Tied for 1st & 2nd place:
1/2. Jane's Addiction at the First Lollapalooza: Great Woods Pavilion, MA, 1991. Jane's was my favorite band, I sat in the 10th row and was hit by the proverbial wall of sound for the first time. Life changing, really. They could have been the only band there that day and it would still have tied for first. Though seeing Gibby shoot a shotgun (Butthole Surfers), a young Trent Reznor toss his guitarist into an amp while pouring a bucket of water on his keyboards (NIN), Ice T screaming hardcore (Body Count), and Cory Glover (Living Colour) marching offstage from getting pelted with sod from the Great Woods lawn was all definitely memorable, I was there for Jane's. Dream came true with Summertime Rolls, Ocean Size, Coming Down the Mountain, Ted Just Admit It, Three Days, Classic Girl, Ain't No Right and of course, Jane Says.
1/2. Radiohead: Merriweather Post Pavilion, MD, 2003. Radiohead took Jane's place as my favorite band after The Bends came out in 1995. It took me another 8 years to finally see them live. It was transporting. I'm still speachless when I try to describe what it was like to see them live. I *will* say one thing -- the documentary Meeting People Is Easy makes it seem like Thom Yorke is depressed all the time. That man was having so much fun up there on stage. If he's a tortured musician in interviews or in his private life, it's easy to see why he plays music. That's where he's happy.