The Replacements: Lincoln, NE, 1986


I have been storing a box of negatives and contact sheets from my college days for, oh, about 30 years now. Some of the images were printed for classes and shows and critiques, but a lot of them never saw the light of the enlarger. In the first folder I grabbed to scan, I found some typical goofy shots that an art major would take, and I also came across a roll from a Replacements show.

I was a student at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln helping with whatever student group put on and promoted shows. So we helped with the load in, food and whatever tasks and errands came up. I even drove Tommy Stinson around Lincoln trying to find a replacement fuse for his bass amp. So my gopher status explains my backstage POV. I remember the show, and vaguely remember shooting photos, but I’ve never printed any of these, they were kindof blurry and underexposed, and I never even made a contact sheet. Kinda glad I didn’t, because this was a fun find. Please ask before posting or using these anywhere else.

Some shots of the opening band, The Cucumbers



11 responses to “The Replacements: Lincoln, NE, 1986”

  1. Brian says:

    Awesome! These really capture an era in time. Do you have some Super 8 or VHS too 🙂 ?

  2. Amazing photos Brian you’re a lucky MFA to get that close to such a legendary lineup never saw them till 91 maybe I was too young or too stupid to realize enough to catch this classic lineup but I thank you for these photos man awesome job thanks for sharing…TW-

  3. CHIP DUDEN says:

    Fantastic. Every time I see photos from this era I kick my own ass for not taking pics during my college years when I was an avid photographer in high school. Epic stuff. I was at this show and have strained a few times to see if I can find myself but no dice.

    • brian says:

      I’ve been refining my technique for digitizing these, I think I could re-do these and get some sharper images. There are quite a few more too. When I get around to redoing them, I’ll let you know and send you some. It’s funny how many people I’ve heard from who were at this show.

      • Henry Battistoni says:

        Hope you can clean them up.
        Would love to see myself in a pic.
        Don’t recall making it to the stage though. So probably no luck there.
        Did you see Violent Femmes as well?
        Seems like it was the same year.

        • brian says:

          I did see that Violent Femmes show and helped out with it too. Didn’t take any pictures though. My brush with fame was when I walked on the stage like a dork and asked the drummer if I could do anything to help. In the nicest way possible, he said “Yes, move out of the way.”

      • Tim Z. says:

        Hey Brian, try this set of applications by Topaz labs I found recently (I’ve been a graphic designer for 25 years, and am always editing photos etc.) There’s one called AI Sharpen that does an amazing job sharpening old photos. Much better than any of the built-in tools in Photoshop, in my opinion.

  4. Jim Williamson says:

    I was standing right in front and can see myself in a number of photos. I recall a guy near me was trying to talk Paul into selling his guitar. At the end of the show Paul gave away his extra cups of beer — I snagged one. (You can see them set up on the stage…thanks, Paul!)

    • John Freeman says:

      Awesome!! I was there too, and can also see myself and my good friend Lee in some of the shots. Was a great show!! Still can’t believe I got to see them live (2x)

    • John Freeman says:

      I was also at this show, in the 2nd row! Was my 1st time seeing The ‘Mats (saw them a year later @ Peony Park in Omaha). Feel very fortunate to have seen them live. Thanks for posting these photos Brian!

  5. Jeff T says:

    Wow! Awesome photos. Would love to see more if you ever add them.

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