Sunday, October 8, 1978
Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum
44 years, 5 months and 22 days ago
Sunday, April 9, 2017 2:33 PM
I was at both shows, Saturday and Sunday at this Oakland visit. The Saturday show was my first Yes concert and I didn't know the band well. My then girlfriend was a big fan though, so she had bought us tix for both performances. For the Saturday show, we were pretty far back, and there seemed to be some on-stage confusion with technical difficulties. I particularly remember that Rick Wakeman was pretty put out. Still, to me, it seemed a fine show. The next night, Sunday, we were in the third row. From that perspective and with the rotating stage and everything else working like a charm, the show was absolutely spectacular. When Jon Anderson hit the high notes of "Sharp! Distance!" in Heart of the Sunrise, it changed my life. Still the most memorable moment of any concert I've ever attended. They dropped balloons from the ceiling at the end of the show, as it was the last US gig before they went back to finish the Tormato tour in England.
This show did have a rotating stage and Rick was playing a Polyphonic Synthesizer this time. I was in the back for this concert but went to the front for Roundabout which was recorded and is on the Classic yes
I always want there to be enthusiastic responses to Yes concerts. Every time I see them, I have this nagging fear that this might be the last time. I find myself trying to appreciate them too much some times.
For the Tormato tour, at the Oakland Coliseum, I noticed that a large portion of the audience were younger glam rock types. I was concerned they would want more rock n roll. When they played Circus of Heaven, I wondered how the crowd would respond to the part where Jon's son speaks. To my delight, it was well cheered.
Looking around the Coliseum, I remember thinking the same thing I thought during the Talk tour: there's not enough fans to warrant continued recording and touring. I figured that this may be the last time I'll see Yes. I took my brother to see this show, as an introduction to Yes. His main memory of it was that he thought everyone in the band was completely nuts except Jon Anderson. Then during a lengthy instrumental section, Jon played percussion like a madman. Yes, even he was nuts.
My memory is how good Anderson was at slowly walking from the back to the microphone. "You're not going to make it on time!", I thought. But he always did. Very cool