Concert article

I wrote an concert article on Marks recent show in Minn. I don’t know why I just needed to vent I guess. Now I don’t know what to do with it. I can’t post it here. It’s way to long. About 5 pages. If your interested message me and I can email it out! Only fans would understand.

Comments

  • Posts: 1,114

    You could upload it somewhere and link to it .

  • Yea I don’t know where to upload it to. I am open to suggestions. Where would be good?

  • Posts: 1,062

    Post it in the Minnesota gig review post. Don't worry about length. Or you can try Medium. Or start a free WordPress site.

  • It’s about 5 pages single space when I tried to upload here it said I was like 1900 words over!! Lol. I had a lot on my mind. Marks just been on my mind. I think I am starting a word press today. I might just load it up in peices

  • Retrospective; My Concert Experience of An Evening with Mark Kozelek
    I recently went to a Mark Kozelek show and a week later I can’t seem to shake it. I just can’t seem to get over it. I am grieving over a concert. Sounds crazy I know, but there are reasons. And I can’t get it out of my mind. Typically, as I have gotten older, the shows I go to tend to linger. There’s a shadow that follows me around. A dark cloud hanging over me. Post-concert depression is problem for a music addict.
    As a long time, concert goer, at least 500+ concerts, over 3 decades of rock, hard rock, metal, indie and alternative. It’s fair to say that I enjoy the energy of a rock show. The crowd, the overall feeling of a rock show tends to resonate with me. I went for the rush of the live performances and the crowds. Honestly, I typically didn’t even know most of the bands I went to see early on, I would go because friends were going, and I wanted exposure to new music. New songs, new bands, literally anything but the ever-present onslaught of country music that’s synonymous with Iowa. From 1992-1995 I went to all the local rock shows and festivals regularly. I was a local groupie without the perks. I got to go to shows for free if I carried a mic stand in or went on a run to the porn shop to get the blow-up doll they wanted to bounce around like a beach ball. Yup, that was me. Then I went to college and it all changed. No more late night out drinking and partying like a local rock star, I was a chem major so music took the back seat.
    I graduated in 2000 and got a job in a lab. I hit a boring lull in my job at one point in 2003 and cruising through the internet landscape I ran a across this pissy little music review site, called Pitchfork. The best part was the fan hate mail they used to publish, god those were hysterical. Once I discovered Pitchfork my music obsession really took hold. Let me just roll out some of the bands from my roster 2003; Death Cab for Cutie, The Shins, Interpol, Queens of the Stone Age, Iron and Wine, the Postal service, Cat Power, the Decemberists, Spoon, the Fall, Broken Social Scene, Neutral Milk Hotel, My Morning Jacket, Aimee Mann, American Music Club, LCD, and back to Radiohead for Hail to the Thief. A stellar list of bands, but at this point I was with my first husband and the only music we agreed on was heavy rock. My ex and I started taking annual pilgrimages to Ozzfest, Lollapalooza and the annual LazerFest. We hit a couple big acts that hit locally at the time, Korn and Tool that whole nü-metal that was a thing for like one hot minute in the early 2000’s. Again, I was hitting very heavy and aggressive crowds. From 2003-2007 we hit a lot of these shows. And we had a lot of fun. Going to concerts become something I really loved doing. But once the kids came along and the marriage fell apart I was separated from my life line of concerts again. All my money and time taken by my new-found role of single mom. Simply maintaining life became the priority. I kept current with the help of Pitchfork. Around this very dark time I discovered Mark Kozelek. Or to be more precise Red House Painters. I was working 2 jobs, dealing with a severe case of mania followed by months of depression, trips to the therapist, 2 little kids about the ages of 3 and 4, and an ever-rotating list of boyfriends. It was about this time, I was trying to deal the best way I knew how, alcohol and a seriously unhealth dose of really depressing music. This would have been about 2007 and I was listening to the last couple of RHP albums as that’s all I had. As things got steadily worse for me, I found the first Sun Kil Moon album Ghost of the Great Hwy. I loved that album, it was a bright spot in my otherwise shitty existence. Unfortunately, it holds some of the worst memories for me, but it’s an amazing album that I listened to daily for a very long time. It helped me just get through my day. Days that were becoming more and more difficult. It became clear to me that Mark was one of the only consistent things in my very inconsistent life. He became my guy, my main man. The stand-in for the erratic male presence falling into and out of our lives. He really was the only one that stuck around or that I wanted to stick around. Ghosts was the standard by which I would hold every Sun Kil Moon release. Mark doesn’t want to hear that though.

