You may recall that Bridget and I won tickets to see Green Day at the Mellon Arena. There has been nothing but drama since we won the tickets. I had visited the Clear Channel offices on multiple occassions and each time they told me that the tickets had not arrived yet. This went on for upward of two months. My insistance with the Clear Channel people intensified as time went on since the show was only 3 days away and we didn’t have our tickets yet. We finally ended up getting a definitive answer from the promotions director that our tickets would be at will call. We didn’t find that out until Thursday before the show. Talk about stress!
After we got our tickets, we decided to look at the map and figure out where we would be sitting. I figured since the tickets were comp’ed we would end up being seated up near the ceiling. Not this night, dear friends. These tickets were in the East Suite. Also known as the luxury boxes. Unbelievable
We walked into the box and saw that there were leather chairs, a cooler full of Cokes, and a fantastic view of the stage. Bridget and I just stared at each other for a second. Then there was the obligatory high-five. Wow.
After a while, the hostess that takes care of the luxurious box people (or the LBP as I have come to call them) came to check on us. She indicated that she would be bringing pizza for us as well. Sweet! A few other folks showed up after awhile including the father and son team of Lee and Lee who live out near the
Starlake Amphitheater… Coca-Cola Amphitheater… Post-Gazette Pavilion.
My Chemical Romance opened the show. They are much harder than Green Day. I had only heard their cover of Under Pressure before hearing them at this concert. I thought they did a good job and they were a suitably well-known band to be opening for Green Day. They played for a half an hour and then the stage crew started setting up for Billie Joe, Mike, and Tre.
Before the boys came out, a drunken rabbit led everyone in a rousing rendition of Y.M.C.A. by The Village People. I have no idea, so don’t ask.
Green Day played an amazing show. Bridget, myself, and the rest of the LBP were having a great time watching all the kids down in the pit throw one another around. Billie Joe seemed to feed off of the crowds energy. At one point, Billie emerged with a Super Soaker and dowsed the audience. He pulled a little boy (maybe 6 or 7) onto the stage and allowed him to continue dowsing the crowd while he retrieved another Super Soaker to give the crowd a double shot. There was a catwalk that extended about 30 feet into the main crowd area. Billie got the little boy to stand out on the catwalk and continue soaking the crowd while he finished the song. That kid now has his favorite band. Count on it.
The guys played at least 6 songs from the new album. The ones I can remember are: St. Jimmy, American Idiot, Jesus of Suburbia, Whatsername, Boulevard of Broken Dreams, Holiday. They played numerous hits from past albums, including: Basket Case, Minority, Warning, Hitchin’ a Ride, Good Riddance, etc. The boys also covered Shout (by The Isley Brothers) and We Are The Champions (by Queen).
At one point, the guys were jamming on the typical 3 chord punk song and asked the audience if anyone knew how to play drums. Billie confirmed that the one kid had in fact been playing for 5 or 6 years. He pulled him on to the stage and Tre Cool showed him the beats that he needed to lay down. The kid was pretty good. He was even tossing some snare rolls into the mix. Eventually they pulled up a bass player and a guitarist. The fans played the song while Billie finished singing. The bass player and the drummer were good but the guitar player had very poor timing. He was about 2 beats off the entire time. After the song ended, Billie had the drummer run down the catwalk and dive into the crowd. He told the guitarist that he was allowed to keep the guitar(!) but he also added “…keep practicing, ‘cuz you #$%&ing suck. “
Green Day put on an amazing show. The production quality, the setlist, the audience participation– this is a band that has certainly come into their own. They understand how to tour and how to put on a show. I’ve seen a decent number of concerts in my day but this was my favorite. I would recommend to anyone that likes Green Day that they should pick up the new album (American Idiot) and get tickets to see these guys. I wasn’t disappointed and you won’t be either.
I <3 Green Day.