It's Only Rock'n Roll
The Kansas City crowd was very excited. Kemper Arena was loud with thunderous applause, which was gratefully acknowledged by Mick. The show itself was very loud; it was definitely louder than any other show we've been to on this tour.
The first five songs of the show really work with the enthusiasm of the crowd. Gimme Shelter was a treat to hear again. Saint of Me once again had plenty of singing along by the enthusiastic crowd.
The lift that brings Mick to the stage at the beginning of Out Of Control worked perfectly tonight, and Mick came through the stage straight as an arrow.
It's amazing that Mick's energy level continues to grow throughout the show. The last five songs are attacked with the same vigor that the first five songs start with.
Darryl has some fun dancing towards the end of the show. His contribution to the show cannot be overlooked. There's an obvious rapport among everyone on stage and the result is a fantastic show.
Start Time: 9:25 Finished : 11:30
The set list:
Johnny Lang opened up the show. He played a good set, but it was lost on the older crowd. As I got up to use the restroom after Lang's set, a middle-aged gentleman turned to me and asked, "Do you know the name of that band that just played?" As I said, I enjoyed Lang's performance but honestly had to answer, "Who cares?" I was just there to see the Stones too.
I became an instant, and avid, Stones fan in my junior year of high school when I hear "Bitch" (the anti-Christ of all love songs) on the radio. Needless to stay, I was ecstatic when Mick introduced that one early in the show. The audience seemed really taken with Lisa Fischer tonight. They were really impressed with her vocals on "Gimme Shelter" and during "Honky Tonk Women" she flirted with crowd on her side of the stage.
The Stones themselves seemed to really be having fun tonight. Mick played with the audience a lot, and during the start of "Out of Control," Keith hung around the back-up mikes playing with Lisa and Bernard and went over and goosed Ronnie as he picked up his guitar. Keith's guitar on "You Got the Silver" was simply blissful. It was a definite highlight.
The crowd was divided up with middle-agers having about a 70%-30% advantage over people closer to my age. It ended up being a nice mix. The younger crowd provided the energy; the older crowd brought the enthusiasm. Though they started out a little slow, by the end everyone in the audience was singing along so loudly that at times they were drowning out Mick's vocals.
It was a tremendous show - worth every penny spent, every day waited, every mile driven and every "But they're so old" comment listened.
For me, concert going may end when Stones' tours do.
I've been a fan of the Rolling Stones for about three years now, and as anyone who really, truly, madly, deeply loves this band knows, the word "love" seems to small, to laughably insignificant to adequately express how I feel. I fell in love with Exile on Main St. at age 16 (which I bought for myself while "Christmas shopping"), and all of the filth and fury and decadence and debauchery struck a chord in me with an intensity that modern music could never hope to muster.
Seeing the group perform at the Kemper Arena on Tuesday night was the first (the first!) time I have ever seen them live. And in comparison to the many rock and roll concerts by the age of 19, no other band has produced such a reaction in me, physically and emotionally, as the Stones.
I must confess that walking into the Arena 90 minutes before showtime, I was fully expecting this to be the greatest concert of my life; there was basically no way I was not going to love this show. All unbias aside, I believe now and always will that this show served as another proud, hollering, two-fisted "fuck you" to the notion that fans are only paying for the name brand these days. Just as I have never seen a band play with as much assured conviction and possession of the stage, so I have never (well, rarely) seen a band play with as much vitality, as if their very lives depended on their ability to connect with every fan in the whole damn place.
So it was all there, the cheesy black-and-white video and the first five and Keith's bit with Chuck and the requisite ovations and the walkway and the hand-slapping and the little stage and the Hot Rocks finale and the confetti during "Brown Sugar." We got "Gimme Shelter" and "Memory Motel" and "You Got the Silver" and "Get Off My Cloud." You've all seen it, and if you haven't, there are people who were there who can describe it with much more clarity and much less romance than me. I spent the duration of the show with a star-struck sort of pleasant, trembling nausea throughout my whole body, and time cannot possibly move fast enough for me until I feel it again. I will only say that last night's show has forever redefined my ideas of what constitutes a fantastic (no, terrific... no, amazing... no, jaw-dropping...etc.) rock and roll show. It was tight, and yet it was overflowing. The closer they were to us, the larger-than-life they became.
A few notes/observations: Jonny Lang is going places; he might never be as big as the Stones, but I can imagine people are saying the same things about him now that were said about them in '64. Why is it that Keith's introduction gets the biggest ovation, but then so many people leave to go get beer during his set? To the graying, bitter bastards (some wearing suits no less! to a rock concert!?) on the floor: you know that smell during "Midnight Rambler"?... that was marijuana. And to the portly, middle-aged gentleman in the red jersey who was smoking it: your inebriated stumblings were amusing for awhile, but got tiresome quick. And seeing the last five songs in concert for the first (the first!) time was awesome, so screw anybody out there who's "bored" with hearing them again... some of us should have such complaints.
All told, a wonderful experience, one that will allow me to die happily. If anybody's got a good quality recording of this show, please get in touch at email@example.com.
