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Matchbox Twenty’s Rob Thomas recalls the “craziness” of his first concert experience


Chris McKay/Getty ImagesMatchbox Twenty and Counting Crows are touring together this summer, but Matchbox Twenty frontman Rob Thomas says as a kid, he didn’t really go to concerts at all. When he finally did see one, though, he says he learned a valuable lesson, which had nothing to do with music.

“I had a very weird childhood… I literally wasn’t allowed to go to shows,” Rob tells ABC Radio. “When I was 14, I went to see Genesis on the Invisible Touch tour…my mom’s friend had an extra ticket.”

At that show, he recalls, “It was the first time that I’d ever seen a bunch of adults around and realized that they all get high at a concert [too]!”  He laughs, ‘I was just like, “What’s going on here? This is craziness!'”

Rob’s bandmate, drummer/guitarist Paul Doucette, was allowed to see shows, but he went to great lengths to get tickets, sleeping out overnight for Metallica and Van Halen shows.

“I grew up outside of Pittsburgh and that was the only thing to do,” he tells ABC Radio. “If a show was coming, sleeping out was, like, the highlight of your life!”

Luckily, fans won’t have to go that far to see concerts this summer: all this week, concert promoter Live Nation is offering more than a million tickets to a variety of summer tours for just 20 bucks. The on-sale for the promotion is live now. 

Among the tours included is the Goo Goo Dolls/Phillip Phillips summer tour. Phillip supports the idea, since he personally found it hard to afford tickets as a kid.

“I worked a couple jobs just to get some money,” he recalls. “And paying for a ticket…even 75-100 bucks, for a younger crowd, it’s a lot…So this deal is really great.” 

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