Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Trevor Hall: Or, How I Learned to Stop Criticizing and Love the Hippies

Monday night marked the occasion of my very second concert (not including the strange Christian Rock concert I went to for reasons I still don't understand). I wasn't terribly excited because I knew there was no way it could outshine my very first concert experience. In any case, it didn't start off with a (good) bang.

The time on our tickets said the doors opened at 6pm and the show began at 7pm. Two of my roommates went early, and my other roommate and I arrived at 7pm. Unfortunately, the folks at Velour must have slept in, because the doors didn't open until 8pm. We spent the hour in the shadow of the building, forlornly watching the thermometer at the bank across the street as the temperature slowly dropped from 32 degrees, to 31, to 30...and finally the doors opened. There was then a good 45 minutes of sitting on the hard wooden benches under the vigorously blowing fans before at last the first opening act ascended the stage: Cubworld, a large bearded Hawai'ian man and his accompianists. I'd heard a few of Cubworld's songs a couple of years ago, and they seemed mellow and nice, but this time around, it was quite different, way more rock-y. After Cubworld came Cas Haley, another large bearded man who was very fun and funny as he sang. He gained a lot of respect from me until he sang a song about legalizing marijuana, which was just ridiculous. But I'm still going to brag about how he pushed past me in the crowd afterward at least three times.

Finally, FINALLY, Trevor Hall's band came on stage to set up, and one of my roommates and I weasled our way up through the harangue to the front where the rest of our party was standing excitedly waiting. As we were waiting, listening to the incomprehensible music coming over the speakers and chatting casually, I felt a sharp pain in my back, as though someone had rammed their cranium into my shoulder blade, which is actually what happened, as some random hipster dude in tight pants had passed out onto me. This definitely happens to me a lot-- a girl passed out on my feet during a boring tour of the Denver Public Library on our King Tut trip last semester. Actually, people passing out kind of freaks me out a little, because I feel obligated to use my first aid skills. Not that I don't want to, I just don't want to find out at the wrong time that I'm incompetent.

Anyway, after that episode, fog filled the room, a sitar hummed, and Trevor Hall descended from the ceiling. Just kidding. He walked on stage nonchalantly, feet bare, jeans cuffed, prayer beads and dreadlocks swinging. Most of the songs the band played at first, I hadn't heard (apparently the 18-song CD my roommates made for me in preparation wasn't half of what he has put out), and I was beginning to feel a bit ridiculous, and the French Composition I had yet to write began to nag at the back of my mind. The two boys at my left pushed past me to show a message to the two girls at my right (which read something to the effect of "Let's hook up after the show"), and I felt even more ridiculous. The drummer suddenly was the only one on stage, playing a crazy solo that could've been at any metal show (but what do I know). But then, the noise stopped and the drummer disappeared, Trevor Hall walked back up on stage, the crowd obnoxiously began yelling requests, Trevor Hall felt embarrassed and criticized and shyly began to play his solo song, and I had a revelation.

He played a song called "Te Amo," and it was beautiful. I can't get it out of my mind, and as we all stood silently taking in the simple melody and poetic lyrics, I surprisingly felt like crying. The whole night, the crowd had been loud and crazy, and suddenly we all felt the same quiet peace. At risk of getting far too overly cheesey, I'll leave it at that, but really, there was something there.
Trevor Hall playing "Te Amo" (that's actually a lie, but it's the best picture of T-Hall by himself)

Listen (ignore the chit-chat and just focus on the song):

After "Te Amo," the band came back and they all played a number of other songs, one of which was "Om Shakti Om" (yeah). During the chorus, we all clapped in time and sang "Om Shakti Om" (those exact words) together, and my French essay faded away, and the criticism I knew would come when I recounted these events to certain people subsided (but now that I'm thinking about it again, I fully expect the criticism to come!), and we jumped and clapped and chanted/sang together and it was wonderful.

There were a few more songs, including a two-song encore, a slightly random poetry recitation (of the song "My Baba"), and then came the last song, the only one played that night (besides some Bob Marley remixes from Cas Haley & Trevor Hall) that I knew all the words to-- "Lime Tree," one of my favorite songs that appeared on the CD from my roommates.
The band playing some song

When the concert finally ended, and the crowd rushed to greet Mr. Hall, my roommate and I pressed our way through the throng and finally escaped into the cold air, away from the smells of patchouli and energy drink. We ran quickly to our car, still on a high, ears ringing in the way they do after over-exposure, much like how everything appears green when you come inside from a bright day. As soon as we were home we went directly to bed, and I let the memories of the sounds sink in, smiling a little as I realized it was okay that hippies were silly, because sometimes it's nice just to let go.
Check out these good songs by Trevor Hall if you're interested:
Te Amo (see above)
Lime Tree
Other Ways
To Zion
31 Flavors
...and a few others. If you're interested, let me know and I'll send you some more.

P.S. If you get the movie reference from the title, kudos to you!


Madison Mercer said...

Dr. Strangelove, Or How I learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb.

And no, I did not google it. I've seen that movie, at least twice.

LP said...

What a great post! Very interesting to read. And I'm glad you ended up having a good time.

I really like Te Amo and Lime Tree.

btw, did you get your French essay finished?

Jared and Megan said...

I like a few of those quite a lot, especially the ones Mom liked, and that you said were your favorites, too.

I would not laugh at you. I've had experiences like that, too! I'm glad you had fun after a while.