November 21, 2011
St. Petersburg, Ft. Lauderdale
St. Petersburg 10/28/11
Depending on how you count things, the St. Pete show was my 50th (ish) time seeing Hanson. Landmark material, right? And how better to celebrate than by getting a great spot and hearing your favorite album? Still, I think the fact that they recorded this show made it lose a little something for me. Hanson was aware of the cameras. I was aware of the cameras. And while I'd like to believe that none of us act any different with cameras, I think it's impossible to completely forget their presence. It's hard to dance like nobody's watching when you know there's the potential for repeated viewing if you happen to do something horrible enough to warrant an instant replay or six.
It was also the most cramped I've ever felt at a show. In fact, I might even prefer plain old-fashioned pushing to being thigh-to-thigh and shoulder-to-shoulder with the people around me. At least with pushing, there are ways to make it stop. When you're crammed in so tight that you can feel the girl five people down reaching into her pocket for her cell phone, there's not really much you can do but stay still and hope someone else caves first.
Despite all this, I had a great time. I finally got to hear Lullabelle live, which I suppose means something by default since I branded myself as "Hollybelle" the moment I rediscovered these guys. After the show, we waited by the bus. I decided like 20 shows ago that I should try to get pictures with Hanson at my 50th show; it seems like the obvious thing to do, right? Only that night, the thought didn't even cross my mind (and hasn't until right now). Instead, we let the guys pick out stickers to add to the maps in our tour books. I suppose in the end I'd rather have those silly little stickers than a picture I could recreate after any given show. Maybe I'll remember to get a picture when I hit #100.
(nevermind the "50" residing over Atlanta instead of St. Pete. I'm still not sure which really was #50)
Ft. Lauderdale 10/29/11
The Shout it Out story was probably the best of the three I saw, if for no better reason than Isaac's sassy attitude. He kept joking and snapping his hand back and forth for no apparent reason, and it was hilarious. Someone asked something about unreleased songs, which triggered Zac not only to admit to the existence of some song called "President of Gas," but to also break out into it. Isaac immediately joined in while Taylor looked the other way like he didn't know the other two goofballs on stage much less share any genes with them. He finally gave in and added a third harmony at the very end of the brief preview we got. It was entertaining for sure, but I can't say I foresee it finding a home on any future album.
The end of the tour felt a little strange because this show was technically the last, but the two Epcot shows directly after threw everything off. They weren't really part of the tour, but putting them after the final show made it feel like we didn't get a real ending. Standing in another sold out crowd that night, though, it finally felt like a last show to me. The energy was high, the setlist was really good, and I finally got to hear SIO for the first time of the Musical Ride Tour after hearing every other album at least three times. I ended the tour the same way I began it: in my favorite silver ballet flats. On day one, I took a picture in my front row seat with my favorite shoes resting against the stage. On the way out of the last show, I tossed them in the trash because they'd been rocked a little too hard (not to mention completely soaked from the rain).