My girlfriend and I went out to see live music in Denver on Saturday.
This is important primarily for two reasons.
One, date night, an indispensable part of any serious relationship.
Two, since I’m rebranding myself as a music writer, I should probably go see what live music sounds like. I’ve been to four concerts in the past five years. That number seems kind of low for a music journalist. What can I say? I’m horrifically agoraphobic, and hip Saturday nights fill me with dread all day Saturday.
I felt the need to move beyond obsessively watching music videos on YouTube, mostly “The Humpty Dance” by Digital Underground, and lurking in indie record shops while scouring the earth for obscure post-punk albums.
I digress. The old lady and I (She’s 27; I’m 40) left Arvada under cover of darkness to check out three bands at the Hi-Dive — Television Generation, Pout House and legendary Denver indie rock band Dressy Bessy. The show was wonderful. The atmosphere at the bar was subdued and mellow. My girlfriend had a Pabst Blue Ribbon, the Budweiser of hipster beers.
At one point we ducked out for an espresso at the Mutiny Cafe across the street just in time to catch a punk band dressed up as cops play a song by 90s rap metal band Body Count. I’ll let you guess which song.
Back at the Hi-Dive, I finally came to peace with the fact that since I have turned 40, I no longer have any compunction about dancing in public. This used to be problematic for me as I dance like a cross between Ian Curtis from Joy Division and the gopher from “Caddy Shack.” If you’re not familiar with Ian Curtis, he struggled with epilepsy and did a sort of dance interpretation of a seizure on stage. If you haven’t seen “Caddy Shack,” please stop reading this and go watch it.
I danced to every song for about two-and-a-half hours, and the funniest thing happened — my legs quit working. For the past seven months, I’ve worked at a French-style bakery making croissants, which is a long way of saying I stand up for eight hours a day. It’s a radical departure from sitting on my ass in a newsroom.
And about halfway through Dressy Bessy’s set, my feet and my legs said “We’ve had enough. We’ve been working for 11 hours. We quit.” I spent the rest of the set leaning against a table and hand dancing.
But it was therapeutic. All week long, my brain fought off a full frontal assault by the forces of anxiety, and a flanking maneuver by my seasonal affective disorder. Dancing, no matter how bad, seemed to send those rotten bastards back to their evil home base.
At one point during the set, Dressy Bessy vocalist Tammy Ealom said something to the effect of “I hope everyone else is sweaty and less anxious.”
Yes, I am. Thank you for asking.