Last night’s concert was at Four Winds Casino in New Buffalo, Michigan. We’ve been there a few times, but we had never been to this particular venue within the casino, Silver Creek Event Center. We decided to get a room and spend the night rather than drive back (it’s about 45 minutes away).
On the way up, we were jamming to a Smash Mouth CD, and I tweeted that we were heading there to see them, saying something like I hoped it was gonna be a kicky blast and the band would really bend the gig out of shape (Greg Brady quote that Shane and I still use all the time). The guitarist tweeted back at me, saying “We always do!” AGH! Awesome!
We get there and get checked in. It really is a beautiful place, with a winding drive through the Michigan woods, and the resort itself is all huge timbers and Native American decor. But we noticed the smell of cigarette smoke immediately. Good grief, it’s just pervasive and gross. At least we were able to get a nonsmoking room. As a former smoker, I try to be tolerant of others and I understand the addiction...but that doesn’t mean I don’t still think it smells gross.
Anyway, we get up to our room and have a beer and get unpacked, I do some makeup stuff, and then we head out to grab a bite at the Hard Rock Café in the casino. We had worried that we’d have to wait a while, but no problem at all. It was fun to see some memorabilia from some of my favorites, like the Stones, Johnny Cash, and Prince. We had a nice chat with our waiter, and he said that they’ve been getting some pretty good concerts there lately, so I’m going to have to keep my eyes peeled for fun shows there. We wondered if the band would stop in after the concert and he said chances were pretty good that they would...they were there all morning and were really nice guys. Cool!
Off to the show. We sat and drank our beers while the place started to fill up. We probably could have taken a little time to play some slots, but we both think slots are boring, and we weren’t in blackjack mode ($10 minimum tables, too), so it was okay sitting there for a bit. The band started pretty much on time. I had tweeted back at Sean Hurwitz, the guitarist, something like “Rock my socks off!” and he replied “Will do!”
And boy, did they ever! Let me channel my inner Stefon and say, “This show had everything! Super cool fuzzy guitar, leaping keyboardist, great songs that made you want to dance, people dancing onstage, invited up by the band, including a young teenage boy dancing with a couple of hot girls and having the time of his life. And a human spark plug.”
I’m afraid to ask...what’s a human spark plug, Stefon?
“It’s that thing when a midget wearing camouflage shorts gets on onstage and dances like a crazy person who’s been zapped with a cattle prod.”
Ohhh...yeah, that would be me. Ken took a few pictures, and I’m the short one in the picture up there. I sometimes don’t realize just how short I am, until I see pictures of myself around other people!
It really was just a total blast of a show, and I’d put it right up there with one of the funnest concerts I’ve ever been to. I’m glad I wore a tank top, because I worked up a real sweat! I waved my hands in the air like I just don’t care, I put my hands on my hips, and I let my backbone slip. They really did ask people to come up onstage a couple of times, and I’m not one to let an opportunity like that slip by! There was a girl next to me up there who also having a blast, and we exchanged a double high five and I said, “This is awesome!” It really was just sheer joy hearing this fun band and some music that I’ve loved for all these years. There were a couple of young kids up onstage, too, and the lead singer, Steve Harwell, was so cool with them. Just having fun and helping kids learn the joy of music! Yeah!
We headed back to the Hard Rock afterwards to listen to the band playing there, and Sean the guitarist tweeted me asking if we had fun. I had tweeted to him before the show “Bring it!” and after the show he responded, “Oh, we brought it!” I said, “Yes, you did!” I tweeted that if they’re heading to the Hard Rock, we’d buy him a beer. He said they were on their way. Cool!
He did indeed show up, and he couldn’t have been a nicer guy, even offering a picture with him before we asked. He didn’t linger long, but was nice enough to sit and chat for a moment. Turns out he’s only been with the band for a few months, but what a great addition. He meshes perfectly with them, and you can tell he has a lot of fun playing the music. I think it’s also great to see how he interacts with fans on Twitter. It seems that they were up at 4:30 this morning to get on the bus and head to O’Hare. Yikes...I slept until about 10:30! If you ever doubted, it’s hard work touring like that!
We also said hi to the keyboardist, Michael Klooster. He’s been with the band from early on, and he was also a really nice guy.
We didn’t stick around real late. The band playing there was kind of fun, but I think we were both a little wiped out from the concert. When we got back up to the room, I had more responses from Sean, saying that he was glad we liked the show and thanking us for offering to buy him a drink. I finally saw the picture of me and him and I totally cracked up. I hadn’t realized he’d flashed that tongue, and I said, “You better put that monkey on a chain!” Ken went to bed a little before I did, and jokingly asked, “You aren’t going to go meet the band, are you?” I laughed and said no, but I tweeted that to Sean and he said, “Sorry Ken.” haha
What a blast. For real. I had no idea they would be that good and that I would have that much fun. A complete blast of a show, and super nice guys to boot. Fangirl approved! If you get a chance, go see them! They’re on tour all summer, and it is an incredibly fun show. Ken and I were talking about it today, and agreed that it’s just FUN music. I’ve loved ‘em since “Fush Yu Mang,” and “Astro Lounge” was my favorite. I played the hell out of that album. It has such a retro, surf punk vibe, and you all know that I dig that, Daddy-O! Man, my neck is still sore from all the dancing. But it's a good kind of sore!
Hey, if my superhero identity is Fangirl, what would be my superpower? Hmm, I need to ponder that.
Look at some live Smash Mouth (pre-Sean as guitarist). This is my favorite song of theirs. See how much fun they are. Look at it. LOOK AT IT!