Addicted To Vinyl Musical thoughts from the open road, with headphones on


The Stereo Dictator Makes the Scene

Greetings ATV fans! It is an honor to join you all as an official member of one of the coolest websites on the net hosted by one of the coolest guys I know.

Now that the sucking up is over, let’s get down to it.

I’m Kevin Brennan aka the Stereo Dictator, a lifelong Cleveland-area resident who is old enough to have seen former mayor Ralph Perk set his hair on fire, to have seen the city enter default during the tenure of another former mayor named Kucinich, to have witnessed the transformation of the warehouse wasteland that became the Flats and then to have seen it much of it go to hell again, to have been one of 2,000 people at an Indians game on several occasions, to have experienced firsthand the agony of the Drive, the Fumble, the Shot and many more hideous sports-related meltdowns, and most important of all, to have felt great disappointment as I watched one of the greatest radio markets in the country be swallowed up by owners and consultants whose only reference to rock and roll was the unbelievably restrictive 250 songs that some dumb-ass programmers classified as a “classic-rock playlist.”

Before you think that I’m just another bitter old guy, let me tell you a bit about some of the pleasant musical memories stored inside my swelling, itching brain.

I was there as the “hottest band in the land” – KISS!! blew everyone away at the Coliseum during a snowstorm in 1976. I sat in the 10th row on the floor when Led Zeppelin played Cleveland for the last time in April 1977. When AC/DC came to the Palace with Thin Lizzy in 1978, I stood on a tabletop and sang “The Jack” at the urging of Bon Scott.

In 1979, I was one of 70,000 or so in attendance at the World Series of Rock which featured unannounced opener the Scorpions who seriously rocked, the return of Bon Scott and AC/DC who could have played all day as they won over the audience after their first song, Steve Perry of Journey tripping and falling over his microphone cord midsong, Ted Nugent swinging down from atop a 20 foot tall stack of Marshalls and subsequently playing his ass off, and the well-documented final Aerosmith performance before the first breakup which included a fight instigated by Joe Perry’s wife.

There are many, many more stories about bands, radio stations, record stores, bootlegs, albums and concerts to tell but I can’t give it all away in my first post so I hope you come back to enjoy them with me. Though I have begun with recollections that are older than many of you reading this, know that my posts won’t all be ancient history but they will feature a healthy dose of my “old-school” perspective which, when it comes to rock and roll, is not a bad thing.

Thanks again to Matt for the outlet and remember the mantra: “My stereo, my albums, my choice.”

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  • Ann

    Welcome! Did you see Springsteen on “The River” tour?

  • Kevin

    I did not see that tour but I did see Bruce on the “Darkness” tour at the Coliseum and believe the date was December 31, 1978.

    I am not a big Bruce fan but that was one heck of a show.

  • Matt Wardlaw

    Dang it. I’m jealous. Like 12 shades of jealous, to be exact.

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