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A 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.

As Yoko 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 rocks.

 

 

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!

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