The Cab and The Summer Set

Now I cannot remember the dates of the shows, but I do remember every other detail about the nights so, here it goes.

The Cab and The Summer Set went on tour together about 5 years ago, and still to this days it is one of the most magical shows I have ever been to.  At this point, I had the opportunity to see both bands play live multiple times, and I knew they put on some of the best shows I had ever seen so I was extremely excited to see them perform together.  I was lucky enough to have been afforded the opportunity to spend time with the members of these bands, so I knew the energy would be amazing, and lets be honest, I was hoping to snag some time with these cool kids at the shows as well.  They had 2 shows in Arizona, one in Phoenix, and one in Tucson, and I decided to go to both.

Night One: The Clubhouse Music Venue

I got to the packed venue just in time to squeeze my way to the front of the packed crowd and watch The Summer Set take the stage.  With their usual grace and energy they took the stage by storm and I got chill as the first chord was struck.  Despite being in a hot, over stuffed room, where I should have been sweating my butt off, I was covered in goosebumps so proud of the people before me.  The Summer Set is an Arizona based band, so I have been watching them perform for years, and being able to see just how far they have come will always overwhelm me.  They are some of the nicest people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing, and incredibly talented, and they deserve all of the success they have gotten.  As I sang my heart out these incredible songs I could barely tear my eyes away from the stage to look around this room filled with people singing aloud to songs that meant something special to them too.

I left that show thoroughly wrecked emotionally.  To be able to see 2 bands who mean so much to me both musically and personally share their art to a packed room venue.  It will always be one of the best nights of my life.  During the show I laughed, I cried, and I thought about the person I was and who I wanted to be.  I thought about where I wanted to see my life go and was already making plans in my head.  I went to bed with a heart so full I thought it would burst.

Night Two: The Rock

Still on a high from the night before, I hopped in my car, kept my fingers crossed it would make the 2 hour drive to Tucson, and got ready for another great night of music.  Now, I had already had the night of my life the night before, so I had intended on laying low for this show.  I got to the venue, found a place in the back of the crowd where I would still be able to see the stage, and set in for another night of great music.  Each night the bands flip flopped who closed the show, so The Cab took the stage first, starting off the night with the same energy they always do.  Instead of joining the crowd of people, I spent the night observing.  I watched another crowded room be forever changed by the music being presented to them on stage.  I watched people laugh at the jokes they made on stage, and cry at the songs that pulled at their heart strings.  I’ll be honest, I even got a little teary eyed watching how much emotion was passing from the instruments and microphone on stage and through the crowd.  It was remarkable, really, to just let myself absorb the energy of the room while enjoying the music from a new perspective.

When The Summer Set took the stage I braced myself for what I knew would be an emotional endeavor.  I really sat back for their set and just wanted to absorb the music.  It was the first time in a long time I really let myself feel the music.  I let my heart keep time with the drums and really let the words of the songs engulf me.  The energy of their set was nothing short of incredible.  It was a truly beautiful thing to witness how moved people were by the music.  It was almost as if you could feel each persons reactions to the music.  Feel how much each song meant to everyone.  That alone, in conjunction with the music, was enough to make me shed a tear.  It was overwhelming, really, to have so much emotion brought out at a concert.  It was one of the most cathartic experiences I have experienced.

I drove home from the show in a trance.  It was a beautiful thing to be able to experience the same show twice, and to really let myself get lost in the music.  Both shows had such an incredible energy, filled with such wonderful music, and both really pulled at my heart strings.  To this day I still say one of my best decisions was going to both of those shows.  I got to spend much needed time being surrounded by great music, and more inspiration than most people get in a lifetime.  It’s been 5 years since this tour, and there is not a day that goes by that I don’t think of these nights.  I can still feel the emotion of the shows, I can still feel the goosebumps along my flesh as each band took the stage, still feel the way the music moved not only me, but the crowds of people who filled up both venue.  But most of all I think back to those shows and think about how infinite I felt. On particularly bad days I spend some extra time thinking about these shows, and hold on to that infinite feeling, that inspiration that can only be drawn out by true talent, and remember that every single day dreams come true, as long as you work for them. If you haven’t had a chance to see these bands live, I highly recommend you make it a priority.  Their shows will not only entertain you, but will leave you feeling like everything is possible, like you want to go out, live your life, and chase all of your dreams.

