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Thread: 1997 - 20 years later

   
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    Default 1997 - 20 years later

    So, for some of us on MJJC we are at the 20th anniversary of the last time we saw MJ live in concert during the HIStory Tour in 1997. Next Wednesday it will be the 20th anniversary of the show at the RDS Showgrounds in Dublin, which I am so glad to be able to say that I attended, and a show that I know many of you have downloaded and watched.

    So, for those of us that have hit that milestone- what are your reflections on the experience. There are a few of us here who were very lucky to have seen MJ live at least once and I cant still say that that night was the best night of my life so far. Only 10 years of age and the various details of that night that stuck with me is mad (outside of the concert). My dad brought me and we were talking about it earlier, things about the journey to and from Dublin, who we met, what we did before and after the show. It was great to be able to talk about it as if it was just another concert.

    Having seen the bootleg video a million times, my memory has been influenced by the recording, but I actually have so many visual memories that will never leave my mind. Seeing the lean, MJ coming out with the suitcase, the opening notes of Blood on the Dance Floor and seeing that blue jacket shine with the lights, MJ hanging from the cherry picker, and I remember being glad that even though he didnt sing Bad, that I got to see a bit of it during the Remember the Time interlude. Blood on the Dace Floor has been my favourite song since I first saw it on Mtv, and I'm glad to have seen him perform it.

    Sometimes I couldnt care less that the show was mostly lip sync. It was still my faourite concert I've been to because it's the one that I can never go a few days without thinking about. Those are the concerts that matter.

    I just wanted to start a thread so we can share our experiences and how we feel 20 years on from the end of MJ's last world tour

    No force of nature can break your will to self motivate.

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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    Thanks for sharing.
    Last edited by Word Smith Sr; 15-07-2017 at 11:54 AM.
    May you rest in peace Karen Carpenter, Janis Joplin, Terence McKenna, Jonah Lomu, George Michael



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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    aaww, thanks for sharing your memories, that was really sweet

    I am extremely devoted to Michael Jackson

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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    Heartbreaking! While I never saw him in concert I saw him at the James Brown funeral TWICE in one afternoon! My parents also saw him as a child in concert in 1973 on a date before they were married! You know most Americans probably don't have any idea that he toured after "The Bad World Tour", right? Which is SO sad...

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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    I saw HIStory twice, Sheffield and Wembley, London. At first he only announced London dates, so I booked that, then he did Northern Ones annoyingly so I went to both.

    We missed our coach back from London and had to find somewhere to stay!

    You know my thoughts on the HIstory tour probably so won't go into that, but it was great seeing songs I hadn't seen him do before plus the OTW medley.

    Having been lucky enough to see Bad, Dangerous and HIStory tours live, this one was the least fulfilling, but it was still Michael Jackson and knowing what he'd been through I recall thinking it was great to see him again, especially seeming so relaxed.
    I CAN'T TAKE IT 'COS I'M TONY

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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    Quote Originally Posted by MattyJam View Post
    Maybe part of it was my youth - it's certainly harder to be impressed the older you get. But I don't believe it's just that. I really think the big stadium shows MJ put on from 1987-1997 had a touch of magic to them.

    I have some very vivid memories of that day. My parents and my siblings took a coach trip to London to see the show and I remember the excitement inside the stadium when MJ's space rocket came onto the stage. He really knew how to work a crowd, how to squeeze every last drop out of a moment, and you will never understand the power of his stage presence and the exhilaration of the crowd from just watching concert footage on a Youtube video. It is one of those things that really had to be seen in person to fully experience.

    I remember the atmosphere as the evening drew to a close and they put the massive floodlights on during Heal The World. I remember watching in awe at the brilliantly powerful staging and theatrics of the History performance in the encore. I remember getting back onto the coach after the show and some random American woman said to the entire coach "well, that was really something special, wasn't it?". Nobody replied to her (us Brits aren't partial to open displays of enthusiasm), but I knew exactly what she meant and I think everyone else did too.
    20 years ago today for you Matty. Happy anniversary. Love reading this- these are the things that make going to a concert much more than just entering the building, support act, main act, done. It's a whole day and I get everything you've written above. I always ask my dad if he actually enjoyed it, and he says he did! I remember him telling me MJ was stuck in the spaceship so we had to go home haha! But the things you shared above go so far outside of the bootleg or video of the show. Thats what has dawned on me recently, I've been to a few amazing gigs this summer and it's all about the entire day, and its the small things that make the bigger things even better.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tony R View Post
    I saw HIStory twice, Sheffield and Wembley, London. At first he only announced London dates, so I booked that, then he did Northern Ones annoyingly so I went to both.

