Monday, March 26, 2018

Blind Item #11 - One Mad, Sad Moment Forever - A Himmm Blind Item - Part Four

As the dark began to settle in, the crowd was an ocean of people who had been there rocking all day.  Massive.  To see over 70,000 humans – do you have any IDEA how many people that is?? A fu@&%ng entire city staring back at you.  Just the crowd chatter was pitching the mic levels near red.  The band said it was "the biggest pub crowd we'd ever played to". 

H3 was going to kick off the show by himself, as their lead-in intro song was a way for the sound mixers to set the levels as each member is supposed to come on the stage and began to play one-by-one.  With a high-five to me for luck, H3 crawled and shimmied up through a trap door in the back of the set up stage, to sneak into the drum riser.  He snagged his clothes on the door, but luckily didn't rip anything.  Like a deranged elf, he was the first soldier into battle.

When I heard the video director announce in my ear-piece that it was time, I actually began to get nervous.  It wasn't quite dark outside yet, but hazy enough for dusk.  A summertime, damp London chill and no breeze that let the sound and smoke hang in the air.  The stage lights instantly dropped and PA went quiet.  H3 crawled nervously atop his stool, looking out at this sea of faces and bodies.  He held up a peace sign to signal the crew.  More people than he'd ever faced in his life, all he could think of was: "Don't f#@k this up…don't f#@k this up…okay, I'm a drummer, count to four - one hand – foot, hand, foot…".

When the fans saw H3 behind the kit, they ERUPTED into a ROAR so loud it created a blast of noise and wind powerful enough to knock you down.  Then came the announcement in my ear:  "Sixty seconds to LIVE BAND".  The band members began to gallop around the side of the stage set, running into battle one at a time.

Then: "thirty seconds", came the announcement.
 
The ten seconds to live rolling cameras and sound speed.  As HT gave me a wink and told me to "have fun lil brotha".  Before slapping up his own people and snaking his way to run out to the stage…he stole my lit cigarette and hot-boxed it to the filter in two draws.  Not even old enough to buy a beer in the states, but there I was.  Still a teenager and had just handed over a check of nearly two million dollars to throw this party.  Probably a world record price for a concert ticket.  As HT ran out to the stage, I followed and took my place in the shadows.
 
The band was working through the intro song, H3 hammering the beat, and the crowd blasts in cheers when HT galloped onto the stage.  They all were getting into the groove of the first tune, like a good warm up.  H3 beat those drums like they owed him money.  I stood there in the wings, a proud friend on the side of that stage with two stunning blondes on either side of me.  As soon as the opening song came to an end, there was applause and cheers.  I braced myself for what was about to happen, warning my dates to hang on tight – it's gonna get loud.  (When you watch the video this is the 4 minute and 07 seconds mark).

That's the moment H3 dropped the hammer, and kicked off that drum for the first major song.  It hit like a thunderbolt…

And oh, baby…did it ever hit.

That first note was like launching a nuclear explosion atop fifty tons of dynamite.  The roar and vibration of the packed stadium sent a vibration through your entire body.  Literally.  Your muscles vibrated, and the metal around you danced like an earthquake.  Your chest felt the concussion of the screaming roar.  The band didn't start playing – they EXPLODED into a blast of music, lights, and gymnastics that blew the crowd backwards.  Think I'm exaggerating? Hardly.  I'm underplaying it. 

H3 beat those skins to death and blew hell off hinges as the entire crowd jumped.  In unison. Up.  And. Down.  It shook the entire stadium, and parts of the edifice were actually falling down like snowflakes.  The light towers in the crowd would've collapsed had they not been rigged right.  The damn camera cranes even shook.  Seventy-plus-thousand people all bobbing, jumping, and singing - hands over their heads to this one amazing song's beat.  It sent shocks of electricity through the air, into your body, and through your soul like a fever seizure of religious ecstasy.  The jumping and dancing of that crowd was a mass orgasm of 75,000 humans all in unison.  Nobody could sit still, and the band couldn't stop smiling.  It was the definition of epic.

