leave your inhibitions at the door
Apparently so. But more on that later.
This past Christmas, Boom Boom bought two tickets for Coldplay’s concert in Chicago next week. It was definitely a surprise because I’ve seen them three times already and it wasn’t on my wishlist. Then again my wishlist only had two things on it – a meat grinder and a date with Lindsay Lohan. I guess Boom Boom thought they both were too cheap. Or, more likely, she wanted to go to the concert herself. It’s kinda like when a guy buys his wife a pool table for the basement or a ratchet set.
As soon as I opened it up, the oldest Piehole started
begging hinting for me to take her with the extra ticket. This obviously threw a monkey wrench in Boom Boom’s plans. It also threw one in mine, too, as I was going to use that as an excuse to hang out in Chicago for a few days between Lollapalooza and the Coldplay concert. It’s not that I wouldn’t want to hang with her but Lollapalooza weekend in Chicago is kinda like my Vegas – what ever happens here, stays here. Not that anything ever does. (Got that, honey?)
Anyway, we made a deal with her. If she got all A’s we’d take her to the show in Detroit. We thought for sure we had it made but, lo and behold, she did it! Even with all those late nights at rehearsals for her two musicals where she could barely stay away the next day. I even tried to sabotage her with some bad math tutoring, yet she persevered. Granted, we probably would’ve bought the tickets anyway, but it was still a fun deal. So we sold the Chicago tickets and bought some for Detroit’s show this past Wednesday.
I really, really wanted to bring my new kitchen knife to the show and see if I can get Chris Martin to autograph it. But I came to the conclusion that running up to him with a big 10-inch kitchen knife probably wouldn’t have been a good life choice.
The concert itself was fantastic. The first time I saw them was in Detroit in October 2009 and then summer 2010. I ended up seeing them a third time at Lollapalooza last year, partly because I’m a big fan and partly because I was too lazy to see walk to another stage. One thing I had noticed about the Lolla show was that it seemed a little more stripped-down and back to basics. Since other bands were on the same stage all day long, they were limited in what they could do with special effects and the guys themselves wore jeans and t-shirts, eschewing the military-inspired jackets from the Viva La Vida tour. It also seemed their sound was more primal, raw.
At Wednesday’s show, they were still dressed casual, but there were a lot of really cool theatrics –
Lights and lasers -
A ton of confetti -
The stage had a walkway that came out to a smaller stage, which was fairly close -
Close enough for me to take this video -
To get even closer, they played a few songs from the audience -
All of this was made for a cool concert experience, especially for the kids. Yet, with all of these “distractions” the band still sounded leaner than the first two times I saw them. Although they’ve mastered their performances, they still played with a great degree of urgency and emotion, too. If it sounds like I’m gushing, I am.
Which brings me to my question of whether they are a guilty pleasure…Remember, a guilty pleasure is something you love but, by most standards, you should be embarrassed to admit it. Like J Lo. In this case, it appears I’m going against gender roles by being a fan. When I first saw them a friend had said that I needed to turn in my “man card.” Leading up to the second time, someone else had asked if I was going to throw my bra on stage. Both times, the jokesters were men. So I figured, it could be a “Coldplay isn’t as manly as Metallica” thing and brushed it off. For this recent show, a female co-worker had remarked that she thought only yuppie women liked Coldplay. And yesterday, another woman asked if I was the only guy there.
I’ve never given a damn about gender roles in anything. I do all the cooking and decorating around the house (using ideas I find in my subscription to Elle Décor). And my preferred method of exercise is Pure Barre, a workout that’s based in Pilates and dance. So them not being testosterone-driven wouldn’t prevent me from being a fan. I’m just kinda surprised.
So I ask you, gentle reader, is Coldplay really a chick band? Are they in the same sphere as Sarah McLachlan or Tori Amos? If gender roles were a big thing for me, should I be embarrassed?
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