Friday, April 30, 2010

Road Trip

Live music is amazing. I'm sure all of you out there in blog land have a favorite artist or band or two and wear their CDs out. And I'm sure that you'll agree with me that a CD just doesn't quite compare to hearing them live and in person.

Last night Patrick and I traveled to Charlottesville to hear Edwin McCain play at the Jefferson Theater. The trip came off without incident (though Patrick missed a turn and we didn't realize it until 23 miles later). The Jefferson is a fully restored theater with state of the art sound systems, ventilation, food and, most importantly, no smoking. We met up with Robert at The Mall and walked our way to the theater, where he roamed around enough to find the acoustical sweet spot (he has an ear for these things).

After the opening act, Edwin came on stage at 9 p.m. and played for right around two solid hours with barely a break in the set. He opened up acoustically, jammed with his full band and then polished off the night with a two song acoustic set that was amazing. We were about twenty feet from the stage and near the middle of the room (though at the rear of the crowd) and he jumped down off the stage and ran over to where we were and finished a song, which was pretty cool.

He didn't play a lot of my personal favorites, but he played some new stuff we hadn't heard and some great stuff in between. He wrapped up the show with a solo performance of 3 a.m., which is one of my favorite songs. He hasn't played it live for about 7 years now and he's just playing it again since it's on his greatest hits album. Getting to hear that live was worth the trip.

Whenever I go to concerts, I go for the music. I even imagine how much fun it would be to be the one up the stage putting on the show (though chances are that's not in my future). But when I look at the people around me, I smile a little and think about my Mom.

See, Mom's the kind of person that enjoys that music but also enjoys watching people have a good time. She likes seeing people dancing and enjoying life. Well, there was one guy there last night she probably rarely would have taken her eyes off of.

This guy was huge. He probably could have been a bouncer if he'd applied for the job. Goatee, shaved head and was so muscular and so big he looked like he could've eaten a weight bench if he'd set his mind to the task. He was right up against the stage, even drumming on it (you can stand right against the stage at The Jefferson). And the dude was dancing his butt off, singing every lyric to every song. I looked closely a few times and never saw a drink in his hand. I don't know if he'd taken a nip or two before the show but he was dancing and shaking his butt for everything he was worth. As much as I enjoyed the concert, I don't think that I came close to enjoying it like he did.

World's full of interesting people, isn't it?

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