Sunday, April 30, 2000

Acts in line for revamped Riverbend

By Larry Nager
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        With its opening concert just four weeks away, Riverbend's 2000 season promises everything from heavy metal to down-home blues, modern rock to Margaritaville — and improved sound and seating.

        The Red Hot Chili Peppers play Riverbend on Aug. 3. On July 11, it's Bob Dylan with Phil Lesh & Friends. Aug. 21, it's Christina Aguilera.

[photo] Christina Aquilera
        The Aug. 6 double bill of Counting Crows and Live went on sale at noon Saturday. Aug. 8 marks the first Riverbend appearance by summer's biggest, loudest tour — Ozzfest, with Ozzy Osbourne, Pantera, Ministry, Godsmack, Static X, Queens of the Stone Age, Incubus, Kittie, POD, Crazy Town, Taproot and more. That one also went on sale Saturday.

        Aug. 25, the B.B. King Blues Fest brings Susan Tedeschi, nominated in February for a best new artist Grammy, along with Buddy Guy and and Tommy Castro. That show goes on sale May 12 at 10 a.m.

        July 20 brings the cutting edge of nostalgia to Riverbend. It's a tribute to the first generation of MTV stars as the “Club '80s” tour features Missing Persons, Flock of Seagulls, Wang Chung and Gene Loves Jezebel. Those tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. May 12, too.

Classic rock draws
        Classic rock remains the summer's biggest draw, and Riverbend will host everyone from perennial favorites the Allman Brothers Band (July 25) to Pink Floyd founder Roger Waters (July 9) to the reunited Steely Dan (July 5) to this year's Grammy champ Santana (Aug. 12).

        “It looks to me like a very diverse and very dynamic, something-for-everybody schedule,” says Mike Smith, president of SFX Cincinnati, which manages Riverbend Music Center.

        Concerts will be added to the schedule throughout the season. Mr. Smith expects at least 35 non-Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra concerts to play the amphitheater this summer. “For this time of year, the volume is up as far as the number of shows booked,” he says.

        Some of the other big acts slated to hit the amphitheater circuit this summer include Pearl Jam, Neil Young, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Kenny G. and an '80s bill of the B-52's and the Go-Gos.

Facility upgrades
        The lawn will sound better this year, as the entire lawn sound system is being replaced. Permanent seats in the pavilion will also be new, replacing the chairs that have been there since Riverbend opened in 1984. Cupholders have been added to the chairs, which should reduce the number of beer-soaked purses and tennis shoes.

        Box seats are another addition to the 2000 Riverbend season. Only 10 of the 40 new boxes remain unsold. The $11,800 fee includes four seats for every Riverbend event, admission to the R.S.V.I.P. Club and a new backstage lounge area.

Present schedule
        Announcements of shows have been trickling in all spring. Here's the Riverbend schedule to date. Tickets are on sale unless otherwise noted.

        May 22 — Kiss, Ted Nugent and Skid Row, 7 p.m.; $77.50 and $57.50 pavilion, $37.50 lawn.

        June 3 — Kenny G., time and price TBA. On sale May 5.

        June 8 — Volunteer Jam with Hank Williams Jr., Charlie Daniels Band and Edgar Winter, 7 p.m.; $27.50 pavilion, $17.50 lawn.

        June 19 — Don Henley with opener TBA; 8 p.m.; a pavilion-only show, $82 VIP, $56 other.

        June 20 — Poison, Cinderella, Dokken and Slaughter, 6 p.m.; $31 pavilion, $17.50 lawn.

        June 26-27 — Dave Matthews Band and Guster, 7 p.m.; $48 pavilion and $33 lawn.

        July 5 — An evening with Steely Dan, 8 p.m.; $75 and $55 pavilion, $25 lawn.

        July 9 — Roger Waters, 8 p.m.; $52.50 and $42.50 pavilion, $27.50 lawn.

        July 11 — Bob Dylan and Phil Lesh & Friends; time and price TBA. On sale May 6.

        July 12 — Yes and Kansas, 7:30 p.m.; $41 and $28.50 pavilion, $18.50 lawn (on sale May 19).

        July 16 — Sting and opener TBA, time and price TBA, on sale May 8.

        July 20 — “Club '80s” with Missing Persons, Flock of Seagulls, Wang Chung, and Gene Loves Jezebel, 7 p.m.; $20 pavilion, $16 lawn. On sale May 12 at 10 a.m.

        July 25 — Allman Brothers, time and price TBA . On sale May 26.

        Aug. 1 — Def Leppard, 7:30 p.m.; $41 pavilion, $31 lawn. On sale May 5.

        Aug. 3 — Red Hot Chili Peppers, Fishbone and Stone Temple Pilots; price and time TBA. On sale May 6.

        Aug. 5 — “All That Music and More” with LFO, Blaque, No Authority, B*Witched and Hoku, 7 p.m.; $31 pavilion, $21 lawn. On sale May 20.

        Aug. 6 — Counting Crows, Live and Galactic, 7 p.m.; $47.50 and $34.50 pavilion, $26.50 lawn.

        Aug. 8 — Ozzfest 2000 with Ozzy Osbourne, Pantera, Methods of Mayhem, Ministry, Godsmack, Static X, Queens of the Stone Age, Incubus, Kittie, POD, Crazy Town, Taproot and more, 10 a.m.; $55.25 pavilion, $29.75 lawn.

        Aug. 12 — Santana with Macy Gray, 7:30 p.m.; $64 and $54 pavilion, $29 lawn.

        Aug. 17 and 19 Jimmy Buffett, 8 p.m.; both shows sold out.

        Aug. 21 — Christina Aguilera, time and price TBA, on sale May 12.

        Aug. 25 — “B.B. King Blues Fest” with B.B. King, Buddy Guy, Susan Tedeschi and Tommy Castro, 6 p.m.; $40 and $35 pavilion, $22.50 lawn. On sale May 12.

        Aug. 27 — Motley Crue, Megadeth and Anthrax, 7 p.m.; $37.50 and $27.50 pavilion, $17.50 lawn.


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