This time, however, the mission was to see Mr. Vince Neil, the frontman for Motley Crue, touring with his own band.
Uhhh...uhhh...mission failed, sir.
Problem was, the show began at 8:00PM, and an assumption was made that there would be an opening band, and that he wouldn't go onstage for an hour or so -- as basically 9 times out of 10 such a thing typically happens with a rock 'n' roll concert.
We arrived at about 9:15, just as the show was getting out. I thought this shot of Neil is fitting, as he seems to be waving at us from afar with an annoyed expression like, "You missed the friggin' show, you idiots."
Yep, that's us.
Needless to say, my buddy was disappointed...and then insult was further added to injury in a comedy of several ways.
First off, all we could do was just stand there as the show was JUST getting out -- literally inches away from the counter where we would have purchased our tickets -- which also happens to be at the bottlenecked route to and from the entrance to the ballroom where the gig took place. So, as we stood in that choice location, we got to hear from all the attendees shuffling past on how great the show was. Apparently he not only played all the Motley Crue stuff, but did a few covers -- including "Heaven and Hell" by Black Sabbath!
If that wasn't bad enough, several folks shuffling by us took notice of my buddy's Ratt tour shirt showcasing the band's name with "Ratt and Roll" underneath, which he had worn on top of a thermal layer. So, needless to say, the typical pro-80s metal fanatical comments were dropped here and there when they saw the shirt...comments such as......
"Wow, cool dude! Ratt rules!"
"Rock on, man!" (hand showing Dio "devil fingers" sign -- \m/)
\m/ "Hey look, it's Ratt...didn't they play last month?!?!" Editor's note: Yes, they most certainly did...and you can read aaaaaaaaaallllllllllllll about it here.
\m/ "Wooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!" (from very inebriated and flirty rocker chick showing off cleavage and tiny metal skull necklass)
\m/ "Cool dude." (cigarette smoke exhaling in face)
\m/ "Hey man, I thought you were the drummer."
Yep, not kidding...my buddy's long blonde locks -- coupled with his getup -- somehow had a few of the metalheads convinced he was the drummer in the Vince Neil concert (the drummer which, ironically, we were unable to lay our eyes on ourselves to verify the apparent likeness since we missed the goddamn show in the first place). So my buddy had these random rockers coming up to him to give him high fives and so forth...someone may have even tried to have their picture taken with him.
So, despite the dissapointment of missing the show, there was a humorous ending to the whole thing, and we laughed it off...AND as we were driving back toward civilization, I mused on how this was going to be an interesting blog post and in the process realized a new category for live performance had been created -- "live performance (barely missed)."
The category appears due to the fact that as I thought about it this show, believe it or not, wasn't the first one that I had barely missed -- I also ran into a similar, and in some ways more humorous situation with a Dio-led Black Sabbath tour from the early 90s (a story for another day).
So how do we end the night? By nothing other than making our way to a theater in town to catch 2012, the latest CG uber disaster film...laughing through the specter of the world ending two years from now, of course.
I guess anything pales in comparison to barely missing a $15 Vince Neil performance.