Tag: concerts

Celtic Woman

Recently I decided to embrace my cheesy side. For years I have loved listening to Celtic music when I’m stressed out, starting out with the amazing Enya.  My brother would get annoyed when I listened to Enya and one day he said to me ‘Aren’t you relaxed enough yet!’.

After my mission I got introduced to the group Celtic Woman.  This is the Celtic version of a boy/girl band but I LOVE it!  Its so peaceful and while admittedly cheesy its calming and beautiful. While watching their Believe PBS concert the fundraisers mentioned a concert for Celtic Woman coming to SLC.  On a whim I decided to go for it.  It’d been a while since I’d been to a concert and figured I could find a friend to go with me.

The concert ended up being tonight and I went with my friend Jill.  It was a lot of fun and something different to spice up life.  I thoroughly enjoyed myself- a night full of beautiful music and despite the cheesy lighting it was great!

Me sporting my Celtic woman shirt

Over the years the women in Celtic Woman have changed but the amazing singer Chloe Agnew and fiddler Mairead Nesbitt have remained constant.  Their numbers were definitely the highlights of the night.  Chloe is just a stunning talent.  They had a broadway medley and her singing I Dreamed a Dream was awesome.

Other highlights were Ave Maria and Danny Boy.  Here are 2 videos I took.  Please just listen because the video is shaky.  I just can’t seem to keep my hand still enough while shooting video.

Jill and I at the concert

I love going to concerts.  There is just something about live entertainment that never gets old.  I think my ideal date is a guy thinking of cool concert and planning it out.  That would be awesome!

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Josh Groban

Yes that's a Josh Groban fan club t-shirt. I am in his fan club!
My friend Jill and I at the concert

After the excitement of the big race I had another treat (it really was the best day ever!), I was able to go to the Josh Groban concert. I had gotten the tickets as a birthday present to myself months ago. In fact, I debated about whether to enter the race or not because I didn’t want it to spoil the concert. In the end I am glad I decided to do both. (I was really tired by the end of the day but it was a good tired! A well-used, exhausted kind of tired).

Josh Groban has a special place in my heart for two reasons.  First, he is the same age as me and he came into fame when I started college .  It might sound cheesy but I feel like his songs could be a soundtrack to my life.  I LOVE his voice.  I know some of his songs are over-the-top but I still love them. I can think of countless times when I’ve felt depressed, turned on his albums and felt inspired, even comforted.

The second reason is in 2007 I was very depressed about my work when I decided to get tickets for Josh Groban’s Awake concert.  I had high hopes going into the concert because Awake is one of my favorite albums by any artist, ever.  Unfortunately I had terrible seats because I missed the purchase time while working at the temple.  They were true nose bleed seats- almost as high as the arena went.

To make matters worse his opening act was strange African techno music that made me nauseous.  (Saturday’s openning act was an amazing piano player named Elew.  It was unlike any piano player I’ve ever heard before. He even reached into the piano and plucked the strings- so cool! Check him out on itunes).

Naturally after the opening act I was feeling a little down about the concert and my bad seats, when they announced the filming of Josh’s Awake album would be that night in Salt Lake! (To listen to the full concert that I got to hear check out Josh’s Awake Live album.)

In excitement I left my seat to get a drink and as I made my way to the foyer a woman approached me.

She said “Would you like to move to lower seats?”

“Of course” I replied and I went and got my friend Camille.  We were moved to row 13 right by the stage!  There were moments Josh was singing to me and he was so close I touched his fingers (sorry to sound like a gaping teen but it was exciting!).  Particularly to go from zero to hero was so thrilling.  It was much better then if we had bought those tickets out right.

Anyway, it was such a low time for me that I have always felt like the concert was a tender mercy.  While this years concert was not quite as memorable it was still great!  In a strange way it was actually more intimate because it wasn’t scripted like the last DVD ready event.  It is awe inspiring to hear someone’s voice fill up a stadium like Josh Groban’s does.  He is an amazing talent and I love going to his concerts.

Excuse the shakiness in these clips.