“And all I know is:

No one, no one lives forever

We will be remembered

For what we do right now”

  • The Cab – Living Louder

“When we were young and restless

Dumb and fearless

Fighting in the street

Will you remember me?”

  • The Summer Set – When We Were Young

Fall Out Boy 3/22/16

Fall Out Boy was one of the first bands I really started to follow.  I started listening to them when I was 14 years old and “Take This To Your Grave” was on a constant loop in my CD player.  I’ve seen them live a few times, but this show was particularly memorable.

One of my best friends took me to the show as a surprise for my birthday, and as an added bonus she brought her son to the show, and this was his first concert, so I was excited to be a part of it.

Now, I don’t typically enjoy arena shows, I just feel like they aren’t very intimate and to me that is half the fun of going to a show.  But Fall Out Boy found a way to keep the entire arena engaged and on their feet from the second they walked on stage until the lights came on and security started ushering us out of the arena.  They played a great mix of new songs off of their newest album, “American Beauty/American Psycho” and added in some old classics from “Take This To Your Grave” and everything in between.

The night was filled with so much nostalgia.  I got to see one of my favorite bands play live, to an arena filled with people, and collectively we all sang our hearts out, but the real treat was being able to experience it all with my friends son.  He is like a brother to me, and being able to stand beside him, sing along to the songs that I first discovered when I was his age, and watch his eyes light up at the beginning of each new song.

It’s a great thing, to watch the way music and bands progress.  To hear the songs that meant so much to me for the last 14 years ago, and have them still mean so much, but in a different light.  It was incredible to see a band from Chicago, who’s first show I saw was at a tiny venue and not even remotely close to being sold out, now fill up an arena and play a sold out show.  They have made quite a name for themselves, and are still going strong after all of these years.  I cannot wait to see what new music they have in store for us; but if we’re being honest I am mostly excited to watch them play sold our arenas and be able to share the music with people I love.

Warped Tour 8/4/16

So I am quite behind in my writing this month, but better late than never, right?

I went to Warped Tour for the first time this year.  In my 28 years of living I have always wanted to go, but living in Arizona, and Warped always being in August, well it just never seemed like a pleasant experience.  My best friend and I decided that we had to experience Warped Tour at least once, and preferably before we were 30, and since she turns 30 this year, it was now or never.  I will say, this was the perfect year to go.  Arizona has had a mild summer, all things considered, and it was only 105 degrees and humid, but we had some great cloud coverage from the monsoon rolling in, so not all together terrible.

We got there much later than planned due to traffic and not really knowing the venue very well, we paid a fortune to park about 1.5 miles away, but hey, at least we got a little workout in before all the dancing.

We got there right at the end of the The Maine’s set, which really sucked because that was one of the bands we were really looking forward to seeing.  I’ve seen The Maine more times than I can count, but they are always a delight to see.  Bonus the “Make America Emo Again” campaign is truly one that speaks to my soul.  Seriously, it’s the best campaign I’ve heard all year.

Since we based our day around starting with The Maine [the first artist we planned on seeing] We had about 2 hours to kill before our next show.  We wandered the venue, found some merch tables to spend our money at, and of course people watch.  I’ll be damned if we weren’t among the oldest people in the whole event, but seeing so many people sweating it out and enjoying the multiple stages of great music was definitely a treat.

The next band we went to see, and i’ll be honest, the band I was most excited to see, was The Summer Set.  I’ve seen The Summer Set live more than any other band, and each and every show is better than the last.  I will say their 30 minute set was the highlight of the entire day; I sang my heart out, danced until I thought I would literally drop, and I’ll tell you, I would have stood outside all day listening to them play.