See you in Memphis!
Gone are the huge props pyro and other trappings of recent Stones tours. Tonight the band put them self under the microscope only to be judged by music and music alone
Mick Jagger and Stones tore into the set with Jumping Jack Flash and kept the audience entertained the whole night with rendentions of their most notable hits over the span of thirty some odd years. One of the drawing points of this tour was the playing of some of the more obscure tunes that they have not played for a long.time live. I am thirty years old the thought of the Stones playing songs I have never heard before at first ticked me off a little but after last night I come to realize that every once and a while. you need a breath of fresh air and the way they played the air was pretty fresh and I took a long breath.
One thing that amazed me is how the audience and band got into the show some times I could not hear the vocals from the stage very well due to singing along that crowd was doing. Great job fellow fans for participation you all need to reach around and give your self a pat on the back.
The next thing I want to comment about is the "great B stage debate" I have read reviews saying how poor the sound was during previous concert. Let me tell you that the biggest hilight of the whole concert was the B stage set it rocked. The band seem to have fun playing in a little more quaint setting and fans loved it. The sound quallity was actually better I thought than the main stage.
The only thing that I have to say to the Stones DO NOT WAIT ANOTHER TEN YEARS TO PLAY KANSAS CITY WE LOVE YOU.
By the way if anybody has any pictures or bootlegs video or audio of this show please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Once again thank you Rolling Stones and thank you Kansas City IT'S ONLY ROCK AND ROLL BUT I LIKE IT I LIKE IT YES I DO.
JUMPING JACK FLASH
YOU GOT ME ROCKIN - After this one, Mick greeted the KC crowd and apologized for not coming to town in a "very long time". Said he couldn't remember when but knew it was sometime in the 70's (it was actually Still Life in 81)
GIMME SHELTER - Lisa!!!
BITCH - on this one, Mick blew the last verse, as he stepped to the mike to sing it, he got choked up but improvised fast by running into the yeah, yeah, yeahs that are at the end of the song. I noticed him look at Bernard after he did this and they both started smiling hard. I don't think most of the crowd even noticed...
HONKY TONK WOMEN - always a winner live, Keef seems to have made it a regular occurance of coming up behind Chuck on the piano solo and improvise the ending of it. Pretty funny still....
MEMORY MOTEL - Best I've heard it live yet
SAINT OF ME - KC was in great voice til this one. Mick tried to get the audience to sing the "yeah, oh yeah" stuff, but they quit on him. The band had to start it up again just to get the crowd keep singing....
PAINT IT BLACK
YOU GOT THE SILVER - total bliss! I thought it was great!!
BEFORE THEY MAKE ME RUN
OUT OF CONTROL
ROUTE 66 - B stage
GET OFF MY CLOUD - B stage
MIDNIGHT RAMBLER - B stage - My first time hearing this one live....blew me away!!
IT"S ONLY ROCK AND ROLL
START ME UP - last time they played KC, this was brand NEW!!!
SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL - encore
some reflections about the concert at Kemper in '81. It is interesting that
they finished in '81 with JJF and now they kick it off with the same!
Rumors flew it was Mick Taylor's fault that the demons were summoned to Kansas City. His gig at the Grand Emporium was too coincidental for anyone to believe that conspiracy did not play a part in adding Kansas City's Kemper Arena late during the '81 tour. Or was it research for a sequel to Watt's book on Charlie Parker that brought the boys to town? Perhaps the truth will be known when VH1 Gives us the "Behind the Scenes" update long after the facts have been laid to rest.
Mick Taylor joined the band onstage for a couple of songs. His handlers were also credited with an "assist" as they openly passed powders to Ronnie. The papal view we commanded from stage right, overlooked the evidence that fundamental hedonism was in full bloom. Ronnie grabbed the vial from Taylor sized like a Olympic baton and pranced on stage, playing the neck of his guitar while tossing the vial up and down repeatedly during "Hang Fire". Keith was a natural to get sucked into this vortex of conspicuous consumption - much to Jagger's displeasure! Keith finished the set with the "baton" cradled in his right hand while playing, finally returning the contraband to Taylor's bodyguard. It's amazing what $16.75 will buy in entertainment value.
It's been almost 18 years since the last Kemper Arena show, and ten years since their last visit to Kansas City. Thanks for coming back.
Please note - this is NOT the 1999 set list, it's the one from 1981!!!
December 14, 1981 (first show out of two nights in Kansas City)
Start Time: 8:20PM
1. Under My Thumb
Please note - this is NOT the 1999 set list, it's from 1981!!!
Thanks to Ted Saxlid, Olaf Reuthebuch, Axel Schumacher and each and every one of you for supplying links to online newspapers, and reviews, of course!
Read all about the "No Security" and "Bridges To Babylon" tours of 1999 in the It's Only Rock'n Roll magazines. New issue IORR 35 out Jan 20, 1999, and the complete No Security guide in IORR 36 is out April 23, 1999.
It's Only Rock'n Roll 1999 -
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