concert. Glad to see a couple of my shots in there.

Ralph Crist said...

Yes myself & my 1st girlfriend. Bad Company came to be my favorite band. We were around the 10 or 20 yard line. My girl was so young and beautiful! Everyone kept looking at her:0) we were in high school and it was better than Woodstock ! We all sat on towels and blankets. Everyone around us were like family:0)... RC, CG, GG

Anonymous said...

I was there! Had to beg and plead with my mother to let me go with my friends from Waco to Austin to see the show. I was 17 at the time. I got sick in the heat, but we stayed til the end. It was awesome. Good memories!!!

JCM said...

My friends and I drove all the way from El Paso so go. I mostly remember Joe Cocker and Bad Company. Memorial Stadium was packed, hot as hell and there wasn't enough water. But at age 21, I didn't care.

"Nelly" said...

Yea, Very Body Said It Was Hot. I Don't Remember Hot, What I Do Remember Is, Water Flowing Out Of Bathrooms, Got The Last Plate Of Food, BBQ, Raining French Connection Rolling Papers, Thrown From A Cessna Airplane, Somebody Breaking Down A "LB", West Coast Turnarounds, Trippin, Downers, No Fights, Great Music, Sitting About 20 or 30 feet From The Stage On The Grass. Front Row Center, Bad Company Coming On Stage, We Looked At Each Other And Said, "FREE", Then Jimmy Page Walked Out, "To Fucking Cool", Joe Cocker, Santana, ZZ Top, Under The Lights...My Buddies From Altus AFB, Ok...(8hr. Ride), Looking For The Car In The Dark. (I Do Not Remember Finding It)
Waking Up On A Lawn Next To Smiley's VW, And A Nice Guy, In A Cop Uniform, Saying, "Boy, You Got To Get Out Of Here"... But Officer, "No But's Son, You're On These Nice Folk's Lawn"...
My Buddy, Jer. Said, "Smiley, I Hope Your VW Starts" And Off We Went Back To Altus AFB. (8hrs. Driving), Just In Time To Go To Work Graveyard Shift On The Flight Line...Altus AFB.
I'll Never Forget Those Times As Long As I Live, I've Been Wanting To Share This Story For A Long Time...
Sgt. Pickett

Greg Larsen said...

i was there on the field about 30 yards from the center stage. I think artificial turf was already there and with all the burns and people cutting pieces out was why it was the last concert,

Angele Jackson said...

My name is Angele McMurphy. I was there with my brother David McMurphy and friends from Killeen Texas. We sat under this huge stage light or we would have been sun burned. I took care of someone's small child named Sunshine most of the day. The music was fabulous in spite of the intense heat. Santana & Bad Company rocked! I remember Joe Cocker was wasted. At some point I was tossed into the sky in a blanket toss. My hair hung to my knees & I weighed about 100 lbs so I was a good candidate. I would never dream of doing that today. I recall standing in line to drink water out of the bathroom sinks. Sounds gross but it was some kind of hot. I sat on a strangers shoulders at the end of the concert to watch ZZ Top in their white satin suits & pink cowboy hats. What a memory!

The Rover said...

I was in college at UT in 1974. It was the beginning of my Sophomore year. I had heard about the concert in Austin. When I tried to buy a floor ticket in Austin, they had none. But, when I was back home in the Dallas area, I was able to buy a floor ticket in Dallas.I already had albums by Santana and Bad Company. I liked ZZ Top of course, but they played them on the radio so often, that I never got around to buying an album. I did buy Fandango! when it came out. I was pleased to see the shot of Memorial Stadium from over head thta came with the LP.

So, I lived in a dorm near the stadium, so the morning of the concert, I walked over to a gate and stood in line, in the already hot heat with about sixty people. I had a blanket, which covered the gallon bottle of water I brought in. I ended up getting a spot in the center of the field, at about the 50 yard line. By chance, I happened to sit by a couple from the Dallas area.

For Bad Company's encore song, they brought out Jimmy Page. Page did nothing spectacular as he played rhythm guitar, other than just being there on stage, in Texas, at a festival, the first he'd played in Texas since their 1969 Lewisville Internationl Pop Festival. IMO, Zeppelin were the biggest draw in the world at that time. When Jimmy was announced, everyone around me, on the stadium floor stood up. And wouldn't know it, the guys sitting in of me, upon standing up, were tall, very tall --over 6 feet tall. At that point, I had to jump up to get a glimpse of Jimmy.

By the time Joe Cocker came on, I needed to go get some BBQ. The BBQ was okay, but it was nothing great. But I'm glad I had the gallon water bottle to fill up before I went back to my seat.

Santana came on as the sun was setting. That was surreal.

Then, there was a very, very, very long wait for ZZ Top to come on. Maybe about an hour and a half. I remember people in the audience climbing on top of each other, making human pyramids, while we all waited for ZZ Top to come on. But finnaly, ZZ Top did appear, and it was all worth the wiat, They put on aqn excellent show, the highlight of which, for me, was Just Got Paid. Billy G lead up to that song with a nice long "talk".

Needless to say, after that long hot day of music, I was spent, and when I got back to my dorm room I crashed, and didn't wake up until about noon, the next day.

The stadium had a brand new astroturf. Several concert-goers cut out some of the astro turf in the shape of Texas. Darryl Royal was so pissed about that, that he, with his influence, got all concerts banned from the stadium.

rosie benefield said...

