A polymath rambling about virtually anything

Posts Tagged ‘dead can dance’

Dead Can Dance: In Concert

Posted by Scott Holstad on May 21, 2013

If you’ve been reading me for awhile, you know that Dead Can Dance is my favorite band and has been for many years. You’ll also remember that I finally got to see them in concert last September in Atlanta, where I lucked into (expensive!) second row middle seats and had an awesome experience. It’s one I’ll never forget. Well, now they’ve just released a live CD called “In Concert” and it’s the show they’ve been touring the world with, the one I saw. Since I have everything they’ve ever put out, I naturally had to get it. First, I put it on my Amazon Wish List, but as no one ever buys me anything from it, I had second thoughts. I had additional thoughts when I read the Amazon reviews. Apparently the CD is an abridged version! WTF? You can get the complete version on vinyl and digital download. 16 songs. Otherwise, the CD has 11 and is missing some important songs. Now why would they do that? That makes utterly no sense to me at all. So I went to iTunes and downloaded it, for a reasonable fee, and have been listening to it ever since, enjoying reliving my concert experience. If you’re unfamiliar with Dead Can Dance, well, they’re hard to categorize. They have a big goth following because their first album back in 1981 was pretty goth. But they got away from that pretty quickly and started playing medieval, Celtic, Middle Eastern tunes, and more. I guess you could say they’re “world music” now, and that’s about right. I have a link to them on my blog under the music section. I encourage you to go check them out. They’ve produced some amazing stuff over the years. In Concert is a good album. I just wish the CD was complete. That’s very odd….

DCD: In Concert

DCD: In Concert

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“Sanvean” Live

Posted by Scott Holstad on February 25, 2013

Here is a video of Lisa Gerrard of Dead Can Dance singing her mesmerizing “Sanvean” live in Atlanta at the concert I went to last year. The person who filmed it was sitting right beside us in the second row. There are nine DCD videos from that show he uploaded. Check them out!

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An End of the Year Post — 2012

Posted by Scott Holstad on December 31, 2012

Last December 31st, I wrote an End of the Year Post where I wrote about highlights (and lowlights) of each month. I don’t know that I’m going to do that this year, but I’m going to try to list some of the same types of things for 2012.

In January, I was still recovering from a major December surgery — a sigmoid colectomy. They took out 25% of my colon. They also took out my appendix while they were inside me. It took me a full 10 weeks to recover from that surgery. January was a month spent resting and recovering. My mother had her birthday and we celebrated. She’s getting fairly old though and that’s a little depressing. My father celebrated his birthday in February. He and Mom are in fairly good health considering their ages. In February, my then-girlfriend and I traveled to Maryland to visit her family. It was a good visit. We saw 18 cops in Virginia on the way up and 18 on the way back. All but one had a car or truck pulled over.

In April, my girlfriend celebrated her birthday. She looks 10 years younger than she is. She’ll age most gracefully.  🙂 April also saw a new issue of Ray’s Road Review come out. It’s the online literary magazine for which I’m the poetry editor. Another issue came out in June.

We found a little Episcopalian church near us in May and started attending. We like it infinitely better than the Presbyterian one we had occasionally attended before. The music was better, the sermons were better (non-politicized), and the people were very friendly. We felt accepted right away.

On Independence Day, in July, I proposed to my girlfriend and she said yes! We’re getting married April 6th, 2013. On July 10th, we went to see one of Gretchen’s favorite bands — Crosby, Stills, and Nash. They can still rock it. Good show.

In August, I had to have another surgery, a neurological one to treat the pain caused by my Trigeminal Neuralgia. It worked for three weeks. Additionally, we were supposed to go to Knoxville to see Van Halen and we were pumped, but VH cancelled all of their shows and that really ticked us off. Very disappointing.

I had a birthday in September and tried not to be too depressed about it. That month, we were also undergoing pre-marital counseling. We want to get married in the little church we attend. Additionally, I was able to go see my longtime favorite musical group, Dead Can Dance, in Atlanta with my friend, Chris. We got second row, middle seats, and it was awesome. This tour was to support their first studio album since 1996, and it’s quite good. I wrote about the concert here and posted many pictures.

In October, I had to have two more neurological surgeries — one to anesthetize the Trigeminal nerve in my brain, and the other to literally burn it. These were my seventh and eighth surgeries since December, 2010. It’s gotten quite old. Another issue of RRR came out that month too. Meanwhile, Halloween 2011 had been a bust for us. We only got six kids, so this year we didn’t get nearly the candy we got last year and we didn’t even carve a pumpkin. And how many kids did we get? None! That’s right — not one. What the hell are all the kids doing for Halloween??? We live in a decent residential neighborhood. It’s not right.

