othersideofthis: (far too early for this)
Hi, LJ. I didn't really read anything over the weekend, so if anything interesting happened, I missed it.

But, whatever, because I HAVE SOMETHING FANTASTIC TO SAY:

after waiting outside for about two and a half hours in the cold with about 12-15 other devoted Andrew Bird fans, wherein we amused ourselves with a cappella renditions of Bird songs (complete with beatboxing) and playing the Name an Andrew Bird Song for Every Letter in the Alphabet (wherein I pwned everyone by using Bowl of Fire songs instead of songs from his newer releases; and where we skipped J, said we wouldn't skip any more, and then got stuck on Q), he finally came out and took time to chat with us all and sign things. No photos, but I couldn't be too sad about that, as A) he'd been filmed for two days straight for the DVD they're making, and B) he was nice enough to stop and chat with us and sign things all anyway.

BUT IT GETS BETTER.

This one girl said to him, "I told a friend that I wouldn't leave here without touching you, so can I have a hug?" and he was like "....okay." Which, you know, was all the opening I needed.

As he was signing my poster, I told him about how we met at the show at the Art Museum where I promptly hurled a bunch of words in a huge run-on sentence at him, and said that I felt kind of awkward about it afterwards, because I had hoped I would be able to be less tongue-tied, so I wrote him a little message in a card. (Hilariously, during the show, a girl in the audience shouted out in between songs, "DID YOU READ MY LETTER?" and he was like "...maybe?") So I was like, listen, you can read this or not read this or misplace it and pretend that you read it, but here, I just wanted to give this to you. And he was all, oh, thanks, and took the envelope (which, uh, may or may not have had one of my awesome blog-business cards in it, which may or may not have been a kind of psychotic idea, particularly considering that a big chunk of my blog has been devoted to reviews of his shows, and that the name of the blog itself is taken from a lyric in one of his songs, but I was like, fuck it, I'm doing it), and, yeah, will he ever read it? I don't know, I'd like to think that he will, but it was just important to me to communicate somehow just how important what he does is to me, and if I can't get the words out in talking, then I'm writing them. So there.

And then, and then, and then, I was like, well, he just hugged a couple of other people, including one guy in a hilariously awkward man-hug. This was an opportunity I wasn't going to pass up. And I was like, "since you're giving them out, can I have a hug too?" And was all, "...sure."

SO YEAH, ANDREW BIRD FREAKING HUGGED ME.

BRB DYING OF AWESOME.

That's how you know that despite the fact that he's pretty much the poster boy for terribly introverted people, that he's also a pretty awesome guy, because he hugs crazy fangirls without worrying that they're going to knife him or whatever. As someone who has her own Personal Space issues with strangers, I appreciated the fact that he let me violate his personal space for a couple of seconds.

Unrelated to the hugging, I felt really old with all of the other people waiting around for him. Most of them were college freshmen or sophomores, and I was all omgzold.

BUT WHATEVER, ANDREW BIRD HUGGED ME. If I can't steal him away for naughty things, I will make myself happy with a simple slightly awkward hug at 1:30 in the morning out in the cold in Milwaukee.

After he'd signed things for us, we all thanked him for coming out to see us, and he thanked us for waiting so long for him. We started telling him about how we'd amused ourselves, and about the Name the Song game and I looked at him and was like, "yeah, do you have any songs that start with Q?" He thought about it for a moment before saying no, he didn't think so. "We got stuck there," I said, "and I figured it anyone would know, you would."

He needs to get on that, writing a song that starts with a Q. Because you can't play the alphabet game without hitting all the letters.

I texted Concert Buddy about this, and she responded with a couple of texts worth of exclamation points. This is, I think, the only appropriate answer.

ABird 083

othersideofthis: (oh you pretty thing)
* omg I need a Halloween costume, guys, what am I going to do? Ideas, give them to me!

* The concert was amazing and epic and beautiful and everything I hoped it would be. It wasn't the best performance I've seen from him, but I think that's a slightly less than fair thing to say, as a slightly less than perfect Andrew Bird performance is still something above and beyond pretty much any other show I've ever been to.