I had just came in from Detroit a few days before and was invited by new friends. I had no clue life was sustainable in heat like that. Loved it, especially Santana. I was hooked on Texas. Still am.

Robert S. said...

I went to this amazing concert. I was with a buddy and his girlfriend, E. Miller. The funny part was I really liked her but she didn't feel the same. Anyway, its probably the greatest concert I have ever seen and though I loved all the groups, I was mainly there to see my favorite band...Bad Company. I had been a huge fan of Free and now Bad Company was made up of Paul Rodgers & Simon Kirke. I had been a big fan of Mott The Hoople and now Mick Ralphs was with BC and finally the late, great Boz Burrell ex Kin Crimson was now with BC as well. I would consider them a "Super Group". It was great when Bad Company was on stage and to have Jimmy Page come out to join them as a special guest was simply amazing. BC was on Led Zep's record label "Swan Song". Just a great concert that I have shared with my kids as well. What's even more cool...I saw Bad Company (the original lineup) on their 25 year Reunion Tour in Washington, DC with my 2 sons. It was a great concert as usual with a solo David Lee Roth as the opening act. Then I saw them one more time in Virginia but it was just with Paul Rodgers and Simon Kirke...not the same, but still great. There is no singer in Rock & Roll that can touch Paul Rodgers in my opinion. Long Live R & R.

Ed Stone said...

I was there also... we were sitting just back of center field... we were among the lucky ones that got some of the BBQ and it was good... it got so hot I remember they opened the player locker rooms and turn on the showers so everyone could go get soaked... also remember rolling a bunch of joints and ran out of papers then some people were walking around with these boxes throwing stuff through out the crowd and then some hit us and it was french connection rolling papers... saved by the bell....lol.. all in all it was a great show

Bobby Kiser said...

I was there with Audy Kiser, Clyde Dykes,& several people from Corpus. It was a fucking party! Jimmy page played with Bad Company, Joe Cocker fell on his ass got up took a drink of whiskey & went right into "She Came In Through The Bathroom window" I smoked dopewith a chimp. And yes it was hot it's fucking Texas in the summer.

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness. What a great concert. We came from Waxahachie in a baby blue VW bug. Crammed in like sardines. It was hotter than A hub,, but we didn't care. Awesome music, awesome friends. Long ride home !!!!!!!!
Judy Smithwick...Waxahachie, Texas

jaromier said...

My name is Jos Geenen. We were there; me and my wife Els. At the time I was on temporarily loan from the The Hague (Holland) engineering office to our Houston office, to help out in booming business times. We lived in Texas for over one year and in our spare time (no children yet) we have been to various concerts; Zappa, Deep Purple, Rick Wakeman, Chicago, etc. We also managed to obtain tickets for the Barn-dance in Austin. The total experience was amazing, starting with being taken from our car by the police to spend the night in the open air in a field next to the concert stadium. Entering the stadium as one of the first was a frightful experience since only one small gate was opened and the crowd behind us was pushing such that we were literally lifted from the ground, later they opened up all accesses. We also remember a great shortage in food and beverages, but the good thing was the public sharing of what was there. The music of Cocker, Santana, Bad Company and ZZTop was great. All in all we share great memories supported by some nice pictures. In the mean time we have grown 5 children (all music lovers). We are still together and enjoying our music, going to concerts and enjoying our memories.

Anonymous said...

I was there. I still keep my ticket stub, originally under the plastic outer wrap on my Fandango LP, now in the CD case. We were stationed at Ft. Sam Houston in San Antonio and drove to Austin for the show, and something, almost anything, better than Lone Star beer. We were stuck on the sunny (hottest) side of the stadium. Great show, and I still continue to Mellow Down Easy whenever I can.

Steve Lawrence said...

Steve Lawrence here. A group of us left from Irving, TX two nights before. Aubrey Albright and his fine sister, and a bunch of others. My friend Terry's mom was worried about us getting busted, and gave him a credit card and arranged a room at the Stephen F. Austin super swank hotel(kinda naive, snicker snicker). We were ordering up shots of jack black in cut glass shot glasses (oldest of us was 17). The pot smoke in the hotel was so thick you could get stoned just walking around. About 8 of us in that room. Got to the show 2 hrs before the start. Temp cyclone fences all around, but around 11am they were down, torn down and destroyed. They announced that due to tons of counterfit tickets, it was a free show. By 12pm, concessions were out, and everyone descended like locusts on the town, picking it clean. We had to drive 20mi out of town just to find some grape and orange nehi at a fast food store, which was all they had left! We were toking nonstop, having taken about a pound and a half and rolling half a day before the show. Cocker sucked majorly. Santana rocked, and Jimmy Page was a surprise show up with Bad Company, as this was their first tour in US. ZZ blew the top off, and then, regrettably, it was history. What a hell of a show! Still, the best rock show I can recall, that with likely over a hundred shows under my belt. Never did even smell any BBQ though. What a memory!

Unknown said...

I remember tht my girlfriend n her sister plus her boyfriend we had spent the night at the holiday Inn before the concert. .when we entered we sat up in the bleachers which was to the right of the stage. From what I remember was the heat and those on the field were soon being taken out due to it being super hot down there. We had shade on the stands. Other things I remember were the human pyramids and one particular one was about 5 or 6 people high n this guy making his way to the top n then doing a back flip into the crowd that was awesome. As far a bands I remember bad company the others were a faded memory cause we were just into having a good time with all the typical concert paraphernalia. But from the bits and pieces I had a fantastic time that as of this day I still remember.... .phillip gomez