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Want to see Alice Cooper? Tell us about your dream concert and win tickets

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When word came out Monday that Alice Cooper was going to play the Civic Center in July, it sparked some interesting conversation among some of us at The Peorian office.

Of those in the discussion I am the oldest and probably most familiar with Alice Cooper yet I wasn't the only one who "oohed" when I read the email from the Civic Center. It got us to talking about people or groups we've seen in concert through the years and who we wish we could or could have seen.

And it got us to come up with an idea our readers might like. Let me explain.

When I told the others about Alice Cooper coming to Peoria the response was pretty neutral. "I'd love to see that," remarked Lisa, who is only 35 but started listening to Cooper when she was in her teens, including learning to enjoy his earlier stuff. His ballad "You and Me" from his 1977 Lace and Whiskey album is one of her favorites. She can even tell you the exact time and place she first heard it on the radio and her surprise to learn Alice Cooper made the song.

Then another office mate, Josh, posed to us a question he'd been asked recently: If we could see any band or person, dead or alive, in any venue of our choice, what would be that concert? His pick was Daft Punk on the moon. That shows the age difference between Josh and me. I'd never heard of Daft Punk and why would you want to see a concert someplace where you'd have to be wearing a space suit? (He then clarified it would be under a dome on the surface of the moon).

The question, though, is good — and tough. What would be my dream concert?

There are, of course, some obvious answers. For example, the Beatles at the Ed Sullivan Theatre or any place else for that matter. Shoot, my basement would work for me. Same for Led Zeppelin or the Stones. And the Grateful Dead, obviously.  

I don't like that I was never able to see Elvis perform live when he was alive. Under the dream concert scenario, I would put him on the list at any venue. I feel the same way about Frank Sinatra.

How about Billy Joel in some little piano bar in New York City? Maybe with James Taylor sharing the stage?  Simon and Garfunkel in Central Park? Roy Orbison on any stage?

I'd like to see Willie Nelson do a few tunes while riding on his tour bus. Just sayin'.

Man, if I really could pick one, but only one, it would be tough. 

Some of the answers of others in our office surprised me a little, perhaps because they all are much younger than me. Lisa, whose preferences are usually more mellow than Alice Cooper, said John Denver at Red Rocks, Colo. Really? Then again, she has seen Neil Diamond a couple times and wants to see him again, so age makes no difference in admiring good music.

Emily, in her early 30s said Ray Charles. She'd seen him once and would have loved to see him again before he died.  

A guy in his late 20s, Stu, surprised me with Bob Marley "in Jamaica, of course." When I expressed surprise he said, "Oh yeah! Are you kiddin' me? That would be awesome." He's right; it would be.  

Stu then said he would love to see the classic composers such as Mozart in their own era wherever they would perform. "I wonder how that would sound, in their own time," he asked.

"Not good, I'm sure," quipped Mark. Yeah, I guess they didn't have mics and sound mixers and such back then.

Mark said Jimmy Buffett would work for him and said he'd rather see him at a smaller venue than a big stadium. Yeah, like in his bar on Key West. That'd be fantastic.

I questioned whether venue was all that important. Like I said, some bands or performers I would love to see even if it was in my basement (which actually isn't too awful acoustically). I guess to me it's more about the music. The others said venue makes a big difference to them because of sound and lighting and how the performer might fit into a certain place.

So, we at The Peorian would like to hear from our readers. What would be your dream concert? Pick any performer(s) dead or alive and any venue of your choosing if you also think venue is important. Let us know here on our website (www.thepeorian.com) by going to the "community forum" or on our Facebook page. Or send it to me at editor@thepeorian.com.

I will report on some of the responses in a later clog so let us know if you are too embarrassed to let us use your name. But then you won't be eligible to win the prize we are offering to those who respond.

A prize? Yeah, baby!  

From among those who respond to us we will randomly pick one to win two tickets to that upcoming Alice Cooper concert, which is July 20 at the Civic Center Theatre. The deadline for submitting is June 15 so you have almost six full weeks to think of your dream concert.

Get your friends to join it. Be creative. Have fun with it.

Paul Gordon is editor of The Peorian. He can be reached at 692-7880 or editor@thepeorian.com

About the Author
Paul Gordon is the editor of The Peorian after spending 29 years of indentured servitude at the Peoria Journal Star. He’s an award-winning writer, raconteur and song-and-dance man. He also went to a high school whose team name is the Alices (that’s Vincennes Lincoln High School in Indiana; you can look it up).