Because Coz wanted me to crosspost it here… 😉 Here’s the tale of my very first Tally Hall concert.
Okay, so here goes my giant spiel about last night’s show. Go get a drink or a sandwich or something if you plan on reading the whole thing. This chronicles the epic adventure of Jennifer and me at the House of Blues in Houston. I brought her along as a birthday present, and I think it’s safe to assume that she had a great time. And so did I.
First of all, I’m happy to say that both supporting acts for the tour (Skybox and Jukebox the Ghost) were fantastic. Usually, opening bands suck and are a pain to have to wait for until it’s time for the headlining act to take the stage.
Second, the Bronze Peacock (in the House of Blues) is a fantastic venue. It’s small enough to make a show feel personal, yet large enough to hold a bar, a merch stand, and all the people who want to have a good time. There was also plenty of room for a certain band to move off the stage and onto the floor as well as to set up a bunch of lamps.
Now, about the bands:
Skybox played first, and their energy was very, very uplifting. One of the singers, Christian, was very enthusiastic and made a point to introduce the other members multiple times. There was also a drunk guy in the audience who kept shouting for “more Tim”, one of the other members. Kinda awkward. But the music was great, and the band was full of life, as all bands should be. I have to say that the bassist has wicked dance moves that should not be underestimated. One of them (I think Sean was his name) had been suffering from food poisoning the night/morning before, and he still rocked. That’s dedication, my friend.
Song to check out: Various Kitchen Utensils (as heard in the “Two Wuv” video)
Next up was Jukebox the Ghost, who admitted to being haunted by a ghost that night and the night before. “We are the ghost,” said who I believe is the lead singer. There were a few technical difficulties during one song, but the lead claimed that every band gets one do-over, and any more than that will cause your ears to bleed. Their music was also catchy and fun to dance to, and the drummer seemed to wear an eternal smile. Most drummers look unhappy or completely occupied by their drumming, but this guy was smiling or had a smile-like face the entire time. It was positively fantastic.
Song to check out: Hold It In
Finally was what we were all waiting for, the wonderfully magnificent Tally Hall. I was very, VERY fortunate to catch this tour, especially since I became a fan about… well, about a month ago. I had heard “Banana Man” thanks to Ludo (in a video where they “made fun” of the band), and after randomly browsing Wikipedia’s article on AlbinoBlacksheep.com (I don’t know why I was looking at it), I discovered that “Banana Man” had a music video, using the version of the song from Tally Hall’s “Complete Demos” record.
And it all blossomed from there. I don’t feel like typing about my epic journey into the world of Tally Hall in this journal, because I came here to tell you about the concert. And so I shall.
Before any of the bands played, Jennifer and I entered the venue, and immediately I saw Zubin at the merch table. We harassed him, of course. I bought a brown MMMM shirt, asked him about Joe (like everyone else on the planet has; he said Joe was okay, which is what everyone else has been told, but I believe him), and then noticed the amazing objects in a case by the shirts. The stories I’d heard were correct; the band WAS selling merch from Tally Hall’s Internet Show (THIS), as well as other items. I saw a neat-looking speaker, and I asked Zubin how much it was. We then played a sort of pricing game, in which he explained that I was supposed to name a price, then he’d tell me if I could get it cheaper or if I needed to offer more. (I have no idea why we did this, but it felt like being on The Price Is Right, which is awesome.) The conversation went a little like this:
Me: “Uhh… twenty?”
Zubin: “Mm, nooo, you can get it cheaper than that.”
Zubin: “Nnnooo, you can get it cheaper.”
Zubin: “A leeeetle cheaper…”
(Honestly, it felt kind of like the “Natural Ketchup” skit from THIS. I half-expected Andrew to run out and rip his shirt off, which would’ve been hilarious.)
