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 Post subject: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 1:12 am 
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I thought the 2000 tour thread was fun. I figured I would get the 2003 thread going. I kind of killed the last thread though so I hope I don't have the same effect on this one. This could be a cool thing to do as we wait for shows. Talk about 03, VFC, Canada, and then 06 and so on.

I went to 12 shows on the 2003 tour and got to go to a 13 in 2003 when I scored tickets to Benaroya. I had been to 18 Pearl Jam concerts heading into the 2003 tour and was excited to make plans for another 12 shows. I got lucky with the way things fell previous to the summer. I was attending college at SUNY Fredonia about 45 minutes west of Buffalo. So having a Cleveland/Pittsburgh weekend followed by a Buffalo/St. College weekend was a great way for me to get to 4 shows on the first leg while school was still in session. In the Summer, I planned on Columbus, Detroit (nice to have 2 shows there) Toronto, and Montreal. It was nice to be able to go to 5 in a row. I went to 5 in a row on the 00 tour (C-Bus, Jones Beach x3, and Saratoga) so I was excited. I also planned a nice trip to NYC around the 2 MSG shows (more on that later) and jumped on the chance to add the Hershey show when it was announced. More about each show.

Cleveland- I had been to Bridge School in 01 but this was my first full show since PJ10 in Vegas in October of 2000. I woke up in Fredonia and drove to Pittsburgh to meet my pal Matt that I met at the CBUS show in 2000 and had become good friends with over the previous few years. We drove from Pittsburgh to Cleveland for the show at the then Gund Arena. The show was the perfect start to a tour. The band was really tight and played a great show. It was the fist time I had heard Alive since the Molson Park in Berrie in 1998. I was really excited to be rocking out to Alive again. My "release" drought continued and I was 0-18.

Pittsburgh- We went back to Pittsburgh after the show and I was pretty tired. I had drove 3 hours from Fredonia to Pittsburgh, then 2.5 hours from Pittsburgh to Cleveland, and 2.5 hours back. 8 hours in the car. Regardless, I was ready to rock. We woke up at my buddies house and watched the NFL Draft in our pajamas all day waiting for dinner and Pearl Jam in the house that 66 built. It was my first time at the Igloo and the first thing I noticed was that you could see the inside of the building from the outside and you don't have to be a hockey player to know that can't be good for the ice. I went to the show with my buddy Matt, his fiancé, and her two brothers. Still no Release (0-19), but being able to see Once, Alive, Footsteps was awesome.

Buffalo- After a long week of class, I was ready for my first hometown show since October 1, 1996 (my first show). In 96 the tickets sold out so fast it was impossible to share the moment with anyone. 2003 was much different. This wasn't just a show for me. It was a chance to share my peak with so many of the people I care most about. I had at least 15 friends and family scattered throughout the arena and we had a great time before the show. The show was incredible and the band seemed to agree with me. I wanted Buffalo to be my night for Release (0-20) but it wasn't meant to be. The show was long, intense, and passionate. I couldn't have asked for more from Pearl Jam and was so proud to be a Pearl Jam fan that night.

State College- Finally, after 20 shows, I got to hear Release. I didn't know what to expect from the show or how I would feel after such an emotional night in Buffalo the night before. I loved the arena on the Penn State campus and we all know the show was a night that will live in Pearl Jam lore forever. I was really lucky to be there. "solo or whatever"

Columbus- C-Bus was an incredible trip and experience in 2000 and I wanted to go in 2003 to be there with the friend I had gained there in 2000. I left Buffalo for Columbus and the 2 shows in Detroit with my girlfriend. We met my friend Matt at a Chi-Chis in Columbus and then the three of us went to the show. We squeezed 3 into 2 incredible 10 Club tickets. There was plenty of room some how and no one seemed to have a problem with us squeezing an extra in. Footsteps and In Hiding stick out as being really good.

Detroit- The Detroit trip was really fun. It was the first PJ trip that was just my girlfriend and I. We had a pair of 10C tickets for night 2 but only had lawn seats for the first night. When we arrived at the venue we looked to see if they had anything at the box office. We were able to purchase 2 tickets in row C for face value about 20 minutes before we walked into the venue. The lady at the box office said they were tickets that went unclaimed by season ticket holders at the venue. The seats were all the way to Mike's side of the stage. We were essentially at the end of the front row because A+B didn't reach as far as we were to the left. Mike had fun with us all night and the people around us that were basically at his mercy all night. Mike handed me a setlist after the show. It is the only one I have ever gotten and I have it framed with the poster and my ticket. Night 2 was really cool. We had 10C tickets about 10 rows in front of Ed. The setlist was really cool and different both nights. Animal and Last Exit were really cool openers each night.