November was pretty quiet, but the pain caused by my TN had been tempered by the surgeries, so that was good. Of course, Obama was re-elected and we celebrated our not having to move to Toronto if Romney won. LOL! Seriously, we were relieved and elated.

In December, Gretchen and I celebrated our second anniversary together. It was a more quiet affair this year than last, but it was still great to reflect on our past year together. In addition, another issue of RRR was published. I also had a job interview here that went great and I was told by the recruiter that I was one of two finalists for the position. I just had to undergo a second phone interview. I did and it was a complete disaster, which I wrote about. I’ve been looking for work for a little while now, so that was depressing. I think the person interviewing me thought I was interviewing for a different job, because he asked nothing about the position and all questions were about other stuff.  Of course we just celebrated Christmas, and it too was low key for us, but I was able to give Gretchen several Baltimore Ravens apparel items and some books while she got me a cool DVD, a Journey t-shirt and a Steelers stuffed bear. I’ve named him Beardy the Bear (I think) after Steelers defensive lineman Brett Kiesel. I’m still considering naming him Heath, after tight end Heath Miller, a Pro Bowler who’s had a great year.

All in all, it was a tough year for us health-wise (but better than 2011) and financially, but we grew closer together and bonded more with our respective families, so that was great. 2013 looks to have some challenges to it (I need a job!), but I think and hope we’ll have a good year and I’m looking forward to it. I’m especially looking forward to our April wedding. So, I wish everyone reading this a happy New Year and I hope that 2013 treats us all well. Cheers!


Oh, I forgot to mention the death of my favorite aunt — Aunt Katherine — late in 2012. We all traveled to Winston-Salem, NC for the memorial service. There I was reunited with several great cousins and even met some new ones I’d never met before. That was awesome. On the way back, we stopped in Asheville to visit my old friend, Ami. It was wonderful to see her again.

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The Dead Can Dance Concert

Posted by Scott Holstad on September 6, 2012

[Caveat — I can’t get the darn pictures to line up correctly with the type, so I’m sorry for the jumbled page.]

Last night was the big Dead Can Dance concert in Atlanta and it was amazing! My buddy Chris D, who drove down from Virginia, hooked up with me here in Chattanooga and we went down to our hotel in Atlanta late yesterday afternoon. After checking into our suite, we went to a local Italian place recommended by the hotel staff. It wasn’t bad. I had lasagna and I would give it a solid B grade. After dinner, we went back and changed into our Dead Can Dance t-shirts we’d gotten with the purchase of our tickets. Looking like concert twins, we left for the venue.

The concert was held in the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center, where the Atlanta Symphony plays. It’s a three story marvel, very tall and high. Fortunately, we were in the orchestra section, down front. When we entered the center, Chris insisted on buying us DCD concert t-shirts, even though we were already wearing DCD t-shirts. I relented, cause he was as excited as a little kid. T-shirts in hand, we hit the bar, where Chris got a beer and I got a pinot grigio.

Me, at the Dead Can Dance concert

Chris and I at the DCD concert

After a drink, we headed for our seats. We were elated when we were taken by the usher down to the second row, where our seats were practically dead center. It was virtually impossible to have had better seats! We giggled like school girls, knowing how close to the band we’d be.

Second row seats

An opening act came on at 8 PM, doing instrumentals to Arabic tambourines and Swiss drum-like instruments. Good world music. Finally, after a break, Dead Can Dance came on. Brendan Perry has aged, but looked great. He’s shaving his hair and his goatee is white now, but he sounds fantastic. And Lisa Gerrard was stunning! She wore a black outfit with a gold cape and she looked regal as she gazed out over the crowded audience, smiling the whole time. There was a backing band of three keyboard players, two percussionists, and a bass player, while Brendan played the guitar and Lisa played her odd instrument, the name of which escapes me — I think it’s a dulcimer. Since they’re supporting a new album — which is fantastic, and their first since 1996 — they did a lot of new songs. All told, I believe they did six songs from the new album and three other new songs I’d never heard before, one a Moorish song that was 800 years old and another a Greek tune from the 1930s. They opened with “Children of the Sun” from their new album, Anastasis, and it was pretty powerful. Here is a picture of the band.

