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BJ’s Top Summer Concerts All Time

Summer is a wonderful time for concerts everywhere.  We here in the Albany area are fortunate enough to have several places to check out some great shows and even some great spots to enjoy it in the great outdoors.

courtesy SPAC.org

Summer time for me means a few things.  Baseball season, hanging around by the pool, finally being able to grill food whenever I want, and heading to some great summer shows.   Nothing like enjoying one of your favorite bands and nothing quite like doing it with mother nature as your back drop.

Here in upstate NY we have the advantage of a few different places for outdoor concerts.  The Altamont Fairgrounds, The Corning Preserve in Albany for Alive at Five and of course SPAC.

The last few years have been some great ones for concerts here in the area.  We all have our favorites and this is a count down of my top 5 five favorite summer shows. You may agree or disagree, but these are the best shows that I have been to in the last few years.

5. Korn 2010

Photo courtesy BJ Ragone

This was a really great time. I even got to hang out with Munky backstage at Northern Lights before the show. I have to tell you, he was a pretty cool guy. Wish I could say that about the rest of his band mates. Korn put on an awesome show in May 2010 and it kicked off the summer quite well. Sold out crowd at Northern Lights was crazy and Korn sounded great!

4. Hank Willams Jr & Lynyrd Skynyrd

Photo courtesy BJ Ragone

One of the best shows I have been to period and it was all because of Hank Williams Jr. Skynyrd was okay, but Hank stole the show and played everything under the sun. He even shared some great stories from his long storied career. It was fantastic. I would go see Hank again in a heartbeat.  I even got to host the pre-party outside of the Times Union Center before hand.

3. RUSH 2010

Photo by Getty Images

I wasn’t sure if I was going to actually go to this show last summer, but man am I glad that I did. Me and my brother got their a little bit late but once we sat down in our seats at SPAC we had an awesome time. One of the best RUSH shows I have ever been too. Everything was amazing from the tightness of the band to the sound quality. I even heard other people say that it was on of the best RUSH shows in recent years. Glad I decided to go!

2. Crue Fest 2008

Photo courtesy BJ Ragone

Motley Crue’s own festival! The first of the two that they did so far and it was great. The lineup kept the crowd going and me and the rest of the Q staff got to go hang backstage with Papa Roach and Buckcherry before the show. All the bands were awesome and I even got to interview Mick Mars! The Crue are one of my favorite bands so it was amazing to get to talk to him.  You can tell I’m a bit star struck at the beginning of the interview.

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1. Heaven & Hell 2007

Photo courtesy BJ Ragone

What an experience this was. Black Sabbath is my favorite band of all time so when I heard they were coming through with Ronnie James Dio at the helm I ran down to Rob Dawes office and was like, “Dude, I need to meet these guys!” I was fresh out fo college at this point and hadn’t done much with backstage stuff so the fact that after the show I got to go hangout with Geezer Butler and Tony Iommi was amazing! Two iconic rock stars that were so important to the genre, it was so cool to meet them. My brother came with me and he was super excited (as you can tell by his giant smile in the picture). Heaven & Hell put on an awesome show and so did Megadeth, who opened up for them. Great time, and one I won’t soon forget.

I will probably be adding to this list this year especially with Q103′s Q-RUPTION going on this summer! I can’t wait for this show because it’s going to be fantastic! Godsmack, Five Finger Death Punch, Skillet, Egypt Central and more, it’s going to be the show of the summer!  Get your tickets to it by clicking here.  Summer is for concerts, and this year will not disappoint!

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