Thursday, June 12, 2008

Make it Last All Night (Make it Last All Night!)

Last night, Noe and I did something we've never done: we went to a concert together. That's right - in the entire time we've been dating, we had never gone to a concert together. We'd gone separately (I never turn down my standing invitation to see Barenaked Ladies with Eric - at least, I never turned it down when I lived in Michigan).

Truthfully, I don't really like concerts that much (in general). I hate concerts in venues that are built for sports - the sound goes everywhere and it's just not worth it (unless it is Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band and you honestly believe that Comerica Park might just be the smallest venue you'll have the opportunity to see them in).

But concerts in venues that are actually built for music are a different story entirely. The Dodge Music Center in Hartford is similar to DTE Energy Music Theater in Auburn Hills, Michigan. Both used to have much better names (The Meadows and Pine Knob, respectively) until corporate takeovers, both occupy a hillside piece of property, and both have plenty of reasonably priced (until you add in the exorbitant TicketMaster fees) lawn space perfect for spreading out a blanket and listening to some tunes on a warm summer night.

And is there any better warm summer night music than Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers? (With the possible exception of Bruce Springsteen, which is just the best music any time, any place.)

I love Tom Petty but have never managed to catch him in concert. Part of this is due to my aforementioned general feelings about concerts. Part of it is also due to the fact that although Pine Knob was a perfectly acceptable venue, it was a pain in the ass to get to Auburn Hills. Anyway, when Amanda, Cailin and Kevin asked if we wanted to go, I jumped at the chance.

The Dodge Music Center is actually better than Pine Knob due to the fact that it's a little smaller and the hill isn't quite as steep, although plenty of drunk people still rolled down. The sound was fantastic.

Kicking back on the lawn before Tom Petty came on

Tom and the Heartbreakers themselves were in good form. No need to be front and center for Tom Petty - I love the man's music but he is definitely not attractive (Cailin calls him 'horse face'). The set list was pretty good - not too much new stuff - but he did leave out some tunes I would have enjoyed hearing, such as "The Waiting is the Hardest Part", "Don't Do Me Like That", or almost anything from the Wildflowers CD (although he of course played "You Don't Know How it Feels"). He played "Free Fallin' - maybe his biggest hit but actually one of my least favorite Tom Petty songs - pretty early on, but finished with the best song ever - "American Girl". There is nothing like a whole lawn of people singing and dancing and screaming "Make it last all night!"

Speaking of dancing, I have to say I enjoyed going to a concert with other people (Amanda and Mini Deal) who dance like I do - badly. Not that there is really any good or rhythmic way to dance to Tom Petty-esque rock music (it tends to be a lot of arm flailing and jumping up and down) but the fact that I had two other people doing it with me made me definitely feel less weird about doing it in front of Noe.

All in all, this was a great time, and I look forward to my next concert in Hartford.


kjlester said...

The Claw's last night on the town :(

Kristen said...

I can't believe you seriously used the expression "listening to some tunes"

Amanda Lester said...

You should have included a picture of Noe's new bff who decided she needed to drunkenly slide up next to him...