  • I met my husband around 2010. We worked together for a couple of years before we started dating. He wooed me with Radiohead lyrics and impeccable indie taste. We bonded though the music we listened to. Our common ground was of course Radiohead. He was also a Sun Kil Moon fan but, not like I was. And for some reason, we only knew about the one record. We got married in 2014. I had largely fell away from Mark at this point. I had a man, I was good to go. Of course, I heard the buzz about Mark from critics and Pitchfork. It was all about Benji. But I couldn’t be bothered at this point I was busy getting married, getting a house, finding a new job and all the other things life throws at you once you try to align two lives together. I did find time to book us some concerts. Then I heard that Radiohead was on tour headlining Lollapalooza 2016. By the time I heard about it they were sold out. I was crushed. I discovered this subculture of pre-sales, ticket bots, secondary ticket market, codes, all the insanity that has now become common in the online ticket buying age. Then it was not just the rush of the concert but the rush of getting the tickets. Buying CD’s, vinyl just to get a code to get first pick, the countdown until the sale, directing the company servers to block bots to get my tix, pairing up with friends online to try and get what we could. I wasn’t playing anymore I was dead serious about my shows now. It provided the distraction and something to look forward to that wasn’t kids, house, chores, husband, work, bill, errands, cooking… the endless middle-class struggle. The out let was now the show. I scored 2 Radiohead shows. We managed to get rail in both Chicago and Detroit this last tour. It was the most amazing experience I have ever had, that close to Thom and Jonny. Hands down the best concerts of my life, because of the connection I had, my husband had, that we had together. We were also living “concert life”, a time where normal life takes the back seat and it’s all about getting there, parking, Airbnb and hotel lobbies, new restaurants, pubs, walking around in new cities, standing in line, making new friends and figuring out how to get to rail, it’s such a strange existence, “concert life”. When the lights went down after the second Radiohead show and it was over, I was lost. It hit like a brick to the head, post-concert depression. Days and days of the linger and loss of our “concert life”. When this depression hit, I knew it well, it was a familiar pain, a loss, that mimicked a time when I was alone and despondent. I turned to someone who I knew, who was a comfort to me in the worst of times. At this point I had streaming services and saw the massive back catalog. I was shocked to say the least. I knew of the Modest Mouse covers album at this point, but that was it. I had a huge number of choices to pick from, so I threw myself into all of it. Admiral Fell Promises on repeat while painting, Among the Leaves while working, Benji reading and working, Common as Blood driving to pick up the girls, Universal Themes cleaning… Mark literally became the soundtrack to my life. He was now ever present in every corner of my existence. Then I started to dig a little deeper, collaborations, singing the classics, then then new album the self-titled album, aptly named as the entire album is all about him, dropped. I listened to it when he was streaming in on the website before Apple and Spotify got it. I realized it was a little different, maybe more personal. I couldn’t listen to it at work it was too distracting, challenging and my boss didn’t appreciate the diarrhea chant. With a new album I knew came a tour. I found the tour dates, Sept 12 Minneapolis the closest show to me. It was a Wednesday. 3 Hour drive not too far. I bought 2 tix, no bots, no presale, no code, none of the things of which I have come to expect. “Concert life” is going to be different this time. I tried to get my husband to go, he couldn’t, work. I thought I could get someone to come with me. Nothing. I was on my own for this one. All these concerts not one alone. I do my regular prep; money, gas, map, garage, snack, and I can only take 1 hour off early. And must be at work at 7:30am the day after the show. Not ideal. At all. But its Mark, I am not missing this unless I am bleeding out my eyes, even still I would get an Uber. The day of the show I hit the road at 3pm and make my way North to Minn. On the way there I start to worry. I am going to get kidnapped, no I am too old for that. Killed maybe, taken for organs on the black market, or eaten Hannibal Lector style. I started seeing the Facebook page with my missing picture. Missing on her way to Mark Kozelek. I push it out of my mind and think about is there goanna be a line? How close will I be to the stage? Could I possibly meet Mark? I knew it was a small venue gonna be a small crowd. No 25K people singing every word, fuck he doesn’t even know all words to his songs. I know it’s all going to be new songs, no Carry me Ohio. That’s for sure.

