The Real 80's Dude

The Official Blog of The Real 80's Dude

Blog Post

Rest in Peace Trooper, We miss you Buddy!

Trooper with his blanky (Jan 12)

Trooper with his blanky (Jan 12)

It’s been three weeks since I said farewell to Trooper. I miss him dearly.

How Trooper came to be in our lives…

We had just lost Max, our 12 year old Golden Retriever, and Dames for Danes (the Great Dane Rescue we support) needed to find Trooper a forever home. He was abused pretty bad by his humans in Georgia and needed some special care so that he could trust again.

We met Trooper on September 2nd 2011 and it was love at first sight. Although we were a bit concerned with how he would interact with Cooper (our other Great Dane at the time) we immediately scooped him up and welcomed him with open arms to our family and home. It was a perfect fit, we needed some comfort because of losing Max and Trooper needed a loving home that would show him that all humans are not bad.

Trooper in the car after getting checkup on his cherry eye (Jan 12)

Trooper in the car after getting checkup on his cherry eye (Jan 12)

If you were to have ever met Trooper you knew immediately that he was an old soul. There was just this feeling you got when you were around him that everything was going to be OK. While his size was a bit intimidating he never used that fact to intimidate others. He truly wanted to be your friend and would lean into you and let you know that he wasn’t a threat.

Trooper and Cooper became known as the “oopers” and life was great for both dogs. They enjoyed each other and we enjoyed them in our lives.

Over the 7 years that Trooper was in our lives he made friends everywhere he went. From walks in the park to Brusters Ice Cream to playing at the dog park everyone knew when Trooper was there and instantly gravitated to him like some type of magnet. It was strange in a way but we accepted that Trooper had that special gift of bringing people together.

When Trooper was about 5 or 6 we lost Cooper and shortly after almost lost Trooper due to bloat (we think it was the stress of losing Cooper). After his life saving surgery (which gave him 3 more years with us) he was a bit slower but still the same great dog.

Trooper looking for squirrels (July 13)

Trooper looking for squirrels (July 13)

After bloating Trooper slowed down quite a bit. He slept more and was even more easy going than he was before the surgery. He started getting grey pretty quickly too but was always up for a walk or for some tug-o-war.

I grew very close to Trooper over the years. Although he never answered back when I would tell him about my day he would look back at me with his big brown eyes and I knew everything was going to be alright.

I knew it was Trooper’s time to go when I got back from picking up my grandchildren from Colorado. He was swaying from side to side, dragging his feet more than in the previous weeks and he was confined to the basement because steps were no longer an option.

On his last day Trooper enjoyed a filet mignon wrapped in bacon and a frosty paw, his favorite ice cream. We played a bit in the yard (as much as we could) and of course took many pictures. While the day was extremely sad we knew it was our time to say so long to our friend and that his pain would soon be over. We said our goodbyes as he took his last breath and then our time with him was over.

My last pic with Trooper (June 18)

My last pic with Trooper (June 18)

While I know that Trooper is gone forever in physical form I hope that some day we meet again.

I love and miss you dearly Trooper!

Thank you so much for sharing your time with us, you certainly changed my life for the better and I greatly appreciate it.

Blog Post

Tom Petty 40th Anniversary World Tour

Ok it’s been over two months since I posted anything but I have been swamped busy and am still shocked about Tom’s death.

I had written 95% of the aricle below prior to his death but he passed before I had a chance to finish and post.

I was thinking of completely re-writing this post but I decided to leave it as is and just finish the ending.


Ready for Petty - Chuck, Kim & TJ

Ready for Petty – Chuck, Kim & TJ

When I found out Tom Petty was doing a 40th Anniversary World Tour I nearly fell out of my chair. My last Petty show was in 1987 there was no way in hell that I was going to miss this show. So… I bought tickets for me, the Mrs and our bestest friends in Cleveland (TJ, Bill and Illeana). The tickets were bought during the pre-sale which was 7 months before the show. Don’t ask the cost but it was SOLD OUT in a matter of hours.

The show was June 10, 2017 at Quicken Arena in downtown Cleveland Ohio.

This adventure starts with an 8 hour drive to Cleveland with the Mrs the day before the show. We stayed at my mother in law’s house which is it’s own adventure.

Nonetheless we made it in and our friends (Bill and Illeana) wanted to see the Journey Tribute band Escape over in their neck of the woods. The Mrs was pooped but I of course went. While the weather was a bit wet we had a blast and the band was great!

