Tag: concerts

Gonzo’s Nose

Yesterday, after work, Kelly and I headed over to Pentagon Row (right behind the office) to see the 80s cover band Gonzo’s Nose. The band didn’t start until 7 PM, so we first went to Sine, where we sat outside and had a light dinner as the crowd gathered. Then we made our way across the concourse to Lebanese Taverna and met up with a bunch of other friends, including Carmen and John. We sat outside once again and were very close to the stage, perfect seats for the concert.

It was a lot of fun. The band started off with some 90s songs, but eventually played a bunch of 80s songs, and took requests, too. We sat there for the whole concert, listening, singing, drinking and chatting with friends. Pentagon Row was full, but not packed, with lots of families, kids, and people out having a good time. The weather was perfect, too. It was a lot of fun for a Thursday evening–it even felt more like a Friday, except here I am, back at work the next morning.

The band is not at all pretentious and does a good job with their covers. They are clearly out there to have a good time and to see that everyone else does too.

Dave Mathews Band

We were up fairly early on Saturday and were on the road just after 9 AM. We drove to Tyson’s Corner in order to go to Macy’s to do some in-person registering for the wedding. Macy’s opened at 10 AM and we arrived 15 minutes later. They gave Kelly a “scanner” gun, and armed with that and a checklist, we spent about an hour dashing through various departments, pointing and shooting at things. Though it was only an hour, it seemed exhausting.

We headed to the food court to get something to eat. For the second time in my life, I had a Five Guys burger. Then it was back to Kelly’s, where my exhaustion had taken on physical concomitants: I crawled into bed and napped for 2 hours.

Around 3 PM, Kelly’s friend Sarah (and company) arrived and we followed them to the Nissan Pavilion for the Dave Mathews Concert. We arrived around 4:15 (for a concert that started around 8:30 PM), and parked in “Premier” parking. It costs $30 to park there, but it is not “stacked” and as I will explain, it was well worth the money. We then spent the next 3 hours under a hot sun, tailgating. There was a group next to us playing DMB music and all sorts of drinking games like flip-cup and beer pong. For a wonder, I chose this day to remain abstemious. (Eventually, I would have to drive.) We grilled hot dogs and ate potato salad and there was a lot of beer-drinking going on, to say nothing of a marathon flip-cup tournament.

Eventually, we made our way in. We had seats in the grass area, decent seats, and as it turned out, not too far from where Karl (from work) and his girlfriend were sitting.

The concert was fun. It was packed. There was a lot of drinking and, er, smoking. The unmistakable fragrance of herbal remedies seemed to surround us. Everywhere I looked (with the exception of our group, of course), people were lighting up. There was one thing that really surprised me. It seemed to me that a majority of the crowd was not there to see DMB or listen to the music (and by majority I mean 51%). I conclude this from the fact that people were constantly talking on cell phones (though I don’t know how they could hear); constantly running off to find other friends; constantly getting lost; constantly hoofing it to concessions to get more beer; and having consumed the beer, walking willy-nilly to the restrooms to get rid of said consumed beer. It was as though this massive audience was a single life form, made up of tens of thousands of cells, many of which had some form of A-D-D.

Occasionally, the crowd would perk up when a specific song came on. I recognized only 3 of the songs played, and one of them was a brilliant cover of “Sledge Hammer”. I wasn’t really familiar with DMB before the concert and I went in with no expectations. I came out appreciating his vocals, but more than anything else, I was blown away by whoever that guy is who played the fiddle. He was incredible. He makes the entire Charlie Daniel’s Band look like five year-old with rubber bands. There were at least 2 solos he did that seemed to defy the laws of musical and muscular physics.

Kelly was ready to leave by the second or third song of the encore so we said our goodbyes and made our way back to the car. This is where the $30 comes in handy. I’ve heard that in the stacked lot it can easily take more than an hour just to get out of the lot. In the “Premier” lot, there were people who made it easy to merge in with the other cars, and in fact, we were out of the lot in under 5 minutes. We were back home just before midnight.

It was a lot of fun. I hadn’t been to a concert in a long time. The venue reminded me of Blockbuster Pavilion outside L.A. We got a lot of sun and heard good music and hung out with fun people. What more can you ask for.

Dave Matthews in June

Kelly and I, along with some of her friends, are going to see Dave Matthews in concert at the Nissan Pavilion on June 28! Not counting all the times I saw composer John Williams in concert at the Hollywood Bowl, this will be the–let’s see–one, two, three, four, fifth concert that I’ve been to see. Not fifth Dave Matthews concert, mind you, fifth total.

Compared with people like strausmouse (with whom I saw my first concert) and stubiebrother, who has seen Pearl Jam about 44 times, to say nothing of other shows he’s been to, I suppose 5 is pretty meager.

But who’s counting, right?

Nanuet, Day 2: Geocaching and a Concert

Try as I might to sleep in late this morning, I was up by 8 AM. Norm, Vicky and I spend the morning chatting and making fun of some of the items in the Rockland County Journal News until Vicky had to go off to her tutoring session. Vicky has taken on this second job so that she and Norm avoid impoverishment.

When Vicky got back, feeling quite impoverished, we all headed over to the Rockland Bakery where we got some fresh bagels and other assorted goodies. Vicky nearly got into a fight with the cashier, who was apparently offended that Vicky was telling her what, exactly, it was she wanted to order. But we managed to make it out unscathed and with breakfast in hand.

We headed up toward Bear Mountain in order to do some Geocaching, but took a detour along the way to view some of the houses in which Norm and Vicky have been interested. They were impressive and I took some pictures on my camera phone, but will have to wait until I get home to post them. And the houses were impressive too.

Upon arriving at Bear Mountain, we parked and had our breakfasts, and then headed out on geocaching adventure, getting lost only once, briefly, because we were so ingrossed in conversation that I missed the trail turnoff. Norm, nice guy that he is, made sure this didn’t happen to anyone else who might follow by building a wall of logs across the trail at a point just after the trails intersected. It took only a few hours for him to do this and Vicky and I watched in admiration.

We did end up locating the geocache and took from it a game called “tangle”. In return, we left a toy pickup truck. We then went down to the lakeside where I demonstrated skipping rocks and injured my arm in the process. (Actually, I hurt my arm on a cutoff thrown in the softball game on Tuesday, but re-aggrevated it today when I tried to “skip” a boulder.)

On the way back to Nanuet, we stopped at 7 Lunney Court and Sleepy Hollow Gardens and I walked past Grandma and Grandpa’s old apartment and parking spaces for the first time in nearly 6 years. I took a few pictures there as well.

We got back to Norm and Vicky’s with just enough time to see the Yankees beat the Mets in extra innings, and then headed out to the Dog House–a hot dog place nearby–and I had for the first time in my life, sauerkraut on a hot dog. It was pretty good. We topped that off with Dairy Queen, and then headed to Norm and Vicky’s church to see a concert. (Actually, we headed to the church before Dairy Queen but Vicky realized that the reason no one was there yet was because the concert didn’t start until 7:30 and we were way too early.

The concert was actually really good, although it was a little difficult to hear the singing because we sat right next to the band and the trumpet and sax washed out a lot of the other sounds when they played. The first half of the concert was religious songs and the second half was secular and there were some impressive singers. We gave pseudonyms to some of them based on various characteristics they displayed. Two examples: Ally Sheedy and Jack Black. I think my favorite moment was when a high school junior did a solo version of the jazz standard “Summertime” and was very impressive.

All-in-all, a very fun day. Thanks Norm and Vicky!