David Cook Ridgefield Playhouse

David Cook returned to the Ridgefield Playhouse – which is apparently where Idol winners go after breaking their hand/wrists and are unable to actually play guitar. (Kris Allen played there just after his accident!)

Before the show I had a meet and greet and before David’s injury I had bought him a mini Kansas City Royals corn hole game.  I told him I wasn’t trying to be a jerk and had bought it before he was injured.  He assured me he would still be able to play it and he would win because no one else on tour would play with him.

During the show David was chatty as usual and made me crack up – as usual.  He talked about how if you were single maybe you could meet your signifigant other at his show (I’m listening…) and then went into this hypothetical story about how you would leave the show together in your RAV4 (uh, wait, that’s MY car?) and go to your apartment in what used to be a lighthouse and run up the spiral stairs (ok, you lost me) and quickly clean up the place before bringing the date upstairs…  He also told a story about how Chris Cornell had written one of his songs and how he met him at the ENT and then spit into the sink. He said he should never tell the story again but they decided just the spitting part had to go.

When he first came out on stage he said that he thought his shirt was a little bit too aggressive for the show but he doesn’t do costume changes – of course someone yelled for him to just take it off and he said we wouldn’t like that because it is a “dumpster fire under here”.

He told stories about both of his brothers – about Adam before Goodbye to the Girl where he explained about how he never really properly dealt with his death initially and took a couple days off for the funeral but just continued on his tour and later ended up going to therapy and kind of sorting things out and thats what led to him writing Goodby to the Girl.   Before a cover of Day is Gone he gave props to his brother Andrew who had mentioned Noah Gundersen and thought that David would like him, but he never really gave it a second thought until he heard the song in Sons of Anarchy and said if he could make the arrangement work for the acoustic tour he would give Andrew props – which I think kills him a little bit inside every show.

The set was a little bit short and since David was injured he did not play anything at all. (And he could not sign during the M&G either, bummer.) It was also interesting that there were two different songs titled Heroes in the set and I was glad that I was not in charge of the database for that setlist!  I am totally loving David’s new single Death of Me and as always am looking forward to seeing him again soon!

Hanson String Theory – Atlanta & Nashville

Near the end of October I made a trip to Atlanta and Nashville to see Hanson’s String Theory Tour.   We had Friday in Atlanta to sightsee so we hit up World of Coke (pro tip – if you have a free ticket in your coke app, screen cap it because it will eat it before you get to the museum to redeem it!) and the Georgia Aquarium.   World of Coke was fun – we had a lot of fun in the tasting room trying all the different sodas from around the world and trying to not stick to the floor.  I really liked the blue raspberry Fanta and of course SURGE… both from North America but I think I did try at least 1 from each of the areas available.  The aquarium was a lot of fun too, we hit up the dolphin show, saw some otters, lots of fish, penguins… and finally found Nemo in the last place we looked! Saturday we took it easy until it was time to leave for the show, found a spot for dinner and headed to the Symphony Hall.  We had 3rd row center for this show and it was my closest show yet, we were between Isaac and Zac and the show was a lot of fun.  Not as great of sound as Denver, but good!  After the show we hung around for a bit to see if we could catch a glimpse of the guys getting on the bus (we did) and then headed to Chattanooga, halfway to Nashville, for the night.  When our hotel breakfast had the tiniest cinnamon rolls and “bagels for babies”, we hit the diner across the street for a real breakfast before heading to Nashville.  We got ready for the show, ubered to the wings mural and took some pre-show photos before grabbing dinner and heading to the venue.  It was FREEZING in Nashville. I had brought my winter coat and was glad I did!   For this show we had front row, all the way over to the side and it turned out to actually be a really great view – no symbol face for Zac and not as far over as the seating chart on the website had led us to believe.  I spotted “Slim” who plays guitar for Lady A (but used to play for Curtis Peoples) and Paul McDonald in the crowd and I’m sure there were more familiar faces around as well.  While the setlist is the same every night the show is not – and Zac sang “now that I’ve started…” at the beginning of chasing down my dreams but… no one else had started so he had to start again.  In addition to the mishaps, there is also a different feel with each orchestra and each maestro. (And Nashville’s happened to be adorable)  talking to Isaac after the show he said that he could notice a difference with each orchestra, their timing, loudness, etc.  I think my favorite shows in order are: Denver, Nashville, Atlanta, Pittsburgh.  I probably won’t be able to keep a ranking up with like 9 or 10 more shows to go. (Though I bet the Sydney Opera House will be up there. Yeah… I’m going back to Australia!)

