Walk on the mild side: Concert was a mellow good time

For the first time in a long time, I went to a rock concert, and it was much different from the shows of my long-ago youth.

Not that it was a bad thing, but it was just so, well, different.

The concert I went to was Theory of a Deadman’s performance at the Island Resort and Casino in Harris. My friend Mary Beth invited me way back in December when the show was announced. Happily, my work schedule fell in such a way as to allow attendance.

Now, I have been to other concerts in recent years, the teen idol of my youth David Cassidy’s being at the same facility back in early 2011. It’s a beautiful venue. Comfortable, well ventilated, gorgeously lit.

To be honest, before arriving at the Deadman show, I thought I would feel like a chaperone. But to my surprise, there were many folks grayer than me there, which just goes to show how wide this Canandian band’s appeal is among a variety of age groups.

What was different to me from the concerts of my younger years was how peaceful it all was. People were excited, no doubt, and there was a bit of a rush to the stage a few songs into the evening.

But for the most part, it was a mellow experience. And that was nice for an old fogey like me.

Back in the day when there were regular concerts in Marquette, that wasn’t always the case. Things got sweaty and loud and sometimes pushy. A vivid memory from back in those days was after one early 1990s concert (I don’t remember the band, but I know it was a metal one) when my friends and I were making our way through the parking lot.

A young acquaintance of mine came up to me, soaked in sweat, his clothes a bit torn. He was thrilled because he got right up to the front of the crowd. In fact, he was so far up front, he was pushed up against the barricade and showed me the bruises on his rib cage to prove it.

That young man has gone on to be a great local musician. Remember that night, Tim Prisk? Next time I see you, you’ll have to remind me what band that was.

It’s hard for a curmudgeon like me to keep it all straight all this eons later as in the course of a few years, bands like Poison, Ratt, Skid Row, Slaughter, Winger, Cinderella, Damn Yankees, Vixen and Kiss – just to name a few – all rocked Lakeview Arena. Ted Nugent was here as well.

One of my favorite interviews ever was with Vincent Furnier, better known as Alice Cooper, who called me at home for a preshow preview story. He was living in Phoenix and his schedule and my early at-work hours didn’t match up so his manager asked if the interview could be done in the Eastern Time Zone’s evening hours.

Sitting on my living room floor, taking notes as Vincent talked in the third person about Alice, well, that was a career highlight, for certain.

The young men from Theory of a Deadman put on a great concert. While it was strange to be in such a calm atmosphere, it was fun.

The wild, super-hyped concert experience is still out there, at venues all over America. Maybe some day, I will attend a old-fashioned crazy rock show. But for this aging music fan, peaceful was all right by me this time.

Renee Prusi can be contacted at 906-228-2500, ext. 253. Her email address is rprusi@miningjournal.net