Next up was We The Kings.  Now, I’ve been listening to We The Kings for years, but I have never been afforded the opportunity to see them live. Oh I was in for such a treat.  They played a great mix of new songs and older jams and really got the crowd involved.  When they said “jump” everyone jumped.  When they said “Dance like no one is watching” you better believe everyone danced their hearts out.  It was great to see a band that only gets 30 minutes to play really take control of the crowd so quickly and effectively.  There wasn’t a single sad face in the entire crowd, every single person was having the time of their life.

Mayday Parade.  Oh how I will always love Mayday Parade.  We stood towards the back of the crowd of this one, as the night grew on we realized we aren’t as young as we used to be and pushing our way to the front to be as close to the stage as possible was exhausting.  Again, I have never seen Mayday Parade live before, but I will be the first to buy tickets to their next show in AZ.  I got to hear quite a few songs from “A Lesson In Romantics” and my teenage heart is still swooning.

Yellowcard.  Okay now here is yet another band I haven’t seen live, but have been dying to see since I was 14 years old.  I have never had such an emotional experience seeing a band live as I did with Yellowcard.  I got to hear so many newer songs of theirs that I never got to experience before, but lets flash forward to the last 2 songs of their set: Way Away, and Ocean Avenue.  I got to hear Ocean Avenue live and I can officially die happy.  Yellowcard is on the brink of disbanding, and they are going on their last tour starting this fall:  THIS IS NOT A DRILL!! If you’re a slacker like me and haven’t seen them yet, a fan of music in general, or just want to treat yourself to a great show, go see Yellowcard when they come to a city near you.

The last band we saw was New Found Glory.  Now New Found Glory is an interesting band for me.  They are one of the first rock bands I ever listened to and make up a good part of my youth but they were never a prominent musical influence in my life, but my friend wanted to see them so we stayed.  I am so glad I did.  They owned the stage, had me singing along so loud to every song, and influenced me musically more than I realized.  It was absolutely the best way to end the night.

I am so glad I went to Warped Tour this year.  I have heard so many stories from friends who went and loved it.  So many people who say that going to Warped Tour was one of the best decisions they made, and I can see why.  I spent the entire day with my best friend, surrounded by such talented artists and the music that shaped who I am, the music that makes me feel understood, happy, whole.

 

Panic! At The Disco & Weezer 8/2/16

So this week was a big one for music, and one of the highlights was being able to fulfill my 15 year old hearts dream of seeing Panic! At The Disco live.  When the tour was announced and the tickets went on sale back in Jan/Feb I bought them immediately.  I bought 3 tickets, assuming that 2 of my friends would want to go with me, thank goodness, they did.  I spent months anxiously waiting to see Brendon Urie live and holy crap was it worth the wait.

The night of the show was somewhat of a disaster.  We had a massive monsoon and I spent an enormous amount of time obsessively checking my Facebook, Twitter, and the event website to make sure the show wasn’t canceled, or that the venue hadn’t flooded.  Lucky for me, the show was a rain or shine event and the venue wasn’t under water.  The roads, however, were flooded.

We ordered an Uber, who was “5 minutes away” but took 45 minutes to get to us, and let him deal with the traffic and rainy roads as he drove us to the venue.  We got there just in the nick of time and heard Panic! get on stage, so thank goodness we didn’t miss much.  Now as I previously mentioned the weather was humid, rainy, and pretty intense given we’re in Arizona where it doesn’t rain very often, so I was surprised to see the venue was still absolutely packed.

Now, I have loved Panic! since I was 15 years old, and I have missed seeing them live more times than I care to count, but it was worth the wait.  I was a little nervous that I had such high expectations built up in my head that I would be disappointed, but that definitely was not the case.  Panic! was everything I could have hoped for and more.  I sang at the top of my lungs, standing with 2 of the best people I know, and it was incredible.  Brendon Urie puts on such a fantastic show, he has such a commanding stage presence, if you haven’t had the chance to see Panic! live yet, treat yo self and do it.

