Drinks, Dinner and Dragons

In college, I had my share of Thursday nights where I would go out as if it were the Saturday, because lets face it, not having to go to class on Fridays, was pretty much amazing. But there were also many Thursday nights where I would stay in.  Sure, now I go out for happy hours, dinners with friends, and the occasional activity, but as I have gotten older, those Thursday night crazy adventures have dwindled down to just about slim to none (except during softball season for work, those stories to come later…).  So when the opportunity arose to get drinks with a friend and go to a concert last minute, I decided to embrace being spontaneous.

Earlier in the week, I was given a gift card to The Signature Room.  I thought it would be fun to grab some (overpriced but free, thanks to the gift card) drinks with a very dear friend.  In case you aren’t familiar, the Lounge is on the 95th floor of the John Hancock building and it overlooks the entire city. It is known for its expensive drinks and breathtaking views. At least the views are free.  We both ordered a Peach Martini and watched the sunset. Doesn’t it look like the sun is an enormous explosion over the horizon? The photo on the right is a view from inside looking out at the lake from the 95th floor.

I do not think I’ll be having sushi for a while. We had an hour to kill before the concert started so we walked around and of course the only place without a long wait was a sushi restaurant. Now, usually that wouldn’t make me think twice, except I already had it twice this week. Oh well. At least it was a sushi restaurant I hadn’t tried before. Bonus points for trying something new. We had a dragon roll, sweet potato roll and of course, spicy tuna. Nom! Nom! Nom! When we’re together, there are always lots of laughs.

Earlier this afternoon, I received a Facebook invite for a show tonight featuring this local band called I Fight Dragons.  I have been a longtime fan, so I called my friend up, told her about it, and we decide it would be fun if we went after drinks to hear some live music. As I said in a previous post nothing beats a live concert.  The music of IFD combines pop/rock songs and electronic sounds using Nintendo game systems. That’s right, an old school Nintendo NES rock band! How clever and unique!  And they actually have the game controllers set up and play on stage. The group recently signed with Atlantic Records and have been working on their new album called ‘Cool Is Just a Number’ for about a year now. Three of the members are from my home town (actually one from a neighboring town) and are some of the nicest and down-to-earth guys around.  Packy, one of the guitarists/vocalists, who actually reminds me of John Lennon,  is one of the most talented guitar players. *Flashback time*  I vividly remember this one talent show in elementary school where he played the drums so passionately and intensely that his glasses flew off of his face in the middle of a set.  He finished the song without being able to see.  (FYI – He had the Harry Potter glasses many years before the books were ever even written.) We all knew at that moment, he was destined to go places with that talent.

Tonights show was so much fun and had a really good turn out.  I even ran into some old friends I haven’t seen in a while, so that was great to catch up with them. The music is awesome and you can tell they are having fun on stage. The crowd was chanting IFD, IFD, IFD. The two story venue was small but a great place to see a band play. I am in awe at how talented these guys are.  It makes me wish I could play the drums or guitar.  Too bad I’m tone deaf, have no rhythm and I can’t sing to save my life. I think there is something to be said for guys who can play instruments and sing.  When we were younger, if you played in the school band, your peers thought you were dorky.  Now if you play in a band, people think you are sexy. (If you are reading this, and you are in a school band – good for you! Keep it up!Do not give in to peer pressure or take your peers seriously. Someday your talents will be appreciated! )

Here are some songs from I Fight Dragons. Money / Welcome to the Breakdown / The Faster The Treadmill.  Check out their website, and if they come to your city, I highly recommend you go to their show. Mark my words, I have faith they will make it to the top.

Sometimes the best nights aren’t planned. Here is to having an awesome, spontaneous night on a random Thursday.   Do you go out often on Thursday nights (post college)? Do you know of any bands that are undiscovered or not household names that you love? Please share the music love!

Love, Caryn

Nothing Beats a Live Concert

When I was little my mom worried that I didn’t know music.  I am not sure where she got that idea from, maybe my sister sang in the car louder than me? She doesn’t know a lot about music, so maybe she projected that onto me? Either way, turns out that worry of hers was unnecessary. I love music.  I love blaring it while I’m in the shower; while I am getting ready to go out; rocking out in my car, and I love it live. My past birthday I chose a bar specifically because it had a live band. I enjoy going to concerts but I do admit I am more one to sit down on a lawn and enjoy the music than to bounce around and stand the whole time. (Dancing at a concert is fun and encouraged, but I like the option to sit and relax too). My dad took me to see James Taylor for my first ever concert. I have a very clear memory of that day. I also went with him once to see Dave Matthews Band.  Since then, I have continued to go to concerts but honestly my list is shorter than I would have expected.  I will keep this an open running list and add to it as time goes on.

Concerts I have been to (in no particular order):

1.James Taylor
2.Dave Matthews Band
4.Guster (2x)
5.Billy Joel and Elton John together
7.Good Charrolette
8.New Found Glory
9.The Eagles
10.Don Henley and Stevie Nicks
11.Stevie Nicks
12.Tom Petty
13.Crosby Stills and Nash
14.John Mayer (2x)
15.Counting Crows
16. Hootie and the BlowFish
17.Darius Rucker (solo as country singer)
18.Rascal Flatts
19.Carrie Underwood
20.Kris Allen
21.Barenaked Ladies
22.Chicago Symphony
23.Rick Ross
24. Howie Day
25. The Stache (cover band)
26. Sister Hazel

27. Goo Goo Dolls

28. Matchbox 20

29. Ben Folds

Have you seen any of these singers/groups? What did you think?