    We missed our coach back from London and had to find somewhere to stay!

    You know my thoughts on the HIstory tour probably so won't go into that, but it was great seeing songs I hadn't seen him do before plus the OTW medley.

    Having been lucky enough to see Bad, Dangerous and HIStory tours live, this one was the least fulfilling, but it was still Michael Jackson and knowing what he'd been through I recall thinking it was great to see him again, especially seeming so relaxed.
    To see him once I feel as lucky as hell, but 4 times, that's just brilliant. The one thing I'd love to be able to say is "Well I preferred it when I saw him in....." but to be honest, once is a lot more than most people so I cant complain!

    I suppose, you really did get a few songs on the HIStory tour that you wouldnt have gotten before, I'm counting 9? (including Dangerous). Didnt realise he did an OTW medley in the UK!

    I remember the UK ad campaign was ferocious, and I used get so excited every time I saw something.

    No force of nature can break your will to self motivate.

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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    Year I was born. That's mad haha. Unfortunate that I was born to late to have the opportunity.

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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    Quote Originally Posted by SmoothGangsta View Post
    Year I was born. That's mad haha. Unfortunate that I was born to late to have the opportunity.
    Yep can identify with that mate. MJ only came to my country once and I was but a baby so even if I did go, I wouldn't remember it. I guess in the future we can go see the hologram :lol: but it won't be the same thing. Jealous of some people here (in a good way that is, especially you Toby!!).

    Looking forward to reading more experiences

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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    June 15th 1997 in Gelsenkirchen, Parkstadion - 50.000 visitors (according to Wikipedia).
    "I´m the temple, you can´t hurt me,
    ..I found peace within myself"

    ...Michael Jackson - Jam





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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    The 20th anniversary of my attendance at Sheffield was last Sunday. I knew it was coming. But it still seems odd that it was 20 years. It feels like so long ago but almost like a dream. I was 13.

    I'm from Glasgow so my parents kindly road tripped me down to see him. I really didn't think in 1997 that it was going to be the last time Michael toured the UK. I remember coming off the motorway and seeing a banner by the roadside "SHEFFIELD WELCOMES THE KING OF POP". Then by the sides of the road I saw all the fans in their t-shirts heading to the venue. It was a beautiful sunny day and I immediately issued the decree, 'we MUST start queuing'. And so we did. I remember leaving my parents in the queue as I snuck up to the gates and peered through the gap at the soundcheck. MJ was on the big screen as the band played along. All day long fans approached me asking where I got my t-shirt from - it has been an unofficial one my mum had bought me on a trip to Paris. When the merchandise tent opened I got out all my pocket money I had saved for this moment since Christmas and bought everything I could get my hands on: several t-shirts, a programme, a key ring, a commemorative coin etc etc etc. When the gates opened I started running but my mother told me to slow down. I didn't want to but with all the crowds around I figured it was probably good advice. We eventually made it to the front and got a good spot to stand on the pitch. And this next bit I will never forget. I've been to a LOT of gigs in my life, and I've seen some of the biggest pop stars in the world in the flesh. Never have I ever heard an audience scream so loud, a reaction so BIG, as when Michael kicked down the door of his spaceship and stood defiantly, decked out in his space age armour. It was unreal. And when he stepped out of the spaceship and started to dance, it was the most surreal moment. I'll never forget it. The man I had studied all my life in his music videos and TV appearances was now in front of me in the flesh. Further moments that stand out, when Michael finished a song (maybe Beat It) he stood arms outstretched and looked out at the crowd...a smile slowly crept across his face. It seemed like he was looking at me. I guess we all felt that. It was a nice moment. And when he got on the cherry picker for Earth Song it seemed like the underside of those magical soles were in arms reach.

    The next morning I woke up in our hotel room to breakfast news talking about Michael's first UK gig in years and showing footage. I lay in bed and read the programme. That day we went into town and at HMV I bought even more cool MJ items.

