What can I say, I could probably end my concert going career after seeing one of the greats Shirley Manson, she is the core of every girl fronted rock band that has came along today. For me she was one of the first female fronted bands that I started listening to years ago.


Garbage was formed in Wisconsin in 1994, and honestly I can’t remember what I was doing in 1994, but I do know when Shirley started singing “I’m only happy when it rains” you listened, as her voice was something completely different then what was on the radio at the time. In all the years that I’ve been going to concerts, Garbage was the one band that I really wanted to see, or at least try to see before the hobby ended in a sense, so finding out they were coming to St. Louis there was no way I was going to miss it.

As usual, I got to the Pageant after noon, and to my surprise was the second person there. There was one other guy first in line, and that was it, it was sort of shocking as usually there is more people in line around 2pm, but clearly with school in session and people working, there wasn’t. So, walking up to the door, I said “I’m glad there is another person besides myself, makes me feel better”….Other than that, was glad to meet him, and all the other folks I meet in line.

The Halo bar opened at 5pm, but the actually venue doors opened around 6:45pm, and I made my way down front and center on the rail, there is never any doubt when you show up at 2:30pm and there is only one other person in line, so, being within arms length of Shirley Manson, was good enough for me. The Pageant had a set list time of what would be happening, Garbage would play from 9-11pm, a whole two hour set, which was fine,  I could listen to Shirley sing every song they recorded and be happy.

Garbage promptly took the stage at 9pm, bursting into “Automatic Systematic Habit” and Shirley looked epic, wearing black high heel boots, with a cut out of a heel, and black leggings, with what looked like a skort type thing, with a scarf draping over here, it was just awesome. She looked amazing, bright red hair up in a bun on top of her head, I was mesmerized as I started taking photos immediately.  Shirley isn’t one to stand still, she moved, dances, and comes to life when singing, you can see it on her face, when she is singing songs, she is living the song she is singing. The set list consisted of 21 songs total the set list is below:


No, I did not get it, someone else did and I asked if I could take a photo of it. I wish I would have did some video taping, as there was several points in the show, that where worth a listen.  Shirley discussed being given a letter by someone that was there, which talked about bullying, and how they were dealing with it. Shirley related her own story of when she was in school, and how she was bullied, and said “that if you think this person is treating you like shit, then you are probably right”.  Then she dedicated the song “Battle in Me” to the girl that had wrote the letter, that was pretty dang epic, to relate your own bullying story to your audience, as I was bullied in school, but learned how to stand up for myself with the help of my parents, you can’t let others beat you down, you fight back.

Another point in the show, had someone in the back holding up a huge water color painting of Shirley’s face, she kept on pointing at it and saying “that is mental” and asked if the person created it, and they did, and they wanted Shirley to sign it, she gladly brought it up on stage, and took the time to sign the painting, here is a photo of it, and I should have took a photo of her signing it, but you get the picture.


It was an amazing night, and I wish I could have stayed to met her, but wasn’t able to for I had to be somewhere the next morning, bright and early. But overall epic performance, I could have listened to them perform for another hour, they sang pretty much every one of there hits, and several ones from there latest album “Not your kind of People”. Shirley Manson is one of the legends in the music world, she has a distinctive voice that you just know is going to out standing when she sings anything, it was an awesome performance and I’m so thankful I was able to go.

The opening act for Garbage was IO Echo, a band from Los Angeles, they had been walking around for the majority of the day. Reason why I noticed them was because I had seen photos of them online. Another girl fronted band, who wore a smiley face sweatshirt and cut off shorts as her attire on stage, overall, they did good had a lot of dark beats, and electronic based music, with a couple guitars and drums, great performance as well.


The Pageant in St. Louis is one of my favorite venues, I always feel like home there, they are located in the Loop in St. Louis, free parking, no hassle, you get in the bar if you are over 21, and just wait by a door. The majority of the day is spent waiting, and it’s a great place to wait, love the venue.. first time there this year, and probably won’t be the last.

I, however took way to many photos, I think I got around 200 on my cell just from Garbage alone. I’ll compose an album here, of the ones that turned out the best. I do wish I had taken some video, being that close, but the memories of the photos are enough to remind me of what an epic performance it was. Thank you Garbage and Shirley Manson!!


Concert goer, Network Engineer, Midwest dweller.
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