You kill me. You always know the perfect thing to say

In the last week (or so) we’ve gone from Minneapolis to Mesa, figuratively speaking. Next week, Tempe with The Maine. Tonight when Jimmy Eat World played Kill, I found that afterwards I couldn’t stop thinking, “I’ve always been an easy kill…I guess I always will.” In childhood, an overly sensitive, cry at the drop of a hat weirdo – making up some stories in her head on the playground, as she struggles to keep her internal monologue on the inside (which I still struggle with.) An easy kill. I can’t explain it any better. (Perhaps whiny baby?) Music made that okay for me. My gateway drug – came to me when I was about 13, which is the perfect age for such a thing. It was Doug Hopkins. (One could argue that Canada’s finest Bryan Adams perhaps started me on this path…a song of the week for the future, for sure! Waking up The Neighbors prepared me for things to come…) One could argue I dwell on this point too often, but I can’t help it. The Blossoms and Doug handed to me, on a platter: The Replacements, Dead Hot Workshop, The Church, The Cure, every Arizona band that I have fell in love with since the first mix tape was sent to me by a virtual stranger (who I later virtually married). If chance is a series of random connections, I can connect the dots clearly and see the major players here. Finding my pop voice, coupled with growing up in a house where music mattered and was to be placed under a…well, a cloudy microscope.

So, you have that recipe for disaster right there. Finding that place to fit in – with other people who got music, set me on a path. (The right one? Depends on who you ask.) It’s not just people who “get” music. It’s not music snobs or music teachers. We are the ones who feel it, carry it around, notes like butterflies in your stomach. It was a relief to know that I wasn’t the only one who felt the weight – been trying to find the right words to describe it for years. It kills me.

This week has highlighted that for me. Obviously, first with the Mats…who…is there a band that better expresses every thought or feeling I’ve ever had? Is that an exaggeration? I have been engrained with a deep love of snottiness, snark, silliness and truth. I see that our love was meant to be, Dear Mats. The experience of last Saturday – getting to see The Replacements live reminded me of being a kid again. The feeling of seeing your favorite band, shout the songs, putting aside the self consciousness for just a few moments and not caring how ridiculous you look when you sing or when tears roll down your face. I held it together pretty good, I think, but suffice it to say that calling it an emotional experience would be appropriate.

Then, tonight, Jimmy Eat World, which is all about the karate kick to the jugular – musically, lyrically. I can’t help but be moved. The live show certainly takes that to the next level with the sweat and the energy and the crowd all singing their whoah whoahs in perfect time. It makes me think of another Jimmy Eat World song, Coffee and Cigarettes,…and how the nights staying up until 5 am and watching the sun come up all because you started talking about a song…and just never stopped, are hours not wasted.

A song I know about one of my rock and roll pin up boys put it very well, “it’s got some kid shaking, isn’t that okay?” I’m an easy kill, what can I say?

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