So the joke on the Jungle Cruise is the famous “back side of water…” It’s always been one of my favorite things to hear… Silly… light… but there is also something about it… something philosophical.
I have been pondering a lot lately, delving into figuring out what life is really all about. Trying to look at water and perhaps the Waterfall from all sides.
We are where we are supposed to be at any given time… I truly believe that. Okay, maybe it is something I am more recently making peace with and understanding, but still… it is a powerful concept and usually right. Yes, sometimes in retrospect, but usually right.
Remind me to tell you the amazing story of the time I met Henry Rollins and wound up speaking to him privately, while surrounded by a crowd, for 20 minutes or so. I was invited to a poetry reading and my friend Linda who invited me wound up not showing up. She kept saying “You need to be there… You need to be there…” and then no shows. What the heck? I was not happy… but it wound up being one of the more profound and life changing experiences I have ever had. She was right… I NEEDED to be there, and her wisdom orchestrated the whole thing and it played out just as it was supposed to. And Henry told me some things I absolutely needed to hear at that exact moment. I need to go back to those lessons. Lose the anger… find the happiness.
I NEEDED to be at the My Morning Jacket show last night… and so I was. A very special thanks and shout out to Elliott and Olivia. I owe you both!
I had not heard anything back, but figured I should put myself in the area of the show, just in case. So off on the 101 I went, into the depths of Hollywood and a part of town I have never explored. Mack Sennett Studios… 1916… historic… A Hollywood legend. Chaplin filmed there. Remarkable.
I hesitantly walked up to the line, where folks wearing KCRW lanyards all complimented my KCRW t-shirt… Chosen to show my support for the station and for the fact that it had a deer on a motorcycle, something very fitting for MMJ. That shirt got many compliments.
Sheepishly I said “I am not sure if I am on the list, but…”
“What’s your name?”
“Yes, you are… plus one… Is your plus one here?”
Outside… “No, not yet, I am figuring that out.”
Inside… “Holy shit! Yes!!!!! This is going to be insane. Who is joining me??? Now!!!”
I wandered in… was a treated to an open bar and some spicy Cracker Jack type popcorn… Ah, the dinner of Champions… or a VIP suite at a baseball game…
That was on one sound stage… Then we were ushered into the main room. Full stage, but a very intimate space. Wow. This is gonna be something. I made my way dead center, about three rows back.
At 7 pm on the dot, Jason Bentley from the KCRW show Morning Becomes Eclectic introduced the band and we were on… or off… or whatever this amazing night holds in store… The entire album The Waterfall played live. Magnificent.If you read my review you know how hard this album is hitting me. It is a deep reflection of the spiritual path I am on right now… a yearning for something more and a wail and a cry to Believe… This band rocks. The talent and passion are off the charts and we all know they are one of the best live bands out there… but there is so much depth to their songwriting and musical exploration. Their albums are about things… important things… like life and trying to understand it… humanity and relationships… love and loss and joy…
Clearly I was open to the message, but an e-mail I read just before the show started, had my heart and brain and soul flickering all over the place. Lesson one… put your darn phone down and do NOT read emails or texts… unless for plan coordinating… when you are at a concert. Of course, a few emails later was the message that I was in the show… plus one. Timing is a funny thing. Profound, actually…
The opening song of the album, and the show, “Believe (Nobody Knows)” set the path… the journey… the energy and the night… “Believe, believe, believe, believe… Nobody knows… for sure.”
Fourth song, “In Its Infancy (The Waterfall)”
“Again I stop the waterfall by simply thinking.
Again I stop the waterfall before my breathing.
Again I stop the waterfall by finally feeling.
Again I stop the waterfall by just believing.”
Breathe… believe. You are here and need to be here.
Then the fifth song, “Get The Point”… another highlight for me… but WHAM! The lyrics tonight hit me like a truck loaded with bricks… tons and tons of bricks… Maybe two trucks… or six…
“And then I realized all the time I was wasting
Trying to mend a broken situation.
Day dreaming of leaving, I only had to do it.”
“I hope you get the point
The thrill is gone.
I hope you get the point
I think our love is done.”
Bam! Got it. Powerful. How are you in my brain and living my life? THIS is the power of music… that connection and understanding… the humanity and common thoughts and ground.
This show is loud and raw and powerful… and utterly amazing. My ears are still ringing as I write this.
Nice encore of some of my favorites!
And more reasons I needed to be there… Well, these are two good reasons… and I got to tell them how much this album means to me and my journey…
I met some new friends… Marc (or k), Amy and Jenn… And I also had the pleasure of having some truly deep and meaningful conversations outside the room with Matt and Mike. Thank you both for your open ears and letting me ramble on a bit. I hope I was not too dark and deep. You both were very cool, and that is not the normal
Hollywood” type conversation, but something I needed. Thank you.
Go and enjoy this album, my friends. And remember, we are where we are supposed to be… Just take a breath, hold onto your faith and believe.