And so I bought it. Turns out that said speaker once belonged to Joe Hawley, and the story on the card that came with it said that he used to record speeches from famous historical figures. He would then play the speeches by hooking up a speaker, like the one I got (he stockpiled them, apparently), and telling his friends that the speaker was haunted and it was “tuning into the past.” Spooky. [LINK TO PHOTOS]
We left the table to admire the merch I had acquired, but Jennifer wanted to go back, saying that she wanted one of the Tally Hall stickers, especially since they were only a dollar. So we went back and I told Zubin that I wanted to waste more of my paycheck on their stuff, and he laughed. We both bought stickers and he was kind enough to sign the backs of them for us, and then we both took pictures with him. Sorry if we annoyed you, Zubin! You’re a gentleman, you know.
The band came on stage and did a mic check, as all bands do, and since I was lucky enough to stand near the front, the wonderful Casey Shea (two-time super hero) heard me shout his name. I explained that I was the one who told him (on Twitter) that he looked like John Lennon, and he smiled and shouted my name, saying he remembered me. Um, freaking awesome moment.
After they finished setting up, the band ducked down, and Rob said we should pretend that they were never there… They then started playing a new song, I forgot which one. They played a whole bunch of new songs, the ones I remember being “Out in the Twilight”, “The Trap”, “You & Me” (I think), “Cannibal”, “Misery Fell”, “Never Meant to Know”, and probably more that I have no idea what they were. They also played songs I knew, like “Greener” (one my favorites), “Good Day”, “The Whole World and You” (another favorite), “Ruler of Everything” (yet another favorite), “Taken For A Ride”, “The Bidding”, “Be Born” (I think), and “Just A Friend.” They even played one of Casey’s songs, which I do not know the name of.
Before “Ruler of Everything”, Rob performed a risky surgery on a megaphone, which was successful. He had quite a difficult time acquiring tape for the surgery, because for some reason the guys running the sound couldn’t hear him, so both Rob and Zubin were repeating the word “tape” over and over, with Rob even spelling it and requesting any kind of tape, regular or duct. Eventually the tape was procured and things were set so Casey could sing the “flibbity jibbity jibber jabber” part of “Ruler.”
Someone almost convinced them to play “Mucka Blucka”, but they didn’t. Someone else asked them to play “Just A Friend”, and even though Rob said that Casey might not be able to play it and they couldn’t find someone in the audience to beatbox for the intro, he said they’d maybe play it later, then, “Well, now we have to.” Their performance was very “open forum”, as Rob put it, since everyone was asking questions and speaking their mind.
Things became even more open when everyone sat on the floor and chilled to an “unplugged” set. Rob mentioned something about stealing stuff, and he said that we might not leave with all of our belongings. Because the floor was probably dirty, we all received free Souvenir Butt-Protectors, which look like those little kids’ menus that you get at restaurants that have a maze, a coloring part, and a word search. This one had a “spot the differences” section, a maze, and a word search. Nice. There was a pre-recorded speech by Rob about the protectors, and this was the best line: “But remember, the only real butt-protector is your heart.”
Someone was awesome enough to record the moment – check it out here:
On some of the songs that they played while we sat, a guy behind us kept singing very loudly. When they started “Just A Friend” the guy was particularly obnoxious, and Rob gave him this look that clearly said, “If you wanna sing it instead of me, go ahead, moron.” (That’s how I interpreted it, at least, since that’s how I felt.) The encore was fantastic, although I don’t remember what song was last. Maybe that was “Just A Friend”? When they were playing that, though, the guys working at the bar all started dancing to the chorus. It was pretty hilarious. Drunkies usually make things funnier.
After the show, the first member I went to find was Casey. I walked up to him and he hugged me, shook my hand, all that great stuff. I told him that he did a great job, and that I’d have to check out his own music. He told me to wait right there, and he ran back to the merch table. He returned and gave me one of his CD-R’s with a few of his songs on it (sadly, one of the songs that they sang, something about convertibles in the summer, was not on it) and talked to me for quite a bit. I told him he was a super hero for filling in for Joe at the last second and that he did an amazing job. We took a picture together, which was sweet. He thanked me again, then both Jennifer and I moved on.
