It was a great year for live music -- too great, in fact, to sum up in one single top 10 list. Thus, here are my 10 runners-up, all of which were heavily considered as I compiled my official top 10 list. That they didn't make the cut just underscores how much good music was offered up in the Bay Area in 2012. I'll organize by date.
1. Martyn Joseph, Feb. 1, Freight and Salvage Coffeehouse, Berkeley. Is there anybody who pours more emotion and feeling into his music?
2. Concrete Blonde, Feb. 24, Bimbo's 365 Club, S.F. Johnette Napolitano is one of the best rock vocalists of all time.
3. Coldplay, April 27, HP Pavilion, San Jose. Just another thrilling night of pop-rock from the genre's reigning kings.
4. Roger Waters, May 11, AT&T Park, S.F. Waters' "The Wall" concert could've easily made my real top 10. Yet this was the third time I'd seen the tour — and it ranked No. 1 on my 2010 top 10 — so I didn't feel it was fair to allow it in the running again.
5. Dandy Warhols, May 16, Fillmore, S.F. More evidence that the Dandys are the most undervalued rock band of the last two decades.
6. Beach Boys, June 1, Greek Theatre, Berkeley. It was great to see the Boys back together again -- but was it really better than one of Brian Wilson's solo shows?
7. Doobie Brothers, Sept. 15, Mountain Winery, Saratoga. San Jose's finest is still one of the better live acts in the business.
8. Justin Bieber, Oct. 6, Oracle Arena, Oakland. Not a misprint. Bieber's fully realized pop spectacle was loads of fun -- and deserves mention here.
9. Patti Smith, Oct. 8, Fillmore. you know it's an outstanding year for live music if a Smith show -- any Smith show -- doesn't crack the top 10.
10. Bob Dylan, Oct. 19, Greek Theatre. After the concert, I honestly considered buying tickets and driving down to see Dylan in Santa Barbara. More, please.
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