Rob De Luca of Spread Eagle: Five Concerts That Changed My Life

Rob De Luca Interview

Feature Photo: ChrisJamesRyanPhotography / Shutterstock.com

We’ve had the great Rob De Luca of Spread Eagle here before, and he’s one of our favorites to chat with. During a recent conversation after dishing on the albums that changed his life, Rob made light of the fact that many concerts also changed his life.

And so, we listened, making this the first of a series where we grab our favorite artists five concerts that changed their life. Thanks for the inspiration, Rob! Were any of you at any of these shows, too?

# 5 – Kix at The Channel

I read that many audience members formed known bands after seeing The Ramones play in London for the first time at The 100 Club. Well, my version of that story is when Kix came through The Channel in Boston in the mid-1980s, I witnessed the metal scene change overnight.

All the local bands would come out to watch when a national rolled through town, and it was certainly packed for Kox. Their professionally choreographed show, the segues, the props, and the killer tunes had everyone watching raising their game. Bands (including mine) immediately began building “ego boxes” to stand on, involving lights.

We were still local bands but now performed like we were playing for much bigger stakes. Kix continued to build and got MTV success on their following album, Blow My Fuse (1988). It’s good to know when they retired, they went out on top.

#4 – Guns N’ Roses at The Paradise 

Long before the “Sweet Child O’ Mine” video was filmed, the only place we could see and hear Guns N’ Roses’ “Welcome to The Jungle” was on the video reel at Jim Blute’s Narcissus in Kenmore Square. Then it was announced that Gn’R would make their first-ever Boston appearance at The Paradise, just up the street.

We, the metal scene squeezed into the 500-seater, witnessed raw power unlike anything else at that time. I remember Axl [Rose] spoke introductions to describe almost every song. I remember Izzy [Stradlin] having some tuning issues. I remember feeling that I was witnessing a sea change. And the rest is, as they say, history.

# 3 – Fugazi at the NYU Auditorium

DIY ethics were embodied in the band Fugazi from Washington, D.C. They refused major labels and Lollapalooza. They owned their own label, produced their own records, did their own booking, and demanded venues only charge $5 for shows.

I saw Fugazi every time they came through NYC, including what they described as their craziest show ever, at the NYU Auditorium. This post-hardcore band invented a guitar attack that (directly or indirectly) influenced thousands of punk, indie, and rock bands. Always one of my favorites!

# 2 – U2 at the Worcester Centrum

The first time I saw U2, it was not a concert that changed my life. Don’t get me wrong, the 1985 Unforgettable Fire Tour at the Worcester Centrum was quite good, but I grew up seeing the absolute greats: Van Halen with Diamond Dave, AC/DC with Bon, Sabbath with Ozzy. Although I enjoyed U2, we were just as focused on rushing home in time to hit the clubs before the last call.

However, years later, when U2 released All That You Can’t Leave Behind, I was ready to try it again and am so glad I did! The band had reached dizzying new heights of inspiration that taught me heaviness is not only defined by guitar distortion or thundering drums. I saw that concert and had to continue to experience it repeatedly throughout the Northeast. A legendary band at the peak of their powers is truly something to behold.

# 1 – Dead End Kids at various shows throughout New Jersey, Maryland, and Pennsylvania

Speaking of the Northeast, every scene in every region had bands that defined it. When I was a teen, in my eyes, the absolute kings of the Philly/Jersey scene were the Dead End Kids. Picture Motley before Motley, mixed with classic hard rock. Two great singers, two great guitarists, and the most hypnotizing live show around.

Dead End Kids wrote strong originals and played their own versions of cover songs, as was the style on the club scene at that time. We traveled to see them in NJ, MD, and PA; being close to something so powerful and unique forever changed me and is the defining reason I wanted to be in a band.

In the mid-80s, bands from the Philly region began succeeding on MTV, and to my absolute horror, they had “pinched” the entire Dead End Kids stage show! Any band spinning their guitars around their bodies or doing high kicks through the drop ceiling owes credit to the originators, Dead End Kids.

Bill Matson went on to sing for Tangier, Georgie Rumbol is still out there doing his thing, and Kelly James is sadly no longer with us. Check out this rough video:

Rob De Luca of Spread Eagle: Five Concerts That Changed My Life article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2024

DMCA.com Protection Status

DON’T MISS A BEAT

Be the first to know when a new article is published

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

Add Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Dan Fogelberg Songs
Top 10 Dan Fogelberg Songs
Aretha Franklin Songs
10 Essential Aretha Franklin Songs
Roy Buchanan Songs
Top 10 Roy Buchanan Songs
Emerson
Top 10 Emerson, Lake & Palmer Songs
Humble Pie Albums
Top 10 Humble Pie Albums
Bob Seger Albums
Our Ten Favorite Bob Seger Albums
Paul McCartney Albums
Top 10 Paul McCartney Albums
ZZ Top Albums
Our 10 Favorite ZZ Top Albums
Peter Frampton
Frampton, Foreigner, Ozzy, & Dave Matthews Band Voted Into Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame
Best Of Bruce Springsteen
2024 Best Of Bruce Springsteen CD Comes With No Rare Tracks
Earthquake In New York
Earthquake In New York This Morning, Like Nothing I Have Ever Felt
Monsters of Rock Cruise 2024: Day Five Review
An Interview With Isom Innus Of Foster The People & Peel
An Interview With Isom Innus Of Foster The People & Peel
Oliver Wakeman Interview
An Interview With Oliver Wakeman, Formerly Of Yes
Leslie Mandoki Interview
An Interview With Leslie Mandoki Of The Mandoki Soulmates
Marc Ribler Interview
An Interview with Marc Ribler of Little Steven’s Disciples of Soul
Motorhead Albums
Complete List Of Motorhead Studio Albums And Discography
Little River Band Albums
Complete List Of Little River Band Albums And Discography
Chevelle Albums
Complete List Of Chevelle Albums And Discography
Haim Albums
Complete List Of Haim Albums And Discography
9 Bands That Never Replaced Departed Members
Music CDs Comeback
Why Music CDs Have No Chance Of Making A Comeback
Classic Rock Bands Still Together But Overdue For A New Album
Classic Rock Bands Still Together But Overdue For A New Album
When Glam Bands Went Grunge In The 1990s
When Glam Bands Went Grunge In The 1990s
Taylor Swift Albums And Discography
Complete List Of Taylor Swift Albums And Discography
Carly Simon Hotcakes Album Review
Carly Simon’s HOTCAKES Album Still Sizzles After 50 Years
11 Tracks Of Whack Album Review
Walter Becker – 11 Tracks of Whack Album Review
Sammy Hagar Album Review
Why Sammy Hagar’s 1977 ‘Sammy Hagar’ LP Was One Of His Best