They say you shouldn’t feed a street cat, not even once, because they’ll keep coming back for more. So, like a street cat looking for her next meal, I keep coming back to the same venues for shows for more of what I love.

There are a million and one things to love but for my first show diary, I wanted to list a few of my favorites.

In no particular order:

Finding out your favorite bands are still bands

This is the biggest thing for me. 2020 saw a lot of friends leave the city or even the state, and the same can be said for the city’s musicians. Of course, some bands are friends and roommates but still.

Add to that how 2020 (and even lasting into 2021), it’s felt impossible to make art under the daily pressure of living through a fucking historical event. Personally, I had a lot of days where I couldn’t write a single thing. I can only imagine it was the same for the musicians.

So to see a lot of the same bands I was seeing in 2019 are still around… it’s comforting. I’m seeing the same familiar faces I used to see and it feels like coming home.

Thanks for hanging in there everyone.

Picking an outfit for the night

This is silly but let's be real: it’s pretty high up there on my list of priorities. I started to miss wearing jeans, doing my makeup, and stressing over which outfit I wanted to wear, or how to make it weather-appropriate (something I’m notoriously bad at, even as someone who obsessively checks two different weather apps) Even if that outfit is just jeans, a band tee, and a denim jacket, I’m still happy to wear that uniform again.

Seeing people have a good time.

I’ve seen a lot in the last few months: tearful reunions, a woman tearing a beach ball apart with her bare teeth, friends hugging each other for the first time in over a year, guys singing with their arms thrown over each other and spilling their beer everywhere, and even wall-to-wall mosh pits.

The emotions in a room are so tangible sometimes that I feel like I'm part of these moments, an observer who has become an insider by simply being there.

The emotions in a room are so tangible sometimes that I feel like I'm part of these moments, an observer who has become an insider by simply being there.

Now, you’re not likely to find me whirling through the pit but I love to see it. That's a level of energy and motion that I can't muster up more than once or twice in a year. Like, I was at a Juicebumps show in July when I made a new friend in an arm cast (if you're reading -- hi, Fabrizio!) Later in the night, I saw him crowd-surfing before capsizing into the pit (don’t worry — he was okay!)

I’m also not much of a dancer so please, lose your mind on the dance floor for the both of us.

Finding out about new bands

We already liked that about shows pre-quarantine but now there’s fresh new music born from quarantine. I’m talking roommates jamming in their living rooms, friends of friends of friends coming together to jam and start a new music project, musicians expanding their horizons and trying out genres they aren’t known for already, people playing all the instruments themselves just to record a song and bringing their friends in for the live performances. It’s beautiful, frankly.

Not to mention there are bands like Hit Me Harold, who I’d never heard of before seeing them at a random bar this summer and now have in my usual rotation. They’ve been a band for years and I had no idea!

Seeing and being seen

I’ve talked a lot already about what I like to see, but what about how I want to be seen?

I used to go to shows by myself all the time and I didn’t talk to anyone at all. I figured one day, someone would walk up to me themselves and we’d hit it off. Then quarantine happened and I realized I never made any new friends at shows, which hurt my heart.

The months dragged on and I made a resolution: If and when we go back to the shows, I’m going to put myself out there. I’m going to make some friends if it kills me.

And guess what? I have. Not every show will end with a friendship but I can say I’m doing better now. I talk to people even when my introvert tendencies shout at me to hide in the corners of the room. I try to smile more to offset my chronic RBF. I’ve even met some of the wonderful people at BFF in the wild!

So please, say hi to me if you see me 🥰

That’s all from me for now. What did you miss about going to shows? What's the weirdest or coolest thing you've seen since coming back? If you're not ready to come back to shows, how are you doing?

You can find my October playlist below with songs from all the bands I plan to see this month. Stay tuned for show recaps, photos, and more!

See you out there 🤘🏼