It was a pretty surreal three-day vacation for this rock chick, with two big CenturyLink Center concerts back-to-back.

Tuesday evening started with a meet and greet with a band I never got to see as a teenager -- Def Leppard. Talk about a dream come true! The guys were so cool...and who couldn't love those accents?

I brought my younger sister with me to the show, and our seats were amazing. The pics I took were the best I've ever taken on my cell phone (which I tried not to use too often, so I could enjoy the full show experience.) My favorite? Shirtless DL guitarist Phil Collen...still hot at age 58!

The openers were just as amazing as the headliners, too. This was my third time seeing Tesla, and -- despite Jeff Keith being a little more "out there" than I remember -- they kicked just as much ass as they did when they played at Horseshoe in the early 2000's. I actually got to meet the guys at that show. While I didn't get to hang with them this time, sis and I did happen to run into drummer Troy Lucketta in the hallway as we were headed upstairs. So cool!

REO Speedwagon -- who I had never seen live before that night -- did not disappoint, either. They played all the favorites I grew up with. It was an altogether stellar night of memorable music.

Wednesday night's show began with the Disturbed meet and greet. It went by pretty quickly, but it was fun seeing the guys face to face before they rocked the CLC stage.

Pop Evil got the crowd going and put on a seriously hard-rocking show. And I know you noticed the drummer -- a blonde female the band never introduced. I'm now hearing Chachi Riot is supposedly leaving the band, but I can't seem to find anything about this mystery drummer-woman (who, by the way, kicks some serious ass!)

After Pop Evil pumped us up, Rob Zombie stormed out and took complete control of the room. I wasn't thrilled with the visuals on the big screen (certainly not appropriate for the young people in the crowd), but Zombie's performance was unmatched.

The best moment was when he got down from the stage and walked all over the arena, shining his spotlight on the crowd. When he returned to the stage, he told everyone to put their phones away for five minutes and just enjoy the show (something I'm ALWAYS telling people...though I do fall into that habit from time to time.) It was AMAZING!

Disturbed kept the momentum going, playing all the hits we remember, from 'Stupify' to 'Prayer' to 'Ten Thousand Fists' to their cover of 'Sound of Silence,' which was even better live than I expected it would be. The cello, violin, acoustic guitars, and especially the tympani, combined with David Draiman's smooth, deep vocals, made the song a complete auditory experience.

It's been difficult to come down from that two-concert high and get back to work, but I must try. I did want to share my experience with you, and I invite you to share yours, as well. What did you like best about either show? What was your favorite concert moment?

Just think...I'll get to do this all again in a couple of weekends -- with the Sevendust/Like a Storm show at Riverside Warehouse May 27th, and Loverboy at DiamondJacks on the 28th. Have I ever told you how much I love my job?

Tesla/REO Speedwagon/Def Leppard photos:

 

Pop Evil/Rob Zombie/Disturbed photos (more to come):