 If you watch the video on YouTube, watch this second song (or the first BIG song of the show).  I was there and could hardly believe it.  Raw, pure, power.  Now my two lady friends were sandwiching me, grinding and jumping.  On me.  I totally ignored any duties I had that night.  It was okay, because the Producer and Director were the best.  I got to stand side-stage looking at my friends as two pop idols danced around me and the population of Wembley stadium went wild.  When KG the guitarist pivoted in my direction though, I noticed something amiss.  The guitar tech had grabbed MY guitar out of the rack on accident! Hell!  It was my guitar KG was now playing onstage, and not his.  I deftly jostled over to his guitar tech to warn them.  All I got was a grin in return.  So I just darted back to my spot and shook my head in awe at his band, with a flawless guitarist not even playing his regular ax, rocking it out.

What proceeded was one of the most powerful performances ever given.  Certainly in my estimate, but also by those who just watch the video without having lived it.  Live.  The band never ran out of steam or had a bum song.  No weak links.  And when my guitarist friend switched guitars and horns, he shot me a thumbs up and a grin – I shot him the bird.  He laughed.  He used my Fender for most of the rest of the show.  I was honored and proud to know that it was a part of this event, and knew – even then – that it would be historic.

34 comments:

Audie said...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aAMqidt6B_A

Don Kieballs said...

So 2 out of 4 have revealed themselves to us on here. That's cool. And the 3rd we already think we knew.

Dena said...

New Sensation : )

filmfanb said...

Heehehe Jon Farris follows HMMMMMMMM

Chug ChooChoo said...

Enty or SDPGuy, are there any Grateful Dead blinds? Jambands?

sandybrook said...

Yeah New Sensation and Suicide Blonde were my favorite INXS songs. Look at 70,000 people start jumping up and down when it starts playing.

VDOVault said...

New Sensation...definitely the beat that took us from 80s to 90s music.

Andrew Wallace said...

Just fucking tell
Me about some pedos and junkies I don’t care about this stupid concert from one of if not the most overrated bands of all time

Chug ChooChoo said...

New Sensation is so vastly underrated and sort of outplayed at the same time. Thanks Himmmms

Miss Tia said...

INXS was fucking awesome. RIP Michael Hutchence :(

Amartel said...

WHat's "sad" about this moment?

Lurky McLurkster said...

The "sad" part will be revealed in part 14 of this blind ;)

Sal Salington said...

Kick (along with Gabriel's "So") was the go-to disc to show off a cd system back in the day. Digitally recorded and mixed back when that was still rare.

Nonya Bidness said...

Such an amazing moment to have been an integral part of! Thanks for sharing, Himmmms 1 & 3.

INXS was huuuuge in the US after the release of Kick, MTV was playing the videos all the time. I had X on cassette(!), but never saw them live.
Always thought they looked like such a hardworking band. Fun to hear about them at the top of their game.

Alexandria said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Don Kieballs said...

Tim Farriss being the guitar borrower/blesser

aanjheni said...

@Don - do tell!? I am a bit lost...

1SICRN said...

Thanks for sharing this story with us. What a great experience! Love watching that concert.

JL said...

OMG First rule of being a writer: Less is more.

I’m just curious... said...

So he dumps Helena for Paula, discovers Heroin and auto asphyxiation and the rest, as they say, is history. I was at Live Aid at Wembley in 1985. 16 years old. Detested Queen with a vengeance as only a teenager can, however they bled the roof off that Stadium that day and were by far the most amazing act. I am still clearly remember their set all these years later and still get goose bumps thinking about it.

Miss Tia said...

MTV showed 'One Thing' quite a bit too. I still have Shabooh Shoobah on vinyl. I considered them 'big' earlier than the late 80s.

xyzxyz33 said...

