This Old Geek

Long live rock


Ladies and Gentleman, boys and girls, Geeks got to explore. There is stuff that geeks gotta do. There are some worthy rambles to be taken.  That’s doesn’t immediately mean Comic-Con (not that there is anything wrong with that), but there other worlds to conquer.

There is a vast world of geekihood out there, that calls out to step away from your screens, and come look at ours. One of the things that music geeks (you know who you are, current downloaders, former gawkers at Carly Simon album covers while you listened to Zep or AC/DC over the record store sound system, thrift store rummagers,  the t shirts in your wardrobe that aren’t superhero laden) and make the pilgrimage to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland.

I mean the place is literally calling to one’s inner and outer geek. We are all collectors in some fashion, be it comics, dvds, blue rays, what have you and if you schlep around the first few floors of the Hall of Fame, you can’t help but think you got in on somebody else’s treasures. You did.

Journey forth and be one with the music geeks, some of us, hell most of us are playing in these multiple dimensions. Okay, so you might not be a Springsteen acolyte, a Deadhead, but as that seer, sage, soothsayer Ice Cube notes: “Rock and Roll is a spirit.” There is so much to move the spirit inside these walls, even beyond the gift shop.(Photo: Author)

Regardless of your dispensation, part of your record collection is lurking in there, along the way, you will find some things that ought to be. You might a few bands that made you change the radio dial with manic like lightspeed, but there is also bands that you stayed in the car waiting for their song to finish on the radio. This was my second spin through the Hall, and just like rummaging through found comics or album covers, there is good stuff waiting to be checked out.

(Photo: Author)

(Photo: Author)

Prince wore this ensemble when he literally made his guitar gently weep in a tribute to George Harrison some years ago.

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Elvis’ chopper, presumably for leaving the building

(Photo: Author)

This is the B-3 organ that Gregg Allman played on stage for many years with the Allman Brothers.

(Photo: Author)

Springsteen, a longtime presence for me.

(Photo: Author)

(Photo: Author)

This piece of history literally speaks for itself(Photo: Author)

This is a pretty awesome site to see. Most of the artifacts can be found on the first two levels, the next two are lot of video and audio offerings including the Sirius Radio home and numerous theaters, all worth checking out. The main theater was dedicated to “The Power of Rock” an exhibit that runs into the fall. That show was a compilation of the best bits from performances of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction dinner, but there are some amazing legends to that voodoo we love em to do. The featured exhibit does change with some frequency so it is worth heading to the Hall’s site to have some heads up knowledge ahead of time (and to buy tickets ahead of time).

(Photo: Author)

(Photo: Author)

Lest you think geek worlds don’t collide, as my son and I walked passed the AC/DC exhibit, a young voice yelled out “Hey, the Iron Man song.” No, it didn’t come from either of us.

(Photo: Author)

Gotta go, I mean, what other museum will have action figures….Go, now.

“How you doin’ ????”

What a difference a few decades can make? My first two concerts when I was fourteen was Bruce Springsteen (yeah, big surprise) and Rush (okay, a bit of surprise), but both were miles away from the local radio station sponsored revue at the Arena on Saturday Night.

My moonlighting gig had me ushering for the festivities, mercifully up the high level so you were in a good spot to see the people watching festival and that was the show for me.  Aside from helping a few teens learn to count to find the correct seat, it wasn’t a lot of heavy lifting. The radio group set up monitors on either side of the stage where we were regularly assaulted with commercials and videotape greetings from performers whose careers are too prosperous to come to Buffalo. Of the roughly 12,000 folks there, about a third of the audience were parents of the concert goers which I guess was good.

Funny to see the corridors full of moms networking or dads looking for a Sabres score.

Each of the first four acts got about 30 minutes on stage. Comedic relief for me was a security guard who appeared in my corridor, hear the first few prerecorded notes, looked at me and in perfect deadpan said “I don’t like them” before he turned to try his luck charming the moms in the hallway (no digits for him there). In between acts, was 30 minutes of commercials, a video and yelping from the air staff of the radio station. I think if I could have gotten a dollar for each “How ya’all doin?” or “Buffalo, make some noiiiiise!” my bills would be paid for the month. You’d think they would need a ghostwriter, but I have to remind myself of the intended demographic.

While resenting a little that I am now aware of such a thing as the Miranda Cosgrove band, in all fairness, headliner Maroon 5 was pretty good in their 50 minute slot to cap the night.  Another usher and I joked about how in our day you had to watch the show and hope the dot on stage as was the featured attraction. Before our Rock and Roll liver spots fully developed, a quick look at the seated people revealed a twittering, texting typing pool. That was at least till the headliner, once Maroon 5 cranked up, it actually felt like a concert and the assorted masses were up and into it.

At least those who were left. By taking a little more than two hours and stretching that over a five hour “well-oiled machine” like production, the younger fans reached their bed times and were starting to depart.

I just marvel at the merchandise sales. The radio station sold blue blinking light hats in such numbers that from upper level had the effect looking like at the old Atari video game on my parents tv set.

Interesting evening, on the upside, at a show with so few licensed drivers, this usher got home in record time.

Worse ways to help make the ends meet, but I’m looking forward to the hockey at the end of the month.

Days of Future Passed

Perhaps out of spite since I still have my hair, my Dad sends the occasional photograph to keep me on my toes.

Radio Days

Perhaps out of spite since I still have my hair, my Dad sends the occasional photograph to keep me on my toes. The one that arrived in today’s email wasn’t so bad. I worked for St. Bonaventure Unversity Radio Station when I was in school in the Mezozoic era (the mid 80’s). We were almost a big deal, had many leatherbound books on shelves of rich mahogany….mostly because the four commercial stations down there at the time played either country or “music of your life.” The attached is a picture from a remote broadcast from the Olean Center Mall, so long ago that my hair was a uniform color of brown and the picture was only in black and white. Enjoy.


Another questionable fashion choice. 1984 was a kidney stone for such things.

Oh yeah, My eldest needed a baby pic for her senior page in the City Honors yearbook, so this is what is going in, apparently. Brace yourselves for a window into my decay.


She’s the clean shaven one….