Next up was Rob, who received a gift from Jennifer: a Hello Kitty coloring book, complete with stickers and instructions on how to color. We explained that he could use it during boring trips in the van, and he got really excited. His reaction was priceless when Jennifer talked to him about getting crayons for it, and he ended up stuffing the book (and the adorable Sanrio paper bag that it came in) into his vest. I like to think that anyone else who took pictures with him that night have the coloring book peeking out of his vest. We took pictures with him (we ended up getting pictures with all of the members) and got him to sign our stickers. There was a little trouble in acquiring a pen for this, but eventually a girl gave him a Sharpie, and all was well. I think he was the one who thanked us for dressing up (Jennifer and I both wore Tally Hall outfits; I was Joe, she was Rob), and I told him how hard it was to find a yellow tie for Jennifer. He agreed and told me that all of their ties were custom-made, and he showed me that they were a little thin near the bottom (I was tempted to touch the tie, but I refrained for the sake of not spoiling such a beautiful piece of cloth). I also told him that her birthday was the day before, so he told her happy birthday and hugged her.
We moved on and visited Ross, who was busy for a moment with other people, but he was really nice when we got to see him. Unfortunately, when we asked for his autograph, he couldn’t find a pen, either. We contemplated stealing the one Rob had “stolen” from the girl (okay, she gave it to him), and he told us to find a pen while he took a photo with a guy. We were somewhat frantic, but Casey saved the day (again) by bringing back a Sharpie. Ross looked around, a little confused because he had found an actual pen before, but he had put it back, so Casey had to call for him and wave the Sharpie around. Ross then signed our stickers and took photos with us. Also a sweetheart.
We had to wait a reeeeeeeally long time to talk to Andrew, but it was worth it. Around the time that we got to see him, the bouncer started telling people to leave. I got a bit worried, especially since we had many gifts to bestow upon dear Andrew. Eventually the people talking to him moved on, and we got to talk and give him our gifts. He was surprised when we said we had presents for him. All of our gifts were from Sanrio, and since he likes penguins, we bought him things with Badtz-Maru on them. I got him a keychain with a moving head and an iron-on patch, and Jennifer gave him a pen with a bubble top featuring Badtz-Maru’s picture. He seemed very happy about the gifts, and Jennifer asked him to make sure to put the patch on his favorite pair of pants or something. He said that he would whenever he got back home and got settled down, and that he would take a picture of it. He asked where to send the picture to so we could see it, but I just told him to put it on his Twitter, since that seemed the easiest (and then everyone else could see the penguiny goodness). I thanked him for playing “The Whole World and You”, especially since it was during the unplugged portion of the show. He was very sweet, as all of them were, and we again took pictures.
Proud of ourselves and content with the loot we had acquired, we finally exited the venue and entered my mom’s car (after dodging a hobo and politely semi-ignoring a guy handing out fliers and CDs – Jennifer got them anyway, which she left here at my house… great.).
I was a little upset that I didn’t have time to meet the members of Skybox and Jukebox the Ghost, and I didn’t get to buy their CDs, either (though I just bought one of Jukebox’s albums online today, in mp3 format), but maybe I can catch them next time and properly thank them for such a good show.
All in all, everyone did a marvelous job, and I think I can safely say that it was the best concert I’ve ever been to. In fact, the only way it could’ve been better was if Joe had been there, but I’d still want Casey to be there, too (since he’s such a cool guy). I can only hope that future Tally Hall shows will be just as fun, if not more enjoyable. I HIGHLY recommend checking out all of Tally Hall’s songs as well as their internet show. I’m anxiously awaiting the release of their new album, “Good & Evil”, which is probably coming out some time in the summer if all goes well.
Song to check out:
Casey Shea – Strawberry Country Lullaby
TL;DR: AWESOME SHOW WAS AWESOME YAAAAAAAAAY <3 *flailing*
Soon I’ll be posting pictures (if I can find someone who has a scanner) of the show as well as the merch we bought and our photos with the fine gentlemen of Tally Hall.
EDIT: PHOTOS ARE NOW AVAILABLE IN HITS GALLERIES. [LINK].