One of the first times – as far as I can remember – that I flew to Auckland specifically to see a show. There had been other times where I’d cash in on seeing something while there, but the whole reason for this trip was to see John Cale. The first – and most likely only – opportunity (in my gig-going lifetime) to see this hero of mine. And it was good. Glad I went. It wasn’t great – I remember feeling ever so slightly underwhelmed in fact. I wish he hadn’t done that version of Heartbreak Hotel through the silly voice-effect. But hey. And maybe one or two more VU songs, but again. Hey. It was John Cale. And I was standing very close to where he was. And I looked across and Chris Knox and Roger Sheppard were standing just over from us – and that seemed to make a whole lot of sense too. Like the two correct people to see at that moment, in that time, at that gig.
I flew up that afternoon, it was a Thursday I think (Why did I say ‘I think?’ It’s right there on the fucking stub). Was there about two hours before the gig. Stayed with friends. We all went to the show. Crashed out after, a couple of drinks. First thing the next morning I was on the plane back to Wellington to start the weekend. It sorta kicked in for me on the flight back – you see those heroes, you get one chance (usually). They don’t have to be great they just have to be there. And so do you too. And that is why I went.
Stubs is an occasional feature here at Off The Tracks – looking back through the ticket-stub box and remembering how the show went down.