I’m sure there are bands in our past who at one point we didn’t care for and yet later discovered. My Smashing Pumpkins story is a bit like that.
I ran across a feature today by Jane Graham “I was a teenage Pumpkins fan” and it really brought this home to me. I was totally one of those who ragged on the band when they first came out. I didn’t ‘get it’ I suppose. As they evolved I did find several songs I enjoyed, but still wasn’t converted to the point of buying a cd.
One of my co-workers was a huge fan and at some point (after much slagging) I fell under the Pumpkins’ spell. It happened roughly in ’98-’99. I couldn’t really pinpoint when I started to give them a chance. Perhaps it had something to do with the euphoria my friends brought back from the Adore tour.
But even before Machina came out I was out in a cold alley blocking out the 20 degree weather for the majority of one Saturday to purchase tickets to their first Machina tour date.
Looking back now I wish I had documented the experience. Calling my friends at 7 AM (“no line yet – just a handful of fans at the door of the Granada” and again at 9 AM (“hey, I’m standing in line…get over here!”) We took turns going after coffee and hot chocolate and talking about whatever came to mind: books, oddly dressed people in line, as well as making the acquaintence of those we were in line with.
We were so pumped they had chosen Lawrence for the first show of the tour. I can remember Erika going to the vintage clothing store down the street to buy a cheap coat the night of the concert – then she just dumped it when we got inside the venue. Hilarious.
The show was spot on. One of the best gigs I’ve had the pleasure to attend. We also went on to attend one of their farewell gigs in Chicago that winter. I still love most of their music. But we all know it didn’t last. It couldn’t. I guess that’s what keeps music progressing (at least I hope it is).
On to other “must-see” bands. Goodnight, Billy C!