I just finished paging through the latest issue of Spin and am a little depressed.
I’ve subscribed to the magazine for, oh, a number of years now. Until recently I always cherished the day its slick pages and obscure, random photography arrived in my mailbox. It was, for quite some time, a Badge of Cool I proudly toted in my messenger bag for about 12 bucks a year.
Now, I flip through the entire magazine in about 20 minutes, scanning articles on bands I enjoy, completely skipping those I know nothing about and admitting to myself that I probably won’t touch the magazine again.
Am I getting old?
There was a time when I regularly attended countless shows in Omaha, some of bands I loved, some I knew little about, others I knew nothing about. To quote a former friend, I’d savor and experience “weird bands just for weird’s sake.” I was happily single at the time and soaked up the experience all the way down to my Low-Cut Chucks. In way, it was a benchmark I used, keeping track of how many shows I attended at Sokol Auditorium and other venues around town. I suppose I felt a need to maintain my Indie Cred by making regular appearances, standing alone at shows (which I didn’t mind one bit) and chatting up more accidental acquaintances than close friends.
I’d sip one beer the entire night, making it last through the opening and headlining acts, plus any encores. I’d make unnecessary trips to the bathroom just to scout out the room and jockey for better footspace on the floor.
Today I’ll view any number of online calendars, alerting me to bands I should see but, quite honestly, don’t care to see as much as I once did. Being a fan of Omaha’s music scene — both its natives and welcomed guests — has become a much more selective process. It’s rare I’ll venture to an unknown show on a weeknight, not only to hear the music, but to say, “Damnit, I was there! Where were you?”
Nowadays, it’s about more than the music. It’s about going to my select few bars, venues and holes-in-the-wall where I’m guaranteed to see the familiar faces I’ve grown to enjoy. And if a good band is playing that night, it’s a bonus.
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