Exposed to Expose` (click here to read the entire story)

by Phillip (aka Mario to everyone else except Mike)

OK- so I guess I am officially taking over my own blog now?  My buddy Mike (aka Miguel) has bitched enough to the point that I’d rather just post a few fun moments in my life, rather than hear him rag on me (complete with neck shaking and hands on hips….two snaps up!) You can read his rant to below on the “Welcome To Phillip Philes” posting. 

I don’t even know where to start this thing!! ….still floating in the clouds. I still can’t get over the fact that I FINALLY got to see my all time favorite group-Expose’! (from the front row no less). They came into my life in 1987 A.D.(After Disco) and have been there ever since.  The first time I ever saw Expose’ was on a cable show called “Dance Party U.S.A.” that was taped in Philadelphia.  (anyone remember Bob Catalano?…ha!) “Come Go With Me” was already all over the radio and that is the song they performed.  Then I saw them on “Solid Gold”, then “Showtime at the Apollo”, then the “American Music Awards”…. I mean these girls were hot on the charts and on every show out there.

This was way before the internet- so if you missed it, tough noogies….unless someone you knew taped it on their VCR (or Beta…double ha!)  And don’t you know I went out and bought their first album. (the original album I played until the grooves where gone, so shortly after I bought a duplicate, never opened it and KNEW one day I’d get it signed!)

….. it is now autographed

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(signed “Take Care-Ann Curless” “God Bless- Jeanette Jurado” & “Love- Gioia”)

SO…anyway, after school one day I hear they are coming to the city I live in!  They are scheduled to be the opening act for “Lisa Lisa”…(I’m sure Cult Jam and Full Force or whoever was there too….but who cares, this is an Expose’ story, right?). Anyway….nobody wants to take a 14 year old to a concert (of course) so I miss it.  Then the second album comes out.  Great songs on this album too- also had to buy a duplicate and kept it sealed in its original plastic.

….also, now autographed!

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( Jeanette personalized this one to me!)

Then, a few years later- one of the girls (Gioia Bruno…in blue, in the picture above) developes throat problems and has to stop singing.  They cut short the tour and wait…and wait. She didn’t get better any time soon….so she left and was replaced by Kelly Moneymaker (pictured below- sitting on ground).  One more album was produced from the new group and then they broke up (actually…I think the record company decided there would no longer be an “Expose'”.)   So, here I am thinking I missed the chance to ever get to see them. 

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(Third and final album)

Fast forward….Picture it, Palmdale- 2007…a young California boy… (Sorry- I saw an episode of the Golden Girls before sitting down to write this)  Anyway… So the girls (all three original members….wait- all the queens will dispute the “original” part since there actually was a group of ladies in Expose’ before the current Expose’ line-up that we all know and love…blah blah, get over it.) …are doing several concert dates with a bunch of artists on the “Freestyle Explosion” tour .  Stacy Q, Stevie B. and a few others who can’t spell their own last name are part of this package concert.  From what I hear, everyone has to sit through 2 hours of “and others” to see Expose’ and then they are leaving after the girls perform…even though there is one more artist yet to sing.  (I’d do the same…in fact, I have- last year…don’t get me started.) 

So, I’ve passed over seeing that show, which is coming here where I live….to drive 3 hours to see them with a full show with all their hits with a live band. (not the 7 songs with a backing music track, like on the “Freestyle” tour….but then again, it is Expose’- so I may sit through some old man singing “Double Dutch Bus” in order to see them.)

That’s right boys and girls….3 hour drive….got there at 3pm (gates didn’t open until 6pm) and the show started at 8pm.  So I waited 5 hours in the HOT Cailfornia sun, in the desert, uphill, with no shoes…wait, take off those last two…  I met some really cool people in line, also big fans, I don’t remember names at all…ever. (sorry)  But if they read this, I was the crazy that got there early. They were all really nice… I just can never remember names, faces usually… but then I can’t ever remember where I saw their faces!  (if you are reading this and we talked, leave me a message so I can but your name up and say hey!) Next time you see me- I’ll be the one wearing all black again, trust me!

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(20 years…and a three hour drive…all for these ladies!)

Palmdale, CA  July 14, 2007

 

Funny thing happened before the show:

So- I get there early…and this is the conversation for the most part-

Mario:  “Hey- Where do they start lining up for the concert tonight?”

Security Guard: “Right there where you’re standing…. You know the show doesn’t start until 8pm tonight…right?

M: “Yah…and the gates don’t open until 6pm, right?”

SG: “Right…you DO know it’s only 3pm, don’t you?”

M: “Sure, sure…and I just drove 3 hrs to get here and now I’m first in line, k?”

SG: “So you really like these guys, huh?”