Now for Weezer.  Now my friends I went with were mainly there to see Weezer, and while I like Weezer a lot there aren’t a band I would have spent money to see on their own.  I was pleasantly surprised, they were great live.  They had great energy, and they added some incredible props to their set which made the experience that much more memorable.

All in all the chaos of getting to the show was miniscule in comparison to the actual show.  I got to see a band live that I have wanted to see for 13 years, and was pleasantly surprised by another band that has been in and out of my life for many years as well.  The bonus was being able to share that moment with 2 of my favorite people.  Also Brendon Urie was shirtless.  That was a huge bonus.

“Give me envy, Give me malice, Give me your attention” – Time To Dance

The Cab, A Collective

I’ve seen The Cab live more times than I can count, so I decided to put this all into one post.  I first discovered The Cab back in early 2010, at a time when I needed music more than ever.  I had been with my ex for 7 years, and though our on again off again relationship was incredibly toxic, I was still shattered.  One night I was driving around aimlessly, listing to the iPod he gave me on shuffle, searching for solace in a song.  Crying my eyes out, around 3:00 AM, feeling hopeless, broken, and worthless, I heard the opening chords to “Vegas Skies” by The Cab.  Have you ever heard a song and from the opening chords, before even the first lyrics have been sung, and you just know it will be special? That is this song for me.  I drove around from 3:00 AM until the sun came up and my tears finally dried and I listened to that song on repeat the entire time.  Over and over until the lyrics were burning into my brain, and the words started to mend my broken heart.

I’ve seen The Cab live enough times to know how their shows are:  high energy, never quitting, and incredibly intimate all at the same time.  Each time I’ve seen them live it was incredible, and after every show I felt a little piece of my heart mend back into place, even the pieces I didn’t know were still astray.

One of the most memorable shows was one that I got to work.  Back in 2011-12 I got this kick ass gig working at a bar/music venue and my sole job was to work with bands.  Make sure they had everything they needed, and of course making sure they had a great time, and my first night on the job was working with The Cab.  Let me be clear: these guys are some of the greatest human beings I have ever known.  From our very first interaction it was clear they were just here to play music, share their passion with the world, and make people happy.  For this show [like many in my future] I had the option of being at the side of the stage, giving me an unobstructed view, but I couldn’t help but abandon my post and join the crowd.  They were touring to promote their newest album at the time, Symphony Soldier, and being able to hear it live for the first time was life changing.  It was incredible to be surrounded by a room full of strangers, singing songs that in a matter of weeks had already impacted their lives so profoundly.

Post show was just as fun.  The guys all took the time to take pictures and chat with each and every single person that came to their show.  I had seen them do the same a previous shows, and at every show I had been to after that.  It’s incredible, really, to see a band so dedicated to make sure they spent time with the people who supported them.

The Cab may not be together anymore, but those same people live on.  Alex DeLeon, Alex Marshall, and Joey Thunder and all doing incredible things with their talent.  Alex Deleon is working on a solo project, Bohnes, that is so incredible it gives me chills.  Seriously do yourself a favor and go check it out.  Now.  Marshall is also working on a solo project, and just released his first single, Hurricane, and if you haven’t heard it yet, I highly recommend you go listen.  Seriously so much great music from these two.  Joey is sharing his talents in the form of his art, and he is now selling these custom prints.

Maybe I am biased because I have had the pleasure of getting to know these incredible men, but I believe that even though The Cab may not be together anymore, but the world is still going to see a lot of incredible things from these guys.

