Columbus and Their electricity - November 11, 2001
On October 24, 2001, I went to see my first They Might Be Giants concert. My first concert ever, in fact. I wasn’t really obsessed with They at the time (Gasp! Shock! Pisces, how dare you?!) so I wasn’t loosing any sleep during the wait. But I was a fan, and had been a fan for about eight years. Which is a lot, when you consider I’m only 16 years old. So I was excited and happy about the fact we were going to see them. I left being a fanatic.
It was a four hour drive to Columbus, Ohio from my old Kentucky home, and when we got there, we spent an hour and a half trying to find the place, then find a place to park. I waited in line outside the small venue for another hour and a half and at 7:30, we were let in.
Oh, happy day! It was a rather small place and I quickly made my way up to the front on a slightly elevated floor just to one side so I was even with the stage. I had a wonderful view the whole time.
Wait. Wait. Wait. Opening act, Okgo, comes on about 8. They were... alright, I guess, but they played too long, leaving after about 45, possibly 50 minutes. Wait, wait, wait. Wait some more... Ah-HA! At 9, They Might Be Giants, and their wonderful band of Dans, hits the stage. They rock. They really do. I hadn’t realized what the concert was going to be like. There was so much energy, and it was so brilliantly loud... The albums just cannot prepare you for their live shows. I could see Linnell looked a little tired and, perhaps, sick (No! No! Not my Linny!), but he smiled a lot and Flans took up all the commentary. Then after 30 minutes of TMBG induced bliss... the power goes out.
Fuck, fuck, fuck! I was saying the exact same thing as Flans.
Turns out their was a major, major storm brewing outside, and it had knocked out all the electricity all the way down one side of Main Street. The crowd mingled about for a bit, while the Johns and co. formed a frantic circle off stage a bit in the weak light of a few flashlights. After a while, the Johns came out, and Flans got everybody to get quiet so he could tell us the situation. And then they play Istanbul unplugged for us! My Gods, that was great. They harmonizing was so much more pronounced, Flans’ ‘oooooo’ where mighty impressive and the accordion was kicking. Buuut... Some assholes decided to sing along, even though Flans expressly asked them not to. So at some points it was hard to hear. Then they wander off a bit, and came back to play a song we didn’t know. It was great anyway, and no one sang along. Flans gave us an update: They were getting a generator and restarting the concert at midnight. Bear in mind, please, that it was only 10:30, so it was a long and boring wait for me and my band of merry people. But I suffered through it, just for my TMBG. The power turned back on around 11:15, but the concert didn’t start back up till midnight, like they said.
They seemed much more energetic this time around, and Linnell even jumped about while playing his keyboard! Talk about talent. His hair flopping about and everything. And I got to see Flans crawling about on the stage! No conga line, but hopefully I’ll see one next time. For there will be a next time! HAHAHA!