With summer just around the corner, I'm looking forward to a trip to the beach, cold beers on the patio, ice cream cones, winery weekends, fireflies, and the start of concert season. I think Larry looks forward to summer concerts more than anything else, and as a person who is constantly complaining about the DC heat, it's the music that gets him through the summer months.
Throughout the past almost nine years that we've been together, Larry and I have spent summers going to concerts, usually with a big group of friends, and if we're lucky, with a picnic and a cooler full of adult beverages. Some summers there are only one or two concerts worth going to, and others, we have trouble making up our minds as to which concerts we'll spend our money on. This year is shaping up to be the best concert season yet. A slew of favorite bands plus a handful of recent musical discoveries will be in the DC area this summer and we went on a bit of ticket buying spree.
Already on the calendar:
May 27 | Jason Isbell at Mansion on O
June 2 | Joe Pug + David Wax Museum at 9:30 Club
June 4 | Rhett Miller at Jammin Java
June 28 | Josh Ritter + Brandi Carlile + The Lumineers at Wolf Trap
August 15 | Emmylou Harris at Wolf Trap
We're also hoping to attend the following if our schedules and wallets allow:
July 11 | Big Head Todd & The Monsters at Wolf Trap
July 24 | Milo Greene at DC9
As I wrote this list, I started wishing that I had made a list of concerts for every summer. It would be fun to go back over the years (all the way back to high school - you couldn't pay me to go to another Dave Matthews Band concert again! And I would rather stab myself in the eye than ever go back to Nissan Pavilion, er, Jiffy Lube Live.) to see how my musical tastes have changed and to remember which songs provided the soundtracks to my summers. There are some concerts that have become traditions (my family gathers for Emmy's concert at Wolf Trap every summer), while I'm looking forward to checking out a few new venues this year (Mansion on O, Jammin Java).
I've seen a lot of great concerts over the summers, but I started thinking about what were the most defining musical experiences of my life. There were a handful of performances that were more than just concerts - situations where the combination of venue and artist combined to create something completely magical and unforgettable:
The best musical experiences of my life, so far:
+ Big Head Todd & the Monsters at Red Rocks Amphitheatre | Morrison, Colorado 2005
+ Josh Ritter at The Orange Peel | Asheville, North Carolina 2008
P.S. I'd love to hear what your best music experiences were and what concerts you'll be attending this summer. Let me know if you'll be at any of the shows on our list - I'd love to meet up before/during/after the show for a drink!