I took a break from reality for the last ten days … and it was wonderful. I danced and sang along to great live music. I ate and drank and shopped like a trust-fund baby. And tomorrow I rejoin the world of grown-ups. I hope you hear the sad, resigned sigh in that sentence.
Quick rundown of my recent adventures:
Death Cab for Cutie with Ted Leo & The Pharmacists (11.17.06)
The night before I bolted to Baltimore, Dan and I hit the fabulous Fox Theater to see Death Cab for Cutie, with opening act Ted Leo & The Pharmacists (hence the subhead above).
And, yes, Grant Miller, you may call me An Anonymous Hipster.
The show itself was great. Ted and the boys kicked ass on stage. Ted’s just damn cool, and his set was my fave of the night. Death Cab for Cutie were quite good, too. But. It was The Place to Be for the pretty twenties; every time I went to the lobby for a beer or a trip to the powder room (the best in Atlanta, by the way), I felt as it I were stepping onto the set of “The OC”; scads of beautifully clad twentysomethings mingled and ogled, seeing and being seen, forgetting they were there for a concert. Those who went to their seats cheered loudly only during the recognizables riffs. The kids didn’t ruin the show; their being there to be there and not to enjoy the music just took away some of the atmosphere that should have been there (did you count my use of “there” there?).
I Was Charmed by the Charm City
I’m too tired tonight (tryptophan + red wine = tired chick), so the travelogue will come later this week, after I’m back in the swing of reality. But I’ll say this much: Baltimore has the friendliest guys I’ve been around in ages. Everywhere we went, we ran into wonderful people to chat up, to give us great restaurant recommendations, to shoot the breeze as we downed beers. And I got to say “Homicide” (from the opening credits of the greatest show ever) at least fifteen times a day; I love running a joke into the ground … especially when French laughs every time.
Robyn Hitchcock and The Venus 3 (11.20.06)
One of the reasons for our trip to Baltimore was to see Robyn Hitchcock with The Venus 3 — the V3 being the beloved Peter Buck of R.E.M., the adorable Scott McCaughey (Minus 5; Paul Westerberg’s faves Young Fresh Fellows; the second R.E.M. guitarist), and Bill Reiflin (formerly of Ministry, now drummer for R.E.M. and Minus 5). I haven’t seen Robyn Hitchcock since maybe 1992 and Georgia wasn’t on the schedule, so French and I decided to catch the Balm’er show.
And what a show it was. Robyn sounds wonderful, and you can tell he has fun playing with his pals. They played my fave, “Madonna of the Wasps” … but the encore may be my favorite in five years. They started with “Not Dark Yet,” one of my very favorite Dylan tunes. Robyn’s voice is lovelier than Dylan’s, which brought a different feel to the song. The next song still sends shivers down my spine: a cover of The Beatles’ “She Said She Said.” W.O.W. The song is perfect for Robyn’s voice and Peter’s guitar style. I was jumping and squealing and singing and dancing with joy during those three minutes, kids. Robyn told me after the show (yes, read those words again, kids: Robyn told me after the show) that they decided just that afternoon to play “She Said She Said” and learned it that day. Brilliant, magical, sublime. They closed the show, of course, with the Soft Boys’ “I Wanna Destroy You.”
Robyn Hitchcock has been inducted into the Cup Hall of Hair Fame, along with the illustrious, lustrous manes of Emmylou Harris and Oliver Platt. His hair is perfect.French and I hung around after the show, waiting on our personal taxi (French makes friends with all the right people) and just enjoying that post-show high. I made a tactical error during the show. My general rule is I don’t drink during concerts so that I can fully enjoy the music and keep the giggly fangirl at bay. Well … we had a bit to drink at dinner (thanks, in part, to our favorite bartender evah, but that’s a story for another day) … and I sucked down three Bass Ales during the show. Multiple six cocktails with my concert high … and Giggly Fangirl joined the night.
Peter Buck was working the merch table, selling CDs and signing autographs for fans. Well, Fangirl jumped out of her hiding place … grabbed her passport … and asked Mr. Buck to sign in. “But won’t that invalidate your passport?” I told him I didn’t care, that it was the only thing I had for him to sign. I felt like a dork as soon as I did it … but then I get to show y’all:
After that bit o’ embarrassment, we got to talk to Scott McCaughey for a bit. Scott may be the coolest, happiest musician I’ve ever met. You can tell he gets such joy from playing and touring. He always takes the time to chat with his fans. I think he’s replaced Peter Buck as the musician I most want to be friends with.
Before we left Ottobar, Robyn came out and chatted with us for a couple of minutes. Yes, Giggly Fangirl had quite the night.
A Thankful Thanksgiving
Our family’s Thanksgiving holiday was casual and happy, spent at the Lake Burton house.
The entire Coffey clan was there, and it was a wonderful day. Thanksgiving is one of the best holidays, I think, because it’s all about being with family and friends, just enjoying each other’s company and retelling our favorite family tales.
A Blog Brag
I met Gizmorox from My Head Is a Box Filled with Nothing this weekend! She was visiting friends for the holiday, so we met for brunch. She’s a very cool woman … and she’s quite the cutie, guys.
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