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Wembley '85


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While I have told the story of my first taping trip to LA and Tempe in November '84, and shared those recordings, I don't think I've widely shared my Wembley '85 story. Here goes.

The London trip story: I went to the Grateful Dead Northeast Summer Tour, 4 shows in 5 nights (SPAC, Hershey, MPP x2) ending July 1 at Merriweather Post Pavilion. Drove back to NYC and worked the 2d, then took the TWA 747 to Heathrow that night, with a brick of Maxell MX-90s and plenty of batteries. Landed, got checked in to the Hilton at LHR, then took the Tube to Piccadilly where my scalper in NYC had arranged for me to pick up tix for all three shows from a tout there.

Gates opened at 4, show started at 6. I got there in time to worm my way close to a gate, so when it opened I was able to rush thru and down thru the seats to the pitch, and got to about the same place each night: stage center, about 30 rows off the front. The folks around me were lovely, friendly people, and respectful of my taping. The 4th was the same drill, but with that haunting solo acoustic Independence Day to start. Bruce was off the 5th, so I went next door to Wembley Arena where Dire Straits were playing an extended stand. Taped that, too.

July 6th Bruce started at 4, so gates opened at 2, but otherwise the drill was the same. When Bruce ended at 8 I was able to walk to the arena and scalp for Dire Straits that night at 8:30p - of course I packed extra tapes and batteries! 5 shows in 4 nights, best trip ever.

Combined with the Grateful Dead leg, that was 9 shows in 10 nights, including the one flying to London. The next day I drove to Basingstoke to see my brother's in-laws. Flew the TWA 747 back Monday. My seatmate in business class was the physio for the band, so he took me up to first class to say hi to Clarence and Patti. Free airfare (I have used literally millions of frequent flyer miles in my life), free hotel, free Bruce tickets (each scalper thought I paid the other), and 5 great shows. And the tapes.

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finally, hrubesh has applied his wonderful skills to my 7/3 recording - enjoy! link will stay active for a week ;)

1985-07-03 London, UK (JimCT Master Tape) 

https://mega.nz/folder/Dwg0AbZB#eO3QYs8ETNMnoFOw9aCOQQ

Transfer/Trade and Generation Info: Sony D6C -> Sony ECM-929 -> Maxell II-S Position IEC TYPE II HIGH[CrO2] -> digitized and burned onto CD -> wav -> trade -> Nero Wav Editor -> Pitch corrected, Equalized, split -> wav -> TLH -> flac (level 8) Align on Sector Boundaries.

Include: md5 (wav/flac), ffp, shntool_info/len, Frequency-Spectral Analysis, Artworks, Info file and Par2 recovery files to 10%.

Enjoy hrubesh's artwork - he works very hard to bring each show he does to life with that, it's amazing!

Notes:
Fantastic sound, a thrilling atmosphere, listening to this recording with headphones and eyes closed, it brings you back to smell that night and it seems to be in the GA in front of the stage.

Born In The USA, Working On The Highway and Rosalita were patched with a different recording from CDR.

For more information regarding this boot, visit Brucebase: http://brucebase.wikidot.com/1985#030785

 

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Wonderful story, Sat 6th July changed my life forever and was the first of my 47 shows over the years which followed. Staggeringly I recently discovered a photo where I found my 12 year old self with my Mum. We are circled in these pics. I know it was us as I had taken a photo from the exact spot. F8D3601D-1961-4939-AF76-32B8CBFBEDC5.thumb.jpeg.e3f10d98b2156739f48b78194e512621.jpeg

000DCEF3-AE0B-4FF1-9423-40AE6ED50EE3.jpeg

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Great stuff, Jim.  Tnx for all the effort.  I definitely have your recordings of the 3rd and 6th.  Looking forward to this ^ new upgrade :).

Three magical nights.  I would argue that the third show on the 6th was the best of the three. The weather was fantastic that week and made the whole thing an unforgettable experience.

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Wonderful story. And thank you for your recording, didn't have this one yet! 

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7 hours ago, JimCT said:

While I have told the story of my first taping trip to LA and Tempe in November '84, and shared those recordings, I don't think I've widely shared my Wembley '85 story. Here goes.

The London trip story: I went to the Grateful Dead Northeast Summer Tour, 4 shows in 5 nights (SPAC, Hershey, MPP x2) ending July 1 at Merriweather Post Pavilion. Drove back to NYC and worked the 2d, then took the TWA 747 to Heathrow that night, with a brick of Maxell MX-90s and plenty of batteries. Landed, got checked in to the Hilton at LHR, then took the Tube to Piccadilly where my scalper in NYC had arranged for me to pick up tix for all three shows from a tout there.

Gates opened at 4, show started at 6. I got there in time to worm my way close to a gate, so when it opened I was able to rush thru and down thru the seats to the pitch, and got to about the same place each night: stage center, about 30 rows off the front. The folks around me were lovely, friendly people, and respectful of my taping. The 4th was the same drill, but with that haunting solo acoustic Independence Day to start. Bruce was off the 5th, so I went next door to Wembley Arena where Dire Straits were playing an extended stand. Taped that, too.

