From Amanda

August 15th

Iowa State Fair

Des Moines, IA


I went to see the Goos at the Iowa State Fair on August fifteenth. It was a sold-out show! I went with one of my friends, one of my brothers, and my dad. We wanted to try and meet them, but you had to have a backstage pass.

At 7:15, Fastball came on, right on time. They were really good! They played for about twenty minutes. It took another twenty minutes for Sugar Ray to set up. They played for about forty-five minutes. They kept the same two yellow Chinese lanterns like Fastball, but added a few more things of course. They were pretty good too. They talked a lot and even pulled these two people onstage, but I think it was planned. I don't know.

The Goos set took about forty-five minutes to set up, but the time went by so quickly! It was interesting to watch them set it all up and everything, since I was at the concert to see them mainly.

Eventually they finished, and the stage darkened except for a few small blue and white lights. This slow (whole notes), mysterious music played (which really added to the anticipation) for a while, and suddenly the stage burst with bright lights and they opened with "Dizzy"! When they said they blew their money on lights, they sure did! It was really colorful and totally amazing, and the smoke machine that was there too made the lights look really awesome.

Robby had on a black button-down shirt and pants with bare feet. John had a white tank top on with green khaki pants. I think Mike was wearing a navy shirt with shorts that were probably black. Nathan and Dave were dressed in all black or at least very dark colors (navy?).

Here are the highlights of the show:

Well, there were some lucky people (I think two, but there may have been more) who got to go on stage in the way back and watch the Goos. During the first few songs, John said something like, "What the hell's going on?" and "Oh, you're killing me!" I was too far away to see what he was referring to.

Before one of the songs, Robby was saying something, but unfortunately, I only caught the last line because some people nearby were cheering from the previous song and I couldn't hear him. All I heard was, "So I'm havin' a lot of fun here!" Every now and then he'd (John) talk into the microphone while carrying it while it was still on the stand. Occasionally, this mic came down from the ceiling and he'd grab that and sing into it.

Later on before the song Name, he thanked Sugar Ray and Fastball for stuff, and then said, "This next song you may have heard. If you know it, sing it. If you don't, pretend you do."After a few more songs, he walked off-stage for a cup of water. When he came back, he talked into the mic from the ceiling saying (I don't remember the exact words), "Honey, I'm home [crowd cheers]. I brought some guys home from work. I know you don't like them 'cause you think their butts are dirty . . ." Another short pause, and then he says, "Sunday, Sunday, Sunday . . . [crowd cheers]" Then he began to introduce everyone.

He walks over to Nathan and says, "Our lucky guitarist number twelve [crowd cheers] who smokes when he's not supposed to: Nathan December!" He goes over to Dave, "I don't know what happened. Why, why, why . . . ?" I forgot some of the things he said. Dave was saying something, but I couldn't hear what he said. He was obviously in disagreement with what John said, but was kind of smiling about it. John eventually said, "Dave Shultz, everybody!" John walked over to Mike and said, "On drums, Mike Malinin!" Then he went over to Robby. "Bass guitar, Robby Takac!" He returned to center stage. Robby then introduced John, "On guitar, ladies and gentlemen, Johnny Rzeznik!" The crowd cheered once again.

Before the song "Naked", Mike had this awesome drum solo. I mean it, it was really awesome! He's just so talented.

After one of the songs, John played a note. Robby clapped his hands above his head. They repeated what they did, and continued until the audience started clapping every time Johnny struck a note. Then he said, "No, no, no, no! When I do this [plays note], BAM! You do this." He points to the audience.

Before the song "Flat Top", Johnny said into the mic, "Flat top! Flat top! Flat top!"

For "Acoustic #3", a light was on John only. He said before playing, "Some of you may have heard this . . ." The light flashed rapidly on him which gave a really neat effect.

After "Iris", they went to the side of the stage for a short while, but several people obviously thought the show was over and left. They didn't show the Greed in Action film, but they did shoot some silver confetti, but I was too far right to catch any.

During their last song "Two Days in February", they began playing it regularly for about one or two verses. Then the lights went white and flashed a lot as the music went really fast and very punk. Then the song slowed down, and the lights became a soft orange for a while, then they changed the style again.

The concert ended. :-( They had played for ninety minutes. Johnny said, "Good night, everybody! Thanks for coming, good night!" They went to the side of the stage, and from there, they tossed the guitars to the middle. I think John also tossed his guitar pick to the crowd.

Sorry this is so long, but it was definitely the best day of my life. Before they even started performing, I knew I wanted to go to another concert, and so did my friend who I think may be a fan now! It was just an unforgettable experience, especially for my first concert!