Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Loving Live Music with Megan

 Megan Hatch is my Since-Third-Grade BFF and truly the raddest person I know. She food blogs at SPICE and generally kicks butt all over the world.

I definitely consider myself a BIG music fan-- all kinds of music, all day, all night. My love for music has led me to absolutely ADORE live music! I believe the power of live music can beat out a CD every time... because you'll either find out how awesome someone is, or how awesome their production crew is. ;) 

My first concert was the Backstreet Boys, when I was a sophomore in high school. It was perfect-- Sisqo opened (that thong, th-thong, thong thong) and BSB was right on the money. But I didn't experience that true power of live music until I was in college. Two experiences solidified my love of live tune-age: Maroon 5 and Keith Urban. 
Back in 2004, both of these musicians were not as big as they are now. My BFF, Holla-Hollz got me into Kara's Flowers back in high school, and we followed them into becoming Maroon 5. They performed at a local arena, and it was ON! It was GREAT. We fell even more in love with Adam Levine, James Valentine, and the gang. My fanhood was cemented, and three CDs later, they still rock my world. 

Then there was Keith Urban, at the Tooele County Fair. Wow, doesn't sound more country than that! I went with my awesome roommate and my good friend. All I knew was, "Take your cat and leave my sweater." Literally...those seven words. The grandstands were packed, and I found out why. Keith Urban ROCKS! He is an amazing guitarist, a great entertainer, and has awesome songs. Near the end of the concert he did a cover of Tom Petty's "Free Fallin'." HELLO! Deal sealer right there! It was such a great experience, and it was the beginning of my love affair with concerts.

From that point in my life, I have been to so many concerts, I don't feel like counting them all. I have been blessed to have a dad in the radio biz, which has allowed me to go to many concerts free of charge. But in spite of that, I am still a firm believer in spending money on concerts. To me it is completely worth it. It's like my drug. I LOVE to get swept up in the music, sing along with my favorites, get some new favorites, and just feel the overall energy that a concert provides. A few concert love examples, to delight you: 
  • I never liked Kelly Clarkson's, "Never Again" until I saw her sing it live, with me sitting in the first row. It was so bad-ass, that I now blast it every time it comes up on my iPod. 
  • Carrie Underwood makes me cry. When we saw her (granted this wasn't even the first time I had seen her in concert) a few years ago, from the first note, there were tears streaming down my face. She was singing something upbeat and angry, like, "Before He Cheats." Pretty much for the first 10-15 minutes, I kept crying. My husband said, "Are you OK?!" and all I could think was, "She's so talented!!!!!" I often tear up at choir and band concerts, even in high school. I'm pretty sure it's only going to get worse from here...
  • Lupe Fiasco was one of the many openers for Kanye West's "Glow in the Dark" Tour. WOWSAH. What a rapper-- so heartfelt, fast-paced, and talented. Another love affair started! If you don't know the song, "Hip Hop has Saved My Life"-- you best be looking it up! 
I'm a pretty open minded gal, so I don't get disappointed too often. Case in point-- I will always LOVE the movie "From Justin to Kelly." If that doesn't read, "easy to please" than I don't know what does! :) I have only had two concerts where I left feeling disappointed: Rascal Flatts and Taylor Swift. WHAT??!?!!? I know-- but there are good reasons. The first time I saw Rascal Flatts-- AWESOME. Truly-- it was a great show. The second time was a waste-- I think they were touring way too much, and it was just overkill. Gary (the lead singer) left the stage for like 30 minutes, and the other two were flirting with girls in the audience for another 15 minutes. Um, can you please just sing? Put the guitar back over your shoulder, and let's get this show on the road. That was how it went... not good. And Taylor Swift- she is also kind of lanky/gangly... therefore her dance moves are a little much. She needs to reign it in a bit. :) Other than that, if you've seen her sing on an awards show you know what I'm talking about. She does not have the best live voice. But there was a big highlight for me-- she did a mash up of one of her songs with Justin Timberlake's "What Goes Around..." and it was perfect. She even slammed on the piano for a minute, and I LOVED it! All of her fans had a great time... I just think I prefer her on CD to live. No harm done! :) 

And now, here are the TOP 3 CONCERTS that I have been to. Therefore, if you have the opportunity-- you should GO! 
  1. U2: THE BEST. You aren't a fan? Get ready to become one! I wasn't a big fan when I married my husband, who is a U2 fanatic. My love for U2 has grown steadily into a great big ball of FIRE since we started dating. Bono ROCKS. HARD. He can do whatever he wants, whenever he wants. He rolls around on the floor and sings upside down, pulls people out of the audience and snuggles with them while he sings. It is unreal and so fabulous. Oh, and not to mention that they are all incredibly talented musicians. Edge-- rules on the guitar. Adam and Larry-- hard rockers. And Bono has such an awe inspiring voice, and you probably wouldn't know it. At the last concert that was here in Utah, he sang something in another language, that almost sounded operatic. I was hypnotized by the power of his voice. Why doesn't he sing like this more?! It's like his secret weapon. All in all-- go see U2. It is worth every penny. Don't believe me? Ask my dad-- www.keithstubbs.com -- he became a believer on that jam-filled night last May. 
  2. Linkin Park: You wanna talk about ROCK?! They ROCK. This is another example of me becoming a fan AFTER going to the concert. I've seen them twice, and each time was great. You will be amazed by their singing skills, and I even marveled that they were still singing and jumping around. They wore me out! The way they can go from the hardcore screaming, to the sweet melodies of their songs is unreal. The deal sealer for this group-- "SHUUUUUUUUT UP!" 
  3. Kanye West: I have to get some hip-hop in here. There is something about going to a rap concert, that is so intoxicating. You REALLY get into the song, and can feel what the song is about. I also have been to a T.I. concert, and I loved how his posse was bopping around the stage with him, adding strength to the important lyrics. But then there is Kanye. My love for Kanye also runs DEEP. To me, he can pretty much do no wrong. I love what he writes about, and I love his versatile style. When Kanye finally hit the stage around midnight, he was solo. By himself, commanding an audience of thousands. That's just how he rolls. He put 150% into it, and you could see that he was sweating, and thirsty, but he kept up the pace. Controversy aside-- he is so true to who he is, and I'm so drawn to that. It was a party, and it was so cool. 
Well, this has mostly been a chronicle of my personal live music love affair, so hopefully you are inspired to have your own. Don't get caught up in your surroundings during the performances-- people watching is GREAT for before the show starts-- and don't skip the openers! You may be tempted, and sometimes your schedule won't be flexible, but openers are usually worth your time. I saw Miranda Lambert open for Kenny Chesney, I saw Jason Aldean open for Rascal Flatts (the good time), and Boys Like Girls open for All-American Rejects. Soak up the musicality, and revel in the freedom of it all-- no one is listening to you sing a-long, because their too busy enjoying themselves. And for heaven's sake... spend the $40 and get yourself a t-shirt. 


  1. I went to a Maroon 5 concert in Orem in 2004 -- might it have been the same? I LOVE finding out I was in the same place as a friend at some random point long ago. I find it cosmic.

    1. I'm sure it was the same!!! We are lovers. :)