The day of the show was a bit warm but my mother in law’s pool was just the prescription. So we hung out there until mid afternoon and then zoomed in to Mentor to grab some grub and pick up my bestest buddy TJ. – Thanks for treating at Subway Bro!

We arrived at the venue and our seats were great. I chose them based on the 2010 Pink Floyd show that we attended. A section above the floor on the right of the stage a bit. Bill and a friend made it but Illeana ended up not coming which was a real bummer but she was there in spirit (minus the nacho cheese sauce).

First up – Joe Walsh

I like Joe Walsh. His tenure as a rock and roll superstar speaks for itself but he puts out a “I’m tired of doing this shit” vibe. I noticed it in 2016 at Blossom too. Anyway his music is timeless even though he may not be.

Here’s Life’s Been Good to Me So Far…

Just like Hall & Oates from a couple months previous, Tom Petty came out to a standing ovation and it lasted for quite a while. The energy from the crowd was unreal. He started out with Rockin’ Around (With You)  and rocked for well over 2 hours. Here’s the set list…

  • Rockin’ Around (With You)
  • Mary Jane’s Last Dance
  • You Don’t Know How It Feels
  • Forgotten Man
  • You Got LuckyI Won’t Back Down
  • Free Fallin’
  • Walls
  • Don’t Come Around Here No More
  • It’s Good to Be King
  • Crawling Back to You
  • Wildflowers
  • Learning to Fly
  • Yer So Bad
  • I Should Have Known It
  • Refugee
  • Runnin’ Down a Dream

Their encore was…

  • You Wreck Me
  • American Girl

This was by far the best show this year. We all had a blast!

Here’s a couple select videos from the show.

I am so glad that I was able to experience this band’s last tour. I was so hoping to see Tom and all the Heartbreakers on their 45th Aniversary Tour but that will never happen now.

Thank you Tom and crew for so many great memories over the years and for this last show.



Blog Post

Rest in Peace Tom Petty

Tom Petty Ticket Stubs

Tom Petty Ticket Stubs

I gotta tell ya, this one hurts big time!

To say that Tom’s music was and is a big part of the soundtrack of my life is an understatement.

In addition to all of his albums I’ve seen him live twice – the first time in ’87 for the Let Me Up (I’ve Had Enough) Tour and the second time just this past June 10, 2017 for the 40th Anniversary Tour.

My fave’s include but are not limited to …

  • Nightwatchman (Hard Promises)
  • You Got Lucky (Long After Dark)
  • Don’t Do Me Like That (Damn the Torpedoes)
  • Into the Great Wide Open (Album of Same Name)
  • American Girl & Breakdown (Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers)
  • You Wreck Me & You Don’t Know How It Feels (Wildflowers)
  • Mary Jane’s Last Dance (Greatest Hits)

See Tom’s entire Discography.

At the time of writing this I can’t think of another musician’s lyrics that I know the words to as much as I know Tom Petty’s lyrics.

While I am deeply saddened by this loss, his music will live on with me and the millions of other fans out there that are like me for many years to come.

Rest in Peace Mr. Petty and Thank You for your music and memories!

Blog Post

Toto – My First Solo Concert

I’ll admit it, I’m a concert junkie and always will be. My obsession started on October 19, 1984 at the Michael Jackson Thriller concert at the old Cleveland Municipal Stadium.

The Tivoli Theatre

The Tivoli Theatre

I’ve wanted to see Steve Lukather and Toto for many many moons but could never get anyone to go. Not the Mrs, not my friends from Cleveland nor my Knoxville concert buddy, Mr. VIP on TV.

So I went it alone and HAD A BLAST!

The adventure was on June 4, 2017 and the show was at the Historic Tivoli Theatre in downtown Chattanooga.

The ride was only an hour or so and parking was a block from the venue. I had done some research on the venue and you can tell it’s been around for a while. The inside was beautiful if your into old theatre houses and the woodwork and seating were fairly ornate. It was kinda like stepping back in time. The venue does need some ceiling work though.

None the less my seat was at the top but I didn’t care because no matter where you sit the view was pretty good. I met some folks from Chattanooga and we talked about concerts and music. They were fairly young but still pretty cool. Who knew that mid 20’s kids were into Toto.

