Performer: The Police
Original Release: Synchronicity
Definitive Version: Live!, 1995
The Synchronicity concert in Atlanta was a tape a played a lot, particularly my first quarter at Northwestern, as I’ve mentioned. I knew it well, so well in fact that when The Police released Live! with the Atlanta disc in a slightly different order (and with some songs added or missing), it was jarring.
Take this song, for instance. It’s not on the tape, which was made from, I think, a radio broadcast. On Live!, it’s the second song out of the box, right after Synchronicity I, which makes sense, except it sounds that this was added after the fact and that the original order—Synchronicity I followed by Walking in Your Footsteps—was correct.
Listen to the CD: The crowd in the background at the beginning and end of this song doesn’t quite match with that of Synchronicity I or Walking in Your Footsteps, whereas those two songs do match. And with that, we’ll close the Art Bell conspiracy part of our program today.
As I mentioned, Synchronicity was a constant play in the basement at Beth’s house, pretty much from the time the album hit the streets in 1983 to maybe 1985, so I can’t help but think of things that we did during that time. And some things that you do, for love, you know are idiotic—even at the time you do them.
In 1984, I got the word from Beth. Adam Ant was touring, and Beth’s younger sister, Erin, wanted to see him at Vet’s Memorial in Columbus, but her mom wouldn’t let Erin go by herself, and she reeeeeeally wanted to see him, so ... I think you can see where this is going, right?
I liked Goody Two Shoes as much as the next straight male—the babe in the video was HOT—but every man has his limits. Of course, making sure that you stay in good with the parents of the daughter with whom just started enjoying intimacy was a consideration not to be taken lightly. In other words, what choice did I have? Sure, I’ll take Erin. Beth said she would make it worth my while.
As good fortune had it, the show was in March over spring break, so I didn’t have to skip school to act as chaperone. The better news was the warmup act was The Romantics, whom I liked. As far as I was concerned, I was going to The Romantics concert.
It was Beth and I, and Erin and a friend of hers … and about 4,000 other women, mostly teenagers. At one point, I turned around and saw the reviewer for The Dispatch sitting a row or two behind me. We were in the top 5 percentile in terms of age—I was a four months shy of 20—and the only two guys in our section.
The Romantics were OK and then Adam Ant came out, and a blizzard of bras being thrown on stage commenced. He would collect the bras and hang them from a mikestand, and by the end of the show, he must have had 50 up there.
That could have been awesome except I never saw anyone actually remove one of the aforementioned garments before hurling it on stage. I also never saw a pair of panties go up on stage either. The whole thing seemed a bit sanitized and, I might add, choreographed, if I may re-enter the pointy tin-foil-hat studios.
I’ve been to worse concerts. Overall, it wasn’t that bad. I liked when he busted out two “oldies” of which the girls in the audience weren’t familiar: Stand and Deliver and Antmusic. Most important, I had done the right thing and gotten in good with the parents by taking Erin to see Adam Ant for the first time.
As we were leaving, Erin said he wasn’t as good as he was the first time. Wait, what? Yeah, she said, he was at Vet’s in 1983; she went with friends and he was better then.
Cue camera 2 for close up on my face and the band: Wom, womp, womp waaaaahhhhhhhmp.
Fortunately, Beth made good on her promise, and I can’t say I have any regrets about going.