  • I get to the venue it’s an old renovated theater. Pretty cool actually. The doors are opening just as I run up to the theater. I pull out my ticket and I notice I am shaking. Wow I am nervous and excited at the same time. I can’t believe I am about to see Mark in person. Be in the same room with him. It seems crazy. They take my ticket and I walk straight to the restroom. I have been in the car for 3 hours and I never stopped. So, I bolt to the mini restroom that is as old as dirt. And rush as fast as I can. I almost run into the room with the stage and it is very dark and so small! I slam to a stop. Where do I sit? There are still quite a few seats near the front open. I scope out the best middle of the stage it’s 3 rd. row. Next to an older couple. The room has a merch table and a small bar in the back. I sit down. Still shaking. I am so fucking nervous at this point. I am literally so close to the stage he’s going to see me. Like see me see me. Holy shit. I look at the time. It’s 7ish I look around. At the crowd. Ok well it’s the strangest crowd I have ever seen. This is probably the smallest venue I have ever been to. Like the stage in the high school cafeteria. There’s a drum kit and an upright piano off to the right side of the stage and a music stand. Apparently, he has so many lyrics he needs a stand? I look at my phone nervously and instantly can’t concentrate. I look around more. Very nerdy young men in pairs. Collage students. Lots of them holding vinyl. Of course. Old hippy chicks. Or at my age, middle age hipsters. Older gray-haired women with big black hipster glasses, I think one had a beeny hat on. Older couples and younger couples, just very diverse. I look like the most basic bitch in the crowd. That’s how I dress for work and I had no time to change. I feel like I stick out. There’s no middle ground, young or old. I guess I am on the old side at 42. I am 3rd row stage right. I try to talk to the older couple next to me. Yea, that’s not working. I look to my left and there’s a younger woman with her purse in the seat. Looking at her phone. I have to get a drink. So, I ask her can she watch my spot, so I can get a beer. She said of course. So that’s my in when I come back. I ask her about Mark. She’s seen him 3 times. This is my first. We continue to talk until the owner hits the stage just in time to let me know I can’t take photos or video. I understand. I get it. Don’t stare at your phone the whole show. That’s not new I went to Jack White. He literally locked phones up! But I was hoping for at least a couple pics to look back on. I put my phone away. And see the guitarist, drummer and pianist come out. Then Mark. He looks exactly as I pictured. Blue suit nice shoes dressed up. I am so happy my face of plastered with this crazy cat lady smile. I can’t believe I am in lunging distant to him. Omg I can’t believe what I am seeing. He opens with his typical smart-ass comments. I wish I could remember. But he thanks the venue and the people that work there. He talks about his past with the city and the last time he was there. Talks about the song he’s going to sing, Night talks, what it means to him, and his inspiration. Then he starts singing. And it’s perfect. My entire focus is on him, all my issues, worries and concerns are gone. He sounds exactly as he does on the record. I am so in awe of him. His voice just feels like home. God, I love his voice.