July 6th Bruce started at 4, so gates opened at 2, but otherwise the drill was the same. When Bruce ended at 8 I was able to walk to the arena and scalp for Dire Straits that night at 8:30p - of course I packed extra tapes and batteries! 5 shows in 4 nights, best trip ever.

Combined with the Grateful Dead leg, that was 9 shows in 10 nights, including the one flying to London. The next day I drove to Basingstoke to see my brother's in-laws. Flew the TWA 747 back Monday. My seatmate in business class was the physio for the band, so he took me up to first class to say hi to Clarence and Patti. Free airfare (I have used literally millions of frequent flyer miles in my life), free hotel, free Bruce tickets (each scalper thought I paid the other), and 5 great shows. And the tapes.

What a great story. I'm seriously impressed by your diligence. Strangely, I lived in Basingstoke for several years. It must have been something of a comedown after the thrills of London, and Wembley!

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56 minutes ago, bobfan1976 said:

What a great story. I'm seriously impressed by your diligence. Strangely, I lived in Basingstoke for several years. It must have been something of a comedown after the thrills of London, and Wembley!

Just lunch and a visit with my brother’s in-laws at their house out there. John was a wonderful old-school gentleman, retired RN officer, the kind of fellow with a Gieves & Hawkes account since his adolescence. Camilla is a lovely lady - I told her if I ever got married I hoped my MIL would be as wonderful as her. 

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Transfer/Trade and Generation Info: Sony D6C -> Sony ECM-929 -> Maxell II-S Position IEC TYPE II
 

Was this the recording equipment you managed to somehow smuggle into the stadium Jim? I remember getting searched by security as we went in, so that’s mighty impressive especially the huge stereo microphone! 

6DDD7BD0-DE6C-41BB-9080-CE8A62599D07.webp

9A052F7C-89EA-4AD6-B643-368F8C5A849D.jpeg

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Yes, that's the deck. But I had the 939 mic - neither are too big. And I had a clever bag that always seemed to get my stuff past security ;) 

s-l1600.jpg

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4 hours ago, doesthisbusstop said:

Transfer/Trade and Generation Info: Sony D6C -> Sony ECM-929 -> Maxell II-S Position IEC TYPE II
 

Was this the recording equipment you managed to somehow smuggle into the stadium Jim? I remember getting searched by security as we went in, so that’s mighty impressive especially the huge stereo microphone! 

6DDD7BD0-DE6C-41BB-9080-CE8A62599D07.webp

9A052F7C-89EA-4AD6-B643-368F8C5A849D.jpeg

Oh, and my D6C had a "steal your face" decal on the lid ;)  :D 

01210__58679.1471453705.1100.1100.jpg?c=

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Brings back great memories and a major regret. I had tickets for all three Wembley shows but the 6th clashed with a wedding in Brighton my wife and I had been invited to and which she wanted to attend: so, I reluctantly  gave up my ticket. We only saw the happy couple a few times after the wedding. I've seen Bruce 54 times since that day. :mellow:

 

 

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6 hours ago, JimCT said:

Yes, that's the deck. But I had the 939 mic - neither are too big. And I had a clever bag that always seemed to get my stuff past security ;) 

s-l1600.jpg

What, you made no multitrack recording?!

JK

Thanks for the story and the download!

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Just shows how huge Bruce was in his commercial peak on the back of BITUSA selling out Wembley Stadium 3 times in the space of 4 days. Two of them on weekdays. 

My dad drove me and my mum to London that Saturday morning and planned to wait around to pick us up after the show. He didn’t have a ticket and wasn’t fussed and it helped us anyway as we didn’t have to worry about parking. He asked some security guy how long the other two concerts had been so he got an idea of what time the show would finish. 

My dad dropped us off and then drove to a nearby park and saw a cricket match being played. My dad was a keen cricketer and had his cricket whites and cricket bat all in the car boot. He always used to keep it in there after it had been washed from his previous game. 

My dad got talking to one of the guys who was fielding on the boundary and they told him that they were a man short, having only 10 of the 11 required players. My Dad told him he had his kit in the car and so they asked him to play! Which he did. He then played the whole game, bowled and took 3 wickets and batted and scored I think about 25 runs. He then drove back to Wembley to pick us up at our agreed meeting point, picking us out of the crowd amongst the throngs of people walking down the street where we were all still singing “Ohhh, ohh, ohh” from the epic Twist & Shout which had just finished. Not a mobile phone or any way of contacting us. What a day. 36 years ago tomorrow. 

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3 hours ago, doesthisbusstop said:

That mic still looks huge! Great job. 

manual says 16mm x 16mm x 121 mm - so roughly 5/8" square x 4+" long - hides pretty easily, in my experience ;) 

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