I wish you hadn't gotten me started, because
being from Motown back in the day,
I've seen more than my fair share of great concerts.
I could go on and on, but I will not bore you
with my "list" of performers that I've experienced,
except to note one of the most notable exceptions...
It was 1972 or '73. My girl friend at that time
got us tickets to see somebody name "Ike and Tina Turner".
I was up on everybody (or so I thought) and I
wasn't expecting much from this concert, put on by performers I wasn't
We caught Ike and Tina's gig at the University
of Detroit Field House with opening act 'The J Geils Band' (with Peter
Well, J Geils just picked them up and layed them
down and the audience was really buzzing along (literally, um-hum).
Peter Wolf went on to do his own thing (Love
Stinks), but in my estimation, he should have stayed with the J Geils Band.
After a short break, this all black band comes
out and this guy (who turned out to be Ike) gets out front, gives a signal
and it was non stop rock and roll for the next
3 hours. Tina didn't come on until the second number. Ike and company
played this very tight, loud and boogie-woogie
first number with the back up singers/dancers- The Ikettes.
Me, not knowing any better, thought that this
was the whole act and if it had of been,
I wouldn't have been in the least disappointed
because they were great.
However, at the start of the second number, Tina
comes on stage in this short shimmy dress cut up to the top of some
very long legs and immediately goes into this
high energy song and dance routine (that she would become internationally
famous for when she finally got the right management).
I noticed early in the show that all the girls, except Tina, were
wearing spike heels at least 4, maybe 5 inches
tall. Tina's spike heels were at least 6 inches tall. How Tina danced non-stop
for 3 hours in those things I'll never know.
But she did and there wasn't a square inch of stage that she didn't cover
- with her back up girls right behind her. The
show was high energy, beautifully choreograped, big time rock and roll
wonderfully talented musicians, dancers/back
up singers. The incomparable Tina Turner just floored everybody.
Ike sure did know how to put a show together.
We had been on our feet through most of J Geils
and we were on our feet for all of Ike and Tina's show. We were in the
fifth row and once or twice I looked behind me
to observe the reaction of the racous crowd. Like lots of Detroit things
I'd gone to, such as the Motown Christmas Shows,
the crowd was intersperced with black and white partiers and
everybody was having a great time and race was
certainly not an issue.
I didn't know till much later that Ike was a
druggie and wife abuser and I was so sorry to learn that Tina had suffered
so much under him with his drug fueled rages.
Ike is dead. Tina, as we all know, went on to the 'World Stage' and is
still knocking them down. That night, long ago
in Detroit, those of us in attendance were privilrged to see a really great
I don't think anybody in attendance will ever
forget or would ever want to forget that night of pure, high energy rock
And did I tell you I saw Ratt play a small outdoor
concert at the end of a 5000 motorcycles rally in Nevada last Saturday
That's the original Ratt, together for 25 years
and still getting everybody on their feet and booging.
They were polished, tight and gave us a great
show. Man, I sure am blessed. The Beat Goes On...
Tom P Palm Coast, Florida and Sunset, Utah
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