Thursday, November 10, 2011

On the Road with Manilow-Philadelphia

When Barry decided to take his show on the road to Philadelphia the "three Musketeers" just couldn't pass up the chance to meet for the weekend. I'm not sure when we dubbed ourselves the "three Musketeers" but I think it might have been at Tempo one night.

After wrestling with the dreaded ticket purchasing system run by Stiletto, we were able to secure great seats in the center on the floor close to the stage. Musketeer 1 and me made plans to fly into Musketeer 3's home airport in Baltimore on Friday night before the show. Musketeer 3's husband, the biggest Barry Manilow fan in America was happy to put up with our foolishness for the weekend.

We were like three excited little girls in the airport that night. The biggest Barry Manilow fan in America was laughing at the three of us in the car on the way to their house from the airport. Of course, he had to put on "Sexyback" on the drive so we could "dance" while we were driving. (A song they used to play in Tempo for the "Tempo dancers"). I I'm sure that the cars next to us thought we were crazy! But first, a stop off at the convenience store where Musketeer 3 bought us both "Three Musketeer" bars in honor of the occasion (which I kept the wrapping and have it safely tucked away with my Manilow memorabilia).

We spent the evening watching Manilow DVD's and looking forward to the show in Philadelphia. The next day we all went out to breakfast and to the Baltimore Harbor for a little sightseeing. Musketeer 3 and the biggest Barry Manilow fan in America were the perfect hosts and tour guides.

It was finally time to pile in the SUV and head out on our road trip to Philadelphia for the concert. We listened to the music in the car and looked forward in anticipation to getting our grubby little hands on the 70's CD at the concert. After a quick dinner stop and so excited we could hardly eat, we arrived at the arena and saw MANILOW on the marquee out front. Making a quick stop at the merchandise booth, we were ecstatic to find the CD was indeed on sale.

Our seats were perfect and Brian Culbertson was the opening act. That guy can really jam. The music got everyone pumped up for the show with an Earth, Wind and Fire song. We were singing and "dancin' in the aisles" before Barry even came out.

We were so close, I got some great pictures that to this day bring back some of the best memories of that show. He used the catwalk to choose a dance partner and come out past the stage and sing a few songs during the show. I can't remember the song set or much about the show, but I do remember the ending. It was the first time I had ever heard him sing "Old Friends" and "Forever and a Day" live. I swear you could have heard a pin drop in that huge arena. It was awe inspiring.

After the show, the "three musketeers" headed to Atlantic City to spend the night. We popped the new CD in and started listening to it. I have to say, at first listen, I didn't like it very much. But after listening to it a few more times over the weekend, it quickly became one of my favorites of the decade CD's.

The next day in Atlantic City we walked the boardwalk, got some corn dogs and took some pictures next to Barry's handprints in the wall at Resorts International. It was a day I will always cherish because of the great conversations in the car to drop off Musketeer 2 at the airport, and afterwards with me and Musketeer 3 on the way home to Baltimore. We talked about the new album, what the songs meant, and what Barry's music meant to all of us. It was such a time a naivety and shear excitement over the music.

Musketeer 3 and I had sushi together that night and went home afterwards to watch the QVC special and yell at the moderator. Every time QVC has Barry on with that same moderator it reminds me of that first time we watched it and how frustrated we were that she would not stop talking. The next day I was dropped off at the airport for my flight home.

These two women will always be forever planted in my Manilow memory banks.

To the "Three Musketeers",
Texas Fan

Next up: On the Road with Manilow-Dallas


Debbie said...

I love it Suzanne. Great Blog. I am sitting here with the biggest grin on my face. I remember every minute. Oh, remember how we were trying to figure out how to go up to Boston and extend our trip a little bit. What a great time we had.

texas_fan said...

I do remember that Debbie. We went into the hotel and found a computer to check on available tickets. Those were CRAZY times!

Anonymous said...

"Forever and A Day" does me in each and every time. Even if I'm just listening to it on my Ipod. "And once the music played, and once they lit the lights..." That's the line that gets me all the time because I think of the excitement at that very moment at the beginning of each show. Although Barry only seems to do that song at conventions and arena shows (because he knows that most of the audience are fans), I think he "feels" that song as much as we do and he means every word.


texas_fan said...

It would be nice to think so Jude. At least, it sure feels like it when he sings it.

Clicky Web Analytics