Simon and Garfunkel • Friday, November 7, 1969 at the Philadelphia Civic Center in Philadelphia, Pa. The first concert I ever attended.
I remember sitting, almost in disbelief, listening to our favorite songs while watching Simon and Garfunkel who, truth be told, seemed a bit geeky like we were.
My boyfriend, Jake, surprised me with the tickets. Neither one of us had our driver’s license so we had to take several
buses from Roxborough and Manayunk where we lived. It was a nighttime concert and going all the way downtown from where we lived was quite a trek. We had both gone to high school in downtown Philly so it wasn’t as if it was a scary place to go.
I remember sitting, almost in disbelief, listening to our favorite songs while watching Simon and Garfunkel who, truth be told, seemed a bit geeky like we were. That endeared them to me all the more. We heard many of our favorites: The Sound of Silence, The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin’ Groovy), Benedictus, Richard Corey, Sparrow, A Most Peculiar Man, Scarborough Fair/Canticle, At the Zoo, and Old Friends.
I could go on and on. It was amazing! I was overwhelmed by the excellent seats Jake had gotten for us. We were in the 12th row back from the stage. I think he had to go to the Civic Center to buy the tickets. This was before StubHub and robocalls for tickets. Concerts were not sold out before you could even buy tickets.
It was also a time when people attending concerts sat in their seats, listened to the performers, sometimes softly sang along, and, in our case, had to keep pinching ourselves to believe that we were actually in the presence of two of our favorite musicians.
I can’t imagine what the tickets cost. Of course, nothing like the money concert tickets cost now. I don’t know where Jake got the money. He worked at the ACME food market while a freshman at Villanova. Our dates usually consisted of walking to the Roxy movie theater in Roxborough and going to the local diner on the way home for a soda and an order of fries.
That made this night all the more magical. I remember it fondly. We felt grown up and very fortunate to experience first hand the magic of live music.
I am Philadelphia born and raised. I moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin when I married my husband, Richard. We have one daughter, one son-in-law, and two granddaughters. In addition to Milwaukee we have lived in Vermont and now New Hampshire.
I retired from my position as the palliative care and oncology chaplain at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center a little over two years ago.
Now I write, read, sew, knit, and rug hook-not necessarily in that order. With deep appreciation for all that libraries have meant in my life I represent my local library volunteeing one day a week at a local nursing home where I discover the residents' book preferences and bring them library books. Mostly, I visit and listen to their stories.