I got to the early show at the 9:30 Club last night in perfect timing to hear my favorite Justin Nozuka song, “After Tonight” and one other song that I’ve just spent the last half an hour trying to find but obviously failed. Either way, I heard “After Tonight” and that’s all that matters.
In between acts, I started to second guess my decision to go alone because it seemed like any spot that I stood, I was in someone’s way. I didn’t have anyone else with me to create “our space” so in order to prevent looking completely awkward I got a beer…..standing by myself with a beer, yeah, definitely less awkward. Oh well. I continued to work my way towards the stage and found a spot on the right side. I could tell the couple in front of me was going to be annoying…and they were. At one point she turns to her boyfriend and asks, “but..like..why does he keep..like..changing guitars like that?” Uhhh because he’s Joshua Radin and he can do whatever the heck he wants! Shut up and watch the show.
Anyway, as soon as Joshua Radin came out on stage and started singing I knew I’d be just fine on my own – I started sweating a little bit and I got the chills all over. I had forgotten how much I love live music. Lauren and I used to go to concerts at venues like the 9:30 Club all the time. They are small enough to feel like you’re sitting in someone’s basement but big enough to know you’re hearing something special. He opened with “No Envy No Fear” and even sang the last verse and chorus without the microphone. That was the first time I had ever heard a big deal artist sing without a mic and to tell you the truth, his albums and recorded songs don’t do his talent justice. He was going for it! The whole crowd was silent with the exception of a few “oww owws” from girls in the audience.
By the third song, I could not, would not, should not continue to subject myself to the annoying comments from this girl in front of me. I moved as far to the side of the stage as I could and when a group of gay guys walked up next to me I heard one of them say: “Yeah, this is good, we’ll get to see more side boob this way.” Now that kind of commentary I could deal with. However, the security guard gave me a little smirk. I looked at him sideways, like wtf dude, and he goes, “I was wondering how long you were going to put up with that girl…here, stand over here and you’ll have a direct view of him.” I LOVE YOU MR.SECURITY GUARD (and if Joshua and I weren’t running away together, I’d toats mcgoats go with you!)
It was strange at first because I’m used to the emo/alternative concerts that Lauren and I used to go to or the big stadium Bon Jovi type concerts where everyone is singing and screaming along with the band. However, for a singer/songwriter like Joshua Radin, we all actually wanted to hear him sing. He encouraged us to sing along to “Road to Ride On” and “Nowhere to Go” and umm all I’m saying is, I wanna be a rock star. That’s gotta be so incredible to hear a venue full of people singing your song back to you.
Side note: Joshua wants me.
He talked to us throughout the entire show. It was cool to find out what his inspirations were for each song and who or what they are about. He told us “You Got What I Need” aka “The Making Babies Song” is a song he wrote for his best friends, a couple, who told him they fell in love to his first album and used to boom boom to it. So, when they decided to have a baby, they asked him to write a song to help them out. When he finished playing the song he goes, “BAM, you’re pregnant!” I laughed and thought “yes, I’ll have your babies, Joshie!”
He played a couple cover songs too. Someone in the crowd yelled “BIEBER!” Joshua laughed, sang the words “Babyyy Babbby” and did Justin’s hair flip before playing the songs he actually planned on singing. Ohh Joshua, you kill me. You’re so funny and cute and wonderful….
For his encore he played a Bob Dylan cover, “Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright”….sans microphone. Again, chills. So many artists use all kinds of machines to enhance their voices or make sure to be great dancers in order to distract from their lack of vocal talent but this guy….this guy…he’s got real and pure talent. He writes his songs, he plays the guitar, and his voice is at its best without a microphone.
Make sure I go see more concerts. It was a few hours free from the outside world, from homework, and from man baseball. It’s hard to see someone so passionately involved in what he’s doing and not feel inspired to do something for yourself. I’m really trying to make this sound less “Shoot for the Stars!” or “Be All That You Can Be!” kinda thing but I want to be a rock star. Preferably an actual music rock star, but I’ll shoot for a rock star in anything. Although I do have a wonderful singing voice… “Weiiinnnerrrrr!” was a true display of my talent as an artist 🙂 For now, I guess I’ll go back to my reading assignment for my English class tomorrow….or whatever….