The set list was…

  • Only the Children
  • Hold the Line
  • Afraid of Love
  • Lovers in the Night
  • Pamela
  • I’ll Be Over You
  • Chinatown
  • Great Expectations
  • Red House (The Jimi Hendrix Experience cover)
  • Stop Loving You
  • 99
  • The Muse
  • Home of the Brave
  • Orphan
  • Rosanna
  • I’ll Supply the Love

Their encore was…

  • Africa

These guys ROCKED and the ticket stub will look great with my collection!!

Here’s Hold the Line…


P.S. If you get the chance to see Toto (whether with a friend or solo) go, they truly put on a great show!

Blog Post

Daryl Hall & John Oates Live at Bridgestone Arena

I’ve listened to Daryl Hall & John Oates since the 80’s but never got a chance to see them until May 24th at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville.

The Mrs. :-)

The Mrs. 😉

An overnight visit to a city I had never navigated was sure to be an adventure. After viewing Trivago for a few weeks I pounced on accommodations at Hampton Inn Downtown Nashville which turned out great because we were two blocks from the arena and it was convenient to everything.

After we arrived and settled we explored a portion of the city by foot. Nashville is huge but laid out very well for sightseeing. Unfortunately there was no way we were going to see the entire city due to time constraints so we explored around the immediate area including the Broadway watering holes. We’ve promise ourselves that we would come back for another show but stay for a couple of days.

Hall & Oates was sold out and the lines to get in showed it. Once we got in, the venue was well laid out and very clean. To boot there were so many food vendors the Mrs. looked at me and said we should have eaten there. From decked out grilled cheese sandwiches to hot dogs to pizza there were more food choices than I had seen in any of my 30 plus years of concerts. I’m kind of jealous that the folks of Nashville have such a nice venue.

When facing the stage we sat in the lower section on the left side about 20 rows up from the floor. Unfortunately there was an entrance to the floor seats and there was constant traffic which was a bit dreadful.

First up was Tears for Fears – they were kick ass! They played all of their hits and I was truly impressed with the sound and how tight the music was. They even did a version of Creep by Radio Head.

Here’s Head Over Heels…


Hall & Oates came out to a standing ovation and the energy from the crowd was simply AWESOME!

They literally jammed for over 2 hours. I couldn’t believe after all of these years how tight the music had remained, they didn’t miss a beat!

The set list was…

  • Family Man
  • Maneater
  • Out of Touch
  • Did It in a Minute
  • Say It Isn’t So
  • You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’
  • One on One
  • She’s Gone
  • Sara Smile
  • Wait for Me
  • Is It a Star
  • I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do)

and for their encore…

  • Rich Girl
  • Kiss on My List
  • Private Eyes
  • You Make My Dreams

Even after all of these HITS they could have still played for hours. After the show was over the Mrs. and I looked at each other and said WOW!!!

Here’s Maneater…


Overall the Mrs and I had a another great adventure and of course another ticket stub for my collection, some day I’ll show y’all.

P.S. We do not recommend eating at Broadway Brewhouse.

Blog Post

My 80s Favorites

Yes I am really an 80’s fanatic. I don’t know why, I just love the time period that I group up in. When I visit home to be with family and friends I am taken back to a time in my life when things were so much simpler. Don’t get me wrong I would not change anything in my life as I have a fantastic family and am blessed more than most, I just long for the memories of my youth.

To help with that I have found some great 80’s stuff. I hope you enjoy as much as I do. As I find more stuff I’ll update this page.

iHeart 80's

Music & Video

While my HS best buddy TJ loves his Amazon Echo (complete with Alexa) I prefer the simplicity of iHeart Radio.

80’s Rock –
80’s Pop –

YouTube Videos –


The best 80’s blog that I have run across is Steve Spears Stuck in the ’80s. Been reading for many, many years and Steve and his team do a great job –

Et Toi

Ok so I took French in HS 🙂

If you have a suggestion or a source for 80’s stuff? Let me know below.

Blog Post

Rest in Peace Gregg Allman

Allman Brothers - Polaris Amphitheater 1995

Polaris Amphitheater 1995 (click to enlarge)

The passing of Gregg Allman hit home for me. My favorite song is Soul Shine because it reminds me of my late friend Lynda and one of our many concert outings.

At the tail end of my 10 year concert bonanza (1986-1996) my friend Lynda and I went to see The Allman Brothers in Columbus Ohio. The show was at Polaris Amphitheater and WOW was it a doozy, check out the Set List

When I’m in a mellow mood or just want to hear some great blues The Allman Brothers Band is my go to. I just wish my friend Lynda was around to do the same.

