Sunday, March 18, 2007

Rock Chalk Shamrock

That was the slogan on many green t-shirts today on the streets of Lawrence, Kansas. You see Lawrence has a St. Patrick's Day Parade, which was a pleasant surprise for my sister and me.

We drove down the three and a half hours for a concert, and I thought it would be good to get there early and eat at Free State Brewing Company. Our visit there was most enjoyable. I got to sample four of their beers: Ad Astra Ale, George O'Malley's Irish Ale, Black Jack Porter, and Oatmeal Stout and eat tasty Irish fare with Colcannon cakes and Irish lamb stew with Free State's Black and Tan bread. Another pleasing change was a male server. He was quite the Chatty Cathy, but I didn't mind because he was interesting enough and shared fun info about the proprietor of Free State's two year struggle to get state laws changed so that he could open a microbrewery. According to our server, Kansas had Prohibition from the 1880s until the mid-1940s, so it was a difficult legal climate for zymurgists, to say the least. Our server on this day of St. Pat was named Shannon, like the river only in man form. A pipe and drum corps stopped in to regale us with a few tunes as well.

The concert occupied our time from 4pm to 10:40pm, with four hours and forty minutes of that six hours and forty minutes spent waiting. The doors didn't open til 5:30, but the line started forming around 4, then the music didn't start til K-OS came on at 6:20. I really enjoyed him. After twenty minutes of setup and soundcheck came a rappist named P.O.S. I didn't care for him as much; it wasn't his music as much as his poor choices with crowd relations. He lacked philosophical consistency. He started by reprimanding the audience for cheering for senseless things, but ended reprimanding those in the audience that weren't singing along to one of his songs because "(He) noticed that those that weren't singing had really stylish haircuts, so they (were) too cool to sing along." Ironically enough, he wanted us all to sing "There will never be anyone else like me." I felt rapped after he was done.

Then another 20-25 minutes of setup and soundcheck yielded RX Bandits, a talented and entertaining ska type group, I guess if you have a trombone, you get to be ska. They probably had the third largest following behind the headliners, Gym Class Heroes, and first place GCH's lead singer Travis. GCH took the longest setup time, but it was worth it. I particularly enjoyed the four "remixed" Hall and Oates songs played on the sound system during setup.

While my sister and I were waiting in line I went to Sylva and Maddy's ice cream shop just up the block to get a couple waffle cones for us (Rock Chocolate Jayhawk and Peanut Butter Freak). Sylva and Maddy's had more options than Ivanna Cone and cost less too. But their options were not too creative or "gourmet." Across the street was a store called Supersonic Music. My sister made the observation that you can't hear supersonic things. I said that maybe you have to play a cd you get from there three times before you can hear it.

Our journey back was pleasantly uneventful, and the fine day finished with a shamrock shake from McDonald's at 2:25 AM.

Labels: , ,


At March 19, 2007 8:28 PM, Blogger bryant said...

Did you go to the Bottleneck for your concerts? I always thought that would be a great place to see a concert. I was really impressed by the pictures they had on their walls: Soundgarden, Soul Asylum... Actually, I don't remember exactly who the pictures were of. But I remember being impressed by such a small venue attracting big names.

At March 20, 2007 10:46 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

Nope, we went to The Granada. I've been impressed with the groups that tour in Lawrence too. The Granada was a pretty neat venue though.


Post a Comment

<< Home