… it was more important, pain more painful, laughter much louder… yeah, when I was young…”
I was standing in a field full of people. Most in lawn chairs. Most over the age of fifty. Probably over sixty. Hard to tell as the sun was setting. My husband and I had been waiting for Fun before abandoning it for Eric Burdon. HAAAA… sorry, I just amused myself at your expense. Let me start over. My husband and I were at the Bluesfest. We’d just found a good space to watch the band Fun. play. They still had fifteen minutes until the show would start. I had been a bit bummed out because Eric Burdon was performing at the same time on a different stage. My loving husband suggested we leave our good spot and check out the other stage for a bit. So we did. Thank you, loving husband!!!
It was an interesting walk from that stage to the other. I think perhaps it crossed some time space continuum. The Fun crowd was young. We felt old. We got to the other stage and felt like children. Out of place in either direction.
I wasn’t alive in the sixties. Not for this incarnation anyway. Since I was a preteen I had a love for sixties music and culture. I idealized the time period in a way that was completely unrealistic. I was indeed wearing rose coloured glasses. Oh to be young!
My teenage years and early twenties were filled with so much emotion and intensity for the things I loved. I felt things so deeply. Things, events, and people held so much promise and power. Now older, and wiser, I know that we’re all equal and no thing or person has all the answers, or will provide me with eternal happiness. The grass isn’t greener on the other side. Every pretty picture is an illusion. Every story has two sides. What goes up must come down. As an old lady, I know stuff. In learning all this stuff, I’ve become bit of a drag. My multi-coloured hope has been muddied with cynicism. Only a few things can clean off that mud. One of them is certain music or visual art. There is something about the power of Eric Burdon’s voice that makes me feel very much alive.
I joked to my husband and said that it would be great if three of my favourite songs could be covered in the first fifteen minutes before returning to see Fun.. Eric came out on stage and started singing “When I was Young”. Pure Joy! Wow, I was hearing the song live. HOW CRAZY is THAT? Ok, so yeah, Eric Burdon is in his seventies. The year is 2013. Someone has already landed on the moon. My 17-year-old dreamer self is never going to be at Woodstock 1969. Heck, it’s been 20 years since I went to my first Lollapalooza. Awesome things have happened in the world. Incredibly sad things have happened. Time has moved on. Yet, here I was feeling like I was getting my chance to live out all my hippie dreams. I had this idea that it would be so wild to see everyone in the audience and on stage turn into their 40 year ago selves in the blink of an eye, just for a second. Well, I wasn’t alive 4o years ago but that’s not really the point. The music was transporting me back in time and it was dreamy.
In the fifteen minutes we listened, he also sang “Spill The Wine” which I was REALLY hoping he would sing. I wanted to hear his cover of “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood” but we figured that was more of an encore type song. I also would have loved to hear San Franciscan Nights.
If I could only choose to hear 100 songs for the rest of my life, all the above songs would be on that list.
We headed back to other stage and Fun. had already started. Oops! Either way, we saw most of the show and I was very impressed. They were very engaging. The lead singer, Nate Ruess seemed very genuine. I compared him to Eric Burdon and said how he also had such a powerful way of singing. Just cuts right through to your soul. My husband pointed out that he sounds and looks a lot more like Mick Jagger. Good point. He really does. Yet, it was this other quality I was comparing. Oh, and I do think it is rather fitting that Fun’s award winning song is “We Are Young”.
I also liked the coloured glowing balloons that were bouncing around the audience at one point. That was Fun.
*This post was written over a week ago. I kept waiting to edit a photo and never got around to it. I’ve been tired.
Here is a layout about the Bluesfest. The top photo is of the audience at the Eric Burdon concert. The rest are from the Fun. concert.