posted this in the tickets for sale section of craigslist after the Rolling Stones' first show in San Francisco.
The crowd outside the stadium at the second show was much larger.


Want to see the Rolling Stones for free?

o, I don't have an extra ticket for their second show on Tuesday, but mounted above the stage are large video monitors that you can watch from outside the stadium. The big screen above center stage is best viewed from the bridge on Third Street

on which the SFPD courteously blocked off two lanes so spectators could stand in the street and watch the show. Don't feel like standing? Directly across from the stadium is a small waterfront park with grass and trees, and here's a pic of the view from the park of the smaller screen above stage right.

uring Metallica's set the right field gates were uncovered so I walked up to the side of the ballpark and watched the band through the outfield wall. Between songs James Hetfield assured the audience that the band members felt healthy and were good friends. The cops cleared out the crowd and covered the gates before the Stones came on, so I wandered back to the bridge and then over to the park, where at a distance the mix sounded better than it did closer to the stadium. The bone rattling arena level bass was less overbearing, and sound monitors towering high above the stadium projected very clean vocals and guitars across the water. I wandered through the crowd in the park blowing harp along the band (sounding like this mp3 of a live Stones cover of "Around And Around" to which I added a harmonica solo). Some kids came over to me and said don't stop playing because you sound awesome, and a barefoot girl with curly red hair followed me around dancing.

t one point Mick told the crowd, referring to the recent passage of a local gun control initiative, "I met Mayor Newsom backstage and gave him my gun." I hope I can still dance onstage nonstop for two hours when I'm sixty years old. And someone lit a fire under Ron Wood's ass, because on this tour he's uncorked some loud nasty stinging slide guitar like he used to play in the Faces, and a couple of his solos recalled the band's Mick Taylor glory days. Seems the Stones have rediscovered that they're a guitar band.

oward the end of the show the cops unblocked the view through the gates again, and I walked back over and took a pic of the band while standing outside the stadium.

he security guards threw open the gates before the encore, and I walked onto the field directly in front of stage right and snapped one of Mick as the band tore into "You Can't Always Get What You Want."

ot too bad considering I didn't spend one cent, and come on, admit it, at big stadium shows you end up watching the damn video monitor the whole time anyhow. And there's a merchandise stand outside the stadium, so you can buy a tour T shirt and pretend you were inside. Take a sweater and some Maker's Mark and you'll be set, at least until you have to find a bathroom. In tribute to Bill Wyman's infamous bladder, I pissed on the side of 330 Ritch on my walk home.