“We feel like what we are doing is a meaningful thing. We are here to serve people, to perform a function that we think is helpful to the world. We believe in it. Rocking. When any person stays in a state of giving they are at their best. That is where we try to stay.”
The anticipation for this show began in January when my older sister and her best friend decided to get on an airplane and fly to San Antonio, Texas to see the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
When my sister came home, she could not stop talking about how incredible the show was. Soon after she decided that it was necessary to catch another tour date on The Getaway World Tour.
I spend extra time prepping for the Chili Pepper show: using a three barreled iron to crimp my locks. In proper 90s fashion. I lace up red/black Chuck Taylor’s. The finishing touch is placed on my neck: a classic black stretch choker.
My sister greets me in my room decked out in appropriate attire.
We grab all the travel necessities and head for Louisville, Kentucky.
We drive through beautiful Kentucky country while aggressively station surfing: our favorite pass-time in the car. Thank you Kentucky radio for making our travel so pleasant: the ride consists of but is not limited to belting out Aerosmith’s greatest hits, conjuring up our best faux smoker voice for Huey Lewis tunes, passionate sing-a-longs to Bruno Mars’ “That’s What I Like,” and hearing Harry Styles’ “Sign of the Times” for the first time over the air waives (EEEP!). But really, I did scream very loudly.
I am driving across a colossal bridge that connects to downtown Louisville, that makes me tense and makes Sis need a brown paper bag. Directions are getting heated. I yell for a quick direction. She replies: “I can’t read!”… Although she means something else, this is all that proceeds from her mouth. How can I let her live that one down?
The streets surrounding the arena, KFC’s Yum! Center, are bustling with life: cars and people fill the roads.
We find our seats: shoutout to my sister for copping them (Section 113).
Time passes through Iron Tom’s opening set. The arena is filled with RHCP fans sporting RHCP t-shirts. I’ve never seen so many band t-shirts at one show.
9:00pm arrives. The lights dim. Doubting that the Chili Peppers will make their entrance on the stage this early, we remain seated. As the the masses stand to their feet, sis states: “I don’t know that this isn’t them”… It was.
Chad Smith takes his place behind his drums, then Josh Klinghoffer claims his spot, Flea follows. There is an aura around the moment: being in the same room with the Chili Peppers. Anthony Kiedis completes the entrance.
“All Around the World” ignites the crowd.
Anthony walks to the edge of the stage and rips the setlist off of the stage, then proceeds to throw it away.
The seduction of the lights coupled with RHCP melodies and psychedelic backing graphics draw us into a trance of sorts.
During “Parallel Universe” sis becomes so affected by the lights that she feels like she may pass out. She looks to the lower section and sees a blurry mass of “floating heads”. You can’t make this stuff up.
“By the Way” is my favorite RHCP jam. The song concludes, my jaw drops.
Throughout the show you can count on several consistencies: Anthony aggressively dancing/running around the stage, Flea and his bass rocking harder than you think possible, and Josh folding over his electric guitar with Gumby-like flexibility.
“Goodbye Angels” and “Give it Away” signal the conclusion of our time rocking with the RHCPs.
I choose not to not video during “Give it Away” in order to soak up every bit of the experience that is left. Whoa. It is as if the music has full control over my body. I see the stage in glimpses as my hair often covers my eyes, my head bangs in sync with Chad’s drums and Flea’s bass. Can’t stop addicted to the shindig (lyrics to the RHCP’s “Can’t Stop”) are accurate.
May 16, 2017 Setlist:
Here’s to more rocking with the Peppers!