Sunday, June 26, 2016

The Year of The Concert

So far, 2016 has been a year filled with things I never imagined. I've spoken enough about the awful ones. Right now, I'd like to speak about the good things that took place.

In January, I got tickets for my brother and I to see Pearl Jam in our hometown (well, for these purposes anyway, I'd call Greenville a hometown...... like a band of that level would ever come to La Libertad). They did not disappoint, not in the least. The two of us, and upwards of 18,000 others, were part of history as they played their sophomore album Vs. in its entirety for the first time ever. When they played "Given To Fly" I was in heaven, beaming while thinking of Mom. And closing with "Yellow Ledbetter"? Over the moon!

Then in May, I got to see a band I've loved for nearly 25 years! I've been a fan of The Mavericks since their What A Crying Shame in 1992. They did not disappoint either, but man the crowd did. It was a beautiful Friday night, there by the river, but you'd have sworn they were playing in a cemetery. I actually felt horrible for the band -- they were giving everything they had and not getting as much back. They played slightly under two hours and honestly, I wouldn't have blamed them if they had cut it even shorter. I was a bit surprised that the demographic was way older than I expected. I mean, at 46, I should have been toward the low end of average, not the low end altogether. Lots of 60+ folks. Hey, I'm glad they like the band but c'mon act like it.

Then just last weekend, I got another experience I never thought I'd get: ticket to Chris Cornell in Charleston. It's an odd story but I bought the ticket the Monday after Mom passed, while sitting in the mortuary lobby. Hey, priorities. So I got a REALLY great seat -- I thought it was fifth row, then second but it ended up as fifth. It didn't matter. It was an absolutely phenomenal show. He had an opening act from a blues/roots artist, Fantastic Negrito. And you need to check him out. Seriously. He's that good. Then out came the main act and I was mesmerized. If you have a chance to see Chris Cornell live, DO NOT miss out on the chance. It was two and a half hours (maybe 2:45?  It was 26 songs) that could have stretched into four as far as I was concerned. Did he play every song I would have wanted to hear? No, but then again some of the ones I love don't lend themselves to an acoustic treatment. The ones he did were outstanding, including a few I wasn't expecting to hear......... if you have a chance to catch one of the remaining shows over this tour, then GO!!!!! Seriously.

I have two more to see that are planned: Rick Springfield in August in Charlotte and The Avett Brothers in Greenville in October. There may be another show, if Ticketmaster lets me cash in a voucher from the class-action settlement. Most of the ones on the list, I really didn't care to see.

It's been a good year for music. Music continues to be my sanity saver, my life raft in these changing seas........

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