“If tonight ever makes a difference

The way that I feel

The way that I’ll remember it”

-Vegas Skies, The Cab

 

All Time Low Featuring Issues 5/4/15

Back again with another throwback.  All Time Low is a band that I have listened to since I was in high school but had never seen live, but always wanted to.  I always managed to miss them when they came to town so when I found out they would be in Arizona I got tickets within minutes of them going on sale.  Of course I was super excited to be seeing a band that I had been listening to since I was 14, and then upon looking further into the tour realized that Issues, a band I had recently started listening to, would be opening?  Now that made this all even better.

Issues was fantastic to see live.  They had so much energy, engaged with the crowd so well, and had such an incredible stage presence.  I danced so hard throughout their entire set, singing my heart out, and during the entire set I actually forgot that I was there to see another band originally. Such an incredibly talented group of people, and I cannot wait to see them live again [and again, and again, and again].

Once All Time Low got on stage, it was high energy and scream singing galore.  Not only did they play tracks from their newest album [Future Hearts], but brought back favorite songs from their 8 other albums as well.  I was in a punk rock heaven, and I was just so happy.  What I found amazing, was hearing songs that meant the world to me at 14, and still feeling so attached to them.  I remember first hearing “Weightless” [Nothing Personal, 2009] and feeling like the song was actually written for me.  It so accurately described how I felt in those teenage angst filled high school days, and at 27 years old I still felt the same. Since 2005 All Time Low has been a constant in my life, and finally seeing them live was everything I wanted it to me, and more.

That night my friends and I danced our hearts out, laughed until we cried, and sang so loud we lost our voices for a few days after.  It was perfect, it was everything I could have wanted, and I am glad that I not only got to see an incredible new band live, but I got to see one of the bands that defined my entire high school experience all in one night.

“But I’m stuck in this fucking rut

Waiting on a second hand pick me up

And I’m over, getting older”

  • All Time Low, Weightless, 2009

Jimmy Eat World 10/30/14

So I am going to take this back a few years to one of the best shows I have ever seen.  Jimmy Eat World’s Futures 10 year anniversary tour was quite possibly one of the most magical nights of my life.  When Futures came out 12 years ago, it was the album that was on repeat and in my CD players for months.  I was going through a hard time, full of teenage angst and all, and this album was the only thing that calmed my troubled soul, the only thing that made me feel like I wasn’t completely alone in this world.

The show was at one of my least favorite venues; too small, jam packed with people and no air conditioning.  I didn’t care.  They played the album cover to cover and as I stood there, in the middle of this sardine can of a venue, sweating my ass off, I don’t think I have ever been happier.  It had been 10 years since the album came out, I was older, wiser, and clearly had outgrown my teenage angst, but I felt like the album still touched my soul, but in a different way.

I’ve always felt the happiest during concerts, felt like my soul was a peace, but this concert in particular, I felt whole.  It has been almost 2 years since the show, and I still think back to that night, and remember that feeling.  Being surrounded by friends, scream-singing the lyrics to my favorite songs, I remember feeling infinite.  I know I am not the first, nor am I the last person to feel so euphoric after a concert.  In fact I’d be willing to bet that there were many people in that audience who felt the same way, who look back at that night and still feel their heart healing.  But that show in particular always reminds me that times may be tough, but they get better.

“I got a story it’s almost finished

all I need is someone to tell it to

maybe that’s you”

-The World You Love

On The Road

I, like most people, have a strong connection to music.  I have been lucky enough over the years to attend hundreds of concerts and work in the industry, making me fortunate enough to have met so many of the people who have written the songs that healed my soul.  Some of them I am even lucky enough to call friends.

Over the years I have found so much solace in music, through the music I have discovered more of myself then I ever thought imaginable, felt emotions I didn’t know existed, and created memories so wonderful, sometimes they feel like a dream, which is why I am starting this little blog.

I want to have a space to document my memories, and hopefully share them with others. I may not physically be ‘on the road’ [although being able to write about that experience would be a dream come true], but I can write about my experiences about other band on their detours through Phoenix.

I hope you all enjoy reliving these memories with me, and share some amazing experiences of your own.