M: “Yup…since ’87”

SG: “3hrs? Are you some kind of Expose’ nut? Am I gonna have to call the cops?”

M: “Yes to the nut part…No to the cops”.

SG: “Well…they’re not here yet, neither is the band…you’re kinda early (laughs)

 (an hour later…second security guard walks up)

SG: “What’s your name…first and last?”

M: “Why…you callin’ the cops?”

SG: (laughing) “No…do I need to? 

M: No….not YET!

SG: “Seriously…they’re doing a meet and greet before the show, I’ll see what I can do to get you in, I already told them some guy is out front that’s been here since 3pm.”

(comes back ten minutes later)

SG: “Sorry man- the concert promoter is only letting the 6 winners of the radio contest go backstage, but they will be signing at their merchandise table afterwards.”

M: “That’s all I need man, thanks for trying though.”

So…at 6:30pm, they finally opened the gates and I got my spot in front and waited until 8pm for the show to start. They were introduced, the music started and I was in HEAVEN for the next hour and a half!

I loved, LOVED the show…they came out to the first song that started it all for them (and me) which was “Come Go With Me”.  I had been watching a few clips from Youtube.com and caught myself doing the dance moves to the song- believe me, I wasn’t the only one shakin’ my bon bon when that song started!  And of course, this picture below would have been a great shot…had I figured out how to use my own fucking camera two days before the show instead of two days after!! Aw well…next time I guess.e2.jpg

( Jeanette, Gioia and Ann on stage… I just tell everyone I was too excited to hold the camera still. I didn’t take too many photos- after all these years and driving half way across California I was NOT gonna watch the show through a camera lens!)

Now to the good part… oh yes, there’s more.  We wait in line for a few minutes before they change clothes and come out to sign stuff.  When it finally got to my turn, I nervously took out my sealed albums.  (for all the youngsta’s out there… before compact disc’s- albums were once pressed on these big black vinyl things, ask your Momma.)

I was next in line- then Jeanette smiles and says “Hi… hey, are you gonna take the plastic off that?”  I replied “Yes!…I’ve waited 20 years to take the plastic off these things” and start ripping them open like a third grader at his birthday party.  She gets the attention of the other two girls while I’m doing this and says “Hey…this guys waited 20 years to open these so we could sign them!”  Then adds “are you sure you didn’t just get these out of the bargain bin for $1.00 last week?” (and laughs). So Jeanette signs them and passes them to Gioia who says “20 Years!?”…. Then she says… “Aw…come here honey” and gives me this huge hug!  (I almost died, she was always kinda my favorite)  As she sat back down I told her how they came through my town when I was 14 and nobody would take me…so I drove three hours by myself to see them.  Ann was really cool too…after she signed them she said “Hey- thanks for waiting 20 years to take the plastic off those things!”

Those 3 hours it took to drive home seemed to fly by (except for the horrendous wait I had at the IN-N-OUT burger drive up in Bakersfield…fuckers!)  Not because of the burger, but I was screaming randomly on the way home (and I don’t care who knows it).  I’m still in a daze…Now I understand what those crazy girls in those old clips from the Ed Sullivan Show went though when the Beatles came on stage, I’ll never laugh at those girls in horned rimmed glasses again.  I’ve taken out my albums every night before I’ve gone to bed and looked at them, I still can’t believe it.  I FINALLY got to see Expose’!

I thought I was gonna be so cool and had this big ol list of cool things I was gonna say… such a nerd am I.  I choked.  But hey…better to just gawk and have a big cheezy grin instead of saying something stupid, right?  And what class, who comes out and signs photos and takes pictures anymore?  THAT- boys and girls, is what makes them true stars.  Class.

…..I still feel like I’m living in that moment and screaming inside.

 

Thank you Gioia, Ann and Jeanette! expose

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9 Responses to “Exposed to Expose` (click here to read the entire story)”

  1. Congrats! 🙂

    Definitely know the feeling — November 2006 was MY first time seeing them (Gioia solo in 2004, but never the group) — no idea how this didn’t happen during the show or signing, but for at least the rest of the week, I really WAS all :*)

    (one show here “back in the day” as well, though after Gioia left, and the ONLY way to get tickets was to win them on-air with one specific radio station! 😦 )

  2. neverwriteitdown Says:

    (hands off my hips now)
    I think you meant ‘has encouraged my creativity’ and not ‘has bitched enough’, but we get it.

    Sounds like the concert was a blast. You made it sound so exciting, I almost wished I was there.

    I think your next post should be what you did before going to the concert and why. That’s an interesting story as well.