Toronto- The Molson Ampa Theater is about 90 minutes from my front door so we met a bunch of people in Toronto for the show on the way home from Detroit. Three of my friends went without tickets and from the second we arrived I knew they were going to either pay a lot or not go to the show. My one buddy is greek and he took us to an amazing Greek restaurant in Greektown and showed us some of the places where "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" filmed. When we got back to the venue the ticket scalping situation was a disaster. The book office was empty and a couple in our group left early without seeing the show. Starting the show with my second release was sweet and the setlist was really good. Get Right>I Believe In Miracle> I Got Id was a great run.

Montreal- My buddy Mike and I went to Montreal right after the Toronto show. It was our first show together after going to most of the 2000 shows together. He just didn't have the money in 03 and just went to Buffalo, Toronto, and Montreal. He was in love with a girl who didn't go to shows and I knew if I was going to keep going to a bunch of shows it would be without him. It was nice to have the Montreal trip. I love the venue. I didn't think the setlist was as good as Toronto but it was nice to be inside again. Mike and I returned to Buffalo after the show and I got ready for the Garden.

NYC- I left Buffalo on an airplane to NYC with one of my best friends Eric, his dad, and his brother. We went to the Yankees vs. Red Sox games on the 4th and 5th of July. In just a few days I would see my first baseball games at Yankee Stadium and Shea Stadium and my first Pearl Jam concerts in the Garden. The Yankees games were fun but the weather was ridiculously hot. The Red Sox killed the Yankees both days but I didn't have a dog in that fight. The Buser family left and I chilled for a day or two on Staten Island with some family. One of the days, I had to make my way to the city to pick up my 10C tickets. I cant remember why, but they were handing them out ahead of the shows in a hotel. I met up with my buddy from Pittsburgh at his friends house in Queens. We would stay there until we left NYC after the shows. We went to a day baseball game between the Mets and the Braves and it was literally about 30 degrees cooler at Shea than it was a few days ago at Yankee Stadium. John Smoltz pitched a 1-2-3 ninth and the Braves won. The shows in the Garden were next and both were pretty awesome. Just being in the Garden was special and the energy in the building that first night was captured well on the DVD release. I enjoyed Night 2 more than most and remember being especially moved by Nothingman.

Hershey- Matt and I left NYC and drove to State College, PA. I wanted to go to Masfield but I couldn't talk Matt into it. We hung out in St. College for a day or so and then went to Hershey with a couple of kids that I didn't really know. We had good seats at the stadium in Hershey but the rows were really wide and we were to the extreme right this time. Since we were on Stone's side we and there was 5 of us we made t-shirts that had one letter of STONE on them. I felt embarrassed about it. It wasn't my idea, but it went over well in the venue. I am sure Stone didn't notice. This show was just okay for me. Not one of my favorites. After, Matt went back to Pittsburgh and I drove with his buddies to Meadville, PA. I was going to get picked up in Meadville and then driven home to Buffalo. These guys dropped me at a Denny's and peeled off. They made me wait for my ride in a parking lot. It was lame.

Benaroya- I thought that Hershey would be my last show of 2003 and I was okay with that. I had a great spring/summer of shows. I still had an itching to see PJ in Seattle and when Benaroya was announced I figured I would take a shot. I was back at school and if I went I knew I would miss some class. I talked my buddy Matt into trying to get tickets based on the assumption that we wouldn't get tickets and it wouldn't matter. I guess it was meant to be because I scored a pair of tickets in the first row of the balcony during the general on sale. I heard later that the allotment of tickets for that sale was gone in 30 seconds. I am not sure what they sold or how fast but I consider myself blessed to have gotten the chance. We flew into Seattle separately and met up in the airport. We checked into the hotel, walked around the city, ate some food, and went to the venue. Kenny Mayne was outside taping some footage for a segment that aired on Countdown. We went into the venue because I really wanted to get a poster. I was so bummed that they went political and I couldn't see hanging it up so I passed. I could have bought one and sold it but I don't play those games. We were walking around the venue and found ourselves in a room we clearly didn't belong in. So, we left and walked right into Eddie Vedder. I froze up and didn't say a word. It was just Ed, Pete, an asian girl getting an autograph and Matt and I near an elevator. The asian walked away, the elevator opened, Ed and Pete got on, I stood there saying to myself "get on the elevator" the elevator closed and Ed was gone. I blew it. The seats were incredible, the show was incredible (#1 of the 69 have been to) and in the morning I was back on a plane to Buffalo with my 2003 experience behind me.