    When Michael passed away in 2009 I was backpacking across Australia. Milllions of miles from friends and family. My parents called to ask if I was okay...a friend at the time remarked that it was almost as if a family member had passed away. The first thing I did was thank them for making my one and only time in his company a reality.

    When I visited Forest Lawn in 2014 I spent a moment alone beneath 'his window'. It was eerie to think this was the closest I had been to him since that day in 1997. HIStory, indeed.

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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    Too long to quote, but fantastic post Chris. You had a couple of years on me, so you could get away with a standing ticket! I was up in the seats in the RDS.

    You just reminded me of the merch stands which I hadnt remembered in forever. Did you get the program? I think thats the only thing I got, and maybe a badge. I got a little blue scarf outside the stadium, but in the years the white MJ text has come off but I know what it is!

    No force of nature can break your will to self motivate.

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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    Yeah I got the programme! In those days I always bought one. I rarely pick one up now. They seem so overpriced.

    I would have bought more at the merchandise tent were it not for my old dad telling me I had spent enough

    I remember looking for Mystery but there was no sign of it at the Sheffield gig.

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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    It was F##king awesome! There he was dangling right over my head when I had "that moment!" I could not believe how close I was to him. There was times he looked not real to me when he was dancing, especially if he did robotics or spins. Seeing him spinning in front of my eyes was one of the most surrealist moments of my life. Billie Jean was strange for me, I kept double-taking from the screen which looked how I'd always known seeing him back to the stage and actually looking at him in front of me. I thought the theatrics were slightly over the top but he put on a great show. I was 18, felt I'd been waiting a lifetime to see him by that point, came so close to seeing him on the Bad Tour -I've never gotten over not seeing him in 88- and again in 92.

    Impersonators always over-dance, over-perform when in actual fact MJ was much slower and more graceful on stage, he never really tried to do 20 moves at the same time to impress. He took his time and brought his physical presence. I had a feeling -deep down I knew- he was lip syncing but I didn't give a toss. By HIStory he'd done more in his life than most people and I was amazed he was still able to tour after such a gruelling career up to that point.

    I don't know where it sits for me in comparison to other concerts I've been to, Prince and other much smaller shows were incredible and artistically moving and personal to me, But getting to finally see him was its own special moment for me.

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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    Great Thread! loving the storys.

    I was at the first Bremen concert, May 31th 1997. I was 11 years old.
    I saw the show with my best friend and his parents. We were standing pretty much right in the middle of the stadium. since we were children and could not see anything my friends mother suggested that we should climb up the fences that surrounded the speakers that were placed mid stadium. The security would order us down like 3-4 times before they gave up and realized we would climb up again anyway. So I was slighty above 55.000 people. I remember everytime a ballad started there were thousands of lighters waving from side to side. The atmosphere was just great. the people in the back of the stadium looked like they had a party. a lot of people were dancing. probably cause they couldn't see much.
    I remember that during Blood on the Dancefloor my friends mother got me down from the fence because there was a group of women that wanted to have someone do MJ moves for them. I missed half of the song because of that.
    Also i remember that Heal the World was my favorit performance because of the ad lips he sang. i didnt know he was lipsyncing most of the show cause i was a child and had no clue about something like that. But I knew he didnt sing those ad lips on the Bucarest Bootleg CD I had and listened to a 1000 times. i cant explain why these ad lips stood out for me so much that night. but it is what it is i guess...

    Although there was a great distance between me and the stage, I knew the steps and the show looked spectecular.

    I wish i was older and had been seeing him 2 or 3 times in concert. i think that i was so blown away just to see him, that i didnt really focus on the performance, since everything happened so fast and was over so soon.

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    Default Re: 1997 - 20 years later

    Already 20 years.......... Yes, I´m thinking of it quite often - just in these weeks 20 years ago I was in Bremen, May 31 and Berlin, August 1. I also saw HIStory in Prague. I wrote about it earlier in other threads... - I saw every concert was so exciting and wonderful and different from the other - and my experiences of each concert, too. Of course, Michael was absolutely great in every show, no word could describe all aspects adequately. After having the luck to see him perform I could not enjoy any other artists the same way as I did before - Michaels concerts, his presence, his performances were more than outstanding!
    ...Well, after loving me, she said she couldn´t love another...
    Michael Jackson, The Girl Is Mine

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