Today, I celebrate 15 years since my first Tally Hall show. It also happens to be the same day that the band released The Pingry EP; the band’s 4th and final compilation of songs before going into the studio to begin recording their landmark, first official album, Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum.
Below is a photo of me and the band — with Ryan Scott eerily peering over Andrew’s right shoulder. It was a great moment but I had no idea it would become so important to me.
If you’ll indulge me, I’d like to re-publish my story from that day, which was originally published on the Tally Hall LiveJournal; the first fan-site I made for the band before HITS came along.
I left a little after 4:30pm to get to the event at 7pm. Despite a slight misunderstanding in exactly which campus the Spring Fling was being held at and ending up at The Short Hills campus of The Pingry School slight after 7pm, my friend Liz and I finally made it to Martinsville around 7:45. Luckily the band didn’t go on till a bit later. To our surprise, the admissions stand immediately recognized that we were not students and let us go right through without paying a cent!
Their mics didn’t work when they first went on stage and the band tried to improvise by playing The Mario Brothers theme for 5 minutes or so until the mics got working. A string on Joe’s guitar broke after a few songs. Later on, Rob broke one, too. This would be the first two casualties in about a year, they said. They were having a hard time hearing themselves clearly in the tent. It was not exactly the BEST time for the boys, but the important thing is it didn’t make a damn bit of difference to any individual listening to the show because it sounded great. Just great. Just… just great. The crowd of hyper high schoolers appeared to be loving every song and bouncing to even the most intricate of rhythms. I was a little nervous to hear Ross play since I hadn’t heard any recordings of him aside from the most recent cut of “The Bidding” just days prior to this show. I was blown away by his skills! I think because my dad was a drummer and I’m a singer, I focus a lot on the drums and singer of any band. Not that Steve sounded bad at all, but the addition of Ross to the fantastic harmonies of Joe, Rob, and Zubin, makes Tally Hall a band I have little to critique on… if anything.
After the show, I was approached by friend of the band and little merchandise helper, Ryan, who I had emailed with a few times in the past. He recognized me and took be “backstage” to meet the band. To my surprise, they all seemed to recognize me off the bat and I was greeted with handshakes and words of gratitude from all of them. Call me modest, but I still don’t think I have done much, or at least as much as I could for the band but I’m happy to do whatever I can for them and will continue to do so. I purchased 2 copies of the exclusive EP release at the show called The Pingry EP. It contains a handful of delightful songs as well as the infamous cell phone call from Joe made to Rob during a concert just before Joe joined the band. If you don’t know the story, read the bios on www.tallyhall.com [Editor’s note: This is no longer on their website]. I got a great picture of me and the band and they invited me to Andrew’s house for their after-party. Whoo! I was debating it a bit because I was so far from home and the later I delayed my departure just meant the later I would have to drive for 2+ hours back home. Then I realized I would be an idiot to pass it up and I got directions to the house and headed over. On our way, I almost ended up going to New York but luckily found a place to turn around and made it through the dark and lonely roads to The Horowitz Estate. We stayed there for a few hours and got to talk in depth with the guys, getting to know each other better. Joe told me his ideas for a few new videos including one for “Be Born” which the more I think about, I can totally see and I really hope he is able to do it. I think it’s a safe bet that whenever they are able to book a gig in the Philly area, they’ll be staying here. Nice. These guys are not only extraordinary musicians but also extraordinary people who I’d hang out with any day I had the chance to.
Before I left, Joe gave me a DVD copy of a film he completed recently for his thesis entitled “The Other Way.” I hope this short film will be available on the internet at some point for all to see. He will be submitting it for one or two or three festivals so maybe one day it will begin to make its rounds on the net. Brilliantly made and conceived, this film is definitely unlike anything you’ve seen before. If I had the means to get it on the net, I would, and make sure people see it.
Thanks Tally Hall! Hope to see you again soon.
Well, I did see them again. 15 more times, if my records are correct. And that short film? You’ve probably seen it by now, now that it’s “on the net.”
You can view all my photos from this concert on HITS Galleries, if you’re interested in going down more of this memory lane with me.
Unfortunately, I didn’t take many photos from Andrew’s house. If I had, you’d have seen Ricky Lax performing some magic for us and I THINK Bora was there but I had no idea who either of them were at the time so it wouldn’t have meant anything to me at the time.
Anyhow, the Pingry EP is 15 and man… I am old.