Murtaugh List and Regina Spektor

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So last week I went to a Regina Spektor concert.  She is a very talented singer born in Russia who fits well into the indie female folksy genre that is so popular.  She is similar to Ingrid Michaelson, Norah Jones, Aimee Mann, and Missy Higgins.  In fact, in some ways I like her better because she is edgy and daring with melodies and arrangements.  On the other hand, sometimes I don’t get her style- she’s too edgy for me! Her song Fidelity is featured in a Target ad right now and her songs Us and Hero were on the 500 Days of Summer soundtrack.

Being fans, Anna and I were naturally excited to be attending her concert in Salt Lake.  It was kind of a crazy weekend for me.  I went to the Regina concert Friday night and then Saturday drove down to St. George for my friend Bonnie’s wedding.  I was exhausted by the time Sunday came around! Thanks to Anna for coming with me to the concert and to St.  George.  She was such a great help to me, and it was a big sacrifice for her. I love you!

Anyway, Friday we went to the concert- Anna, her roommate Becca and myself.  Before the concert we ate at the Pie up by the University of Utah (I know enemy territory!).  It is the best pizza I have had outside of New York.  You don’t even need any toppings. It’s delicious!  After dinner we drove to the concert.  It was at a club called In the Venue that is standing room only.  It is the same place we went for the Ingrid Michelson concert but this time it was even more crowded.  Plus, we arrived early so that added another hour to the standing.   By the time Regina’s opening act was finished (btw the opening act was thoroughly lame…in the grand tradition of opening acts) I was already exhausted.  It was a mosh pit with hardly room to move.  To make matters worse, even though I was up front I was in a place where the grand piano blocked any view of Regina.  No matter how I tried to crane my neck I couldn’t see anything but her legs on the pedals.  This seemed like a lot to put up with for a pair of legs!

Finally the crowd made me feel nauseated and I was getting overheated.  I bravely began to make my way through the crowd.  I basically became a human plow trying to find my way to the back.  Along the way I pushed many a young kid and even had some rude comments.  One woman said “I was standing there first and thanks for stepping on my toes”.  I felt like saying “I beg your pardon mademoiselle.  I am sorry I didn’t ask your permission to step on you in a MOSH PIT!”.  Rude!   Finally I made my way back and wolfed down a Gatorade for $4.  It was then that I realized “I’m too old for this stuff”.

Murtaugh List

I’m too old for moshing it at standing room only concerts. I’m too old for road trips with little sleep.  I’m too old for Motel 6’s with lame, scratchy sheets.    I’m too old for nothing but pizza and root beer for dinner.  I need some nutrients!  I’m too old for skipping 2 meals and then binging on a huge dinner.  I’m too old for giant ice cream Sundays and anything with the words “extreme sour” in it.  I’m too old for trendy clothes, head banging music, tantrums, sleeping  in past 9, wearing t-shirts with “funny” sayings, practical jokes, big wads of bubble gum, prank phone calls, cartoon network, teeny bopper music, any kind of eating contest, glitter, costumes for no purpose, camping for “fun”, sleeping on the floor, watching the Hills or America’s Next Top Model, all-nighters, selling my blood, cosmic anything, group sports of any kind (especially dodge ball), Weird Al anything, Chef Boyardee, lame car games, ice skating and dancing to impress a boy (what was I thinking!), eating fake cheese, pop tarts, ramen noodles and most prepackaged foods,  flirting to impress a boy, anything in a “fun land/arcade”, and petty fights with friends.  The list goes on.

Basically I’m too old to be doing things that aren’t genuinely me.  I am too old to be playing a part or trying to fit in. I am not saying I have to be completely selfish but when you are young you go along for the ride easier.  Now I would be more likely to express my feelings and then agree to what others want to do. I remember going to concerts at the Velor in Provo.  It is loud, crowded, and miserable.  The music isn’t my taste and you know why I was there- to impress a boy.  I am too old for that kind of stuff.   If  I do  end up doing something on my Murtaugh list expect me to feel tired, even exhausted and grumpy.  I will try my best but no guarantees!

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If you are wondering about the title of my entry, the Murtaugh list comes from an episode of my favorite show How I Met Your Mother where Ted makes a list of the things he’s too old for.  These include going to raves, sleeping on futons, piercing your ears, and laser tag. Then Barnie and Ted have a challenge where Barnie attempts to do all the things on the Murtaugh list and Ted does a list of  stuff old people do like go to bed at 8 and eat at 4.  It’s pretty funny.

