[To celebrate the release of Oceania, the Smashing Pumpkins held a boat cruise on Lake Michigan for the faithful. Charmaine was there and files this report. - AC]
Fans came from all over: Ottawa, Vancouver, Toronto, New Mexico, California.
Fifteen people won by posting Facebook essays on their wall and having the most interactions and chosen by SPRC (Smashing Pumpkins Record Club). Billy Corgan also told fans on the cruise he was able to look at and pick some of the essays.
Other guests were friends (for instance the Madina Lake twins which Billy said were practically the first two people to hear the album outside of the "bubble"), family, wrestlers from Billy's Resistance Pro, or won through radio promotion. I was one of the lucky people to win via Facebook. My beautiful friends liked and shared nice comments about my love for SP and shared some nice SP memories.
The cruise happened the same day that they were streaming the new album on iTunes. Some of the fans were actually singing along as the album was playing on the huge PA which SP brought because they had been listening to the stream on iTunes earlier. Some of the songs I had heard live before but also some of the songs were a surprise to me.
Before Billy took the stage the house music was The Cure. Billy played these songs solo.
The song "Jesus is the Sun" was quite a treat and is around 22 years old. He also played "Bleed" because it was played at the first SP show almost exactly 25 years ago. And this is all happening with Chicago's skyline behind them.
Jeff came up to accompany on "Bleed."
"Right of Spring" was a song that Billy said he had never played before, saying he wrote it when "He didn't write good songs anymore according to the internet."
Billy was drinking Tea. A fan asked how his tea shop was coming along and he said it was supposed to be 3 weeks, but that was about 3 weeks ago and it's not open yet.
Nicole told me it was nice she didn't have to "work" tonight and she just got to hang with fans because she wasn't performing.
When I was talking to Mike about an earlier concert, I told him that it was really awesome to hear him singing Black Diamond (KISS) on the live stream from Rock in Rio.
Mike said it was the most fun he's had in a while. I told him it was awesome and "I lost my marbles" Mike says, "Oh, I'm sorry about your marbles." I thought that was pretty funny.
I let Mike and Nicole know that the SP songs they were playing were trending worldwide on twitter and I saved the screen grabs. I was really excited for them when I was watching that live stream. They weren't aware that that happened.
Some of the fans who run really great SP fan pages were there and they also stayed in Chicago for a show at the metro and Resistance Pro on Friday.
It's an exciting time to be a Smashing Pumpkins fan. The new album is out June 19th and the fans on the boat really enjoyed it. There were people dancing, bobbing their heads and singing along and I am very honoured that I was a part of the special night.
Thank you for reading - Be well,
12 hours on a bus from Toronto to Chicago: $100
16 hour bus ride from Chicago home to Toronto: $100
1.5 hour flights were $1,000 one way from Porter or I'd have much rather of flown.