I went to see Sebadoh on Monday just because I was on the list. That’s right, I’ll pull that card. I think Sebadoh are boring and tour too often, but I wanted a distraction. I missed Quasi, and I honestly don’t remember who that band is anyway. The crowd was small and older than I’d expected. They seemed unimpressed for the most part, and I could understand that, but they paid to be there, so they probably didn’t think Sebadoh sucks.
A few people were head banging, which was cool, but the band awkwardly remarked on the crowd’s apathy. I think of Tucson as a town of many things, including a pretty big aging hipster population. Am I wrong? Or are we all just so relaxed we can’t even show a touring band we like them, even when they ask us to? Are the people I saw at Congress on Monday the only ones left, and they just went out because they felt they should? Did the rest move to Portland?
Dear Tucson: I was at the Nobunny/Creamys/Acorn Bcorn show at Solar Culture a week ago, too. Come on, you guys. There was a big crowd, and there was crowd-surfing, yeah, but nothing like what it would have been in San Francisco or even LA. All these bands are from here, and Nobunny was coming back to Tucson (lead singer Justin moved to Oakland years ago). After the show, everyone went home.
Comparing shows might be kind of futile, but it probably means something when I can honestly say that every single band I’ve seen in two different cities that include Tucson has played better in the other place. Nobunny got a way better response when I saw them in LA, and Austin-based Indian Jewelry got, like, a rave in Detroit compared to a house party in Tucson. (You guys: Detroit). Another now SF-based Tucson native Seth played with his band Hunx and his Punx here not long ago and it was lackluster compared to when I saw them in Vancouver. (You guys: Canada). Ann Arbor-based City Center played to hundreds more people in New York than when they played at the Red Room. Phoenix-native French Quarter played for a bigger crowd in Grand Rapids, Michigan when I saw him there than when he played at Dry River. (For real.)
Tucson, please be more fun to the people bringing you fun. I know it’s hard to break out of your cool shell to jump around and say you like something a whole lot, especially when it’s summertime and you’re trying to stand very still, but try anyway. You can jump in one of a million pools right after. Bands keep coming here and deciding not to come back. You’re ruining my social life, Tucson, when you used to make it. Now we’re stuck seeing Sebadoh again. You guys.