Will Forest Hills Stadium Rock Again in the 21st Century?

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Forest Hills Stadium

Editorial Note: This post was written by Colleen. Have fun exploring the story of Forest Hill Stadium and check out the introduction to Colleen’s weekly live music history column here.

If you’re like me, you know that our concert memories remain in our hearts and minds long after the show is over. But, unfortunately, we can’t say the same for the venues where we experience our favorite concerts. Continue reading

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The Secrets To Feeding Your Live Music Addiction With MOG

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Today our sponsors and partners over at the MOG Music Network have a bunch of new releases for you to enjoy. What’s MOG? Looking for some new full album downloads from Neil Diamond, Elvis Costello and N.E.R.D.? What does Live Fix think of MOG? Here’s the complete lowdown that’ll answer all those questions. Continue reading

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A Hot August Night Tribute To The Biggest Neil Diamond Fan Ever

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Neil Diamond Hot August Night

A long time ago I realized that there was no point in denying the influence of my parents on my musical tastes, especially my love for live music.

And in my early twenties, I started asking my parents questions about…who they were when they were young, why they made the decisions they did and other important details about their lives that I didn’t already know the answers to.

During my inquisitive quest, I got to know more about my dad’s love for Neil Diamond. And sadly, last Monday my dad, Joe Catania, passed away at the young age of 60. And like we’ve done for other live music fans who’ve passed on, this post is a tribute to his life and especially his love for experiencing Neil Diamond live in concert.
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The Real Story of Live Fix That I Haven’t Told You (Until Now)

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Wolfgang's Vault - memorabilia

Usually I’m the one asking questions when it comes to live music culture, but this time Frank from Windy City Rock graciously flipped the script on me and asked some good questions about why I started Live Fix, how we mix social media with live music, and what the future looks like for concert fans. And I was surprised by what I had to say about our ambitiously pioneering live concert community.

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A Touring Lesson From Neil Diamond

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I’ve been waiting for the right moment to spill a few words about Mr. Love On The Rocks.

And like my loyalty to the Cubs, my emotional connection to Neil Diamond rests largely in the fact that my dad has always been a huge fan, so growing up with “Coming to America” and “Sweet Caroline” blasting from the family record player ever since I was a toddler has made it nearly impossible not to appreciate Diamond’s live performance.

But, I’ll be honest with you.

Sadly, though, I haven’t seen him live and reading about his recent tour and pre-show regimen just adds to the respect for one of the best songwriters and performers in pop music history.

And then there’s his loyalty to his fans.

Reading Diamond’s response about his Ohio performance last week was impressive.

And he eventually offered a refund for the show during which he apparently sang with a raspy voice that was eventually diagnosed as acute laryngitis.

On his website Diamond issued this response.

Dear Fans in Columbus,
Please give me a few days to figure out a way to make it up to you. I haven’t let you down before and I won’t let you down now. Until you hear from me again remember, You are the sun. I am the moon. You are the words. I am the tune. Forgive me. I love you. Neil.

Here’s what his fans had to say on the website forums:

I was honored to be at the Columbus concert. It was the first time I had seen Neil in concert. I enjoyed the concert along with thousands of other fans. I appreciate Neil being there even though he wasn’t feeling well. I hope he returns to Columbus but don’t blame him if he doesn’t. I and my friends don’t want our money back.
Take care Neil, and I hope to see you again.

This show.. might not have been in the top ten best Neil Diamond shows.. but.. even though he was sick.. you still see the heart and soul that he put into giving it his all. This was the first time I ever had the chance to see Neil live… and it almost did not happen. But as luck would have it.. we were able to go. For that.. I am so thankful. Thank you Neil for a wonderful time : ) and we hope to see you again when you come thru Columbus.

A few weeks prior, this August 12th NY Times article allowed for a behind the scenes look at Diamond’s recent touring regime that includes “on tour, he has his meals sent by FedEx every day from a dietary consultant in California. Backstage at the XL Center, he warmed up his band with light calisthenics”

And then there’s his equally impressive drive to play live and record music.

“So looking back and seeing that it’s been over 40 years since the first hits makes you think, ‘Is there a time that you stop?’ ” Diamond continued. “But I don’t think I’m ever going to stop. It’s the only challenge I have left in my life.”

His only challenge? How often do we see live shows as challenges for artists?

Or do we only see it as an opportunity for us to escape?

I know there’s a lot of independent artist out there fighting every night for a spot to play their music live. And on the flip side there’s also a lot of artist who take their fans (and their cash) for granted.

And how often do artists offer a refund for a bad show? I’ve been to many bad shows and never been offered a refund.

But whether you’re a Diamond fan or not, he certainly has shown what it means to deliver his best for his fans and continue to push himself to play the music he wants to, a balancing act that not many artists can boast about, and also sells out shows or sells records.

Here’s a bumby but effective fan video clip from the Ohio show:

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