Favorite Show: Benaroya
Favorite Song: Black at Benaroya
Best Seats: C-Bus
Best Crowd: MSG Night 1
Best Venue: Benaroya
Best City: New York City
Worst City/Venue: Hershey
Biggest Snub: Not being able to talk Matt into Mansfield 3

(Sorry this was so long. Thanks for sticking with it if you did).

I'm looking forward to hearing your stories of the 2003 tour.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 4:48 am 
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Great tour, but the beginning of the end for Pearl Jam.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 4:50 am 
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How many of your nearly 1,700 posts on a Pearl Jam message board came after that beginning of the end?

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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 4:54 am 
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Most of them, I think.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 6:36 am 
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cutuphalfdead wrote:
Great tour, but the beginning of the end for Pearl Jam.

Cmon dude, the beginning of the end was the 2006 tour.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 6:39 am 
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WtOB? wrote:
cutuphalfdead wrote:
Great tour, but the beginning of the end for Pearl Jam.

Cmon dude, the beginning of the end was the 2006 tour.

Nah, 2003 was when they became self aware and started the whole "Pearl Jam live: the celebration" thing. It's the attitude I think that ultimately led to where they are right now. "Look how awesome we are, all we have to do is show up and it's a party".


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 6:42 am 
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cutuphalfdead wrote:
WtOB? wrote:
cutuphalfdead wrote:
Great tour, but the beginning of the end for Pearl Jam.

Cmon dude, the beginning of the end was the 2006 tour.

Nah, 2003 was when they became self aware and started the whole "Pearl Jam live: the celebration" thing. It's the attitude I think that ultimately led to where they are right now. "Look how awesome we are, all we have to do is show up and it's a party".

Maybe. But I love the 2003 tour way too much to ever admit it.

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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 2:00 pm 
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I haven't listened to the tour nearly as much as I have 2000. I guess b/c I wasn't too crazy about the first wave of boots I got, and that kinda got me off to a bad start. I forget which ones, but I have 2 Aussie boots and one is just kinda boring. The other has some gems, but I've never been too excited about it.

I skipped out on the Japanese boots, then I got the ones I went to (Raleigh, DC, Hershey). The ones I went to were OK, but not great. Each has some interesting moments, but none are PJ at their best. Hershey was fun for me though. Took a road trip with some friend, partied it up, then saw PJ and a very pissed off Ed. Not to mention, they played some good Vitalogy tracks that night.

I other ones I have from that tour is St. Louis and Mansfield 3. The pre-set is really cool, but I'm not crazy about the overall show. I give St. Louis the edge in that battle.

Does Benaroya count as a boot for that tour? If so, I have that one too.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 2:24 pm 
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I also think 2006 was the beginning of the end. It was a fun tour though becuase it was my first experience of seeing them in Europe.

Anyway, back to 2003. I did:
4/15 Raleigh
4/16 Charlotte
4/19 Atlanta
5/2 Buffalo
5/3 State College
6/18 Chicago
6/28 Toronto
7/1 Bristow, VA
7/8 NYC
7/9 NYC
7/12 Hershey

Favorite Show:
Favorite Song: tough call - Release in Raleigh. My first Release and my first show in over 2 years (which used to be a long layoff)
Best Seats: Charlotte
Best Crowd: State College w/ MSG 2 a close 2nd
Best Venue: Bryce-Jordan Center, State College (small and more intitmate than the big arenas)
Best City: New York City
Worst City/Venue: Hershey
Biggest Snub: Hearing about the 3rd night in Boston and the acouostic set (7/11) while at the MSG 2 show. Had I known earlier, probably would have tried to make it.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 4:45 pm 
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For some reason Ed`s voice has rarely been better than in July 2003.
Mexico I :heartbeat:


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 4:59 pm 
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TortureFollowsReward wrote:
I also think 2006 was the beginning of the end. It was a fun tour though becuase it was my first experience of seeing them in Europe.

