I have loved Bryan Adams since the mid-1980s, but it wasn’t until this past weekend 30 years later that I saw him in concert. I had a Bryan Adams poster hanging on the back of my bedroom door in high school right under my U2 poster. I have seen U2 in concert 90 times, yet Bryan Adams only once. But it was worth the wait because Bryan did not dissapoint. He was very much the showman and sounded just as great as he did in the 80s. There was no opening act and Bryan played for over two hours with no intermission. The sold out crowd at Wolf Trap in Northern Virginia was on their feet in sheer excitement and appreciation.
I left my house at 2pm for the 8pm show to avoid the terrible 495 Friday traffic, but to my delight traffic was not as bad as it was driving to the Cyndi Lauper / Boy George concert at Wolf Trap back in June. My car thermometer read 102 degrees, which is kind of crazy for the 9th day of September. I want to wear hoodies and jeans, not tank tops and shorts. Anyway, I digress. Since it was so hot and only 3:15 instead of tailgating in the parking lot at Wolf Trap, I decided to tailgate at the brand new (just opened a few days prior) Ledo Pizza in Vienna, VA. I ordered buffalo wings and sweet tea – and a pizza to go. I had been craving wings since the previous night when I was out watching football but too excited to eat any.
I wanted to stay at Ledo’s until at least 5, since the gates didn’t open until 6:30. But it was a very small Ledo’s where the counter overlooks the dining room. There were more staff than patrons, so they were all watching me and I felt weird if I were to just hang out there. So I left and was parked at Wolf Trap by 4:15. Within a few minutes, I realized that buffalo wings with blue cheese and sweet tea was probably not the smartest idea – especially since I was still hung over and had little sleep from the previous night. Luckily there are bathrooms right outside the entrance that I could drive to. Then I rested in my car and had two squares of pizza before walking back up to the entrance. After the gates finally opened at 6:30, I got a large blue powerade and drank it straight down and the rest of the night my stomach and I were just fine.
Of course I couldn’t get to my seat until 7:30 when the pavilion opened. I was in orchestra left row Q seat 5 – not a bad view. Looking around I noticed it was an older crowd than the Cyndi Lauper / Boy George even though they were all popular at the same time in the 80s. I was sitting there feeling annoyed with everyone around me who acted like this was the first conert they had ever been to, and annoyed wondering if it was worth it traveling and waiting basically 6 hours for a 2 hour concert. Then at 8:15 Bryan took the stage and the music washed all my annoyances and frustrations away. I was once again VERY happy!
Bryan and all the guys in the band wore white button down shirts and blue jeans. There were lots of guitars and guitar solos – a bit too much for my taste. But there was one drum solo, so that made me happy. I was surprised that “Everything I Do I Do It For You” got a bigger reaction and applause from the audience than the songs from Reckless, my favorite and I thought Bryan’s most popular album. I cried during “Heaven” – just brought back all the great memories from my teen years. I thought Bryan’s new songs off Get Up played as great as his old hits. It is a great album. But the auidence didn’t seem that interested, but I loved them especially “We Did It All.” But that’s how it is at any show. Only the real fans are singing along to the new songs and everyone else just know the hits.
Bryan Adam Setlist for 9.9.16 at Wolf Trap, VA was as follows:
Do What Ya Gotta Do
Can’t Stop This Thing We Started
Don’t Even Try
Run To You
Go Down Rockin’
Kids Wanna Rock
It’s Only Love
You Belong to Me
Summer of ’69
When You’re Gone
(Everything I Do) I Do It For You
If Ya Wanna Be Bad Ya Gotta Be Good
Back to You
We Did It All
I’ll Always Be Right There
Please Forgive Me
Cuts Like a Knife
18 til I Die
The Only Thing That Looks Good on Me is You
Brand New Day
All Shook Up
She Knows Me
Straight From the Heart
All For Love