Is there anything more fun than an awesome outdoor concert?
One of the cool things about Salt Lake City is the Twilight Concert Series. When I first moved to Utah in 2001, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that in the summer, the city hosts pretty great bands for FREE concerts every week. Back then, you could bring a cooler filled with cocktails and snacks, lay out a blanket, and hear good music. It was at the Gallivan Center, a cool outdoor amphitheater right in the center of SLC’s downtown. Over the years, I’ve seen incredible shows under the summer stars: David Grisman, Sam Bush, The Roots, The Black Keys, Michael Franti, Rebirth Brass Band, De la Soul, Toots and the Maytals…the list goes on.
At De la Soul, years ago!
With my friend, Betsy, at The Black Keys
The Black Keys
Bursting at the seams with fans
At some point, you couldn’t bring your own booze to the shows anymore, but vendors sold beer, wine, and yummy food. The bands started getting bigger and so did the crowds, so in 2010, the Twilight Concert Series was moved to Pioneer Park. We made it to the first show at the new venue (Modest Mouse) but it was such a crowded and unorganized scene that we didn’t make it back, despite other cool bands in the lineup that year like Matisyahu and She & Him. In 2012, tickets cost money for the first time, but $5 per show is nothing for big names like Iron & Wine, Common, and Band of Horses.
Last night, we made the trek down from Park City and braved the crowd of 25,000 to see My Morning Jacket, one of our favorite bands. We know the tour manager, so we’ve been able to meet the band and hang out backstage at other shows.
Last summer’s My Morning Jacket show at the Fox Theater in Oakland
Last night was no exception!
As usual, the band ROCKED. We were able to enjoy the backstage area and the VIP section, with free drinks and a good view of the stage. But we preferred to be closer to the band and in the crowd.
(How funny is that guy?)
One downside of these concerts is that they’re open to all ages. There are a lot of young kids there who really don’t care about the band and just want to socialize and be cool. But there were plenty of true fans up front where we landed for awhile.
Toward the end of the encore, the big moon shone over the crowd. After the show, we briefly chatted with a couple of the band members and headed home with fresh music memories and happily ringing ears. SO MUCH FUN.
The letter “M” is checked off on Life List # 99!