As many years as I’ve blogged (off and on, not consistently I fear), it’s amazing to me some time to look back on memories that I was sure I blogged and discover, nope I didn’t. It’s like my memories are somehow now in text form even if they aren’t?!
Take today, I was reminded of Silverchair playing at Rockfest at Atlanta Motor Speedway in 1999. I was sure I remembered writing about the day I spent there and then I look at my blog and the first entry is two years later.
I honestly don’t go see a ton of live acts, for some reason, I’m usually content to hearing their music recorded, but there are a handful of bands I love enough to see over and over and then there were chances in Atlanta like the one-off Rockfest and the much-missed Music Midtown where anyone who liked music should have been there. I mean, one ticket got you in to see a ton of acts. In the case of Rockfest, it was one popular act behind another, each playing short sets. It was the only time I saw many of these bands.
- Taxi Drive
- Marvelous 3
- Better than Ezra
- Sugar Ray
- Mighty Mighty Bosstones
- Eve 6
- Collective Soul
- The Offspring
I have vivid memories of seeing most of those acts as I got there quite early and secured a place right on the barricade separating the crowd (approx 130,000 people) from the stage. It was June in Georgia, even North Georgia is miserably hot in the open with no shade. It wasn’t long before people were passing out from the heat and being hefted over the barricades to the security guys. And shortly, the hoses came out. As I wear glasses, the last thing I normally want is to be wet, but I remember happily taking one water blast to the face after another. I have never been so hot, wet, and muddy yet happy to be there.
This is the only video I uncovered from the show. If you watch carefully, you’ll even see them blasting the people down front with the hoses! Alas, I didn’t spot Mark of a decade ago hugging the front line!
It’s funny that I did dig through old emails and found the following in a message to a friend. So maybe my memories about ‘blogging’ it was simply writing about it in emails:
…went to Rockfest at Atlanta Motor Speedway in the early summer. It was HOT and WET (because they kept spraying the hose on us). I was on my feet for over 12 hours near the stage. You couldn’t leave and ever get back. I was one of the mud people. They actually showed this concert on MTV tho I only saw a few minutes of it myself. It’s very possible I could have been on TV because I was down front where the cameras were when they showed the crowd. I left sunburned and tired. Actually I saw the last three acts from the stands because I just couldn’t stand anymore. The only one of those three I regretted not being down there for was Live.
So, there we go from the way-back machine! I had totally forgotten that I wasn’t down front for Live, but I do remember that I retired to the bleachers and then actually left part way through The Offspring. They were playing songs from their then newest album that hardly anyone had heard yet. I won’t forget the walk back to the parking lot as I had made the mistake of taking off my wet shoes in the stadium while seated. Between wet shoes and swollen feat from standing so long, they wouldn’t begin to go back on. Barefoot on a gravel parking lot does not equal fun!
Though an exhausting day, it was great fun! Happy Memories from those first years living in the big city! And now I’ve blogged it so a few years from now when the cobwebs are cobwebier I’ll have this to remind me.
Note: I’ve recently found a few more videos. Alas I still haven’t found me in the crowd! But they definitely rustled some memories of the concert. If anyone finds some other Atlanta Rockfest videos or wants to share photos or what not to post here, please send me a message.
Looking For Photos?
I’ve recently heard from a photographer (see comments section) who was shooting at Rockfest. If you’d like to see photos from the day and maybe just maybe find yourself in the crowd, check out @orockphotos on Instagram. Also lots of cool photos from other concerts! I’m enjoying them all but if you want to zero in on just photos from this concert you’re looking for tag #rockfestatlanta99