  • Mark’s next song I think is Yellow Door/ Black butterfly I don’t know for sure, they blend together. Yellow Door sings about a hotel room. He basically conducting the other members as this is the first show I think they have all played together. He makes jokes about someone setting a beer on the stage. This is my fucking stage! Smiling and laughing the entire time. He such a smart ass. He keeps cracking jokes and smart comments in between each song. And even during the song. Changing the lyrics into something special. Unique. Funny as hell. Just for this show. I can tell every show is different because of the crowd interaction. He’s in great spirts tonight. He’s got us laughing and giggling all night long. He complains about the air conditioning. It’s too cold. Then it’s too warm. He’s right it was too cold then it got hot. He drops some of his lyrics and starts talking to the girl in first row. Is she single? Lol of course her husband is right there. What female comes to a Mark Kozelek show alone.... he goes off on this tangent about how he gets calls from husbands on his voicemail. “That’s my wife Mark Kozelek!” he’s yelling and smiling at the same time. He tells a story about when he was with someone and her husband showed up and he was being chased down the street with this guy yelling at him “that’s my WIFE Mark Kozelek!” it’s probably true. We all know about Marks many girlfriends. Mark then asks what the girl in the front want him to sing, she says my love for u is u dying... which is probably on his set list already. He says he will after a couple of songs. He sings some more snapping his fingers with the beat, going to his stand to remember all the lyrics and comes over to stage near me. Singing to that side of the crowd. He makes eye contact with me and I am still stupidly smiling completely immersed hanging on every word. It really feels like he’s singing only to me. One song blends into the next. I have no idea which songs these are since they are off EP’s or collaborations I am not familiar with. Then maybe 666 Post and This is my Town. Then he stops and starts giving the very young blond couple up front who have been making out almost the entire show a hard time. Asks where they are from the young woman is from Finland, the guy is from Seattle. She goes to school at the university across the street. He asks how old they are, which both are in their early 20s. He starts giving them crap about young love. “It’s only gonna last a couple of months!” The older crowd starts rolling because, well we all know they never do last. Mark starts talking about all the relationships he had in his 20’s. Marks got quite the reputation. Who knows how much is true and how much is fiction. Turns out the young couple have been together a couple years, long distance. Then Mark feels bad about saying it wasn’t going to last and asks the girl what she wants to hear him sing. Her reply is Carry me Ohio! Which of course he’s never gonna sing. So, we all groan because yea no way. He says ok But just a little bit after this next song. He sings Mark Kozelek museum. Of which he gets the whole crowd singing diarrhea. Of course, everyone is just dying. This would be the crowd that laughs at all his fart jokes. Next, he sings the first girls request My Love for You is Undying. Great song off the new album, he comes over to my side of the stage and is singing, and I know the words to this one, I see him see me singing to. He smiles and then turns around snapping his fingers again. After this song he gets the guitarist to figure out Carry Me Ohio and we are all floored he’s gonna do it. They do the first verse then the chorus then he goes off on a tangent about the young couple. And it’s funny. But while he sings that song the crowd is riveted we are all just amazed he’s doing it. When he stops the crowd loses it and goes crazy then he tells us “fuck u guys!” “Fuck u!” to one side “fuck u!” to the other side “Fuck u guys!” The entire crowd is rolling! We r all dying because he’s laughing so hard while he does it. It’s all about the Mark experience. It truly is an evening with Mark. And he’s in great form. The whole concert you could tell he’s just loving what he’s doing right now. That’s why he keeps writing the way he does. He’s having a Moment. And we are all along for the ride. Maybe I am not as big a fan of the new material, but once I hear it live I understand. It’s meant to be heard live, your meant to interact with him, to be part of the music. I get where he’s going and respect that’s it’s something new and different. He calls Carry Me Ohio a pretty song. And it is. “10 years of my albums were all pretty.” He says speaking of his previous albums. I think he hates his back catalog. I love those albums, but I can see how he got bored with them sometimes. They were like music wall paper. Pretty, nice, unassuming. He’s probably sick of being ignored at European Festivals. This is more experimental, it demands to be listened to. To understand it you have to pay attention. It’s a challenge, he’s challenging us to really take time and concentrate. There are no easy answers any more. It’s no longer delegated to background music. It’s more free form, fluctuating and ever changing. It’s about everything and nothing. He sings about Katy, we know Katy. He sings about his current girlfriend Caroline. We know her too. He sings about his mortality, the passage of time. He sings about touring, and Europe and the music he’s listening to. The Linda Blair song... of which he pretends he’s sitting next to the exorcist and sounds like his head is spinning. I just start laughing and crying it’s just so outta control. It’s like nothing I have ever seen or been a part of.

