Lindsey Buckingham has been touring again so naturally, this meant I had to go. Lucky Bill was coming along to keep me company. I just cannot miss Linds when he is in town! It had still only been less than a year since I actually met him! WHOA!
He was playing at BB Kings Blues Club in Midtown and I had never been there before so it is always good fun checking out a new venue.
For dinner, we went to Becco on 46th Street. Becco is Lidia Bastianich’s restaurant – it did not disappoint. I opted for the three dish pasta where they come around with big frying pans filled with the three pastas of the night and continually fill your dish. The pasta was fantastic (the penne with veal ragu and peas was easily on par with pasta I ate in Rome) and Bill got the main chicken dish that was in a light broth with some Israeli cous cous and vegetables – the chicken was absolutely amazing. The only downfall was it was seriously the noisiest restaurant I have ever eaten in. I am not one for shouting over the table so basically we basically didn’t talk through the whole meal.The tables are very close and we had two very loud speakers on either side of us so we didn’t stand a chance but the whole restaurant was like having five McDonald’s playgrounds inside but with adult voices.
We then made our way back down to 42nd St to get to BB Kings. Here is where the ranting starts. We got there 10 minutes after the doors opened and decided to have dessert there so we would reach the $10 per person charge that you must make for sitting down. The tables on the floor was pretty packed already but we didn’t get to choose where we sat… even though it was general admission. The guy leading us to our seats offered us one table that was behind a pillar or right down the front where Bill would have his back to the stage. We took down the front but it was awful. We were told we HAD to sit facing each other. Um ok? Luckily, no-one was sitting beside us so I mentioned to Bill that when the show starts he can come and sit next to me so he could actually see the stage.
Then, at about 8.15 (show was starting at nine) they bought down a girl and sat her beside me. Um – how does it work that you can come in late and end up with a better seat than Bill? Okkk then. But we still had the seat beside Bill where he could move and then wiggle around when the show started. Oh no we didn’t. About 20 minutes later, they sat another girl beside Bill. So we were essentially jammed beside the stage with not even an inch of room between us and the other people and Bill couldn’t see a thing as now he didn’t even have room to spin around. I went up to our waitress and asked if we could just move seats up to the back as they had great booths, with a good view of the stage and these were still empty. She said no – if we did we would have to pay another $10 charge per head AGAIN. This was on top of the $60 each ($73 including Ticketmaster charges) that we had already paid for our tickets and on top of our desserts and drinks that we had already bought. So I cracked it and said to Bill I wouldn’t care if we left because he couldn’t see, I was slammed against the side of the stage and it was just miserable.
Then, the waitress came over with our bill. Bill noted to me how the tip was already included and she wouldn’t be getting anything else as she was pretty much hopeless. She came and took our card and then came back ten minutes later with the receipt for us to sign. She pointed out to Bill that this was just a partial gratuity, basically letting us know to add more to it. Bill is a VERY good tipper so he was very much “No worries!” and was about to up the tip to his usual ‘average service’ tip of 15%. That was until he saw the amount. The included gratuity was ALREADY 15%. So he wrote that on the receipt an when she came back he pointed out to her that it wasn’t partial as it was already 15%. To which she said “Exactly – that is only a partial tip!” AHA – she thought we were tourists – understandable considering my accent but who was she kidding?! I would LOVE to know how much she is swindling other customers (especially those who were drinking) out of more money with her scam. Bill quickly pointed out to her that 15% is a partial gratuity but that is only when it comes to GOOD service. She then just walked away. Worst service EVER.
I looked up towards the back and noticed that all the decent booths and tables up there were only just filling up. Which means that people coming in last, were getting way better seats than us – it was a schmozzle of the highest order.
Lindsey came out and I tried to enjoy it being squashed against the stage and with the girl beside me basically sitting on my lap. He played REALLY well. It was just him and his many guitars… but check out the setlist. Go Insane was AWESOME and he totally rocked Come.
Cast Away Dreams
Bleed to Love Her
Not Too Late
Shut Us Down
Never Going Back Again
I’m So Afraid
Go Your Own Way
Seeds We Sow
Here is proof that I did stay to see him –
It was then time to leave… which would have been easy but President Obama was at an event across the road. EEEEKKK. We had to have the flash off for the Obama/Clinton lighting to show up but… here is Obama, Bill Clinton and me!
See all those huge garbage trucks? They are used as barriers while the President was there. They circled the block! Which left me a bit dismayed as that means all he sees lining the streets when he comes to New York is old garbage trucks?! You can see more pictures here of the garbage truck barricades.
When we were finally in the cab on the way home, Bill also mentioned how he saw a mouse trap under one of the booths there… so then I got visions of mice running over my bag that I had under my seat. UGH!
The worst came the next morning when I checked our online banking and somehow our credit card had been used online at the Apple Store and Anthropologie. I knew the transactions had taken place between 6am (when I first checked) and 8.30am (when I checked again)… sometimes it does pay to be OCD about banking! Bill and I also had a fair idea about who may be responsible but of course, no proof. Anyway, after all that, we contacted BB Kings and they have been STELLAR in dealing with the issues we bought up. We learnt that for a gig like Lindsey’s there should have been no issue with us moving seats and the set tip is definitely is NOT a partial gratuity. They were sad we had such a horrid time with our server and have offered us tickets to another show of our choice. Our bank has also been great dealing with the card issue so no complaints there… the only way we can find out who it was would be to file a complaint with the police and then our bank will hand over any documentation (if they even find it) to them. The Anthropologie transaction didn’t end up going through so that is a bonus but that also means there is no record of purchase or shipping address.
So there you have it. Could any more drama happen over the course of twenty four hours?! Sheesh!!