Went to the glorious Magic City Music Hall in beautiful Johnson City, NY on Wednesday to see Bright Eyes' first and last performance in my hometown. When this was initially announced I was completely shocked, seeing that Magic City's forte is mostly washed-up classic rockers and shitty metal bands, and wondered what type of crowd would go. I just had a feeling that it wouldn't go that well, and I was sort of right. The crowd was pretty good sized but may have been the worst I've ever been a part of. Coming of age in the jam band scene makes going to a Bright Eyes concert an uncomfortable proposition and between all the plaid shirts and emo college kids, I really felt out of place. But what was the worst was the overall immaturity of the crowd. Between all constant talking and cell phone bullshit, it was like half of this crowd had never been to a concert before. This might have had something to do with looked like half the crowd being underage but still, that's no excuse from given the performers on stage a little respect. When a group is doing a quiet song, the audience should actually shut up and listen. Conor didn't really help himself as he grew perpetually drunker and belligerent as the night went on. I've heard about the drunk show stories and while it didn't really affect his overall performance, it was just another blight on the night. I could understand his frustration with the crowd though as the band actually cut one quieter song out because the crowd just wouldn't shut up. If the Binghamton area is actually wants to get more quality concerts, the people going to them should stop acting like assholes and appreciate an artist like Conor Oberst actually came. I doubt he'll ever be back again. At least I'll be in Portland in a couple of months where people actually appreciate actual music.
On an unrelated note but something I wanted to address, Norman Mailer, someone who I have great apprectiation for as an author, passed away last week. As a person, Mailer was a pretty dislikable man to many different groups and his general boorishness has a unique appeal. There's no denying that the man was a talented writer and that being a prick shouldn't disqualify his literary achievements. Read The Executioner's Song and find out.