Temple of the Dog 11/14/16

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The one and only Temple of the Dog album was made 25 years ago and because they never toured for the album they thought it would be cool to do a 5 city/7 date “tour.” 7 dates!!! Well one of them was L.A. so this was one of those rare moments that you would look back on and either say “I was there” or “I wish I would have gone.” I thought I would end up in the latter category when I tried to buy tickets only to find they were “sold out”…even though I was online right when the presale started. Bob to the rescue. I’m not sure whose balls he tickled to get tickets but he got 2 and I was the lucky recipient of ticket #2. The show was on a Monday but I guess you can’t have everything go your way.

After making the drive from San Diego, checking into our hotel and walking a short distance from a local bar we were once again at the Forum (see Epicenter 3/14/15). We immediately hit up the atrocious drink line and of course right as we were near the front of the line we started hearing the piano intro of “Man of Golden Words,” the Mother Love Bone song that the name “Temple of the Dog” was lifted from. Just as we escaped the drink line and began to find our way to our seats we were bathed in the familiar sounds of the arpeggio riff that opens “Say Hello 2 Heaven.” After that we were treated to all other 9 songs from the eponymous album along with 15 cover songs, 5 of which were Mother Love Bone songs. The stage setup was simple and stark without so much as a backdrop. It was clear that the band wanted to focus on the music and pay tribute to their friend Andrew Wood. They succeeded in spades and ended up paying tribute to what were surely some of the band members’ favorite artists as well. It is not often that I get to see a band from my teenage years for the first time 25 years later. This was worth the wait.

SETLIST: Say Hello 2 Heaven, Wooden Jesus, Call Me a Dog, Your Saviour, Stardog Champion (Mother Love Bone), Stargazer (Mother Love Bone), Seasons (Chris Cornell), Jump Into the Fire (Harry Nilsson), Four Walled World, I’m a Mover (Free), Pushin Forward Back, Hunger Strike, Hey Baby (New Rising Sun)-(Jimi Hendrix), Heartshine (Mother Love Bone), River of Deceit (Mad Season), Holy Roller (Mother Love Bone), Reach Down, Man of Golden Words (Mother Love Bone), Baby Lemonade (Syd Barrett), Times of Trouble, Achilles Last Stand (Led Zeppelin), Holy Holy (David Bowie), Fascination Street (The Cure), War Pigs (Black Sabbath), All Night Thing

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Chris Cornell 2/4/00

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So Soundgarden had broken up but I was happy to have anything new from the voice of that band, Chris Cornell. He had just released his first solo album Euphoria Morning a few months prior to this show. It was a memorable concert for me because it was the first time I had been to the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall and it was the first concert I attended with Lucinda. Since the last concert Lucinda told me that she couldn’t be with me but about a week later after going back to her ex-boyfriend decided that we were going to be together. My friend Ross also went with us. The funny part is that I decided we were going to dress up for this concert because of the place where it was held. I wore a charcoal pinstriped suit with a black shirt and silver tie while Lucinda looked absolutely stunning in a silver dress. We looked very out of place once we got there and it probably didn’t help that we were completely stoned out of our minds but we were in love so everyone else be damned. It all seemed very formal because of the whole place being filled with seats. I think Chris Cornell felt strange after awhile because he encouraged people to get out of their seats and come down to the front of the stage. He played pretty much all of Euphoria Morning and am pretty sure he left out any trace of Soundgarden except for maybe “Like Suicide.”

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