  • It’s not a concert at this point it’s something else. He sings a brand-new song he wrote 2 days ago about 80s music and bullies. He sings other songs I don’t know. This is My Dinner next I think. He tells us he’s going to sing one more song then he tells the sound guy don’t turn the lights on after that song because if we want he will come back out and do an encore. Which of course he does. He sings I can’t live without my mother’s love. He gets a young man to sing with him who is really good actually it’s a beautiful rendition. And I am in love with it. When it’s over and he thanks us and the venue, the lights come on and I look at my phone. It’s 11! He just did a 3-hour set. WTF ! I know he saw me, and I am torn. Should I go to the side stage to see if I can meet him or go home. I don’t know what to do. So, I walk out the front and stand there. Not knowing if I should stay or if I should go. He sang about sometimes going to the front of the venue after a show. Maybe he will come out. I don’t know I panic because I have a 3 hour drive back home and I have to take my kids to school and go to work. I am torn. I really want to meet him. I know his tour is almost over in the US then it’s Europe then it’s over. With nothing on his schedule next year. I mean he might tour. He might not. It’s late in a strange town and I am starving. I blend in with a group of guys, so it looks like I am with them. They go to the bar across the street. I stop in front of the bar. Should I go in the bar? Maybe he will go there. I know he’s up until 7 am. What would happen if I did meet him? Would I get to talk to him? Get a drink? Or get ignored? Or worse nothing at all? I look around. I can’t take the chance I have to get home. I hop to the other street and head back to the car. Usually after a show I am on a massive high just over the top. Not this time. I hit the road and become incredibly depressed like crying in the car. It was just such a fun night. There were such highs, like a drug and I can’t believe it’s over. Emotional crash when in the car. I feel like I got to know him. Like a long-lost family member or boyfriend that just didn’t work out. It’s been miserable for me the last week. I can’t listen to him. I get too upset. How can one show mean this much to me? I am honestly at a loss of words. I do everything I can to distract from this post-concert depression. It’s worse than Radiohead. It’s bad. I manically start looking for another musician or band. Who’s been around for a while who’s got a big back catalog, so I can distract from my Mark depression. A band that’s been around since the 90’s. Someone who is still making relevant music. I need a special band to fill this void, this music hole. LOW has a new album out. Pitchfork gave it 8.7. They have a huge back catalog.... a tour. Nov 16. Madison Wisconsin that’s not too far. I check out their twitter. I tweet them. “Taking care of my Mark Kozelek depression with a new obsession LOW.” Omg they liked my Twitter! LOW…yea…. Let’s go with LOW.

  • That was a great read; thanks for that.

    He seems to be on brilliant form at the minute. I've got a ticket for his Edinburgh show in October and I really can't wait.

    That new Low album is incredible as well...

  • edited September 24 Posts: 142

    @dani9374 said:
    I just start laughing and crying it’s just so outta control.

    Too many drugs can do that to you.

  • Posts: 1,114

    Thanks for the essay. Other bands you may enjoy with decent catalogs are Spain and Great Lake Swimmers.

  • I have been listening to the new Paper Kites on the corner where u live. If u want pretty indie mellow pop.

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