So, I love music, and I love it a lot. I’m primarily a fan of heavier music, as I cannot enjoy “today’s top hits.”
But, I still enjoy genres like Indie and Alternative.
I attended my first concert on Sept. 24, 2021 in Burlington, Vermont.
Now, I had heard of Soccer Mommy previously, but hadn’t listened to them. My friend in Maryland was a big fan, but he was my only insight, until another friend, Julie, found out the band was playing in September and invited me along.
I went for the vibe, and because, well, it would be my first ever concert.
We went, and it was phenomenal. The venue was really intimate, and I was in the second row while standing. I was blown away by their talent, and spent a whole lot of money at the merch table.
But I desired something more.
Something more personal.
And so, my main hobby came into play.
Fine, I’ll simply come out and say it; I still collect and do things with Lego.
Is it that big of a deal? Nah.
Am I embarrassed by it? Nah.
Do I rarely tell people about it? Yes.
To accompany this hobby, I run an Instagram page. I’m not going to present my username in this, as this isn’t a self-centered advertisement column. Regardless, I’m incredibly proud of my page and content, and I knew that it would assist me in giving back to Soccer Mommy.
And so, I made figures of their exact outfits from my performance.
Sometimes with life I become a perfectionist, and so I HAD to do my best. Through a lot of trial and error, I made the five members fairly well.
And so, I took the photo of the figures, and posted it when my schedule aligned.
I tagged each of the members and I hit post.
It hadn’t even been half an hour before I started to get out of the ordinary notifications.
Four of the members reshared the photo, with the other member messaging me saying, “Those are incredible!!! Everyone in the band is amazed!”
Among the shares was the official Soccer Mommy Instagram page, with over 130,000 followers.
I was absolutely in shock. And then, the bassist followed me.
And what happened the next day?
I received a message asking if I sold any of my work. Since I never have, I delivered the bad news, but asked what piece they were seeking.
And who was asking me?
None other than the bassist’s mother.
It was Nov. 11, and so Christmas was fast approaching, meaning that it would become a gift for him.
Holy shit, again!
Surprisingly, there are rare and hard to find Lego pieces, and since most of the parts used for the photo was made from third party companies, I was reluctant to sell it.
But, since people typically have more than one outfit in their closet, I asked if they knew of a favorite alternative outfit. And luckily, they did!
I had to commission my friend to paint the torso as the outfit was even harder to obtain, and he painted it perfectly.
The figure got finished a little too close to Christmas for my liking, and I thought it simply would not arrive in time.
But it did!
And what did I receive as confirmation?
A photo with him holding it.
I couldn’t believe it. I was so hyped.
A couple of weeks later, the band announced another tour, this time performing in the infamous Woodstock, New York.
You already know I had to go.
The concert was the night of March 28, 2022, and was an even better time than my initial one.
The venue was like a two-story bar, and it was even more intimate than the last concert.
The band killed it once again, playing fan favorites, a new single off their upcoming album, and the best cover of Slowdive’s Dagger imaginable.
To make this concert even more memorable, I decided to take two prints of the photo with me. One to give to the lead singer, and the other one to hopefully have signed.
Once the show ended I took the step and a half forward in order to be mere centimeters from the stage and their equipment.
The band consists of the lead singer who also plays the guitar, the bassist, a rhythm guitarist, the drummer, and another guitarist who alternates between the axe and a keyboard with effects. Each of the members pack up their own gear, and so I strongly believed I had a good chance of getting to talk to at least one of them.
The guitarist/keyboardist was the first to come from off stage and begin with his gear.
My time was fast approaching.
An audience member came from the merch table with a record in hopes of the band signing it.
But, they had no Sharpie. Unlike yours truly.
I attended the concert with Julie again, and she had one.
I actually had two, in fact.
He came over and took them from my hand and asked if I had anything I’d like to be signed.
I unraveled the poster and smoothly asked, “Yeah, this if you remember it,” I laughed.
“Holy shit! This (my art) is still the greatest thing that’s ever happened to us,” he exclaimed.
He took the first print backstage, and emerged with it a few minutes later, with it fully signed by the band.
When he handed it to me, I, in return, handed him the gift print. He was a little confused at my intentions, but quickly understood and brought it backstage.
Once he came back, the few remaining bar patrons started to swarm him, presumably asking for signatures. In order to not get in the way, Julie and I decided to head over to the merch table to get even more memories from the night. I got a shirt and she got a hat, and it seemed to be time to leave.
But I wasn’t finished.
I headed back into the main room and the cluster of people had dissipated and the bassist casually was packing his gear.
My anxiety and genuine intention of not interrupting people was in full force, and I was hesitant to approach.
But since I had missed the opportunity to talk to him at their previous performance, I knew I couldn’t disappoint myself again.
And so I casually told him that he killed it, and he thanked me! We began talking and he asked what my name was. I was so happy and told him that it’s Ryan, and that he follows me on Instagram.
Even with a mask on, I saw his face absolutely light up with joy and he was blown away when I was there.
He shook my hand and asked me if he could get a photo with me, as he wanted to send it to his family, because ‘they’re obsessed with you.’
Ahem; HOLY SHIT!
His question was one of the craziest and coolest things that I’ve ever experienced. Like, woah!
He jumped off the stage and offered up his phone for the pics. After this, we talked some more including about my major, Julie’s major and just other life stuff.
His name is Nick, and he very well may be one of my most loyal followers. He likes all of my posts, and I feel so honored each time.
See “Lego” on page 6