Well, the rumors were true and the tour was rare, not only in makeup but in number of stops -- only four in the US. Click on this Gentlemen of the Road link to learn more about the tour. The tickets themselves are unique because they're like passports, with multiple pages describing the show and places to get stamps of each of the bands playing, and a beautiful plastic, almost holographic ticket inside. Best of all, when the tour is over, you have a code for a free download of an "album" created from the live performances of this tour. Oh, then to add more anticipation, just a couple of weeks before the show it was announced that the Dropkick Murphys would also be on this stop as well as headlining an aftershow concert at the State Theater. This tour selected unique cities and venues to do these shows; and the shows are like festivals -- outdoors with multiple bands on two stages playing all day and early evening, followed by multiple shows that evening at intimate indoor venues...in this case in the quaint and historic Old Port area of Portland. (We never intended to go to these but in my younger days, maybe)
On to the show: Shel and I get to Portland to meet up with my daughter and her boyfriend who arrived earlier in the day. The whole Eastern Promenade area of Portland was closed off. So we chose to park at a garage near the Narrow Gauge Railroad Museum, which was offering free rides on the line that runs up the bay to the Eastern Promenade and the show. As it turns out, immediately after turning onto Fore Street to get the parking garage there was a parking lot advertising $6 parking all day. Woo hoo! So we had a couple of blocks more to walk to the museum...no bigs, it was a perfect Maine August day.
At the museum we learned about the narrow gauge railroad history in Maine, looked around the museum and got onto a couple of cars...not a bad way to kill an hour waiting for my daughter to arrive, only 3 bucks apiece. Then at 1:00 we hopped onto one of the renovated old cars being pulled by these little engines and rode up along the beautiful harbor to the show. (there will be pictures!)
We arrive at the venue and what a gorgeous place for a concert...high on a hill that overlooks the bay. We had a great time listening to the bands and enjoying each others' company. My daughter is now 21 and these moments don't get to happen that often, which was really the whole point for me in going. The show itself was mostly secondary. Good thing because it wasn't managed well by whomever. The lines to everything were insufferably long. There weren't nearly enough vendors and the layout was not conducive to freedom of movement. So you had a situation where there's hours-long lines to everything with people having to walk through those lines to get anywhere. I don't know what they (whoever they were) were thinking when they laid it out the way they did. But the music was excellent and the company even better.
AND SHELLY TOOK THE FOLLOWING PHOTOS: