So there’s this band…
I first heard about it from my friend who tends bar at a nearby brewery. “They play stuff from the 90s,” and he started listing several bands, making my jaw drop lower with each one.
“You’ve got to book them!” I told him.
A couple months later, he did. I told all my friends.
Then, for whatever reason, the band canceled.
Then they rescheduled. I told all my friends.
The band came! And I had one of the best nights of my life. I remember repeatedly saying, “I am so happy right now.” Plus, I did this: (It’s a slide show, so go quickly and you can almost see me playing! 😉 )
Do I know how to play the drums? No.
Did I have permission to climb on stage during a break and play the drums? No.
Did the drummer turn around and say, “Hey, what do you think you’re doing?” Yes. But after the first two words his face went from irritation/borderline anger to a broad smile. I was clearly having fun, for one thing, and I was the one who gave him food, for another. (That would be a separate blog post.)
Then, after applying some subtle pressure, the band got booked for a second time. I told all my friends.
The band got canceled.
The band was booked for a third time to play this past Saturday! I told all my friends.
Then Thursday morning I got a message from the bartender:
“I’m sorry to have to tell you this, but the band isn’t playing Saturday night after all. There was a miscommunication and we double booked.”
Picture me hanging my head.
Then he says, “The band that will be playing instead is a Pearl Jam cover band.”
Now picture me laughing my head off.
Pearl Jam is the band of my youth, my first musical love since age 12 when my big brother handed me their first album and said, “Check this out.” I was instantly hooked.
I told the bartender all was forgiven. I’d be there.
I had told my mom and sister that the band was returning, so I updated them with the news that instead the performance would be by a cover band for “a particular Seattle 90s grunge band.”
My sister responded, “Nice,” then launched into a series of puns involving PJ song titles. (I love her.)
My mom said, “Is it a country band?”
She could hear me rolling my eyes from across the country.
“Ok. Ok. EV’s band?” EV, as in, Eddie Vedder, Pearl Jam’s singer. Mom’s way cooler than she lets on. Living in Cleveland, my parents sometimes take out-of-town guests to the Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame. After one trip, she mailed this to me:
The band last night was amazing. On the way there, my husband speeding because, in his words, “My job is to get you there as fast as I can,” I wondered if they might play my two favorite songs. I decided that would be unlikely, as these two songs are rather obscure: found on the soundtrack of the 90s movie, Singles.
But at one point, the singer said, “I recently rewatched the movie Singles…” and I started punching my husband’s arm.
They played my number two favorite song. “I’ll take what I can get,” I said to myself.
Then in the second half of the show, the singer said, “I think I’ll go back to Singles,” at which point I shook Hubby’s arm violently because I knew I was about to hear my favorite song performed live. It was spectacular. The guy was no EV, but on the whole, they were very good. They even played my third favorite song while I waited in line for the bathroom. At that point, my bartender friend caught my eye, pointed toward the stage with a questioning “Okay?” hand sign.
I gave him a nod and a thumbs up.
Earlier, when Hubby ordered a flight of beer, Bartender gave us an extra. Nothing was said about it, but I suspect it was in reparation for our (mainly my) pain and suffering for the emotional whiplash.
The crowd comprised people from their 20s-60s. Some rougher-looking types, a guy in a business suit, and a woman Hubby described as belonging in a country club. A woman with gray hair was actually head banging at one point. An older couple was swing dancing during one song. At other times, the crowd on the floor was so discordant that you’d think they were all at different shows, listening to different songs with different beats. If I weren’t entertained enough by the music, watching the crowd was plenty of fun. But we all had one thing in common, so nothing else mattered.
There wasn’t a single song I didn’t know and love. Even Hubby was singing along to a few. It took me ten years to turn him into a fan, during which time I watched his slow progression from subtle toe tapping, to humming along, to singing along, when I knew I’d finally converted him.
The bartender and I saluted each other on the way out.
That night was a job well done.
But I’m still looking forward to the other band returning. 😛
Would you have enjoyed this night? What band, or cover band, would you most like to see perform live?