Shine on, Shine strong, Neil Diamond!

Time travel warning. I’m about to revert to a 17-year-old teenager again, but first, I need to give you a bit of background. 31 years ago, my mother and I took my then 8 year old daughter to her first ever concert. Neil Diamond. Even though she covered her ears at some of the noise, it was a night she’s always remembered. Me, too.

Flash forward to Mother’s Day when, as a combination Mom’s Day/birthday gift, my daughter repaid the favor and took me to see Neil Diamond. Here’s where I revert. 20150510_165029We were on the freeway, with me having no idea WHERE we were headed, when a Neil Diamond song pops up on her sound system. I’m like…”Neil!” and she’s like “Yessss!” Still took me a minute to clue in, but then it was one of those OMG, OMG, OMG moments, you know? I just couldn’t believe it. Then I erupted with sheer joy. We called my mom first, because she was with us so long ago. She laughed and definitely enjoyed our enthusiasm. Then we called my husband, who’d been keeping Christie’s secret for three months! We spent the rest of the drive up singing Neil Diamond songs and reveling in the memories and the anticipation.

Everything fell into place with this, from my daughter seeing the concert ad at just the right time, to us lucking into a parking spot one block from the venue that had an easy out. We had a great dinner at a trendy little restaurant. Then we settled in our seats…row frigging nine from the floor!!! We didn’t even have to look at the tv screens, we were that close! 20150510_193703

Neil Diamond sang without intermission for 2 hours and 10 minutes! And he’s doing concerts every other day…at the age of 74! I’m exhausted just thinking about it.

That man hasn’t lost his touch. He got me through some very rough teenage emotions and that emotional bond to his message was right back in place on this night. His voice is strong, his presence equally so. He had us all crying and swaying and clapping and singing and hugging. It was amazing.

It was a night of laughter and high emotion and I’m so grateful to have been there. And so grateful for my daughter’s HUGE gift to me. I turned 60 two days ago. And 60 is looking pretty darn awesome, thanks to all the wonderful people surrounding me. And to one amazing night that made me feel seventeen again, a youthfulness that has lingered in the days since the concert.

So many, many thanks to my daughter for a gift that I will remember FOREVER…in Blue Jeans!

The Diamond is shining strong! And I am, at the moment, feeling young again.

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14 responses to “Shine on, Shine strong, Neil Diamond!

  1. Love your blog. Another precious memory to add to a brimming collection. So happy for you. Thanks for sharing and letting be a part of it.

    • Yep. You know, lately, we’ve had more friends get sick and have seen more of the downside of aging. But adding more memories to the coffer is definitely the up side. 🙂

  2. sweetinspirationals

    Hi Laurie, how lucky are you that you got to see Neil Diamond in concert, twice? He’s a talented musician, love his music. Sweet Caroline, Holly Holy, Forever in Blue Jeans, 🙂

    • I feel very lucky, Sweet Inspirationals! Thanks. I remember 31 years ago, when he started singing Sweet Caroline and everyone started flicking their bic lighters, my mother was aghast at all the flames in the wooden domed event stadium we were in. Now, it’s all cell phone candles, eh? I hope you get to see him. He is so talented!

  3. Fantastic, Laurie! What special memories. Neil is my all time favourite singer, and one I shared with my beloved late father. We’d talk about Neil’s lyrics and enthuse about his amazing melodies. Neil came to the Glastonbury Festival here in the UK a couple of years ago, and it was great to see that huge crowd of all ages singing along to the chorus of Sweet Caroline. Amazing performer.

    • My favorite album of his is Taproot Manuscript, one of his lesser known ones, I think. I love that you have these memories with your father! Neil Diamond has affected so many people over his life. It’s amazing.

  4. Valerie J. Patterson

    Yep, this is a very special memory between mother and daughter and to have it occur twice is wonderful! Happy 60th to you, Laurie! And you and your daughter both look fabulous in the photo. What a huge blessing for you to be blessed with children, and an even greater blessing to share moments like this! I have thought I would enjoy a Neil Diamond concert, too! 😛

  5. oh, what a fun, fun, fun time. I love the symmetry of the whole thing. Your daughter getting the tickets, you having had taken your daughter back in the day, Neil coming on the radio to “guide” you and your call to your mom. talk about full circle. What an awesome gift of love and time spent in joy from your daughter!! AND you look so happy in the pics. I love it. Jillian

  6. Jillian,
    Yeah, with a little help also from their grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. I LOVE my family. 🙂

  7. Fabulous. What a wonderful gift. Love Neil Diamond and am ultra jealous of you!

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