Stones Tickets Purchased

Well, it happened again. I got lured in (or suckered, however you want to put it). It seems kind of impossible, but I just purchased tickets for opening night of the Stones’ “50 and Counting” tour at the Staples Center. This will mark my third time seeing the group, and I have some thoughts:

1.) My Wife is Smarter Than Me. There is a neat thing the band is doing this time around, offering a “cheap” $85 lottery ticket. These tickets could only be bought in pairs with the location of the seats being hidden from the purchaser. You were to find out where you were sitting the night of the show, and it could be anywhere from the nosebleeds to the front row. This appealed to me for two reasons, the first and foremost being that this was the cheapest ticket. The second being the “winning the lottery” angle. It was exciting, and I started day dreaming about who I would take as my guest. I already had two friends going, so if we all got these $85 lottery tickets, then we would have one extra.
But when I prepared to buy the tickets (at 10:00am precisely on April 15), I saw no link to the $85 tickets. No option for them at all. Only the standard seating.

What I came to find out after talking with my wife (who through friendly curiosity also went online around that time) was that the $85 tickets were offered through and not through Ticketmaster’s site. The site where I was looking.

2.) Expectations Meeting Disappointment Meeting Desperation. Without the $85 ticket option, I panicked. Our party’s plan was blown, so we scrambled for Plan B. The “cheaper” seats had gone very quickly, so now we were in danger of not getting to go at all. This is where my psychology gets tested. Before I heard there was a tour, I wasn’t chomping at the bit for another concert. Then I heard there was one, and some friends started talking about going, and I said, “Sure, but I don’t need to pay big bucks for my third time seeing these guys.” But as the week passed, anticipation grew. I started getting excited for the show that hadn’t happened yet. So as the tickets disappeared, I began to feel disappointed in missing something that until a week ago I hadn’t even known existed, so desperation kicked in and we expanded our search. I’m telling myself it was worth it. I won’t share how much we paid for seats, but let’s put it this way: my one seat for this show is priced higher than the three seats I bought for the previous 2 concerts (I bought myself one in 1997, and two for a 1999 show).

3.) Prep Work. Now comes the period where I think about the show a lot, and wonder about set lists and what we’ll see and who the opening band is, almost none of which I can affect. What I can do is manage my own musical playlists to put myself in the proper mental state. I’m going to limit my listening to the latter years, focusing on my “Stones with Wood” list. As I wrote in my review of “Shine a Light,” the Stones tend to play the songs of the Ron Wood era best because, well, Ron Wood was part of the group when they were written (mostly). There’s less separation and translation at work. He didn’t have to learn a part that was done by another guy. He just does HIS part. So I won’t get my hopes up for a great version of “Sympathy for the Devil” (still one of the my least favorite songs the latter-day lineup plays live, with its synthetic bongos and whatnot) (that and “Only Rock ‘n’ Roll”) (and “You Got Me Rockin’,” which never did it for me ever) (anyway…). Get ready for a kickin’ version of “Shattered” or “Love is Strong” or something. These are weird things to say.

Of course, I prepared myself to get those $85 tickets, and we all know how that went. I can’t help it. I’m still hung up on it. Feels like such a missed opportunity, even though they went super fast.
4.) Wish (Set) List. You know you’re a long-time fan/apologist when you propose such things, but as I walked out of the “Shine the Light” wishing the Stones had played a few cuts from their latest studio album. This sort of thing rarely happens, but as it had turned out that “A Bigger Bang” was pretty good, and had some good Rolling-Stonesy music on it, it would have been fun to hear, say, “Rough Justice” or “Infamy.” I’m hoping for some of that here, between the hits. I’ve yet to be disappointed by their performing “Jumpin’ Jack Flash,” but wouldn’t it be cool to hear “Plundered My Soul” just once? Other songs I’d like to hear: “Beast of Burden,” “Look What the Cat Dragged In,” “Worried About You,” “Thief in the Night,” and “Emotional Rescue.” I’m setting myself up for disappointment here; the weird kind where they end up “only” playing “Honky Tonk Women” and a zillion other hits.
5.) Prime Rates for Out of Prime Times. As I said, I paid more for this ticket than for my previous tickets combined… and I paid more for this ticket than I do for most things in my life (truth be told, I don’t buy that many things). But I realize that in my Stones-observing period, I’ve seen them live three times (1997, 1999, and now 2013), and never in their prime. That seems weird. I know it makes sense, because I didn’t exist when they were at their (culturally determined) peak, but wouldn’t you think I would have learned my lesson by now? I ignored the Bigger Bang Tour, the Live Licks Tour. Why did this one sway me? And for so much? I’m really hung up on that.
6.) Dumb Hats. Look at this picture:
What a dumb hat. If I have one wish for this concert — and I felt like wasting it on something really weird — it’s a limitation on dumb hats. Hats are for bald guys, man. Mike Love wears a hat. Sure, Jagger’s wore some cool hats, but this is not one of them. C’mon.

One Response to “Stones Tickets Purchased”

  1. You have got terrific knowlwdge here.

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