Thursday, October 31, 2019

My Music Stars #3

On the morning of Saturday, July 2, 1977 I got up and left my apartment to ride my bicycle to the Oakland Coliseum for Bill Graham's Day on the Green.  Halfway there the right pedal broke off (it's between six and seven miles).  Luckily I had toe clips on my pedals so I
continued to pedal one legged.  I got to the show and laid out my blanket on first base where Dick Allen was working that summer and Mark McGwire would be in the future.  The stage was set up in the center field bleachers and you could sit anywhere you wanted except for the infield grass or the dugouts.  The Outlaws opened the show, then Carlos Santana with Leon Patillo on lead vocals.  Then the act I really came for (seemingly most of the crowd) Lynyrd Skynyrd. Ronnie Van Zant was one of the most charismatic people I have ever seen.  You can see the performance from that day in the movie Freebird.  Watching the tape today, there is much symbolism that they probably couldn't use now.  I still enjoying listening to Freebird and especially the fifteen minute version.  When the big curtain rolls down to show the picture of the bird the crowd went wild.  I am instructing my family to give $100 to the first person to scream Freebird during my memorial service (far in the future).  After Skynyrd played came Peter Frampton and many people took the opportunity to leave.  This was right after Frampton comes alive came out and was in heavy rotation on the radio.  Frampton overused the voice box and many people were leaving during his set.
Some things I remember from this concert.  There was more alcohol and weed than you would imagine after everyone was searched for those things at the gate.   I remember running into two guys I went to high school in Eugene with at the concert and lastly, I only paid $11.50 for the concert.    


Fuji said...

My brothers attended a lot of the Day on the Green concerts. I'll have to ask to see if they went to see Lynyrd Skynyrd in '77.

ned said...

Great story wish I could have seen the original band!