Saturday, April 10, 2010

Pretty Cool Things I've Done Since I Moved to LMU: Semester One

Ahem ahem. For all the bitching and moaning I do about this place, I really have had amazing opportunities here.

I thought it'd do me good to write a list of what I can remember. Installment one: Semester One.

DeVotchka Concert
Right after I moved here, I spotted this and simply had to go. It was a magical and spooky concert, with Christmas lights, oboes, tubas, many stringed instruments, NO talking from the band whatsoever (WEIRD) and a weird burlesque act at the end. Marvelous. Hearing "How It Ends" was incredible, and I especially liked "The Last Beat of My Heart" which kinda got a little tear from me at some point.

Of course, this concert experience was generally awkward due to the social situation I found myself in, but now that I look back it's with fondness, even for said awkwardness. I just remember dragging myself back to McKay (heinous dorm) and wandering around in a sheet for the rest of the night, unbelievably conflicted. Ha. Hindsight is 20/20.

Fleet Foxes Concert
A few weeks after the previous concert, this time with awkwardness that would break the charts. Ahem. Regardless, it was one of the best concerts I've ever ever ever been to, ahh. Just glorious. It was at the same venue, and only about 3 weeks after I had been introduced to the music of said band in general. They make such BEAUTIFUL music, they really do, and their harmonies are insane. From the first note my eyes welled up as though I had been slapped-- I was just so shocked at how it sounded in person. Ahh. Even with crazy appalachian beards and all, they were a great show and talked with the audience and all that. Mykonos was, of course, the best part, and although I don't usually like Oliver James, hearing it live was very nice.

Peace Jam
(mega thing, apparently, where Nobel Peace Prize winners speak and people come from all over to educate and perform exercizes on the matter of peace, service, and politics. LMU is big on service, so they had it here, which was a big deal. I wasn't into it, but I did get to go see EIGHT of the past Nobel Peace Prize winners speak at this huge function. The interesting thing about it was I didn't find any of them particularly inspiring, with the exception of Desmond Tutu, of course, who was amazing and made me cry a bit. The rest of them I don't even remember, except for this Irish woman. I remember her being very bitter towards republicans in general, for which I really felt like she should have given it a rest, but at the same time she was very passionate and said something along the lines of "If you didn't vote, if you didn't do all you could or even the bare minimum, you have no right to dislike anything. You owe it to the world to do what is in your power." I liked that, and think it is true of any one who is a part of any cause. I'm one of those "every vote counts" people, and futhermore, I think that the more we educate ourselves (something I do a very poor job of much of the time) the more we can do things within our power to sway the status quo. Some other things they spoke about were mutual respect, which I also liked, but saw very little of.
At one point one lady had everyone in the audience hold hands. Gotta say I wasn't especially into that...

On campus. There was this theatre kid named Sam who died, tragically, the year before I came here. He loved the Beatles. A number of kids here put together this outdoor concert as a tribute, all Beatles music. It started off terribly, but got progressively better with insanely good singers and musicians. Across the Universe was wonderful, a group singing in four-part harmony did an amazing job of "Because" (chills!), a group did Hey Jude terrifically (nothing like singing along to that! ahhhhh!), another did the entire Abbey Road Medley (!!!), and another did a George Harrison collection, including While My Guitar Gently Weeps, which absolutely shocked me. It was chilly and blankety and hot chocolatey good, and I loved every minute of it, regardless of not knowing Sam or any of these people, I thought it was a wonderful idea.

Joel McHale
Came randomly to do his stand-up with some other dudes. He was freakin' hilarious, and I was surprised that despite being known for his Soup snarkiness, he mostly focused on life with his wife and little son, which was terribly funny. I'm a bit of a fan, now, I must say.

Preview Screening with David Fincher Q&A
At the Egyptian in Hollywood, about a month before Benjamen Button came out. Got in for $8, saw the movie, and the Q&A followed. I got him to sign my ticket, shake my hand, and even talk a bit about screenwriting, which was fantastic. Intriguing man. Elusive man.

Neil Gaiman reading & book signing
Neil came to Santa Monica to promote The Graveyard Book, and read a very long chapter of it, much to everyone's glee. The man is very funny, very witty. Afterward he showed us a preview thing of Coraline, read some other snippets including the poem he wrote for Tori Amos's baby girl, and then we got to buy signed books. I, of course, have one.

1 comment:

Emily Gant McGuire said...

I myself saw Josh Tillman, and I believe it's his brother that's in the band, I cannot remember his name for the life of me, play at Hailey's. It was amazing, and I bought his CD. Josh's set was much better than the rest of it, and that might of been because he had his brother and others (not the whole band) play with him. Ironically, I went the wrong night. I was originally going to see Cursive, but I'm so glad I mixed up the days because I am a much bigger fan of Fleet Foxes. And later I realized, I was sitting very close to Josh before he went up, but was so focused on my friends not having arrived yet that I didn't even notice him. Not that I could ever go up, and actually, you know, speak a word to him. One of my favorite concerts, and it was quite possibly the most low key one ever.