Mountain Goats Adventure!
Saturday night I trekked out to Claremont, CA with some friends to see a "Super Secret Mountain Goats show." We left with no idea when it started or anything and just hoped for the best. To even know where it was involved emailing John and then being told very little. Adventure! When we got there we realized we were on the quietest, emptiest college campus ever. But! We managed to time it very well and get there not long before it started and we caught the whole thing.
IT WAS AMAZING. Like being back in time. Before, in fact, I ever got into them. Rachel, the old bass player/singer was there and she played and she sang, and she hadn't played with him since 95 (they said). WOW! I was surprised.
It was in a small room at what appeared to be at a small college, and it was just John on an acoustic guitar, then later Rachel playing bass. In the last few years I have kind of fallen out of love with seeing the Mountain Goats live, which was sad for me since it used to be one of my favorite things to do. It just got too big, and has the same frat boys giving devil horns during the wrong songs, and then a set list that didn't change from night to night (which made wanting to see more than one show on a tour, not very important). But really, the audience stuff probably got to me the worst. The last time he played in NYC I missed and wasn't sad about that. And because I am nutty, not being sad about it actually made me sad.
Oh well. The point is that this show was AMAZING. Old songs, and new songs, and RACHEL. The audience was a bit on the annoying side (and I am being forgiving since I loved the show so much) but maybe I am just a curmugeonly grandma who isn't down with the young people? Definite possibility. Lots of dreadlocks but then also people who looked like they haven't been washing their hair in months, but didn't have dreads... I don't think I get that? Off topic! What makes college kids want dreadlocks? I had a roommate in college who had them and it was so gross. She'd rub them on me just to piss me off. Ugh, bad memories.
It was like watching two people have the time of their life. Maybe they were! John even said that he was having the best time in the room at one point, and it definitely looked that way. And it ended with one of my favorite of his songs that goes "Goddamn it! I love John Coltrane!" that hasn't been recorded. It also included "Going to Kansas" which I take as a personal shout-out since I am always going to Kansas afterall.
I am even feeling so good, sitting here listening to the show, that I don't feel like talking about how awful the opener was. He sounded like he should be on the Dawson's Creek soundtrack (voice-wise) but then had these really cheesy songs about, well, doing it. All sex songs all the time from that guy! But even he (and many smelly college kids) could not ruin my enjoyment of this show!
I guess I now have a great and unique LA experience. Well, in addition to Knott's Scary Farm and making a beach video and Disneyland and all of that. I like it though. Feels more like home. At least a eensy weensy bit. And i have a permasmile on my face that may last at least one more day.