I also wish that I could have seen him in Chattanooga last year (2016) but the timing was just not right.

Anyway… Thanks for great music and memories Mr. Allman, I’m a life long fan.

…and Lynda, I still think about you every day, wish you were here my friend 🙂

Blog Post

The Music of Foreigner

Me & the Mrs @ Foreigner

Me & the Mrs @ Foreigner

I’ve been to many shows in my life but seeing Foreigner just never materialized until I received an email from one of the plethora of ticket vendors I subscribe to (Live Nation, TicketMaster, Etc…).

The stage was set for U.S. Cellular Center in Asheville North Carolina on February 22, 2017 so I bought tickets for me and the Mrs.

Seeing Foreigner in Concert was going to be a great addition to my 30+ year ticket stub collection, or so I thought.

Our adventure started with a two hour drive from Knoxville on some seriously winding roads through The Smokey Mountains. Rain showers did not help but we ended up making great time.

Upon arriving we circled the downtown streets of Asheville looking for a parking spot. It was as if we were sharks circling our prey when we settled for the lot across the street from the venue. Hell it was only $5 to park in the old church parking lot (down from $10) so I was stoked.

We needed some fuel to continue our adventure so we went looking for an affordable restaurant. No such luck because eating healthy is not affordable. We settled for BurgerFi and Mmmmm it hit the spot + the Mrs was able to get something vegan and gluten free which is her “thing” currently.

We’re in our seats and awaiting the show to begin. The Mrs seemed fairly excited too, even though she’s not a concert nut, unlike myself.

Finally the lights went low and the stage lit up – Yea Foreigner!

To be honest I can’t remember the first song they played because I was stunned that Mick Jones, the only remaining founding member of the band, was not present.

I thought maybe he was waiting for his “Q” to come out, but he never materialized.

I was thoroughly disappointed that after my 30 year wait, Mick Jones was not there. What a complete bummer.

They did however play all of my favorites including Hot Blooded, Dirty White Boy, Juke Box Hero, Urgent, Cold as Ice, Double Vision and Blue Morning, Blue Day. Of course the Mrs was pleased too because she got to hear a couple of “slow dance” songs (I Want To Know What Love Is, Waiting for A Girl Like You).

Ok so yes I was bummed out, but to be honest with you Kelly Hansen belted out the lyrics for all of the songs like nobody’s business. I honestly think he sings better than Lou Gramm (the original singer). The rest of the band did a great job too. Without Mick Jones though, it was “The Music of Foreigner” not “Foreigner in Concert” like I was lead to believe when I bought the tickets.

Overall the Mrs and I had a great adventure and of course I’ll still include this ticket stub with my others but I really wanted to see Mick Jones play.

Oh well maybe the band will see this blog post and invite me and the Mrs to a real Foreigner Concert and perhaps I’ll even get to meet Mick himself 🙂

P.S. We found the damn car keys…

Blog Post

Rest in Peace J. Geils

The J. Geils Band 12th album (Love Stinks) was the first album that I ever listened to, complete with crackling and popping.

J. Geils - Love Stinks

J. Geils – Love Stinks

I remember listening to Love Stinks over and over until my father would come home from work and then of course I would pretend to be doing my homework (it was his album). By the time I listened to it in ’82 or ’83 the album was 2/3 years old already but I didn’t care one bit, I just jammed to it with my air guitar.

My favorite songs were:

  • Just Can’t Wait
  • Come Back
  • No Anchovies, Please
  • And of course Love Stinks

Ya know to this day I don’t think my father realizes that I listened to all of his albums (Janis Joplin, Johnny Cash, Harry Chapin, and everything in between).

Anyway…. Thank you Mr. Geils and your band. You started me down that rock and roll path.

By the way, if ya get a minute take a listen, it’s a great album (click the album cover above).

Gotta Comment? Leave one below.

Blog Post

Hello I’m Chuck

Hello I’m Chuck.

I grew up on the east side of Cleveland Ohio during the 80’s. I just completed my 47th trip around the sun.

I currently live in Knoxville Tennessee with my wife, daughter, horses, Great Danes and Guinea Pig. I also have two grown children that live out in the wild.

Live music, Indians Baseball, home renovations, travel and spending time with my friends and family (not in that particular order) are among my favorite things to do.

This blog is about my journey, both past and present (with an 80’s perspective).

Welcome and Enjoy!