* My review of the show is here, at my blog. Photos are here, at Flickr.

* Concert Buddy and I got there extra early around 5:15ish, but we couldn't get in until 6, so we sat around and freaked out/screwed around on Twitter/mocked the hipster kids and the people trying to get into the locked museum doors. The whole thing was making us both a little anxious though, because there was no order, no instructions, no one there who knew what was going on. So there was no line, just this massive blob, and we were both like ORDER. LINE. MUST HAVE. Eventually, as it neared 6, we started edging up next to the doors that the security guard was standing at. We wound up being probably in the first group of 10-15 to get in. En route to finding seats, we walk right past Andrew Bird himself, who is wandering around kind of aimlessly. We waited until we were appropriately far away to freak out properly. We managed to waltz our way up to a table right front and center, which we sure weren't going to complain about.

* Much waiting ensued, and then more waiting, and more waiting. Which was followed by more waiting, while a woman from the art museum and a guy from the radio station had a little discussion about art and music. Nice, kind of funny, but the crowd was impatient for Andrew Bird. I ran to the restroom as soon as they were finished, hoping that the break would be long enough for me to get back in time, but unfortunately, the restroom might as well have been in another freaking state, it was so far away. :( As I exited the restroom, I could hear the opening notes of his first song -- the acoustics in the place were absolutely crazy -- and shuffled a little faster to get back.

* Once the show was over, guests were allowed to walk around some of the exhibits in the modern wing, which was pretty awesome. I hadn't been over there yet, other than just a quick walk through to find the restaurant my boss took me to the other week, so it was really great to have that chance. And also really great to have that chance surrounded by other people who were the kinds of people to think critically about art. Very awesome. There's some deep stuff in there.

* Concert Buddy and I walked around for about half an hour until we realized we had finally exhausted all of the areas of museum that we were allowed to go into. "I guess that's it. The only thing left for us to do," I said as we turned the corner from the staircase and began walking towards the doors, "is to hunt down Andrew Bird whoisstandingrightinfrontofus." Yeah, he was just a little bit in front of us, taking a picture with some people. (Apologies to those people, who probably have me and Concert Buddy in the background being alll :O) And cue fangirl freakout. It wasn't so much that he was standing there, but that he was a) still at the museum at all, and b) talking to people and c) taking photos with people who are obviously fans, because it's not like real friends would be all Hai let's pose for photos! After shuffling further away to observe and freak out without being seen as total psychos, it became pretty clear that if Concert Buddy went up to talk to him, that she would have either thrown up on his shoes or had a panic attack or something awful, and I was like, well, I'm not letting this opportunity pass me by, and just sort of marched up to him and, idk, spewed some word vomit at him. Something lame about how I love his music and am just amazed every time I see his live show and omghugefan. He asked my name and shook my hand and was all, wow, thanks, that's really nice, sure you can have a photo. While I was wrangling someone to take the pic, Concert Buddy said hello to him and got in the shot. (The woman I asked to take the pic, for the record, was really snippy with me. I'll feel bad if I'm badmouthing his mom or something, but she was like "Yes, I'll take it, just don't take up too much of Andrew's time" or something like that. Bitch plz. He could have said no if he didn't want to take the time to have picture with us; he's notorious for politely declining to take photos with people. The last time Concert Buddy had the opportunity to talk to him, she asked for a photo and he said no and she was kind of crushed. It wasn't like I was expecting to have an indepth conversation with him. The whole encounter took, like, 3 minutes tops.) So we got our photo (which is yet another atrocious photo of me - though not quite so bad as the one with Loudon Wainwright) and said thank you and then scurried outside and promptly made a big pile of SQUEE in the doorway. Epic.

* He is so tiny omg I just want to put him in my pocket. When I talked with him, he was just a hair taller than me, and I was in ~4" heels, putting him at probably 5'9" or 5'10" or so. But physically he's just so... angular. Lanky. Wiry. Something like that. I wouldn't be shocked if I weighed more than he did. Very kind and gracious and patient when presented with one fangirl who makes a giant run-on sentence all in one breath, and another who could barely get out her name. And also pretty.

