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Reflections on the Genesis "Bleed 'em Until They Drop" reunion tour

COW Blogs : Ron Lindeboom's Blog : Reflections on the Genesis "Bleed 'em Until They Drop" reunion tour

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.

Ron Lindeboom



Posted by: Ronald Lindeboom on Jan 14, 2008 at 6:37:33 amComments (2) music

Comments

Is it still called progressive rock?
by Peter Ralph

I know it was 30 years ago.....

Genesis were a local band when I was a kid - thatĀ  diminished their appealĀ  somewhat because they played every few weeks. We would try to avoid paying the 50p entrance by climbing thtough the windows. I don't remember their lightshows being quite so spectacular back then. I think it was just an ether slide hooked up to a projector.

 

I like it too!
by Tim Wilson

Wow, GREAT pictures! That's got to have been a powerful experience.

I heard the double drumming before I saw it, first on "Seconds Out" from 1977, their second live album and the first with Phil Collins singing. As is always the way with Genesis, there are several long instrumental interludes, and as is always the way, they're gorgeous.

But you can absolutely tell when Phil moves to the back of the stage to play drums with Chester Thompson. Most remarkable is that it's not harmony like, say, the drummers in The Allman Brothers Band. (Whom I love listening to, btw, Check out the remastered Fillmore Concerts to hear them in their glory.)

No, what's amazing about Phil and Chester is that they play in locked down unison, all the more remarkable because the drum parts are so complex, and because drumming is often so intuitive. And for being so tightly joined, the drumming is still so fluid and joyous.

I've seen Phil sitting in with the band on Late Night with David Letterman a couple of times, and he and Dave's drummer Anton invariably get around to the unison drum thing. Dave pulled Phil to the desk one time and asked, almost yelling, "How do you do that?" "We watch," said Phil. Dave asked, do you practice? To which Phil replied, we did once, for a few minutes, but only to make sure we could see each other's hands. Every time you play, the drumming is different. That's why you have to watch.

It still amazes me every time I listen to Seconds Out.

That bleed it dry thing is amazing. The Eagles were the first band I can remember doing that, with Barbara Streisand right behind. I've seen Bob Dylan a couple of times recently, and the tickets ran in the $20-50 range. I don't think you could spend more if you wanted to. He makes his money by playing upwards of 100 gigs a year, every year for more than the past ten.

Bob's folks do have a variation on the theme, though. When he does the occassional multi-night stand, you can buy a reasonably travel package that includes a nice hotel room, transportation to and from the show, and really good seats to some or all of the shows. Given that the shows are usually in places like NY and LA, packages with hotel rooms aren't exactly cheap, especially if the stand includes a weekend-- but the packages really truly are less expensive than you could put together yourself, by apretty long shot. And no $1000 dinners with Bob offered. :-)

Apart from the occassional festival, Bob's always played smaller crowds than Genesis have for the past 30 years or more...but I still like his example.






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