- Precious. My precious. Just kidding.
For better or for worse, I don’t really give a hoot about my indie cred most of the time. I went to the Train show last night at the Crystal Ballroom voluntarily (!) out of morbid curiosity. I didn’t win End Hit's ticket giveaway yet somehow managed to convince the kind door folks to let me in anyway to catch the tail end of Train’s set. While I want to attribute it to an act of kindness, the truth of the matter was VH1 staples “Drops of Jupiter” and “Meet Virginia” had already been performed and people were filing out as if it were already over. I’m really bummed I didn’t see those songs performed live. Now I can’t tell my grandchildren about the time I witnessed a song performed that was tailored for “FM radio” by a band on a “major label.” They’ll have no idea what I’m talking about.
Despite Ezra not being able to give away free Train, T-Pain or John Coltrane tickets yesterday, there was a surprisingly packed house at the Crystal. According to the venue’s personnel there were 1100 pre-sale tickets sold out of the 1500 available. Considering most of the crowd was middle-aged parents with their teenagers in tow on a school night, that’s not too shabby. Honestly, neither was their cover of Aerosmith’s “Dream On,” with which they closed the first encore.
Say what you want about Train’s music—which could be a lot of deservingly awful things—but you can’t say they’re prima donnas. In fact, they’re more just family dudes making easy-to-swallow music for fellow families to enjoy. Maybe that notion isn’t Pitchfork-approved, but so what? Apparently at one point during the set (that I missed) singer Pat Monahan brought his daughter onstage to sing a song called “She’s on Fire” with him. The collective heart of the audience was warmed so badly, it could have caught on fire.
On top of causing near spontaneous human combustion, they were also incredibly gracious to their die-hard fans afterward. Later on I chatted with a lady waiting in the rain by their tour bus with hopes to take a picture with the band. She missed her chance to when Train canceled their show at the Crystal two months ago. For that show she bought VIP tickets for $175 from Ticketmaster, which was to include a backstage meet 'n' greet and an autographed tour poster. Ticketmaster still honored her tickets for this show; however, it would merely include admission and not the perks. She was clearly disappointed. When Pat Monahan finally came outside (carrying his child) she told him of how she was ripped off by the questionable ticket distribution company. In return she was invited to the after-party, however tame that may be. Talk about making a die-hards fan’s dream come true, huh?
While I didn't stay long enough to have Venus didn't blow my mind (whatever that means and not like that could ever happen anyways), I do have an iota of respect for these post-grungers now. (Ok. I feel really dirty now. I’m now going to listen to that new Yeasayer album on full blast until my ears bleed.)
(P.S. - All you young dudes passed on free trip to Cougar Town by not taking these Train tickets off our hands. After Train's last song the house lights came on revealing a sea of hungry cougars on the prowl while "Stacy's Mom" blasted through the speakers. Grrrowl!)