Posts Tagged ‘Concerts’

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Show #5: Fleck, Hussain and Meyer

November 3, 2010

This was supposed to be a concert of 2009, but somehow it ended up rescheduled for May 25th. Mom had bought tickets ages ago, and I’m so glad I put the new date on the calendar because we would have completely forgotten.

This was a concert of three people at the top of their arts: Edgar Meyer and his double bass, Bela Fleck and his banjo, and Zakir Hussain and his tablas. I don’t know that I would have dreamed of putting the three together, but it flowed beautifully.

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Show #4: Frightened Rabbit

November 3, 2010

Way back on May 18th, I went to see Frightened Rabbit’s “acoustic” show at the Rickshaw Stop with Jenn (surprise!). This was my first taste of what would eventually become my cranky old woman-ness, so between that and the death of my hard drive (which lost my photos, which were great for this show, sob), I wasn’t chomping at the bit to write this up.

But the band was great! I’d love to see them again. OH WAIT, I was supposed to see them in October in Vancouver but got a sore throat instead. Stupid throats.

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Cranky Old Person

October 22, 2010

My goal in chronicling all of the concerts I go to is twofold: one, to make you jealous, and two, so I can actually remember who I’ve seen, and when and where. I’m massively behind, like six months behind, but there’s a reason. Some of these shows aren’t great memories. I should add that every band was fantastic, but I find that all I want to write about is the audiences.

And there is the problem. That shouldn’t be the focus. I don’t want to just sit around and complain about other people; it serves no purpose and makes me angry. It makes me feel two steps away from a “get off my lawn” moment. However, this last week, I realized that I was closer to yelling at youngins than I thought. The reason I’m around all these rude, noisy people is because I’ve been hanging out in the back of audiences lately. For the last twenty years, I’ve always arrived early and secured a good position, usually about five to ten people back, and under an air vent, if possible. The people up there are there to hear music, and to interact with the band, and hopefully not there to drink, or stand around and talk to their friends. The down side is that you’re crammed in there.  Lately I’ve felt like having my own space, and therefore I’m near the back, where the less committed can be found. So it’s my own fault!

But see! Now that I know, I’m going to start elbowing myself up to the front again, so I can lose myself in the music and the energy of the true fans. And if anyone complains, I’ll tell them to get off my law and let the old lady up front.

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8th Concert of 2008: Santogold!

October 17, 2008

I received an email a while back from my boyfriend. The text was as follows:

Babe I know you’re sensitive and you don’t like the 80’s so I’m taking a big gamble here; I’m just saying if Santogold knocks on my door and asks if I want to go on a date with her, I’m considering it.

Two months later and we’re rocking together at her show. She did NOT, in fact, steal my boyfriend (whew).

I was taken aback a little when I saw that there were four bands in the lineup.  It was a school night, after all. But get this: I enjoyed all four acts. What?

First up was Low vs. Diamond. A good, tight pop rock act. Halfway through their set, I found myself mindlessly singing along to a song, and realized that they’ve had pretty heavy rotation on Live 105.  With a swift change of tone, Alice Smith came on next. It was just her and a guitarist. She came out, shyly grinning and pulling off her glasses right before approaching the mike. So when her heavy, beautiful voice came belting out, I was actually taken aback. I’m definitely interested in hearing what she can do with an entire band. I had, for some reason, gotten this idea in my head that I didn’t like the Mates of State, even though I had never heard them. Trevor thought I was insane, and that they were right up my alley. He was right. I liked them enough that I am actually considering buying their album (which is something, in these tight times).

And Santogold. She was everything I was hoping and more. Now, being a pop rocker, it was very strange to see roadies take EVERYTHING off the stage at the Fillmore. While we waited, the air grew thick with smoke, with only about 30% of it coming from the smoke machine on stage. Once the music started, you couldn’t help but move. I love being in audiences that dance, it keeps me full of energy and improves my experience. And her backup dancers are so impressive live. They have almost not interaction with anything else happening on stage, and they’re tight and well rehearsed. All in all, a fantastic show.

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7th Concert of 2008: Flogging Molly!

August 4, 2008

I almost forgot to write this one up!

On July 17th, Flogging Molly and Ludo played for FREE in San Jose’s Plaza de Cesar Chavez. San Jose has a great program where every Thursday afternoon after work, there is free music. Usually different radio stations get one day, and play music representative of their genre (this one was hosted by south bay alternative station Channel104.9). I have very fond memories of hearing music in the park, as we used to go fairly regularly when I was younger. It was a nice way to while away an afternoon with my mother and younger sister. The music was usually good, the weather was always great, and it was free and safe, so my sister could go run around in the fountain without much worry. I’m glad it’s a tradition they’ve kept over the years, even though I haven’t been able to make it for ages.

