Drops In the Bucket List: 5 Venues To See a Show In Before You Die

Categories: Pop Life

bucketlist560.jpg
Photo by Cory Garcia
I'm not much of a traveler. Outside of a few trips to Vegas, I've never been on a real grownup-type vacation. Every year it's a struggle to think of something to do with my vacation days, one that eventually leads to a few four-day weeks and a couple of midweek shows.

Now that I'm getting older, I'm realizing the fallacy of this line of thinking. There are plenty of places I'd like to go; I just need to stop putting it off and get to work on visiting them. This year I'm making a musical bucket list of places I'd like to catch a show before I die.

It'll be a work in progress, using criteria of both personal history and musical importance. I'm letting you guys in on the first draft and opening myself up to personal ridicule so that I can get your opinions and maybe inspire one of you to make your own version.

5. 924 Gilman, Berkeley, California: Green Day was the first band I ever obsessed over. After purchasing Dookie, I immediately went out and bought their older records and tried to find what information I could about them online through the wonders of America Online.

Judge me if you must, but we all have to start somewhere. Green Day led me to seeking out my small town's scene, which led to meeting people who liked "real" punk, which lead me to discovering the Misfits and G.G. Allin, for better or worse.

18 years after the fact, I find myself still wanting to take in a show at the venue that I heard about in vague terms back when Google and Wikipedia didn't exist. At the time all I knew was that it was a club and that a band I liked played there. Now I can fully grasp how cool of a concept it is as a DIY volunteer organization dedicated to making great art and community-building.

4. Madison Square Garden, New York City: I've never had a real desire to visit the Big Apple. I understand the appeal and I can't really pinpoint any particular reason why it doesn't interest me. While I understand there are other venues more deserving of my time, if I do ever make the trip out the one place I would like to see a show is at The Garden.

I realize that's me being taken in by the myth of the building, but it's hard to listen to native New Yorkers talk about the place and not be a bit curious. When musicians born and raised in NYC talk about "knowing they've made it" they talk about being booked at Madison Square.

While I'm sure it's like every other major arena in the country, the name has a certain value attached to it, and a good name is everything sometimes. Be honest: would you rather see a show at Madison Square Garden or Louisville's KFC Yum Center?

Plus I read on Yelp the Garden has excellent chicken fingers, which is always good to know.



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9 comments
Omar
Omar

the gorge about two hours from seattle is a pretty amazing place to see a show too.  another place where its hard to have a bad view.

Kelsey Whipple
Kelsey Whipple

From a fellow VVM writer (out of Denver), thanks for putting Red Rocks at the top! She really is a beaut.

Jarod Frank
Jarod Frank

Being a KISS fan, I was lucky enough to see them in some legendary venues. The first being Cobo Arena, which is the one pictured on the back of KISS Alive! Tiger Stadium and Dodger Stadium were also amazing, not to mention the Backstage club down off the Southwest Freeway in 1992. Long-time Houston KISS fans can attest, you can't get a much louder show than one at the Sam Houston Coliseum in the 80s. I've still yet to see them in New York City, and a show at The Garden would probably be the ultimate.

Dave Hester
Dave Hester

 I went to a few CBGB shows. No one special was playing. Total shithole of a club, but it totally fit. The navel of American punk rock.

Dave Hester
Dave Hester

Good additions. I want to see a show at the Hollywood Bowl so bad! I've only seen pictures of Dalhalla, but I wouldn't be surprised if it made its way onto my list in a few years

MarcoFromHouston
MarcoFromHouston

I caught a Carlos Santana concert @ MSG a few years ago. It was magical. I'm hoping to get to Red Rocks sometime in the next couple of years. Other venues on my list are The Hollywood Bowl, Carnegie Hall, Radio City Music Hall, & Lincoln Center.

basshole
basshole

I got to see a Monsters of Rock show at Donington in 1991 (AC/DC, Metallica, etc) and have to say that seeing 75,000 British leather-clad long-haired metal-heads was almost as entertaining as the show itself. Last summer I got to knock Red Rocks off my bucket list: I saw A Perfect Circle one night and the Flaming Lips and Primus the next. Stunning place to see any show. I second Dave's CBGB/Fillmore/Cavern additions. I was in CBGB in the middle of the afternoon once, but I wish I'd seen a show there.

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