I don’t know if you know this, but I have been trying to see Ted Leo play for a good part of this year. First, he had a show scheduled in St. Louis in February, I couldn’t go. Then he played with his band at a festival in Champaign, we couldn’t afford the tickets until the last second. I spent the whole week cleaning a basement to get the money. When I tried to buy a ticket, I was informed that I couldn’t buy any for the single show, I now had to buy a festival ticket, which was twice as much, and could no longer afford them.
BUT THEN I found out that the show in February had been canceled anyway, so Ted Leo was coming back for a makeup show! So Brian and I went and it was magical.
We arrived right before the first band started, and both opening bands were pretty good and fit with Ted Leo very well. As soon as we took a spot near the back, Ted Leo came out and stood five feet from me. When I told one of my co-workers that I was missing work on Monday to go to a show he said, “Yeah, i’m going to see U2 in July!” Pffft, is Bono going to come stand five feet from you? Not nearly as exciting. Brian wouldn’t let me throw my bra, Chicago Diner cake, my bra loaded WITH Chicago Diner cake, or my PPK button at him, so I just tweeted excitedly and then watched the show.
Apparently Ted Leo (by the way we never refer to him as Ted, always Ted Leo) talks a lot, which he apologized for at least four times. An apology wasn’t necessary, as he was funny and personable. He mostly talked about KISS and cold gin, and when his distortion pedal was too quiet he said that it was some ‘weak Nirvana shit’, and then said, “Yeah, I said it!” He played ‘Me and Mia’ second and then said, “I thought I should just get that one out of the way.” He threw in a cover of Angelfuck by The Misfits at the end of a song and that made Brian really happy.
He was also assertive with the audience, which I thought was very cool. Some guy in the front took pictures the whole time and finally after a few songs, Ted Leo was like, “You know i’m not going to do anything but stand here with my guitar, right? After awhile it gets a little uncomfortable.” When someone asked him to play Since U Been Gone (his very popular Kelly Clarkson cover), he refused and said that song haunts him everywhere he goes. He also didn’t take any requests at the end, because he said he really wanted to play the last two songs on his setlist. It sounds dickish, but he was really nice about it and I believe this is what the kids call “keepin’ it real”.
He didn’t seem to be selling merch, so I didn’t get a shirt and had to use my cash for practical things like gas money and food.
The only negatives were the audience. It was in a bar so you would think the alcohol would help, but hardly anyone was even moving, or singing along, or looking like they even liked being there. A guy in front of me stood behind his girlfriend the entire time, creating a wall with their heads, and he also kept backing up and pushing a girl into me. Apparently she didn’t care, but if you’re at a show and it’s NOT packed and they have plenty of space in front of them, if someone is backing into you, don’t move. Let them back into you and then in theory, they will realize they’re too close and will move. Unless you’re Brian, you’ll end up with your elbow in a 6’5″ linebacker because the guy doesn’t know what personal space is. Seriously, Brian’s elbow ended up in this guys stomach and he still wouldn’t move away from him, and I don’t mean like he was throwing elbows, I mean he had his arms crossed and the guy ended up THAT close to him. So Brian just yelled ‘yeah!’ and ‘woo!’ extra loud all night.
The moral is, don’t be a dick. Be aware that there are people around you and they probably don’t want you stepping on their toes and rubbing on them!
Overall, it was worth me spending my weekend driving all over Illinois and I would do it again. If you have the chance to see Ted Leo, with or without The Pharmacists, do it!
To move backwards, to go to St. Louis, first I had to drive down to Carbondale and pick Brian up. It was finally warm here so it was a good weekend to road trip. I wore skirts all weekend because I was sick of the cold and having to wear pants and sweaters. Brian made me biscuits and gravy for Mother’s day:
We picked up a package of the Field Roast apple and sage sausages to go with them. I’ve had Field Roast slices before, but not these and…they were gross. I haven’t had a sausage in at least 18 years, but I thought they were too meaty and I ended up feeling sick for most of the afternoon.
When it came to dinner time, obviously I wanted to eat in St. Louis since we were going there for the concert anyway. The problem was, it was Sunday, the show wasn’t until 9:00, and most places that we could kill time in (The Galleria), would be closed by 6:00. So that crossed a lot of things off of our list. We decided to go to Pi Pizzeria, but when we got there at 7:00 it was packed, and there was a 45 minute wait just to be seated. So we just went to Whole Foods.
I swear, on my tombstone it will say, “She always ended up eating at the Whole Foods Deli.” I didn’t really want anything on the hot bar (Not for $8 a pound anyway), so I got some simple spring rolls, a drink, and of course, CAKE. I tried to eat the muffin for breakfast, but it tasted like there was no sweetener in it at all, and then I realized there were two spots of mold on it.
And this is what I wore. I had a hard time picking out which black vegan t-shirt to wear, but in the end I went with the one that was actually clean.
And that was the end of my St. Louis adventure, hopefully the next time I go it will be on a weekday so i’ll be able to blow all of my money on soap and food like the good lord intended.
under: food, life, music, pictures, vegan in illinois