I have been meaning to get over to the blogs and add my reflections on the recent Genesis reunion tour. I've been a longtime fan of Genesis since the days when Peter Gabriel fronted the band. And I am one of those people who actually thought that Genesis was better (at least on "A Trick of the Tail" and "Wind & Wuthering") without Peter Gabriel, and that Peter was better without Genesis -- well, some of the time, anyway. So, when I learned that Genesis was hitting the road again, I immediately set out to get tickets and secured two tickets for the San Jose show and two for their first night at the Hollywood Bowl. Being a drummer since I was 14, there's simply nothing like seeing the double drummer attack of Chester Thompson duking it out with Phil Collins. As I told Kathlyn prior to the show, these guys make non-drummers understand why drums are such an incrediblly fun instrument to play.
That said, and while I will always be glad that I had a chance to take Kathlyn to see Genesis, a band she had never had the chance to see before, it really was not the same. I began jokingly referring to the tour as the "Bleed 'em Until They Drop" tour and the "Our Fans Are In Their Peak Earning Years" concert series. While it was indeed fun, it was quite apparent that this was not as much a concert for the fans as it was a concert for Genesis. Or maybe, for their bankers...
For an extra few grand, you could join them for dinner at one of the shows. You and about a hundred or so others, as we saw at the shows we attended. I jokingly told Kathlyn that I'd feel like a real idiot sitting there at a table in front of the band while they sat eating over at their table, perhaps muttering under their breath, that "Man, look at 'em all, we're making more 'take-home' on this dinner than we did during the whole 'The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway' tour. And so, I know what I like in your wardrobe, indeed..."
For a hundred grand or so, you could tour around with the guys and perhaps even be given a "complimentary" t-shirt from the tour. I suggested to Kathlyn that an appropriate tour gift might be a new and empty wallet. (Not real leather, mind you; vinyl, the kind you give kids when you are trying to teach them the value of money.) Or, if a t-shirt is your preference, perhaps a t-shirt with a huge target printed on it, with the words "I toured with Genesis in 2007" emblazoned on it. Think of it as the ultimate premium paid for designer dresswear.
But was the concert fun? It was a lot of fun and short of "Mama" -- a song that I have always hated in every possible way -- it was a remarkable show. Chester and Phil drove the band like a cattle stampede (hey, this is Creative COW afterall) and Kathlyn now understands far better my passion for progressive rock. (While songs like "No Son of Mine" are real crowd pleasers, I'll take the big sweeping multi-faceted epics like the Duke suite that they did, along with the 20 minute medley they did of many of their earlier classics.)
But in the end, I left the shows with a burning question: Did they make more from the concert, or from the $35 t-shirts, the $25 dollar programs, the 2k a head dinners and the 100k "Patsy Tour" tag-alongs?
I know it's only rock 'n roll but i like it.