Don't know how many Beach Boys fans are out there, but I'll just pass this along since I'm still hyped up after the concert and also my ears are still ringing.
My wife is a huge BB fan from when she was growing up. She actually first me them in 1964 when she won a dance contest in Jacksonville and got to go backstage and be introduced. She's always wanted to go see them again, but they broke up and life otherwise intervened.
This past weekend we saw a story on "CBS Sunday Morning" about the remaining Beach Boys teaming up and going on a 50th Anniversary tour. She turned to me and said she didn't care if we had to drive to another state, but she wanted to go sometime this year to see them. I had already been on Ticketmaster.com (anticipating her request) so when she said she wanted to go I asked her if Wednesday was OK. She got excited and asked how far we would have to go. "Oh, about a two hour drive" I said. She was more excited, but then thought about it and said "But can we get tickets?". I waited a couple of seconds purely for dramatic effect, then asked if the third row was OK
The concert was at the St Augustine Amphitheater, which is outdoors but with a canopy cover. We were seated in the pit, orchestra right, third row. We actually moved back one row so we could be on the end so we had a bit more room. The seats are in a semi-circle in front of the stage so I was about three steps from the stage itself. However, that meant I was also three steps from a massive amplifier bank, which explains why five hours later my ears are still ringing.
Bruce Johnston was closest to us and would step forward from his keyboard and clown around a bit with the audience. Al Jardine and Mike Love were center stage, but I still could have hit them with a wadded up piece of paper if I gave it a good heave. David Marks was a bit farther over and Brian Wilson was over on the far end, which was too bad except that towards the end of the concert he came out from behind his piano and grabbed a guitar and came center stage so we got to see him a little better. Sadly, Brian's voice is pretty shot. The others didn't sound too bad, but since we were so close to the amps it all got a bit washed out. Still, it was great.
The event banned all cameras and recording devices, but cell phones were allowed in. My wife was worried that if I used my little iTouch (I don't have a cell phone with a camera) we'd get thrown out, so I had to wait to shoot some video till later on. Also I had to shoot from my seat and the iTouch camera is pretty lousy with zero zoom and serious contrast issues. Still, you can get a feel from the videos. I'm sitting in the first one, but I was able to shoot standing in the second one. They are just short clips:Video #1 - "Little Deuce Coupe"Video #2 - "Surfing USA"
The concert was a lot of fun and for any Beach Boys fans out there, it's worth the trouble to go see them in person on what might be their last tour together.