From The Desk Of Finn’s Motel: Top Five Coolest Cheap Trick Shows I Ever Saw (3. Jefferson County Fair, Hillsboro, Missouri)

Finn’s Motel mastermind/auteur Joe Thebeau gifted us in late 2006 with the amazing, out-of-nowhere Escape Velocity debut, a concept album about leaving behind the drudgery of cubicle life and suburban malaise for some greater, unknown existence. Even with the help (cough) of a January 2007 MAGNET profile, it took Thebeau nearly 11 years to finally follow it up with the outstanding new Jupiter Rex (Victory Over Gravity). Thebeau will be guest editing all week. Read our new Finn’s Motel feature.

Thebeau: Speaking of state/county fairs … When I was 15, I made my first $100 working at the County Fair, raising tents, picking up trash and tearing down tents at the end. I was almost killed by a carny that summer, when I punctured the water-supply hose to his trailer with my trash picker upper. Thankfully, the crew manager talked him out of beating me to death. But I did have to pay him for the hose.

In 2000, Cheap Trick played at the Jefferson County Fair, in my hometown of Hillsboro, Mo. Being a county fair and all, they did pretty much the expected set list. But, the most memorable moment, for me, was during “Dream Police,” when Rick carnival barked, “They persecute me right here in Hillsboro, Missouriiiiii!”