Omaha, Nebraska - Omaha Civic Auditorium Arena

Nov 09, 2001

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  1. Debbie B.
    Neil in top form Friday night….
    Sat Nov 10 09:27:42 2001

    …the civic auditorium was packed. The crowd was very good…it took a few songs for folks to start rocking…but all eventually got into it. Those that chose not to stand did not mind the ones that did stand. How can you NOT stand when the music is playing. The review stated a sold out crowd of approximately 9,500…Neil announced during the show that 12,620 packed the auditorium. Neils voice was awesome…my friend said he sounded better than his records! The show started at 8:20pm and comleted at 10:30pm. The band was also incredible. The set list was the same (I wish he would have included Starbird). He wore a black sparkly shirt and black paints and he looked very awesome and he sweat, sweat, sweat!! ‘Yes I will’ and ‘Lady Magdelene’ were magnificant. Neil is so sincere and loves to sing and we all loved his perfomance last night. The ‘Girl, You’ll be a Woman Ssoon’ segment was great, the crowd hooted and hollared, he selected a blond from the left center of the stage, front row. From past accounts that I have read here, this encounter was ‘tame’…but, fun none the less. The ‘kissee’ did seem to enjoy it also. Neil caressed her face and hair, she kissed him on the cheek during the song and he kissed her at the end. Neil thanked her husband for allowing her to participate and asked if anyone had a cigarette. Neil looks execellent and in great shape and his voice is in top form! I mingeled with the crowd before the concert and met people who had come from the Rochester Minnesota area, Kansas City and as far as 8 hours away. What a great concert! I was singing ‘America’ all the way to my car. Last night was my first Neil concert and the beauty part is that I will be attending the concert tonight and I will be sitting in the 2nd row on the Main Floor! It was well worth the wait but ended way to soon. We tried to catch a glimpse of Neil at his Hotel (which shall remain anonymous), however, by the time we got out of the traffic jam…he was safely tucked in his room. (Others did seem him earlier last night at the hotel).However, there was a group of Diamond fans at the same hotel having a party after the concert. Oh well, there is always tonight!! Neil, THANK YOU for coming to Omaha!! We hope to see you again!! You are the GREATEST entertainer!!

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  2. Published Saturday
    November 10, 2001

    Review: Neil Diamond sings to all-ages sellout

    BY CHRISTINE LAUE

    WORLD-HERALD STAFF WRITER

    RELATED STORY

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    Neil Diamond’s goin’ like 60

    As the slow drone of a string orchestra began to swell, a huge flag hanging above the three-tiered stage at Omaha’s Civic Auditorium Arena lifted, the lights dimmed and the crowd stood.

    In darkness, the familiar bass line began. The crowd cheered.

    Then, in a bursting spotlight, he appeared.

    “Far. We’ve been traveling far!”

    With “America,” pop icon Neil Diamond launched into more than two hours of his Top 40 hits and songs off his newest CD, “Three Chord Opera,” to a sold-out crowd of more than 9,500 people Friday. He is scheduled to perform another sold-out show tonight at the arena.

    Any song Diamond could have picked would have drawn fans to their feet, but his choice of “America” was particularly moving in light of the terrorist attacks, bringing tears to some audience members’ eyes. Near the song’s end, he substituted the chorus – “They’re coming to America” – with “stand up for America.” Those who had sat back down jumped to their feet.

    With the final notes, his head dropped. Body lunged. Arms swept up, then out. Without a doubt, it was Diamond in all his sparkling glory.

    “As they say, music has the power to heal,” he said after the second song. “Well, let the healing begin.”

    With a dose of “Red, Red Wine,” some “Cherry, Cherry” and 26 other songs, Dr. Diamond made the rounds, working the front and back of the stage.

    During “Girl, You’ll Be a Woman Soon,” he slowly dropped to his knees, singing the lyrics “please, come take my hand” to a woman in the front row. As they held hands, he caressed her face, creeping farther to the floor until he was lying down, kissing her gently for several seconds at the song’s finale.

    “He still has it,” said Rita Clifton, 52, who traveled far – 150 miles from Orchard, Neb. – to see Diamond for the third time. Clifton said after the show that he didn’t do quite as many of the rowdy songs he has before.

    Could it be because he turned 60 in January?

    “Maybe he’s taking it easy on us – we’re getting old, too,” she said with a laugh.

    But this was not a blue-haired crowd by any means. A man holding a 2-year-old girl twirled in a floor aisle, and two twentysomethings said they had several friends who were jealous because they couldn’t attend.

    Some parents brought their kids. Dave and Marcene Dickes of Sioux Falls, S.D., attended with their sons, Pat, 21, a University of South Dakota junior, and Chris, 24, a Creighton University dental student, who illustrated the generational span by reminiscing about the family’s video collection.

    He remembers when the family bought “The Jazz Singer” movie – on Beta.

    “We’ve always listened to Neil Diamond on family vacations, on road trips,” Chris said.

    Diamond, sweat beads glistening like the sparkles in his black shirt, ended the show with “Brother Love’s Traveling Salvation Show,” with his trademark lunge-bows as the band broke into “America,” again.

    “Thank you, Omaha!” he yelled. “God bless America!”

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  3. Singer Neil Diamond, on tour promoting his new album, “Three Chord Opera,” performed before an estimated 9,500 fans Friday night at the Omaha Civic Auditorium.

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  4. Debbie B.
    WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! WOW!!….
    Sun Nov 11 02:44:02 2001

    ……all I can say is that I can now die a very happy woman! Tonights crowd was much more rowdy than last night! (In a good way). We had soooo much fun!! Sitting in Row 2 on the floor may have had something to do with the ‘fun’ factor. Mr. Diamond sounded so good tonight. We sat Left Center on the Main Floor in Row 2…I told the girl sitting in front of me (1st Row) to be prepared for the ‘kiss’, she didn’t know what I was talking about so I explained it to her. I told her that Neil would pick her…and he did!! MAN!!! Right in front of me (if it couldn’t be me…this was as good as it gets). The ‘kissee’ was about 5’4”, long, full, dark brown hair, middle aged, nice looking, nice shape(not a stunner)…it was incredible. Neil looked very good, wore the light grey sparkly shirt and black pants. He sounded so awesome! The song set was the same as last night (same as the rest of the concert tour). I would recomend finding floor seating (1st 4 rows, Main Floor) at any expense! It is a totally different world from the front rows! Neil sings with such sincerity and intensity…he really cares about his fans…and we care about Neil!! What a totally awesome weekend this has been for me!!! My first and second shows (ever) will never be forgotten. We parked our car by Neils hotel…after the concert, we ‘ran’ out of the auditorium (about 4 blocks)and hung out waiting for Neil and band to arrive. Finally, after about 25 minutes, his bus pulled up. We could only get so close due to the security guards…I think I was about 8 feet away from Neil. I took several pictures, however, it was very dark, so, we will have to see how they come out. I took some pictures of Renee and Linda Press and a few other band members! Neil said a few words, he was pretty hoarse (you couldn’t tell at the concert), I can’t remember what he said…I was so pumped! Then, we went into the hotel bar, we hoped that Neil would come down…but, he didn’t. However, we hung out by the table where many of the band members were eating…Rachel came by several times and I asked her if I could take her picture..she said yes! She is very, very nice! What a great weekend for all!! I can only hope that Neil will continue to tour in the future as I will be there!! Neil is so sweet!! Neil, you are the GREATEST!

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