Lollapalooza 7/30/96

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My uncle Darryl informed me one week before graduation that I would have to move out. I ended up moving in with Jack, my best friend at the time, because he was also in a situation with nowhere to live. I started working full time at Super Lube and he got a job at the local car wash. We moved in and quickly realized we didn’t have any furnishings. With a little help from a lot of people we were set up. A lot of debauchery went down at that townhouse because for the first time our group of friends had somewhere proper to party. Before this we partied a lot of at different outdoor locations or house parties, but those weren’t the norm. That summer was the first time I ever took LSD and I took it frequently. I was curious about it long before I did it and read everything I could get my hands on pertaining to it. It didn’t help that my friend Ross lived with a drug dealer and gave me about 100 hits to sell. I’m no drug dealer so what ended up happening was my friends and I would get bored with nothing to do so we did it. I never took more than 2 hits at a time because I had heard about people who took too much and thought they were an orange and everyone was trying to peel them, etc. That summer was also the only time I have ever smoked Opium. I also had Hash for the first time and there were plenty of Mushroom trips as well. I know this sounds really bad but I never strayed so far from myself that I couldn’t come back and I always made it to work and paid my bills as well. I viewed these experiences as mind expanding and still do. I learned many important life lessons that summer.

Anyways Lollapalooza’s lineup this year included Devo, The Ramones, Screaming Trees, Soundgarden and the almighty Metallica, all of whom I had never seen. I am not really a Devo fan but it was comical to see them all dressed in yellow pleather with silly hats. I am also not a big Ramones fan but I do appreciate their place in Rock N’ Roll and feel lucky to have seen them one week before their last performance ever. The real draws for me were Soundgarden and Metallica. I became a Soundgarden fan after hearing “Outshined.” I borrowed the Badmotorfinger album from my friend Claude and must have played it about a thousand times. I remember they opened with “Spoonman.” They had just released Down on the Upside a couple months before this show but aside from “Pretty Noose” and “Ty Cobb” their setlist was compiled from Badmotorfinger and Superunknown, with the exception of a cover of “Waiting for the Sun” by the Doors as the sun was setting behind them. Amazing. Chris Cornell played “Black Hole Sun” by himself acoustically, which was also pretty amazing. Ben looked pretty pissed off the whole time. The set came to a close with a fierce version of “Jesus Christ Pose.” This is another band I feel very lucky to have seen because they broke up less than a year later. I was blown away and I still had Metallica to look forward to. I had been turned onto them with the album …And Justice for All by my friend John. That is still my favorite Metallica album. After getting into that one I bought every Metallica album in existence. On this tour they were promoting Load, which had just come out less than a few months prior. I don’t remember them playing much if anything from this album. I do remember them rocking my ass off for more than two hours with all the classics.

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