Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Why I'm not washing my right hand anymore or, Chris Thile touched me
It's true, folks. The day finally came. Some of you may remember my quest to interview Chris Thile a couple months ago. While that venture proved unsuccessful, (through a combination of factors, really) the dream in part became a reality anyway. Last night, Jason and I attended part of his Christmas present, a Punch Brothers concert here in Chattanooga at the UTC Fine Arts Center. Although it's a very nice concert hall, it's a relatively small venue, so we knew walking in that the evening was off to a great start.
As we took our seats (artfully selected via the hall's seating chart and memories of ballet recitals in said hall by yours truly) we discerned that our near eye level seating arrangement would be ideal. Then the house lights dimmed and the guys took the stage and everyone (self and Jason included) nearly had a stroke upon seeing Chris himself live and in the flesh - and like ten feet away from us. I am certain there was definitely some eye contact. The audience was so enthusiastic after each piece that the band kept laughing and remarking on what 'sweet people' Chattanooga has (what can I say? I've been trying to persuade ya'll that this place is awesome for years - maybe you'll listen to Chris.) At one point Chris remarked on what a good time he was having, and everyone clapped and hollered again, eliciting his comment that it was such a good audience that we'd "even clap for his having a good time!"
But the best part came at the end. The band played their last encore, (a rendition of 'Heart in a Cage' that nearly brought the house down) then Chris announced that they would be autographing things and meeting audience members in the lobby after the show. It's true. We met them all. The bass player, Paul, said he liked my red shoes, and we had a discussion about his own red shoes. Chris asked if my name ended with a y or an ie, and said "don't sound so downcast!" when I told him "just a -y." And we shook all of their hands. Chris even offered a bit of a bow. I may have been shaking a little. We considered sticking around til they left to stalk them a little more, but decided against it as Jason had to go to work at the crack of dawn.
People, let me tell you that if you live in a city where the Punch Brothers will be playing, you need to buy a ticket. These guys are incredibly talented musicians. They're also v. amusing and the show is so much fun. Jason proclaimed it the "best Christmas present EVER."
And now, back to work.