One way to go to a show guilt-free, is to buy concert tickets as a gift. You can't give someone a single ticket to a show, and a person can't accept two tickets without first offering to take the gift-giver. So for Christmas, I gave my brother a pair of tickets to see Pete Yorn. Win-win!
So several weeks after Christmas, my brother finally redeemed his Christmas gift at the 9:30 Club to see Pete Yorn. A duo from New York called The Wellspring opened with a short set that resulted in me going home to buy their EP from iTunes. They made beautiful music together and I'm looking forward to hearing more from them. Following The Wellspring was Ben Kweller. Ben reminds me of Sam from Diff'rent Strokes except he totally rocks. Between the two openers, my brother and I were ready for Pete. I remember buying Yorn's Music For The Morning After when I was in college and listening to it, almost exclusively, for months. I loved that CD so much and yet, I did not stay on top of his subsequent releases. After watching his show, I felt like an absolute butt head for neglecting him for all of these years. How did I wait ten years to see him in concert?
Another way to make the purchase of concert tickets seem less frivolous is to make the show a part of a celebration. Last Saturday, my bff from high school drove into town from Philly to help usher in my 33rd year on this planet. We headed for Annapolis for a Bob Schneider show, oddly scheduled at 1 o'clock in the afternoon. We stopped in a little early to grab "lunch". (Vegetarian nachos + vodka and tonic = lunch, right?) I was pretty pleased to be carded on my thirty-third birthday. I think servers are required to card anyone who looks 30 or younger, but I will take whatever I can get for as long as I can get it.
|Oh sure. We might be under 21.|
I wasn't really sure what to expect with the Bob Schneider show. I had a couple of songs of his that I enjoyed, but I don't think it's possible for a couple of his songs to reflect his eclectic catalog. Well, guess what I have been listening to non-stop since last Saturday? The show was kind of... adult-themed. I'm not sure if he didn't realize right away that it was an all-ages show or if he just didn't care, but Angie and I were laughing hysterically as he talked about anal sex and George Bush. (Sidenote: It's probably not a good idea to bring your kid to see a performer if you're not familiar with their performance antics. After a quick snorkel into the ocean of his career, it's pretty clear to me that his show is not meant for 8 year olds.) After sleeping off the birthday martinis and hysterics, I found myself downloading a few of his albums, pleasantly surprised by some of the lyric's depth and sadness.
|Hello, songwriting, grittier version of Clooney that I'd never bring home to my mother, but that I'd brag about to all of my friends.|
Seriously, boys with brains and guitars. I'm so glad that my husband is okay with how I feel about you.
Okay, I like girls with guitars too, but not like that.
I don't go out on school nights often, but last Thursday, I caught up with Melissa, who I met at an Old 97's show. I did not feel guilty about this show because the ticket was $8 and I was socializing with someone new - something that does not happen often enough. (And she is really cool and bright and I'm very happy to have met her!) We went to a fun, divey place in Hampden called Golden West. This is a great place to go for brunch or lunch, with lots of vegetarian options, but we arrived at 10 PM for drinks and Those Darlin's, some rocking Tennessee chicks who we learned about from their opening gig with the Old 97's. These girls (and one guy) are so. much. fun! Melissa was telling me about the guitars that they were all playing, while I was impressed by the varied crowd that they drew. Thankfully, Melissa and I were not the oldest people in the hipster-heavy scene. This is excellent music to power a cardio workout or to get really drunk and flail around to. Do I have a drinking problem? Moving on...
Last night, Angie and I went to the sparkling new World Cafe Live at The Queen venue in Wilmington, DE to see Ingrid Michaelson. This was neither a gift or a special occasion, which brings me to my final point about guilty ticket buying. Screw that guilt noise!
We started the night at Orilla's right across the street. We shared a few delectable plates and red wine recommended by Meg, our very helpful and friendly waitress. This tapas and wine bar is worthy of the business that the new club will bring.
Wilmington is the perfect spot for my Philadelphia friend and I to meet almost halfway for a night of fun, and we will probably return to World Cafe Live for more shows in the future. (What else are we going to do in Wilmington?) The venue was very easy to find and Angie and I were both delighted by the convenient $3 parking right behind the building.
Ingrid Michaelson is a pure delight. Her self-deprecating but unselfconscious humor make her relatable while she sings beautifully, sweet songs about love. The venue was standing room only, and there was an unfortunate number of people at the bar who were so disrespectfully loud. If a full band with blazing guitars amplified throughout the space were playing, it may not have been noticeable, but when it's just a singer and a guitar, it's so incredibly rude for people to be so loud. If Angie and I meet there again, it will probably only be for loud, crazy rock bands. I'd like to see Ingrid again, maybe at a sit-down venue where people tend to be a little more respectful, and where I am not constantly maneuvering through a sea of taller people. Life is hard down here, you guys.