Meeting Keane, and other brushes with stardom in 2009

If you’ve read my blog for any amount of time, you know that I love going to concerts, symphonies, operas, plays, and musicals.

My favorite concert of 2009 was Keane at the Hollywood Palladium (with Mat Kearney as the opener). My “bosom friend” Esther treated me to my ticket for my birthday, and we met up with my friends Kathryn and Elizabeth in Hollywood for a night we’ll never forget last May. I was recently going through my pictures of 2009, and realized that I never blogged about my experience meeting Keane after the concert, nor had I mentioned other “celebrities” I met in the past year.
The Palladium is a fantastic venue, and I was excited to actually be there for a performance (after being a lifetime closet fan of The Lawrence Welk Show.) It underwent a very extensive renovation that was completed 6 months earlier in 2008, but it still had the retro charm. Mat Kearney, who has become one of my other recent music obsessions, performed a stellar opening set (and Esther and I saw Mat again in SLC in October). Keane’s set was phenomenal…the best performance I’d seen of their three concerts I’ve attended (Coincidentally, all in LA). After the show, us girls were DETERMINED to meet our favorite band. We waited out on the street by the door, shivering in the cold next to the tour bus, for over an hour until the boys from Battle came out to greet their adoring fans.


Esther with Tim

Kat with Tim

An awkward shot of me with Tim (there wasn’t any time for retaking pics)

Tom greeting his adoring fans

Esther fondling Richard’s ear (I mean, caressing his cheek)

Another embarassingly bad shot of me by Tom post-autograph (I was the dedicated photographer of the post-concert experience, so there aren’t any decent pics of me)

I was lucky to go to more concerts in 2009 than any other prior year. Despite my anorexic bank account, family and friends with connections hooked me up with great tickets throughout the year (They no longer think it odd when I tell them which concert tickets I want for my birthday and Christmas) I also got some insanely cheap concert tickets off Twitter and fan sites. Here’s my 2009 list:

January: Missy Higgins, Justin Nozuka, and Lenka at Atlanta Center Stage
February: Flight of the Conchords at Atlanta Fox Theater
2 Fox Elipsus Shows (Austell and Snellville, GA)
March: New Kids on the Block at The Bi-Lo Center, Greenville, SC
April: Jersey Boys in Chicago (technically a Broadway musical, but it FELT like a concert)
May: Keane and Mat Kearney at the Hollywood Palladium
June: No Doubt at Atlanta’s Lakewood Amphitheater
August: Greg Laswell and Elizabeth and the Catapult at the Murray Theater
Iron and Wine at Gallivan Center, SLC (sort of…long story)
October: Mat Kearney and Vedera at In the Venue, SLC
November: Imogen Heap at In The Venue, SLC
Justin Nozuka and Elizabeth and the Catapult, Glass House, Pomona, CA
December: Natalie Cole with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Salt Lake City
Peter Breinholt (et al.) at Rose Wagner Theater, Salt Lake City

Throughout the year, I did meet a handful of celebs. Here are the pictures I was able to snag…

Me with Elizabeth (of Elizabeth and the Catapult)

Missy Higgins (I was 5 feet away from her at the merch table, but Taylor didn’t want to wait in line to meet her) I DID have a wonderful 5 minute conversation with her in 2005 in SLC.


 

Rosie with Peter Breinholt (I could write a whole blog post about these two…)

Rosie and I with Ryan Shupe (of Ryan Shupe and the Rubber Band)

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir – obviously, I didn’t meet the whole choir, but I have several friends and relatives who are in MoTab, or the Orchestra on Temple Square

 

Waiting in line to meet David Archuleta at his Christmas CD signing in November

This goofy Archie kid went to Murray High, where I graduated, and used to hang out with my sister Mary. When she came with us to the CD signing, he said “Hey Mary, I like your hoodie!”

Rosie with HER favorite (American) Idol

Mat Kearney – In The Venue

Last week, Esther and I saw Mat Kearney in concert at In the Venue in SLC. We’d seen him open for Keane in LA earlier this year, and were impressed by his stuff. I’d heard some of his music prior to that show, such as his radio hit “Nothing Left to Lose.” but this year I’ve been getting into more of his albums. We started our night out with dinner at Zupa’s, then headed to In The Venue in SLC.

Waiting for the show

The opening band was Vedera, and they did a short, but sweet, set. Their style was reminiscent of Paramore, and I’ve had their CD in heavy rotation all week. After tiring of the poor view from the back of the main floor, we headed up into the loft and sat on a six-foot high bench. We called it the crow’s nest and loved the view. Mat started around 9 pm and did a solid 2-hour set. Highlights were “Breathe In, Breathe Out,” “Undeniable,” “Closer to Love,” “Crashing Down,” and “City of Black and White.” I was particularly impressed with how crisp the percussion was…so much more defined than listening to the album. It enjoyed coming to the show with a greater appreciation of his music than his pre-Keane set in May. Esther and I are now certifiable “Kearneyheads!” (in addition to our Keane obsession…oddly enough the two acts share a lot of the same letters)

At the end of the show, Vedera came back on and did the final song with Mat and the Band. There was a great synergy between the two bands….you could tell that they were having fun on the tour. They barely made it to SLC, as the prior show was in Denver just as it was being slammed with a bunch of snow. We were glad they made it, because it was a show that was unforgettable…

It’s undeniable how brilliant you are
In an unreliable world you shine like a star
It’s unforgettable now that we’ve come this far
It’s unmistakable that you’re undeniable

Post-concert afterglow