It’s been a while but the “rock mum” came out to play this past weekend.
I’ve come to the conclusion that concert tickets are like buses – none for months then BANG the diary is full and the credit card is smoldering. I’ve got tickets to seven gigs for between now and mid-December with another two for 2015 booked (OK – Girl Child is going to one of them with her Auntie Fi instead)
The first gig on the list was a little bit different and, as it transpires, a big bit special.
For those of you who don’t know, as well as writing this blog and working on my bigger “creative baby”, I also write music reviews for a friend’s website –http://phoenixmusiconline.org
Friday night’s gig was the first one I’d attend where I’d written a review of the band’s debut EP and was also to be the first gig review I would write for the webpage. Add to the already mounting nerves, I was also to catch up with the band after their set.
The band in question here are an amazing up and coming hard rock band called Crobot from Pottsville, Pennsylvania USA. This was their first UK trip and they were playing the support slot for a UK based band.
Girl Child drew the short straw and agreed to chaperone me for the evening.
Having taken the train to Glasgow, met up with the Big Green Gummi Bear for a quick hello and a coffee at his office before he headed home to Boy Child, we set off up the hill to the O2 ABC in the city’s Sauchiehall Street. We arrived at the venue ten minutes before the doors were due to open to be greeted by a suspiciously short queue – ok two suspiciously short queues and yes, we did join the wrong one! Eventually, after a circular tour of the former cinema, we found ourselves in the right room. It’s safe to say that Glasgow’s O2 ABC 2 is an “intimate” venue! (At a guess, I’d say it would hold 250-300 max, perhaps a few more)
When we entered there were perhaps thirty folk there. Gulp!
Girl Child drew me a withering look and retreated to stand near the back of the room, leaning against the low wall that bordered the raised lounge seated area. Sensing that she was best left alone, I wandered over to stand in front of the stage. The “barrier” was already lined with music fans- all 12 of them- and a handful of people were gathered behind. I joined them.
Bang on time Crobot walked out onto the smallest stage I’ve ever seen and, appearing totally unfazed by the distinct lack of audience, launched into a storming six song set. Right from the off, they performed as though they were playing to a sell-out crowd. Kudos to them!
A quick glance round told me that Girl Child had retreated even further back and was now curled up on a velour covered seat in the raised area. She was messing with her mobile phone. Definitely best left alone!
Standing among such a small audience made me feel surprisingly self-conscious. I almost felt as though I was intruding in a bizarre kind of way.
As Crobot started their final number audience numbers had swelled and they left the stage to an audible round of applause. Considering the situation, those guys did an awesome job out there.
With my ears ringing, I went in search of Girl Child who reluctantly admitted they had been ok.
A few minutes later I went up to the bar and spotted two of the band members standing chatting to some folk near the merchandising stall. With slightly shaking hands, I went back to where Girl Child was sitting and declared it was time to take the final leap of faith and introduce myself to Crobot.
Any of you who know me well will fully understand just how far out of my comfort zone this was taking me! “Rock Mum” persona was firmly painted on as we approached the band’s front man.
I needn’t have worried.
The band’s singer turned to face me, his face lit up as the sight of a familiar FB face and he embraced me like a long lost friend, declaring warmly, “You made it.” My nerves vanished. He then turned to Girl Child and hugged her too. The look on her face was priceless!
A few moments later the bass player joined us with a high five and a friendly if mischievous grin.
Two nicer more friendly guys you couldn’t hope to meet.
With the ice broken we chatted for a few minutes, struggling to hear each other over the headline act on stage, and posed for the obligatory photo (Yes Girl Child messed up the first one!)
The venue was now about two thirds full but the star act of the night had been and gone and done it. All those latecomers will never know the talent they missed.
Quietly Girl Child and I slipped out into the night in search of some dinner, leaving the headliners doing their thing. (I’ve never left a gig early before!)
A slightly surreal but wonderful experience!
Oh and what do you talk to two heavy rock stars of the future about? Why – their trip to the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and the fact that you have actually been in and around their home town back in Pennsylvania. Small world!