Remembering Great Concerts in Columbia

1 decade 2 years 11 months ago Wednesday, October 10 2007 Oct 10, 2007 Wednesday, October 10, 2007 5:29:03 PM CDT October 10, 2007 in News

In this Follow-Up File, we'll show you the effect these shows have on the community.

"It's like this electric crackle in the air," said Mike Dunn of the University Concert Series. "The hair on the back of your neck will just stand up because everybody is so excited, and you can just feel this pressure, this tension as they wait for the performers to come on stage, and when they come on it'll just erupt."

What causes this reaction?  Artists who have performed in Columbia, like Ray Charles, Kenny Chesney, Johnny Cash, B.B. King, M.C. Hammer, Rascal Flats, and The Rolling Stones. 

"You've heard the names of these big-time performers, and they've all played in Columbia," said Tim Hickman of the Mizzou Arena.

Richard King owns the Blue Note downtown, and has seen several of these artists both at his venue and elsewhere.

"It's a real positive experience, and you know, if the artist connects with that audience, and comes out and reads that, and just jumps right on it and plays with that, the event can be just unbelievable," said King.

He says his most memorable show was when he walked the line with Johnny Cash.

"That show in particular was just one of the shows where I couldn't believe, you know, it was Johnny Cash and June Carter and the whole family up on the stage, and it really was one of the more memorable experiences that I have had in this building,"he said.

Putting on a big show involves work. It typically takes anywhere from 30 to 100 people about eight hours to get Mizzou Arena ready for an event.  The most equipment ever used for one show was 50 truck loads when the Rolling Stones came to town.  And it brought plenty of "satisfaction."  Although Columbia isn't considered a major market, performers often return.

"Columbia's great ... I mean you get a lot of artists that like to come back here,"said Hickman. 

"Columbia does respond really well to these kinds of things, is the support that we get from the community- both the ticket buying folks and folks that are involved in the show, and I think that they make these shows, these events even that much more special," said King.

These shows have an economic impact on the community, bringing guests- and their money- from around the state, but the experience of being at the show has a bigger impact on those who are there.

"The experience is something that, you know, you'll never forget. I can remember some of the first concerts I ever went to when i was young, and a big show, and you know... It's just so exciting to be there, and those kinds of things just stick with you," said King

When the show is over, like a candle in the wind, the excitement keeps burning.  King said that one big name performer he has never had perform at the Blue Note is Missouri's own Sheryl Crow. She submitted tapes to him when she was a student at MU, but he never booked her band.

The Elton John concert sold just under $1 million in tickets ($984,499) on Friday.

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