Saturday, November 20, 2010

How did the Spanish band Delorean reinforce my faith in strangers?

To know me is to know that I'm prone to over analysis.
It's time for one of those moments, with an added dose of linking unrelated events that really aren't linked at all.

Might I suggest having the song "Deli" by Delorean serve as your background music to this post?

The story of last Wednesday's concert at Lincoln Hall might have begun in July 2008, a couple weeks before the 7th Annual Lebowski Fest in Louisville, Kentucky. I had purchased 3 passes to the event (which ended up selling out) but it turned out I would be making the trip by myself. I sold the two passes to two strangers - a couple from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

That couple, Tara & Dan, became quick friends and remain the gold standard that "Achievers" (Fans of The Big Lebowski) are not one-dimensional. We quickly discovered that many of our musical tastes overlap - but not all, which is where the beauty lies. Since we first met over 2 years ago, we still keep in touch and like to bring new music to each others' attention.

Fast forward to last month, October: my month of Twitter immersion, where I stumbled upon this blog post from someone who is followed by Lost in Concert (another great Twit-find, for the record). The blogger of easy tiger. is a much more prolific concert goer than yours truly - and with an overlapping taste of music that reminded me of Dan & Tara. It was an insta-follow as far as I was concerned. It was the post casually mentioning Delorean, and their upcoming concert, that started my personal scouting of the band.

After a couple weeks of sampling nearly every YouTube video of the band's songs, I made the decision that I was going to try to get to this show. Yeah, it was on a Wednesday Night (a night usually reserved for basketball), but did I mention that the show was at my new favorite Lincoln Hall? Normally, I'm more focused with providing specific friends with full albums weeks in advance to get them as hyped as I am for a show. This time, I just casually Facebook posted a live version of the above track along with another live performance of a different song with an open invitation looking for someone to join me.

Much to my surprise and delight the aforementioned Tara stepped up! She was going to be in town for a major convention and wouldn't mind catching up with me while checking out a new band. She wasn't 100% certain though - it was going to have to be a game time decision due to how exhausting long days on a convention floor can become. That's why I didn't buy tickets in advance. However, I did contact Lincoln Hall (though a chat function on their website that I've never used before) and got a table reserved for us in the balcony.

Trying to continue my "thinking smartly ahead" plan I stopped by Lincoln Hall on the way to picking up Tara to buy tickets. The Lincoln Hall guy told me he was expecting the show to sell out shortly after doors opened. Initially, I had dismissed that as salesmanship but a Lincoln Hall tweet noting a recent rush of ticket purchases got me nervous. I was only able to buy one ticket, for myself, per Lincoln Hall policy. If I'm going to love their ticketless operation - and the anti scalping side effects that occur - I quickly accepted that I would just have to get Tara back to the venue quickly. Tickets remaining: 40. Well, 39 after my hand was stamped.

Being in the Lincoln Hall balcony was a first for me, normally I want to be as close to the action as possible. However, Tara doesn't have the height-specific luxuries that I have which makes being up front good for me and a obstructed experience for her. Not to mention she was later thankful for having the table and seat during the opening acts to help rest her feet (which I learned some 24 hours later included a broken toe). The songs I recognized from my YouTube tour were awesome, and the songs that I didn't recognize convinced me to buy the band's album.

I'm awful at "concert blogging" but the one thing that I took away from Delorean's performance was the enthusiasm - especially that of the keyboardist. If I were to ever have the musical ability to be in a band, I would most likely have antics similar to his. Not since the excellence of Phoenix's touring drummer had my attention been such in demand for someone not fronting a group.

If Tara had not commented on my Facebook post, I wouldn't have gone to that show. To a larger extent, if I had not been so oddly prone to talk to strangers, I never would have met Tara. And to take this to an inconceivable extent: My entire experience last Wednesday seemed to create an odd sense of self validation. In the past 3 years I've made a conscious decision to pursue my interests with more zeal (i.e. pursing my love of Lebowski, going to more concerts, and not being afraid to approach strangers). I was very thankful to Tara, and I told her such... Best drinks I've ever bought for a girl! (Note: Dan and Tara are now engaged. More proof that married, or soon to be married, women love me.)

As a post script to this great concert, I sent a message to another stranger. No, not the blogger that initially pointed me into Delorean's direction (although I will direct-message this post). Another great find is the blog Amanda's Music Selection. The writer of that blog is in Toronto, and we all know how I feel about music from Canada! We have been trading messages about musical acts and future concerts we are excited about (I'm seeing Freelance Whales, she's seeing Wolf Parade). Turns out Delorean is making a stop soon in Toronto - she may check'em out. I hope she does - if only to keep this wonderful world of strangers spinning.

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