    Mike

  3. Nothing wrong with getting there at 3 PM for a concert you have been looking forward for over 20 years!! Afterall, I’ve seen people line up for an Alanis Morissette concert (when she was the big thing in 1996) at the San Diego County Fair as early as 12 NOON for seats!!

    I remember back in 2003 when I thought seeing the Bangles and Berlin at the OC fair was the greatest thing (OC fair had lots of cool ’80s bands that year) and then wishing what would happen if I ever got a 2nd chance to be able to see Expose’ and finally get to see “I’ll Never Get Over You” performed live. (missed them back in 1993 and had been regretting that decision — very emotional song that is responsible for making sure I didn’t lose what was to be my future wife).

    I just happened to be clicking the website of various state fairs in CA that year and decided to click on the Mid State Fair just for whims (since they always claimed to have the biggest names for concerts). I then notice the words “Expose” (without the accent mark) for 7 PM on August 1, 2003. I was wondering — was this just a local band called Expose or was it the actual Expose’?? I then was able to confirm on a couple of message boards that it was Expose’ (I almost fainted — as they had not performed together since 1993 at that time!! — and that was to be their FIRST reunion concert!!) and I would get the chance to see the same 3 singers that sang “I’ll Never Get Over You”. Needless to say, I scrambled to get vacation days and book a hotel room (65 miles away) for a concert 5 hours away — also ended up showing at the concert venue just a little bit after noon and waited 7 hours for them to perform. Still have fond memories of that concert.

    I actually booked 2 nights at the Marriott Residence Inn on the same street (Avenue P) and made it a weekend. It is very rare to hear the song “I’ll Never Get Over You” during their concerts, also is great to here Ann Curless being able to sing lead on some songs!! Angel sounded even better LIVE than the album version.

    Oh yeah, those are my videos I uploaded. 🙂 Hope you enjoy them! I ended waiting at the wrong gate — (the one in the back of the ampitheater) — I was the one (with my wife) that was asking the security guard in the red shirt where to park and what was allowed in (about 3:30 PM) — we then decided to go to the mall to use the restroom.

    And yes, still in awe over seeing them live and hearing my favorite song performed live!! Ann also sounds just as good as ever!!

  4. Hi…I think I was the first girl in line behind you! Me and my nephew came from Missouri for the show! They rocked! (Gioia is my favorite too!!)

  5. Jeanette Balazs Says:

    You are a true fan like myself. I first met Gioia in 2002. She didn’t disappoint. These ladies are better than ever. I just saw in them in April in CT. Glad to see your dream came true!

  6. Having had a similar experience when I met Exposé after their 2006 reunion concert in Milwaukee, I completely understand how you choked when you met them. I did the exact same thing! I foresaw the possibility of a meet and greet after the show, and trekked to Milwaukee equipped with witticisms and a 16-year old concert ticket stub from their “What You Don’t Know” tour. (I was 15 when I last saw them, and had the fortune of an older sister nice enough to drive me to my second Exposé concert.) There I was, ready to see the group that I have loved and worshipped from the moment I bought my very first cassette, “Exposure.” I was in awe throughout the concert, then struck dumb at the sight of Jeanette, Gioia and Ann a short distance away. My moment arrives and with the enthusiasm of a teeny bopper of years past, I giddily profess my undying love for their music and thrust my faded, old concert stub at them as proof that—yes, I really have been waiting a long time for this. We chat, they tell me that their outfits were stolen after that show (curses to thieving bastards!) and I now have memories and a photo that I will treasure forever. I luff Exposé!

  7. Hi,

    I took some pictures when Expose played their first concert. This was their FIRST reunion. You can see them here:
    http://blog.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendID=56408589&blogID=185236014
    or go to http://myspace.com/djangel7 and click on “Freestyle Concert Pictures” in my Blog.

    Regards,

    Angel

  8. Very cool! I know how you feel. I had posters of them everywhere in my room as a kid (from BOP and all the teen mags at the time) and would tape every appearance they were going to make (I actually still may have them..I need to look). I saw them in concert in Chicago in 91 (or 92) and then I was lucky enough to see them (and meet them) at the Columbus Pride fest in June! It was amazing! They were fantastic!!! Well worth the trip. I’m actually trying to get them booked in chicago right now. Check out some of my pics from the Columbus show on my blog if you want: http://frenchdel.spaces.live.com

  9. drummer CINDY in VEGAS Says:

    1987 in VEGAS @THE SANDS hotel,,, i bought a t-shirt from that show, came home and put it in a zip lock bag… knowing that 1 day they’d be back…..and on SEPT 22, 07 in VEGAS…the girls graciously signed my shirt for me !!!!! and took pics with me… they ROCK…… im glad their DESTINY will finally be FULFILLED!!

    ROCK ON

    GIOIA, ANN, JEANETTE

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