In my wonderful big haired and tight jeans youth I think there was one phrase I would have (almost) given my right arm to say, “Yes...I am with the band.”
Now in my wonderful, comfortable fitting clothing and sensible shoes, middle aged youth I can finally say, “Yes...I am with the band!”
Alright...it’s a cover band. But I am with them! I am finally with the band!
My man and I spent this past Saturday night with friends...who were friends with a guitar player in a Doobie Brother’s cover band. They introduced us...so now it was official, I was with the band. They were called “Long Train Running.” I was never a huge fan of the original Doobies. I mean I liked some of their songs but I would never have spent a hard earned $20 to go and see them. No...I saved those hard earned dollars for the likes of Journey, Def Leppard and Cheap Trick. In a good year, I could see all of my favs for under $100. Where have those days gone?
We were certainly up for a night out with friends, listening to some familiar tunes and remembering the days of sticky hairspray, halter tops and wine coolers in a bottle. It was fun. Really fun. It had to do with nostalgia of course. It had to do with knowing the words to every song. It had to do with cutting loose with people our age who were also cutting loose. We were all good friends that night.
The place they played in was a bar with a small stage, a few small tables and a pretty good sized dance floor. There was more room to dance than sit and the the place was full. They started early, at 7:00, and were finished by 9:30. Hmmm...were they trying to tell us something? You bet they were. They were telling us that we were clearing out before 10 so that all of the youngsters could come in and go til 2AM. What? Were we not up for that? I’d like to think we could have been...but it was sure great to be basking in the afterglow of good songs, loud guitars and the obligatory drum solo, all while putting on my jammies at 11:00.
We have two friends in another band. I don’t know if they would want to be considered a cover band...but they play all classic rock and they call themselves Fossil. That kind of says it all… They also play in small venues where the music is loud and the faithful groupies sing louder. They play about a dozen gigs a year and we try and go to them all. In all things being relative, I am sure they get the same rush with a screaming crowd of 100, as the big bands n get in their venues of screaming thousands.
I have always loved music and concerts. And many of my old favorites that are still touring. Some bands hire new singers who can hit the high notes and if I close my eyes I would never know the difference. I am seventeen years old again wearing overalls and a tube top. But here’s the problem; I don't feel like paying $100 to go and see them anymore. For me and my guy that would be $200! And if we wanted to eat and drink it could be a $300 evening.
I never thought I would say it...but I get just as much satisfaction in paying a ten dollar cover and buying a couple of glasses of wine and thinking about the good old days in the midst of a good cover band. And by the looks of the crowd on Saturday night, they feel the same way. Sure, we miss the good old days when we use to get up in the wee hours of the morning and drive to the big stadium where we would wait in line for hours. We thought we were so cool drinking at 7:am with thousands of other kids; many of them sick before the gates even opened. It was worth it to see multiple bands for less than it would cost for half a tank of gas these days. Gosh, I am sounding old, but I have other priorities.
My son is turning 18 in a couple of months. He has got the concert and music bug like his mother and he asked me for concert tickets for his birthday. I am laughing as I write this. The band is called, “Bring Me The Horizon.” He has played me some of their music, and yes, like my mother and her mother, and all of the mothers in years past; we just don’t get our kids music.
Because it is a special birthday...I splurged and bought him two tickets for $120. This band is just getting popular so according to him that is, “a steal!” If this band gets any bigger I am going to be in trouble. Though I do not believe for one second this band or many of the singers and bands popular today will be around in five years let alone thirty. I do not believe there will be too many cover bands dedicating much stage time to Bring Me The Horizon in the year 2044. I don’t think any lounge acts with be crooning the classics of Miley Cyrus.
I could be be wrong. I hope I am wrong. I hope my kids have somewhere to go when they are my age. A place where some really good musicians have taken the time to learn and master the songs of their youth. I hope they have a place to cut loose, sing at the top of their lungs and for a few hours be kids again with no worries or responsibilities. God willing, when I am eighty, I am still going to be listening to the music.
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