I rarely think to save the ticket stubs from the concerts I attend nowadays. Who am I kidding; with the price of sitters, we can barely afford a night out together. This assortment has a good deal to say about my taste in music during the mid-late 1980s; which saw me from high school through college.
It is hard to imagine you could get good lawn seats to a CSN concert for $8.50 in 1984. In fact, the most expensive ticket here, the Human Rights Now Benefit at the old JFK stadium in Philly, was an all day affair which featured Joan Baez; Tracy Chapman; Youssou N'Dour; Sting; Peter Gabriel and The Boss - all for $35 and a good cause. The time I saw Pink Floyd at JFK was a much darker affair, and when they played "Run Like Hell" as an encore that was rather good advice.
I won the ticket to Newport by being the only person listening to WSMU out of Dartmouth, MA when they were giving them away. Came as a pair with two coupons for free Ben & Jerry's.
The back to back concerts at the Saratoga Springs Performing Arts Center featured Crosby, Stills and Nash on the first night and Neil Young and Crazy Horse the second. Neil absolutely rocked. The R.E.M. show at the Philadelphia Spectrum had 10,000 Maniacs as the opening act. The Hot Tuna show was on a Manhattan pier where I also saw Stevie Ray Vaughn that summer. I spared you the many, many Grateful Dead ticket stubs, but have fond memories of the Summer of '87 Tour where Bob Dylan played a number of gigs on the same bill. I camped out in Boston overnight to get tickets for one of those shows in Foxboro.
The rarest ticket stub here, though, is the yellow and red one for my best friends in their high school band "The Influence", for whom I was impresario, head groupie and mischief maker all in one. If you've ever seen Dead Poet's Society, then you've seen the inside of the Everett Theater in Middletown, Delaware where we managed to get permission to have the concert. We did everything, from getting the closed down theater to open up just for us to play to appropriating all of our school's stage lighting and audio equipment. This was out great triumph of art over conformity and naturally I kept the stub as a memento.
If I do get out to hear live music it no longer is an arena show, but often something in a place that seats less than 1,000 and more often than not less than 100. But when I want to recall who and where I was in the days when music was among life's most important things, these colored bits of paper bring it all home.