It’s hard to explain to the young folks who were either not born yet or too young to remember all the hoopla surrounding this tour, let alone those that became fans after the reunion.
I saw over 25 shows on this tour and each night was wonderful, there’s no doubt. These shows were simply fun! But it was very frustrating following the tour (by collecting tapes or learning the truth about what actually got played) that Fall 92: He was playing nearly IDENTICAL sets on a nightly basis and we just went through that on the previous tour in 88. Those two albums were not satisfying after that long five year wait. What kept us all on our feet was the fact that he was out playing and new music was at hand. Basically: We didn’t hear from him for so long! Life was much slower back then and 4-5 years then felt like 10 years! These days, 4-5 years can feel more like 2-3. It’s hard to explain to the younger folks.
We had to call the 'Backstreets’ hot-line every morning (and sometimes wait HOURS to not get a busy signal) just to learn what was played the night before! If it weren’t for the 'Backstreets Magazines' - NOBODY would have known what got played in order to collect new tapes; etc. Then after waiting so long to hear the set - always left by either Jon Pont or Eric Flannegan - you’d be so pissed cause it was the EXACT same as the previous evening! Evenstill - collect cassettes we did - lists came through the mail from friends (Karsten especially - my good friend, didn’t we search all over for the latest buddy - lol) every day and that made it all so fun! But who would have ever guessed it would be until 2002 to actually get a new rock album? 'Tracks' saved us all and while the 95 tour was fun - it wasn’t the same.
Anyway, this latest release brings back many memories of my last year in college; sleeping in cars and getting stoned in airport bathrooms. We even drove two Europeans we never met before but were Backstreet readers from Orlando to Miami - stayed up all night just bullshitting. Good times.
That band he put together sucked! Nothing was worse than '57 Channels' every night and why he didn’t play a few more from 'HT' each night was also strange! We never did get a chance to hear 'Soul Driver' as it was done on the album and 'The Long Goodbye' and 'All Or Nothin' we’re done very infrequently. Whatever. It’s hard for me to listen to this tour nowadays but it all feels like yesterday.