The other unfortunate thing about the Regina concert is she had a foul mouth.  It was too bad because her music is beautiful.  I don’t know why women feel they have to  be so ugly and unseemly.  It makes me sad.

Roommate Reunion and Ingrid Michaelson

I have mentioned on this blog that my current roommate is my 30th.  Over the years I have shared apartments with 30 different women.  They have each taught me much and almost all have been positive experiences.  That said- some have risen to the top and become life-long friends while a few more have made an indelible impact on my life.  In my fantasy life I would live minutes away from all these special friends.  We would swap recipes, watch each other’s kids and be there for hugs and comfort.  Sadly most of them live away from Utah (and even the one’s that do have a life.  Afterall, we aren’t living in a Norman Rockwell painting!).  Still, my heart yearns for the friends I do not regularly see.  I miss them and wish they were here.

Lately I have felt a little lonely so you can imagine my excitement over a recent trip to California for a ROOMMATE REUNION!  One of my most prized friends/former roommates Emily Alvillar Whitman came to my sister Megan’s in Palo Alto, California and I joined her.  The three of us then had a lovely weekend of reminiscing and catching up.  It was very nice of Megan to host and allow us to sleep on her coach! The weekend was simple- nothing too flashy- but it was great to reconnect with an old friend.  Plus, I got to spend time with Megan and her family.  Seth was very nice to watch the girls so the three of us could go to San Francisco for the day. (Thanks Seth!).  We went to all the sites Golden Gate Park and Bridge, Chinatown, Piers etc.  Emily got some jewelry and we converted a magnet into a keepsake ornament to help us remember the trip.

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On Sunday we enjoyed spending time with my family for my grandma Wagner’s birthday party.  She is such a wonderful woman and loving example in my life.  I will have to write an entire post about her someday.  Emily was a good sport and seemed to enjoy herself at our family party (sometimes being at someone else’s family function can be awkward.  Thanks Emily!).

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On Monday it began to rain and then Tuesday it was torrential downpour.  I don’t think I have ever seen it rain so much in Northern California.   It was so bad that on Tuesday the rain made the battery short out while driving Emily to the airport (after visiting the temple).  We ended up putting Emily in a yellow cab and then Seth came to my rescue.  Hopefully the car won’t sustain any permanent damage.  If it does I will feel awful.

We made some cute crafts on Monday.  I am a volunteer for festival of trees and as such we are each responsible for creating 8 gifts that can be sold at the festival.  For my gift I am making long sleeve t-shirts with Christmas symbols on them.  I hope they turn out ok.  It’s kind of complicated how you make them but basically you cut out a stencil out of freezer paper and then you iron on the paper to the front and back of the shirt.  Then you pain the shirt with textile paint.  Once the paint has dried you set the paint with the iron.  If any of you have cute and inexpensive craft ideas for the festival let me know.  It has to be something that does not require sewing or knitting.

Anyway, it was a wonderful trip and I hope we do it again.  It is important to reconnect with friends. You never know when you will need them or they will need you.  I believe that people are put in our lives for a reason and that we will be accountable if we throw people aside as if they are worth nothing.  Relationships are worth sacrificing for and certainly worth preserving.  Why is I seem to be in the minority in this view?  It seems so logical to me!

One last comment is on Friday I went to hear Ingrid Michaelson sing at a concert in Salt Lake.  She was a great performer with a beautiful voice.  What made it more exciting is the tickets were only $15 plus fees!  Anna and I went and it made me all the more grateful that she is here.  I’m so glad that we are not only sisters but that we have so many common interests- even enjoy the same concerts.  I am sure the time will come when she is busier with friends and school but for the moment we are spending a lot of time together and I love it!  The only downside to the concert is it was standing room only. With my foot condition it is hard for me to stand for hours (I told Anna that I am not as young as I used to be! I’m too old for this stuff!).  I am not sure how I am going to get through the Regina Spektor concert at the same venue but somehow I will figure it out.  It is worth it to see such amazing talent and spend time with my sister.  I can’t wait to hear Regina sing!

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