Dead Can Dance, Atlanta 2012

DCD played several new songs to start the show off before going to one of their old ones, “Rakim.” Here’s a picture of Lisa singing “Anabasis.”

Lisa Gerrard

Here’s a picture of Brendan doing “Amnesia.”

Brendan Perry

The band continued mixing new and old songs, but they didn’t play many of my favorite old Dead Can Dance songs, like “Cantara,” “American Dreaming,” “Salterello,” and “Carnival Is Over.” Oh well. Here’s a picture of them doing “Yulunga.”

Dead Can Dance

One of the big highlights was of Lisa doing her classic, “Sanvean.” It always brings tears to my eyes, it’s so beautiful. It was an awe inspiring performance and I recorded it on my iPhone so I can always play it.

Lisa Gerrard performing “Sanvean”

Brendan & Lisa collaborating

DCD ended their show with another song from the new album, it’s closing song, “All In Good Time.” They then left the stage. The crowded roared to its feet and exploded. The ovation lasted a long time before they came out for an encore. They played a rousing version of “The Ubiquitous Mr. Lovegrove” and another before leaving again. They got another standing O before returning for a second encore. This happened again, for a third encore, before the band gathered onstage to say their goodbyes and wave at us. Lisa blew the crowd kisses.

Goodbye DCD

It was a glorious concert and Chris and I were elated that we had gone, that we had such good seats, and I was particularly thrilled because I had waited some 25 years to see them live. Kick that off the bucket list, I guess.  I’ve seen a lot of good concerts, some very good. Morrissey was great, The Cure played until 1 AM, I saw the Bauhaus 15 year reunion tour concert in Los Angeles, Nine Inch Nails was amazing, but this one was perhaps the best show I’ve ever seen. I’m only sorry my beloved Gretchen didn’t get to make the trip with us. Perhaps another year.

Speaking of Gretchen, there was a sobering note to the evening. She called me while I was in the venue waiting for the show to begin, distraught. Her car window had been smashed out and her purse stolen, with everything in it. It was terrible, and we’ve spent the bulk of the day making the bank, DMV, credit card, and new car window rounds. What a hassle, and it was very worrisome. Chris and I contemplated going back to Chattanooga early in the morning, about 1 AM, but Gretchen went over to my parents’ house to stay, so instead we left around 6 AM today and got back at 8. It’s been a full 24 hours. It was an amazing show.

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Tomorrow is the Dead Can Dance Concert!

Posted by Scott Holstad on September 4, 2012

Wow. The concert I’ve been waiting to see since March is finally here. Actually, I’ve been waiting to see Dead Can Dance in concert since at least 1988, back when I first started listening to them. When they broke up in 1998 without my having seen them, I was distraught, knowing I’d never get a shot at seeing them live. Well, they’ve reunited, put out their first studio album since 1998 — it’s great too! — and they’ll be in Atlanta tomorrow night. My friend, Chris D, and I are going. He’s driving down from Virginia to Chattanooga, where he’ll hook up with me and we’ll continue on to Atlanta. We have spectacular seats! Second row, near the middle. Close enough to see the sweat on Lisa Gerrard and Brendan Perry. LOL! That’s awesome. I’m hoping they’ll play most of my favorites, as well as some songs from their new album. I’m sure it’s going to be a quality show. I have a DVD of them in concert from years ago, and it was a magnificent performance. I hope to take lots of pictures, and I’m thinking of pressing Record on my iPhone and recording the whole concert so I can listen to it again and again. My only disappointment is that my fiance is not going to get to come along. She has to work and the seats were so damn expensive, she decided not to go. Pity. My fear, however, is that I’ll be too sick to enjoy it. I’ve come down with something in my chest and a cough and headache. I’m taking OTC drugs to ward it off, along with vitamins, so hopefully I’ll be fine by tomorrow night. The show starts at 8 PM sharp, so Chris and I will be there in our DCD t-shirts, ready to groove.

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Awesome Dead Can Dance Seats!

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 14, 2012

Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre – Seating Charts

Last night, I got the news on my Dead Can Dance concert seats in Atlanta. We’re in the second row, near the middle! Hard to get better seats than that. Right up front. So very excited! I hope Dead Dan Dance plays all of my favorite songs, along with some new ones. I’ve heard they’re preparing a new studio album, their first one in close to 15 years. I can’t wait for this concert in September. I’ve been waiting 24 years to see DCD in concert. These seats are awesome!!!

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