 

Lance Bass at Sacred Heart

Monday October 15th Lance came to Sacred Heart University as part of their lecture series. While the lecture was geared towards the students there it was open to the public and we very well may have been some of the oldest fans that showed up… but ain’t nothin’ wrong with that! Lance ended up talking about various topics for almost an hour – his failed Russian space mission, growing up and not knowing he could be a musician, getting the call asking him to be in *NSYNC, the Brady Bunch house, being an actor, causes that he supports and that are near and dear to his heart, coming out as Gay and how growing up without any out role models affected him and how he wants to help be a role model for LBGT kids today…. The last 15 minutes or so were reserved for questions and I have to say that I’ve been to a few events like this and they were probably the best questions as a whole that I had ever heard asked. Definitely touched on some great subjects like what projects he has in the works (an *NSYNC broadway show? A documentary about Lou Pearlman? New *NSYNC merch coming out…) Afterwards we hung around and were able to catch Lance leaving and get pics with him and I chatted with his husband Michael a bit as well.

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Christina Aguilera Liberation Tour

Saturday October 6th Christina Aguilera brought her Liberation Tour to the Mohegan Sun Arena. The box Office was saying that the Doors were opening at 7pm, there would be no opener and Christina would take the stage at 8pm. I figured I would get home at a reasonable hour but Christina’s countdown to take the stage didn’t actually start until 8:49pm with her taking the stage just before 9pm. Now that she has canceled some shows due to her voice I wonder if there was some sort of delay that caused it or if this is the norm for all her shows. While the tickets came with a free copy of her new album, I hadn’t had a chance to listen to it so I was not familiar with her more recent songs, of which there were several in the set. However, with such a big stage production, even not being able to sing along didn’t really make me feel left out of what all was going on on the stage. She had 4 female dancers and 2 male dancers who sometimes were even out in the crowd during parts of the set. I found it a bit interesting that she was all dressed up in Asian inspired outfits and talked about “looking in the mirror” and singing a song from the beginning – but she did Genie in a Bottle and NOT Reflection from Mulan (which wasn’t in the set at all.) It seemed like that was what she was setting up for so it felt like a missed opportunity to me.
Throughout the show Christina talked to the crowd and thanked her “Fighters” for sticking with her and how she had not been on tour since she was pregnant with her son who is now 10 years old and how her daughter ins now 4 and probably will follow in her footsteps because she is always on the side of the stage watching and looking on.
Towards the end of the show she ended up bringing 2 pairs of fans up on stage with her and it looked like they were having a blast on stage with Christina and her crew!
The show was a ton of fun, Christina’s voice was incredible and I had a blast. Hopefully she gets better soon and can continue on with the tour because anyone who is going to see it is in for a real treat and you can tell how much fun Christina is having during the show!

Category: Concert  One Comment

Tyler Hilton at Stage One

Tyler Hilton came back to Fairfield as a solo act for the first time in a few years and I was very excited to see him. I did the VIP ticket so I got to hang with him a bit before the show – there were about a dozen of us just hanging out, talking about past shows, making random song requests. (Several of which made it into the set that evening – although I pulled the most obscure song I could think of out as a request moreso to see if he even remembered its existence than for him to actually play it – and he did remember it but wondered how I knew about it!) He practiced a Christmas song he had written for a Lifetime movie that has a bunch of the One Tree Hill cast members in it. He fumbled through it a bit on the piano but said he’d try it out during the show again and hopefully do better (and he did, and he did!) He was happy that the venue had a piano for him to use so he did more songs on that than he usually does, but said he’s not much of a piano player so he kept apologizing that he might mess things up. He did way better than I ever could, so no complaints here! It was great to see him again at Stage One – he mentioned it was one of his favorite venues to play and he always looks forward to coming so hopefully that means that he will come around again soon! We also tried to convince him to book a Christmas gig at Daryls House so maybe that will end up happening as well.

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Elton John Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour

Elton John brought his Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour to the XL Center in Hartford on September 19th. We had bought tickets what seemed like so far in advance and then before we knew it, the day of the show was upon us! I had taken a peek at the setlist before the show and realized I was familiar with most of the set (and the ones that titles I didn’t recognize I was hoping I would recognize the songs once he had started to play them) but I was super disappointed to see that he had no Lion King songs included ☹ We got to the venue pretty early in an effort to beat traffic and ended up finding we had parked next to a broken escalator so we had to ride a scary elevator instead. While we were waiting for doors we saw the escalator had been fixed, but by the time the show was out the escalator was OFF. So we had to ride the creepy elevator yet again…
We had a couple in front of us who were VERY excited about the show, and turns out they also knew how to use setlist.fm and look up setlists so they discussed the show with us a bit beforehand and said they had seen him a few times before (it was the first (and last!) time for my Mom and I) and it would be the BEST SHOW WE HAD EVER SEEN. After the show my Mom and I agreed – it was a good show but probably not the BEST! EVER! Except neither of us really could decide which show that we had seen was the best.
When we got to our seats, Elton’s piano was furthest from us, but I noticed a track on the stage and figured the piano was going to move. Sure enough, it did, and he did end up over on our side of the stage a couple of times (though never for very long). His band was absolutely incredible backing him and in addition to playing the songs, he told stories about most of them before he started which I always find really interesting in getting the backstory about how songs were written, what they are about, etc.
The stage setup had a brick road all around it with different items of significance throughout Elton’s career included – the broadway shows, etc. I wish we could have gotten a better look at the other side of the stage as well because the detail was amazing! My only disappointment was I thought that he would change his outfit/glasses a bit more than he did – otherwise I have no complaints and it was a great show!

