Big Crowd of Fans!
By Jordan and Andrew
What an evening! Saturday night (3 June 2000) marked my
first time ever to see Yoko Ono in concert. Her appearance was with Thurston Moore
of Sonic Youth and DJ Spooky as part of the Bell Atlantic Jazz Festival. The location
was The Lawn in Lower Manhattan's Battery Park. It was interesting to think that
only yards from the stage where Yoko performed is where, almost thirty years ago,
Yoko and John filmed some of the footage for their film Imagine. John would have
been proud of Yoko's return! But, despite the significance of the location, the
venue wasn't actually all that pleasing -- sound quality wise. (But leave it to
an old audiophile to complain about that!) Yoko's vocals could have been done
better justice by being brought further to the front. But at least the sound for
her set was better than that of the band before her.
came out, ready to begin her set, hordes -- very literally -- swarmed to the front
of the stage! We had been sitting about twenty yards from the stage all afternoon,
with a nice, comfortable view -- up until that moment! It was amazing! I don't
even know where all the people came from! Being that I am not a frequent concert
go-er, I had no way of knowing to expect such a scene. Unfortunately, our great
seats on the lawn turned into not-so-great-but-okay places to stand for the show!
Even despite the man with a cowboy hat a few feet in front of me, I did have a
good view. Nothing could spoil this event! Plainly put, as we all know it, Yoko
opened the set with the words "Let's all stay alive, okay!" The show
was approximately one twenty minute long freestyle jam. Thurston's beautiful guitar
work created a sheer waterfall perfectly blending with Yoko's vocal acrobatics.
He even played his guitar with a drum stick! For the most part, Yoko sang only
abstract vocals, with some words and phrases interspersed here and there. At one
point she asked the crowd to "listen to your heartbeat!" She the proceeded
by stating that "your heartbeat is mine and my heartbeat is yours."
As the music came to an end, she left everyone with her usual goodbye: "I
love you!" Despite my euphoria and extreme satisfaction with seeing Yoko
live, I do think I have to say I enjoy her recordings much more. Also, I enjoy
Yoko more in a more intimate setting (who wouldn't?), such as the Whitney Q&A
I was fortunate enough to attend earlier this year. I've never been a big fan
a crowds -- but it looks like Yoko has a big crowd of fans!