i am an extremely lucky person in the fact that the musicians that affect me the most and whose music i hold closest to my heart are also very tiny bands. i didn't know this at the time i fell in love with them, but it became clear as i saw more and more bands that no concert is quite like a mount eerie concert. i'm spoiled rotten that i always get to see my favorite band in the most intimate atmosphere, and i always get to talk to the musicians when i hand them personally the money for their hard work.
that said, this past concert was still the most intimate of the mount eerie shows i've attended (this one bringing the total to four). it would have been five if i could have gotten my lazy ass out of bed on saturday and headed up to boston sooner. i apologize to Claudia, who probably would have enjoyed their electric guitar show even more, but we were only able to make the midnight acoustic show. for me that was perfect though.
first was thanksgiving/adrian orange. i'd seen him last time i saw mount eerie, but that was an electric show, with drums even, and was a very different experience. he's very funny though, and even when he's a little too tired (they'd all left seattle at 4am that day, after all) he manages to be entertaining. last time i saw him he had a really bad cold. maybe one day i'll see him in peak shape, hehe. he didn't want to replay any songs from the last show, since most of the people in the audience had been to there, so his set was pretty short. again, kicked myself for not going earlier, because adrian really rocks out hard core on electric guitar. still, the songs i didn't recognize turned out to be from the newest record, "cave days and moments" and they were really good.
then it was jason anderson. now, in all honesty, having heard his music before and not having seen him live, i wouldn't say i was a big fan. but he came out starting with a song that was about how he wasn't on speed, but everyone thought he was. claudia said ecstacy more like. no matter what he was or wasn't on, he was really excited and happy to be there, and he just wanted to beam out his energy and share it. and i can never really hold THAT against anyone, can i? he never sat down for his set, which was very long and involved a large amount of singalong (which it always amazes me that people aren't used to doing at concerts), but instead ran around the audience with the guitar (definate article -- it was the only guitar, they all used it). he jumped up on chairs, ran up the the balcony, jumped off the stage, and naturally, broke a guitar string. with sing alongs like "the best thing in the world is when you love someone and they love you back", of course it was a sappy sweet show. but i can appreciate genuine sappy sweetness. i note speed levitch for doing the same sort of thing, only he doesn't have a guitar. claudia said it was like and indie-kid self-help, and in a way it was, because i know that he was out to make everyone feel as good as he was feeling. and that's something to at least be grateful for, even if it isn't your cup of tea. so, to my own surprise, i really enjoyed jason anderson's set.
after all this running around, and changing a guitar string, it was mount eerie. phil said he couldn't top something like jason's show, and in pure volume of energy, he was right. so he sat on the stage, and after singing a few songs-in-progress from his notebook and joking about the stickiness of the guitar, asked all the lights be turned out. when asked how dark he wanted it, the answer was pitch. and of course, there is nothing like phil on acoustic guitar in the dark. that was basically how i saw him the first time too. he sang "i, whale" which was one of the pieces i was hoping for, and slow sing alongs like "what do you love?" which is one of my favorites. as usual, when he said he only had time for a few more songs, everyone called out what they wanted to hear. there were lots of different answers, and i called out myself for "human". after the requests were processed by phil, we ended with "the pull", which i was amazed at hearing, since it's actually far back enough to be a microphones track, "two blond braids" which got a lot of request for some reason, and the last song was "human"! i was very excited my request was the final song. that's the second time he's played my request (last time, me and another person called out for wooly mammoth and got it). how often does someone get lucky enough that their favortie band plays the songs they want to hear when they shout them out? again, me with the being spoiled.
finally, it was the trek to the exit, with a stop at the merch table. small band merch tables are the best, because it's the band selling you their records, and you get to give the money right to them. best kind of capitalism ever. when claudia and i got there, for some reason, adrian gave us this peace sign, and i did it back, and i said to him and jason anderson how much i appreciated their show, and that i think i had all of adrian's albums, but not jason's, so i wanted to buy one. jason was all "no no no, it's not as good as the show!!" and i told him too bad, i was going to buy it anyway. it turned out i didn't know "cave days and moments" was out because phil's site hadn't said anything about it. so i bought that too. then we got up to phil, and claudia had a lot of albums to choose from, so we were there for a little while, and i kept talking with adrian and then to phil for a bit, as claudia was sad there wasn't an album with "woolly mammoth's absence" on it, etc. i then said to phil, "oh, i just want to let you know, i have a copy of egil's saga, and i really really enjoy it." being that there aren't very many copies of egil's saga, his expression really changed. he said "thank you. what's your name?" i told him and he replied "oh yeah, i send you stuff all the time!" and shook my hand. how often does a girl have her favorite musician ask her name and have him in some sense recognize who you are? it was really awesome for me. claudia picked her cds, and we realized we'd lost patrick, and so thanked them all again and then went to leave, to find that the door we had planned on exiting through was closed, and they directed us round to the front of stage exit. on the way, i saw the broken guitar string from earlier, and i picked it up and took it home, as my own private momento of the show.
the other thing that makes me so lucky and feel so special is that whenever i go to a mount eerie concert, i return with a renewed sense of happiness and self-understanding. everything i hear at those concerts, somehow, seems meant just for me. and i take it to heart and use it in my life until i go to the next show. so really, how lucky am i? the luckiest.