Lovely lovely wonderful memories.
Giving me chills as I read it.
Maybe even a tear in my eye.
INXS was a part of my everyday.
I was in the Midwest, in my little bedroom,
with INXS playing on my Boom Box
dancing in my room and singing along.
Even at 12 years old,
I had a huge crush on Michael H.

BeautyBitch said...

Thank you, Andrew. Never saw what the big deal was, either.

Unknown said...

Love love love them and MH was my first and biggest crush! Saw them live at the top of their game (though not sadly this performance) and it still ranks as the best! Thank you for sharing and making me love them even more

AkhaldanSolo said...

INXS Wembley XS
https://youtu.be/DvuTkZFl1l4?t=25m36s

"...the second I sort of climbed through this trap door next to my kit..."

;-)

ginger falls said...

I was on the 10th row floor Watching The Dead in Memphis before they played Chicago(their last show)w/Jerry.So happy I got to see him live.#Shakedown Street forever

ginger falls said...

@Don & huge fan & love them all

lucy said...

my INXS favorites = don't change, beautiful girl and mystify may be my favorite I am sucker for piano

thank you for concert link @audie. I am going to clean house to it after I finish rereading story!

Ell said...

This story takes me back to one of the best nights of my life. I didn't get to see INXS at Wembley, but I saw them just the week before in Maastrict, the Netherlands. I was an exchange student in Germany coming to the end of my year abroad and I saw the show with an Australian student. We were fourth row.

Motörhead said...

Fuck that old shit, I saw GnR at Wembley that year and that was a ROCK concert. I was 19 and my mates girlfriend blew me whilst he went to get beers during ‘you could be mine’ I couldn’t cum though, distracted by the band and my girlfriend behind me. Good days! Fat and old now

lucy said...

I watched this whole concert. very empowering! what talent , the whole lot of you. must be incomprehensible rush. kinda wonder how bands continue to tour year after year (stones!) but I think I kinda get it, has to be tough to walk away from that feeling. exhilaration of it all. the rush. I wish I never quit playing instruments. I played guitar many years (won songwriting contest 2nd grade! it was about mowing the lawn but truth be told I only came in first after it was found out Danielle plagiarized her first place song, scandalous..) same year I won hat design contest, yep I peaked at nine years old. later years I could keep a drum beat and I could also play pixies "gigantic" entirely on bass . lol basement band was fun!

anyhow after the concert I went fooling around looking for stuff and came upon this: https://youtu.be/ZNaNigEwssQ

at first I was like do I like this? and you know what. I do! I like it alot. this is how you respectfully honor a classic without fucking it up. as a matter of fact I think I love this. well done!

urban chaos said...

Ugh.. what a downgrade. Helena was stunning. Paula.. err.. I got nothing

jessorella said...

@imjustcurious Wow, what a memory! Lucky you 😊

MindYourPsAndQs said...

Incredible concert. I’ve never watched this before, but when they kick off New Sensation, it’s one of the most powerful performances and crowd responses I’ve ever seen! I was more of an ‘80s art school chick (on my Vespa, giant portfolio case bungeed horizontially to the chrone back rack, lifting the tail up like a plane as I blasted downtown on Jarvis St. in Toronto, a little hung over and always late for school) than ‘90s, but always loved INXS! I forgot how many great songs they had, and, watching the concert, I now remember every single one like the back of my hand. HT ‘slithering’ onstage is a great description: I love him in their earlier music video for One Thing... the video quality is lousy, but he hypnotizes the viewer as he swirls like an eel, seducing the camera. Being incredibly sexy, creative, talented, sensitive, shy and famous is an overpowering burden for some... his shocking death still haunts me, and I sometimes think of his daughter, Tiger Lily, (who has now come in to her inheritance) and how hard things must have been for everyone. BTW, the website is really acting up.

Advertisement

Popular Posts from the last 30 days

 

Video