* So we sat around outside the museum while Concert Buddy smoked a POST-ANDREW BIRD-FREAKOUT cigarette, and we both sent obnoxious tweets out to the internet. She finished her cigarette and was like, well, I guess that's it, there's not much else to do. Cue Andrew Bird walking out of museum, violin case strapped to his back. "Not much else to do except see where he's going," we said. We followed from a decent distance (this wasn't creepy stalker following; regardless we had been heading in the same direction down Monroe anyway), wondering if he was just going to go take the train home or something, because that would not be surprising at all. He went and got in a car with someone, though, and thus ended any ideas of getting in the same train car and staring wistfully at the back of his head.

* Poking around in my blog stats, I found out that a link to my entry was tweeted first by this guy, Don Van Natta, Jr., who is apparently an investigative reporter for the New York Times, and then that one was retweeted by this guy, Matthew Cooper, who was a reporter at Time magazine and who was one of the journalists held in contempt of court for not naming sources during the Valerie Plame thing. CUE INTERNET FREAKOUT, OMG. Like, OMG, WOW. I tweeted at both of them thanking them for linking, and then continued freaking out. In the grand scheme of things, a link on twitter from some noteworthy people doesn't really mean a whole lot, but, wow, it excites me.

* I also went out on a limb and wrote to Gapers Block, a local news site, offering them my review for their music section. They had covered the announcement of the show, but I didn't know if they had anyone at the show to do a writeup. Anyhow, the editor of the music section said she'd love to have the post, and she put it up and linked to some of my photos on Flickr. I was kind of hoping she would link to my website, but whatever, awesome. The post on Gapers Block is here, and now it comes up whenever you Google my name, so there's something in the search results other than stuff about the big gay inaugural parade.

* VERDICT = AWESOME.
othersideofthis: (some lonely night we can get together)
Concert Review: Andrew Bird with Alpha Consumer, Schubas, August 6.
For a performer who is finally getting the mainstream attention that he deserves, Bird is still remarkably humble and down to earth. As a relatively recent transplant to Chicago, I unfortunately missed out on the days where you could catch Bird routinely playing at the Hideout or Schubas, but I can’t shake the feeling that he would be just as happy playing for a few hundred people as he would be performing in front of a sold-out Radio City Music Hall. Even though his show has gotten bigger and more intricate over the years, he looked as comfortable as ever, owning the small Schubas stage and having the audience pretty much eating out of the palm of his hand. I can comfortably say that this was one of the most special, magical concert experiences that I’ve ever had. There was the feeling of knowing that something like this may not ever happen again, which made every moment all the more precious.
Overall verdict on Lollapalooza: much better than anticipated, with plenty of nice surprises for me. Will I go next year? Maybe. I’d need an incredibly strong lineup (like Friday’s) to get me to go out again, let alone go out for all three days. But despite the rain and the fact that my legs still sort of hurt from all of that standing, there were enough priceless moments during my Lollapalooza day that I don’t have any real complaints.  (April Smith, Hockey, Manchester Orchestra, Gringo Star, The Knux, The Gaslight Anthem, Bon Iver, Ben Folds, Fleet Foxes, The Decemberists, Andrew Bird, and Kings of Leon.)

Lollapalooza photos on Flickr
Hockey, The Knux, The Gaslight Anthem, Bon Iver, The Decemberists, and Andrew Bird

WHAT'S THAT? OH, I GOT TO MEET ANDREW BIRD FOR 30 SECONDS? OH, HECK YES I DID.
BRB, STILL MAKING NOISES OF HAPPY DELIGHT SEVERAL DAYS LATER. WHO GOT A BIG HAPPY SMILE FROM ANDREW BIRD? OH, I DID. MMHM.

Concert photos, Over the Rhine, August 9

PS I MEET BEN TEMPLESMITH ON SATURDAY. AUGUST IS FUCKING AWESOME.

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othersideofthis: (Default)
oh, medusa

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