So Jeremy and I tootled on down to my old stomping ground. When we arrived, Ludo had already started, and though I did want to see them (as I am currently listening to this song at least once a day), my desire to not pass out from hunger won out and we grabbed some pizza (forgetting that there is actually food at the park, though more pricey). When we got the park, it was easily the most crowded I had ever seen it. There was a great mix of people: bored college students who wandered over from state, fan boys dressed like hot Irishmen (yum), and families with all ages of children. My kind of crowd.

Flogging Molly were, as expected, excellent. I first saw them by accident about ten years ago (!), when I was still dating the sax player from the sadly disbanded Ibopa. I was helping Ibopa gather a crowd for their show during the SOFA festival (which used to be great), and headed into the club early just to check it out. Flogging Molly were playing, and even though I was supposed to be outside handing out flyers and flirting with boys, I stayed through the whole set.

Even ten years later, they’re still brimming with energy. And they’ve always sounded amazingly tight musically. I can’t help but move when I’m listening to them (even in my car). It was great to be around thousands of people who felt the same way. I left before the encores, as I had to catch the train back to my car, which I missed, which allowed me to hang out in the Dirdion Station in San Jose for an hour. If you’re going to be stuck in a bus/train station for an hour, that’s a good one, as there are benches and it has that kind of nostalgic charm, like train stations in movies. It’s also near nothing except HP Pavillion and is boring as hell.

If you’re in San Jose on Thursdays, check it out: http://www.sjdowntown.com/Music_in_the_Park.html
(I just looked again and OH CRAP THEY ADDED THE ENGLISH BEAT THE SEPT 4TH SHOW. )

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6th Concert of 2008: Tidal Wave, Day 2

July 29, 2008

So I probably don’t strike you as someone who would sit in the sun all day and have her ears assaulted by heavy guitars and blast beat drums. And you’re right. Not exactly my usual haunt. But I’m always open to new adventures, especially when they’re free.

The boy, on the other hand, is very into metal. So I decided, after hearing about it for two years, to get down to McLaren on July 6th and hear the following bands (for free!):

Embryonic Devourment
Agenda of Swine
Fog of War
Saros
Ludicra

Man, metal band names make me giggle.

It was a nice day. The weather was perfect, there was food and beer and good company (my favorite boy, Brandi and her wonderful kidlet, Brandi’s gruff-looking but totally nice friends, and Nomi and Joseph swung by as well).  I won’t write too much about the bands themselves, but I am a self-professed idiot when it comes to this musical genre. Let’s just say that, to my ears, the bands improved as the day wore on, though I think I liked Fog of War the best. Which I think means I’m into thrash? I have no idea.

All I’m saying is I’m not opposed to showing up again next year. Did I mention it was free?

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5th Concert of 2008 – Stevie Wonder!

July 9, 2008

Mace and Trevor at Stevie, originally uploaded by mizsarah.

As my (early) birthday gift, Trevor took me to see Stevie Wonder at Shoreline on Saturday, July 5th. Sarah and Gabe joined us as well.

I keep saying I’m never returning to Shoreline, but I keep getting pulled back. After the Bjork disappointment*, I swore my rear would never touch the grass. But the four pack of tickets was such a good deal, and it was STEVIE WONDER. How could we not go?

The set was fantastic. Sure, there were a lot of unfamiliar songs, but there were also plenty of sing-a-longs. He ripped through a bunch of hits right near the end, including my favorite of his songs, “For Once In My Life.”** The band was tight, and Stevie just radiates joy when he sings.

And oh, the food. Both couples brought a ton of food for a picnic on the grass before the show. There was cheese, pate, bread, olives, shrimp, broccoli salad, pickles, and more and more. And cookies and cherries and truffles for dessert. I rolled out of that place. I adore eating with Sarah. She knows food and loves to share. Fantastique!

It was an excellent night. I was the people I was always jealous of, for once in my life.

* Which was disappointing because I could not at all see the stage, not because it wasn’t a good show.
** I’ll admit it; I cried a little. I was there with my boyfriend, listening to a song that always makes me think of him, and OH GOD WHEN DID I BECOME THIS CREAMPUFF? I am infected; please shoot me in the head.