Categorized | Personal

Van Halen KC Road Trip

Posted on 28 October 2007 by SonHouse

Some old high school buddies, Ave, Wade and I decided a few months ago to take a road trip from Austin to Kansas City to see the Van Halen reunion tour with the original singer, David Lee Roth. We’ve been VH fans for 25 plus years so it was pretty much a no brainer that we were going to see them, we were just hoping for a closer show. After monitoring the web site for a few weeks, it looked like the closest show to us was going to be in Kansas City. KC is about 12 hours from Austin so the road trip would prove to be a long one. We secured our tickets, for the Oct 26th show, through an inside connection at TicketMasters and then waited for the day to hit the road.

We decided to leave early on Friday the 26th, at 6am, and drive straight through to KC. We stopped many times along the way, eating at a childhood favorite pizza place, Mazzios, taking photos of the starship pegasus outside of Dallas, an abandoned arcade shaped like a flying saucer and witnessed a high speed chase on the interstate.


We checked into a hotel in Tulsa and then finished the last 4 hours of the trip to KC to meet another high school buddy, Chris, for dinner at the KC Masterpiece bbq place off the loop. We finally made it to the Sprint arena right at 8pm, just in time, and after getting settled into our seats, VH started within 10 minutes.

The show was great, although it could have never completely lived up to our expectations and hype over the last few months. The band was pretty tight, Eddie delivered on the guitar chops as usual, Alex was steady on the drum kit and even the new kid, Wolfgang, Eddie’s 16 year old soon held his own, although I would have preferred to see Michael Anthony on bass. Diamond Dave was good, all in all, although he can’t hit the high notes any more, he forgot some lyrics and his stage show was a bit Vegas in nature but we looked passed that and just enjoyed hearing the tunes from our childhood. The drunk fan in the parking garage stairwell at the end of the show summed it up nicely with a fist bump to each of us as we climbed to the 5th floor level, when he said, “It wasn’t solid gold, but it was good!”

After the show, we headed back to Tulsa and pulled into our hotel at about 4am, slept for 5 hours then drove the rest of the way back to Austin yesterday afternoon. Would I do it again? You bet! The trip allowed us to spend some quality time with each other, something we do not get to as much as we’d like and we got see our childhood idols in full form. Can’t beat it!

Here was the set list:

  1. You Really Got Me
  2. I’m the One
  3. Runnin’ With the Devil
  4. Romeo Delight
  5. Somebody Get Me a Doctor
  6. Beautiful Girls
  7. Dance the Night Away
  8. Atomic Punic
  9. Everybody Wants Some
  10. So This Is Love?
  11. Mean Street
  12. Pretty Woman
  13. Drum Solo
  14. Unchained
  15. I’ll Wait
  16. And the Cradle Will Rock
  17. Hot for Teacher
  18. Little Dreamer
  19. Little Guitars
  20. Jamie’s Cryin’
  21. Ice Cream Man
  22. Panama
  23. Guitar Solo (“Women in Love” intro, “Cathedral”, “Eruption”)
  24. Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love
  25. 1984
  26. Jump

P.S. My good buddy, Ave, is a professional writer/editor and worked up a 3000 word essay on our adventure in the car on the way back. He has some connections to Texas Monthly magazine and is trying to get it published so I’ll let you know where the story ends up.

Time to get back to work.

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