Check out a slideshow of the Sublime with Rome concert here!
The Show: Orange County and the rest of the world was robbed when Sublime singer Bradley Nowell overdosed in 1996 just two months shy of the band's multi-platinum, self-titled release. Fifteen years later, several songs from the major-label debut remain in heavy radio rotation. During the Sublime with Rome set on Friday at the Orange County Fair, I asked myself if the original band members' decision to emerge from the ashes (after enlisting the help of a 22-year-old fan named Rome Ramirez to fill the shoes of the late Nowell) was a good choice. From the opening chords, the answer wasn't immediately apparent.
When Ramirez, along with bassist Eric Wilson, drummer Bud Gaugh and saxophonist Todd Foreman took the stage, they immediately launched into “Date Rape,” one of KROQ's most requested songs of all time. With Foreman's sax and Gaugh's kick drum ferociously accenting the opening salvo, the crowd's rapturous response was Pavlovian.