Thursday, May 3, 2007

Reflections on an era...

I found out some sad news a week ago. One of my beloved rock venues in Columbus, Little Brothers, will be closing up shop this summer. (Thanks to a post on the blog donewaiting .)

See, this is what I mean about not liking it when the world changes.... "End of era" could be used to describe the closing-- and, in fact, I HAVE used the phrase to describe the news. However, I've realized in the past few days that by describing it as such, I am: 1) giving meaning to the very existence of the "era", and 2) implying that I was part of (or "took part in") said "era" and 3) calling notice to the end of that "era" in my own life and the lives of the people with whom I shared those experiences. Basically, I'm admitting that we're all getting old. BAH.

Dan Dougan's getting old. That's why he's gracefully bowing out when the "getting got goodgray-hair." All kidding aside.....the rock business is hard. (That's why I never really pursued my dreams of opening my own club in Louisville. Some say I've "good foresight," others may say I've "no guts.") Point is....clubs come and go. I know that, and I also know that my sentimentality should subside soon. But until then, I'll reminisce on some of those shows, and resign myself to the 3 realizations listed above.

I don't even remember what my first show there WAS, so I won't begin there. (It was probably TransAm, or some other Thrill Jockey/Touch&Go/etc. band....who knows.) I guess I'll begin instead with a show I'll never forget: RL Burnside & T. Model Ford back in 1997. I went with Chad, Ben, and Nick, I think, and we got there when the doors opened. (You could actually do that in Columbus and NOT be considered socially awkward....I think it stems from Ohioans belief that it just gives you more time to DRINK.) We ended up talking with T. Model Ford for awhile. He had just past his 75th (?) b-day and was on crutches due to a recent hip-replacement. We were really there to see RL, but T Model Ford stole the show that night. The two traded sets for HOURS. I think we stayed until AFTER 2am because those old guys knew how to jam, and didn't know how to quit. Amazing.

Another amazing show was Freakwater that same spring. The crowd was sparse, and mostly seated at tables which was odd for Little Bros. I doubt I've ever been to a smokier show, but it fit the mood perfectly. Freakwater is a fave of mine, due to the hometown connection and all. Catherine and Janet's melodies put a smile on my face and an ache in my heart simultaneously. And for me that's when music really says something. To me, they're my "old drunk friend" and I do hope to see them again.

Kentucky House

Come on back to Kentucky
Come on back where you belong
Come on home my little darlin'
You know you never should have gone

You went up to the city
And you came home all dressed in black
With that big wide-eyed monkey
Tattooed all across your back

You were burning with a vision
Burning like a shooting star
The only time when I get driven
Is when I'm driving in my car

Come on back to Kentucky
Come on back where you belong
Come on home my little darlin'
You know you never should have gone

Come on home little darling
Everything's gonna be just fine
We got ice, we got a front porch
And all the girls all got big dreams like mine

Other great shows (on which I can expound later...):
- Built to Spill (saw twice....Oct. 1998 w/ Apples in Stereo & 764-HERO, May 1999 w/ ??? The Oct. show was pretty good, but the May show was AWESOME.)
- Archers of Loaf (My only time seeing them live....I thought it was a great show, but my friends weren't as impressed)
- Guided by Voices (how many times? not sure....always great)
- The Makers
- Man or Astroman CLONE BAND (one of the funniest shows i've EVER been to)
- Numerous Columbus bands....Bigfoot, Tiara, Jive Turkeys, and too many others to remember and/or name

Other great things about LB:
- Getting stamped "Over 21" before I was (thanks unscrupulous bouncers!), and paying the lower cover (I'm not endorsing underage drinking, by any means....and to their credit I was 20 1/2)
- The relatively clean bathrooms for a bar
- The relatively cheap drinks (compared to GA)
- The pool table area where you could actually have a conversation
- All the memories of my friends, crushes, heartaches, heartbreaks, good times and great music

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

In the beginning...

Well, I'm going to attempt this whole blog thing because 1) it's what the cool kids are doing, and don't i want to cling onto any "cool kid" status i possibly can? and, 2) i have lots to say, and 3) Tyler is always telling me to "Write that down!" I can't tell if he thinks what I have to say really IS profound and should be shared, OR he's just tired of being the soundingboard for all of my rants, raves, deep thoughts, funny jokes, etc. Time for someone else to listen.

I went back and dug up some of my old notebooks (I really hesitate to call them journals or diaries, because they're too much like scrapbooks. And "diary" sounds too juvenile or girlie) to re-read and to get the hang of things again. (That should be an interesting read. Perhaps, I should finish this beer & grab another....) Who knows what I'll unearth in those things. Ah, to be 23 again...... No, thank you.

Probably the real reason for this whole introspective excursion (and who knows how long it may last) is that I'm turning 30 this year. I've been looking forward to 30 for the past 8 years until THIS year. I know it's not a big deal, but there's some sort of shift in perspective that's clouding my brain right now. I hesitate to call it a "fog" or a "dark cloud" because I'm really not dreading getting older. Both of those images conjure up some sense of "impending doom." I really don't feel that at all. (Seriously.) What bothers me, rather, is the world that keeps changing. I'm so damn nostalgic lately, and I don't know why. I keep thinking back to "the good ol days" & that's bothering me. Because the "good ol days" are a LONG time ago. I've had lots of "good ol days" since then, and I'll have many many more to come. I've always been one to look forward to "later," but lately I keep looking back.

I think I'll try to get out a lot of these memories on this blog, in the hopes that -- someday (soon) -- I'll "remember" that the good part's next.