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#CAMPINGTABLE

I am not much of a camper but I do sometimes camp out in my scrapbook area for weekends at a time – and after getting a couple of new toys and realizing that I needed some more room, this portable aluminum camping folding table from RORAIMA turned out to be exactly what I needed!  It is light weight, really easy to put together, is just the right height and if I do ever decide to go camp, I can easily disassemble it, toss it into the carrying bag and it will take up next to no room in the car to be transported! Pick up your own at Amazon!

The instructions were a bit faded which made for some fun times with putting the table together, but it went together in about 10 minutes once I figured out what I was doing 🙂

I received a discounted item in order to write this review, but I am absolutely loving the table and all thoughts and opinions are my own!

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Book Review: Girl Boner

Girl boner is geared towards ‘good girls’ seeking sexual empowerment.  There are journal exercises throughout the book and stories from abuse victims as well as ways to self are and pointers on sex positions.  It seems like a woman’s pleasure is always an after thought to the man’s, so this book helps educate the women and hopefully help make their sex lifes a little bit more pleasurable.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

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Book Review: Fantastic Failures

Fantastic Failures is all about people who have changed the world – but not without falling down first.  Some of the names that you will probably recognize that are included in this book include – Harry Potter author JK Rowling, Media superstar Oprah, movie director Steven Speilberg, NASA brain Katherine Johnson… The moral of the story is, be persistent and keep trying.  Fall down 7 times, stand up 8.  If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.  Just think of all the things we would not have if the people in this book gave up after their first attempt didn’t go as they had planned for it to!

 

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

Even the most well-known people have struggled to succeed! Find out what they learned and how they turned their failures into triumphs with this engaging and youthful guide on how to succeed long term.

There is a lot of pressure in today’s society to succeed, but failing is a part of learning how to be a successful person. In his teaching career, Luke Reynolds saw the stress and anxiety his students suffered over grades, fitting in, and getting things right the first time. Fantastic Failures helps students learn that their mistakes and failures do not define their whole lives, but help them grow into their potential.

Kids will love learning about some of the well-known people who failed before succeeding and will come to understand that failure is a large component of success. With stories from people like J. K. Rowling, Albert Einstein, Rosa Parks, Sonia Sotomayor, Vincent Van Gogh, Julia Child, Steven Spielberg, and Betsy Johnson, each profile proves that the greatest mistakes and flops can turn into something amazing. Intermixed throughout the fun profiles, Reynolds spotlights great inventors and scientists who discovered and created some of the most important medicines, devices, and concepts of all time, including lifesaving vaccines and medicines that were stumbled upon by mistake.

 

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Book Review: We Are The Nerds

We Are The Nerds tells the story of the birth and tumultuous life of REDDIT, the Internet’s culture laboratory.  It may be a surprise to many, but I do not spend much time on reddit at all.  I am aware of what it is and I know a ton of people who spend hours there checking everything out but for whatever reason it never really clicked as a place for me to check out. However, I am a nerd and I am all about the internet and making webpages and apps and the like so getting to read a bit about how everything behind the scenes went down before the site was created and then trying to figure out how to balance its popularity as well as know what to censor and what not to censor was really interesting to me.  A lot of fun stories from behind the scenes, some sad ones as well.  I learned a lot, even if it did seem to take me forever and a day to actually end up finishing the book. (Where has all my free time gone!? No wonder why I have no time for reddit…)

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

A riveting look inside Reddit, the wildly popular, often misunderstood website, whose intensely-engaged users have changed the culture of the Internet–“a must-read for anyone hoping to make sense of the century ahead” (Ashlee Vance, bestselling author of Elon Musk).

Reddit hails itself as “the front page of the Internet.” It’s the third most-visited website in the United States–and yet, millions of Americans have no idea what it is.

We Are the Nerds is an engrossing look deep inside this captivating, maddening enterprise, whose army of obsessed users have been credited with everything from solving cold case crimes and spurring tens of millions of dollars in charitable donations to seeding alt-right fury and landing Donald Trump in the White House. We Are the Nerds is a gripping start-up narrative: the story of how Reddit’s founders, Steve Huffman and Alexis Ohanian, rose up from their suburban childhoods to become millionaires and create an icon of the digital age–before seeing the site engulfed in controversies and nearly losing control of it for good.

Based on Christine Lagorio-Chafkin’s exclusive access to founders Ohanian and Huffman, We Are the Nerds is also a compelling exploration of the way we all communicate today–and how we got here. Reddit and its users have become a mirror of the Internet: it has dingy corners, shiny memes, malicious trolls, and a sometimes heart-melting ability to connect people across cultures, oceans, and ideological divides.

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