Anyway, back to 2003. I did:
4/15 Raleigh
4/16 Charlotte
4/19 Atlanta
5/2 Buffalo
5/3 State College
6/18 Chicago
6/28 Toronto
7/1 Bristow, VA
7/8 NYC
7/9 NYC
7/12 Hershey

Favorite Show:
Favorite Song: tough call - Release in Raleigh. My first Release and my first show in over 2 years (which used to be a long layoff)
Best Seats: Charlotte
Best Crowd: State College w/ MSG 2 a close 2nd
Best Venue: Bryce-Jordan Center, State College (small and more intitmate than the big arenas)
Best City: New York City
Worst City/Venue: Hershey
Biggest Snub: Hearing about the 3rd night in Boston and the acouostic set (7/11) while at the MSG 2 show. Had I known earlier, probably would have tried to make it.


I was at raleigh and bristow in 03. I've gotten release 2 times in 14 shows, raleigh 03 and night 1 of pj 20, and both were super emotional for me, you can just feel that song live. Bristow was slightly disappointing because i just knew id get bushleaguer there, but it was a fantastic show otherwise, especially how crazy everyone went for why go making a come back that night


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 6:55 pm 
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I think I only got 2 shows that year, Vancouver and Benaroya Hall. Both were great shows for me. Good fun. I miss those days. Hard to imagine it's been 10 years.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 7:23 pm 
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The April-ish shows from this tour are top shelf Pearl Jam.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 8:28 pm 
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This was the last great Pearl Jam tour.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 21, 2013 9:16 pm 
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Few things will ever top Champaign for me. That's a top 15-20 PJ show for me regardless of the fact that I was there.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Fri February 22, 2013 5:20 am 
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matt reeder wrote:
Few things will ever top Champaign for me. That's a top 15-20 PJ show for me regardless of the fact that I was there.


:thumbsup:

I wasn't there and it is a top 20 for me. The end of the Spring tour was incredible.

Birmingham
Raleigh
Atlanta
Boston III
Hershey

It amazes me how negative perspectives can be. You can say beginning of the end or you could just call it one of the best tours by Pearl Jam, which I'm sure we all agree on.

Before this tour Pitt 2000 was the best show I had seen. I remember walking away from Raleigh thinking they had topped it. I was blown away that they could pull off such an all engrossing concert experience mid tour in a shitty music city like Raleigh.

The Riot Act songs holding their own live, Gimme Some Truth, Fortunate Son, Know You Rights, the rarities, the one offs (Growing Up), the loooong sets, tenclub tickets to as many show as you wanted. 2003 had it all. I'd love to go back.

Hershey was a let down (what a shitty venue), but I love the rhythm section in that one. It felt like Stone, Jeff and Matt had something to prove.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Fri February 22, 2013 5:22 am 
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Beginning of the end also means last great tour. I'm not trying to knock these shows by saying that.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Fri February 22, 2013 5:43 am 
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cutuphalfdead wrote:
Beginning of the end also means last great tour. I'm not trying to knock these shows by saying that.


You're good people :thumbsup:

Wile we are on 2003, do yourselves a favor and cue up the 4/11 Daughter. That might be my favorite Pearl Jam moment and I wasn't even there. Smoke beforehand if that's your thing 8-)


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Fri February 22, 2013 6:36 am 
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I picked Hershey, of all shows, to attend, because I thought it would be cozy. I passed on the State College show because I knew it would be fratboy central and it didn't sound like fun to me. What an idiot I was!

However, I think the Hershey show is generally underrated. Some notes....

- It had the best sound of all the PJ shows I've attended, probably because the venue is so small and oddly shaped...so I could hear everything that was going on. This was not the case with any of the subsequent shows I attended, where it sounded like they were playing across a canyon.

- The show was very tightly played. Very tight. One of the tightest shows of the tour. It was the complete opposite of the Spectrum shows, where I felt like I had been majorly ripped off.

- The setlist had some interesting items such as "Help Help" and "Get Right", and both "Grievance" and "Insignificance".

- It was fun watching Eddie go off on the mosquito bites girl.

- The venue staff, local police, and short encore all sucked majorly. However, this was not enough to ruin the show for me.


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 Post subject: Re: Let's Talk about the 2003 Tour
PostPosted: Thu February 28, 2013 7:51 pm 
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2003 tour was incredible. State College will never be topped for me, Philly 06 was as close as it has come but I still give SC '03 the nod.


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