Sunday, October 10, 2010

ACL Download: Day 2. This is probably why I'm not a professional music journalist.

Hello, I am 13 years old. A 13 year-old boy.

While watching The XX yesterday, I took 17 pictures of this naked inflatable blow-up doll.  It was acting as a place-marker for a group of friends, and according to my photos, commanded a little more attention from my camera than the band itself.

Heh.  That one is my favorite.

Anyway.  In the middle of The XX's set, I squeezed my way out of the crowd with my buddy Dan. He needed a beer, and I needed to catch the last few songs of The Temper Trap's set.

Now: A word on The Temper Trap. I'd like to share with you a photo I took at SXSW 2009, right before the band popped. This was pre-Diet Coke commercial, pre-500 Days of Summer soundtrack.

(I'm sorry the photo is so crooked. I went through this phase in 2009 where I thought tilted pictures looked really cool, but now I see they just force you to tilt your head sideways).

Note how close I am to the stage in this picture. I took this with no zoom, inside the diviest of 6th St. dive bars, Dirty Dog. Note also the discernible amount of physical space between each audience member.

At that show, I remember turning to Ross and saying, "I feel like I'm part of something important right now." Because it's true, I was completely blown away by them. Dougy Mandagi, the lead singer, turned around and played the drums at one point along WITH the real drummer, and I thought: "Dear God. Who are these guys?"

THIS was their audience yesterday.

My, how times have changed for The Temper Trap!

I ran into them at the Rock the Vote Nights party last night, and congratulated them on how far they've come in just a year and a half.  Somehow, this devolved into a discussion about haggis. That Scottish dish made out of a sheep's heart and lungs. It was a pretty solid interview.

Speaking of bands who popped at SXSW 2009, Local Natives were also at last night's Rock the Vote party - and put on one of my favorite performances of the whole weekend.

I'm quickly beginning to latch onto these intimate small-venue parties that have risen up around ACL proper. Austin is a little city, mind you, so there's really only a limited number of places you can do stuff like this - and American Legion Hall, in the very second story room where Local Natives played last night, was the exact same room where two friends of got married last summer. Back in July, I stood in a quiet, reverent circle in the room's perimeter, watching Karl and Rendi sway to the beat of their first married couple dance; last night, I jumped up and down in that room with a hundred sweaty bodies to the frenetic drumming of Local Natives.

In all of Austin, this one room, in this one house, is a very sacred spot for me.

Local Natives were so thankful during their set, repeating over and over again how much they loved Austin. We were drunk with flattery.

Outside, Megan saw one of them, and insisted I interview him. She tapped him on the shoulder.

"HEY. DO YOU READ BLOGS." (This was her opener).

"...yes?" he responded politely.

"THIS GIRL HAS A BLOG!" (Now pointing in my general direction).

"Hello," he said.

"Hi. Your set. It was really good!!" (Last two words pronounced in high-pitched squeal).

"Thank you!" he said.

"How does it feel to be a rockstar?" (Pause while I considered a point of clarification)--

"A curly-headed rockstar?"

Quickly realize that qualifier was a mistake.

"Um...I guess it feels pretty great!"


From left: Ari from Republic of Austin, Megan, Ryan Hahn from Local Natives, me.

Thank you, Ryan, for not punching us in the face. And being generally lovely.

Last day of ACL is today! Off to go get ready for that. Step One is changing out of pajamas.


bsimms8907 said...

I was distracted by that blow-up doll all day too. How could anyone not be :) I love reading your recaps, and you were smart and broke them down by day. I didn't do that and it took me forever to finally finish writing it out, but at least it is done and posted now. I had so much fun this weekend I'm glad I was able to make it happen!

Heather Howell said...

I realized just how old I was this weekend. Three days on my feet, sunburned, and dehydrated has caught up with me. I'm sitting here in my pj's "working" and trying to recover. I'm glad I saw you from afar. Still wish I would have tackled you though. :)

bsimms8907 said...

I got the Ok to do the profile piece on you! I just need a little bit of time to come up with some questions, and then I'll talk to you about setting up a good interview time and place. Does that sound ok?

Megan said...

You forgot this anecdote:

Megan: So, where are you from?

Ryan: California. Orange County, actually.

Tolly: Ahhhhh...the "Oh Seeeeeee" (knowing smile)

Ryan: Yes.

Megan: One time I was in Newport Beach and I went to this biker bar and had the best Frito Pie. They put it right in the bag and the Fritos were the CHEESY KIND!

Ryan: Wow.

Megan: you wanna be my boyfriend or what.

Austin Eavesdropper said...

LOL....Megan!!! Yes. I DID forget about that part. Ryan, are you looking forward to your next "interview?"

@Heather - WORD. I am in PJ's too, still. :) Thank God we work from home.

Let's take this blog comment section relationship to the next level. Drinks this Sunday?

@BSimms - Ahh, Brittney! That's awesome!! Of course, it all sounds lovely. I think you have my email address, but let me know if you don't. If you live near campus, I am in Hyde Park, near Dolce Vita (LOVE!) as well as Quacks...mmm. Hungry now.

ARIANA said...

HAHAHA! This was hilarious. And I don't know what I'm doing in that photo?? Did I meet Ryan? Awesome. Love you Tolly <3

bsimms8907 said...

I have your email address. I'll email you whenever I get a better idea about what my week is going to look like. If I get as much homework done tonight as I am planning on then maybe something later in the week will work. I live in Hyde Park area too, so either of those places works for me. You can choose.

Penny Lane said...

Blow-up dolls seem to be invading my weekend.... curious

Breanna said...

@Megan - AND THEN WHAT DID HE SAY? You can't just leave it like that. P.S. We need to hang out more.