C is for Counting Crows
I got off schedule a little there because I meant to have this post on Saturday and, well, I did not. It happens! I’ll still get 26 posts into the month; don’t you worry.
So let’s go onto the letter C and talk about a band that deviates from what most any of my typical readers think I listen to.
Picture it: December 1993. I was halfway through my freshman year of high school and packing up my childhood home. My musical tastes at the time were heavily hard rock and grunge. If I was pressed to list a top 5 at that exact moment, they would have been: Guns and Roses, Stone Temple Pilots, Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains, and Soundgarden. But then I left behind my friends and South Florida and moved to the Orlando area, knowing nobody and starting at a new school. Around that time, the band Counting Crows put out August and Everything After. I don’t know how I found them – probably the video on Mtv for Mr. Jones – but I was super into that song. Then I got the album and it quickly joined my short list for albums that rocked from start to finish.
The thing I enjoyed was that it had a quality about it that mirrored my current state of emotions. There was happiness, longing, sadness, and loneliness. Adam Duritz’s voice embodied how I felt most days. As a 14 year old girl in a new place, it was difficult to feel a part of the city and the school. Especially because I was not like most of the other girls. I wore band t-shirts and baggy jeans and Nikes or Converse. I wasn’t very feminine and never gave it much thought because before, I had a group of friends who already accepted me.
As I listened to this album more and more, my dad became interested and he too liked it. My dad was a major influencer of my musical tastes already so it was kind of fun to share that with him. Well, soon after our move, the band went on tour and were coming to a venue downtown called the CowHaus. Well, I hadn’t made any friends yet so who did I go with? You got it: my dad. I would consider this my first concert, if you don’t count symphonies for field trips. At first I felt like a nerd going somewhere “cool” with my dad but accepting the fact I had only lived in town for about 2 weeks and knowing nobody at all, I was just fine with it. I don’t know how many people this venue held but it wasn’t many. (Maybe 500?) It was dark inside, crowded, but such a cool experience; one I’d never had before. (A stark contrast with the next show I’d attend, Soundgarden, which was outside and completely insane!)
After attending the show, I was even more of a fan. I wore the t-shirt the next day I went to school and it actually helped me to meet people because people asked if I had seen them. (Also, always buy merch from artists; it’s how they make money. Seriously.) I will always love this band for what they did for me at that specific time in my life. The teenage years are rough and moving during them, even tougher. This band helped to smooth the rough edges of being 14/15.