One of my friends is employed at a company that throws ridiculously amazing holiday parties. Every year, his company rents out a stadium and hires a classic band to perform. He invited me last year, but Darius Rucker was performing, who I’m not a fan of. Plus, I was bummed about some hipster dude who was ignoring me, so I was spending a lot of time in coffee shops writing terrible poetry with my fried blonde hair and 90’s angsty plaid. My heart was too cold and sad for such revelry as holiday parties.
This year, however, I do not have any hipster dudes making me sad, so my heart is full of joy for the holiday season. My friend invited me to the party again this year, this time telling me that Huey Lewis and the News was booked. I think my response was somewhere along the lines of, “HELL YESSSSSS.”
Huey Lewis was the soundtrack to my childhood. Seriously. You couldn’t turn on the radio back then without hearing “Stuck With You” or “If This Is It?” or “The Power of Love.” This has always been my favorite Huey song, hands down:
Their music has always been pretty light fare, but this is the one song that hints at something heavier. I freaking love that guitar riff. Seriously, when that song pops up on the radio, I don’t care if I’ve heard it three billion times – it’s one of those, “OH SHIT TURN IT UP, IT’S GONNA BE A GOOD DAY” kind of songs.
And so Saturday night arrived with much anticipation. After enjoying food and an awesome dueling piano band for an hour (it sounds lame but I promise you, they were amazing), we headed to the stage to watch Huey Lewis. Oh look! Here’s a terribly fuzzy picture to prove I was there!
They opened with “Heart of Rock and Roll.” I don’t care if it was named as an Awesomely Bad song or whatever, I still love it. And it’s true, everyone does get all excited when you hear your city getting called out in the song.
I had been worried that Huey Lewis would sound bad. I am always a little skeptical of this when I see shows with aging rock stars. I have to say, his voice sounded pretty good. At one point in the show, the band all performed several a capella songs. Even my close friend, a music major, admitted that it was a tight set.
The band sang “Power of Love” pretty early in the set, and then moved on to some other songs that I guess only hardcore Huey fans would appreciate. It was around this time that I wanted to do a mosh. I mean, don’t get me wrong, the show was still good. We were having fun. But it was definitely a lower energy kind of show. Huey would try to get the audience engaged and no one was really responsive except for the really big hits.
We were standing close to the stage, but the energy would not have been any different had we been seated in the stands. It was the kind of show you could take your grandmother to, and she’d want to go out for ice cream afterward. I’m not saying this is a bad thing. It’s just a different energy than I am used to.
We had been joking around about moshing before the show, but now I wanted to do a little bit of it. So my friend and I ran into each other, then he ran into another, and I ran into another (these were all people in our group, by the way. Not random people.)
We did about three seconds of moshing before I took a look around me. People were staring at us with Very Disapproving Looks. The friend employed at the company quickly said, “Guys, cut it out,” after a dude in a cowboy hat kept his gaze on us. But then he commenced to groping his girlfriend’s boobs the entire night, so clearly he was not in any place to judge. I think the woman in front of us even texted her disapproval over our brief antics to someone. Awesome.
Moshing aside, it was an awesome night spent with great people. You can’t beat a good, free show. And, say, twenty years from now, if I hear a Huey Lewis song pop up on the oldies station, I can tell my kids that I saw his show, and they can be all, “Yeah, I don’t care.”