Once upon a time, I was able to open for a little band called Suburban Legends.
You might not know who they are, but in the ska/punk sub-culture, they’re a pretty big name. After Reel Big Fish, the Mighty Mighty BossToneS, and The Aquabats!, Suburban Legends is one of the big ones. They regularly show up at Disneyland:
And I used to be a fan. Maybe if I hadn’t opened for them, I still would be.
First of all, the venue is called The Loading Dock. It is literally a loading dock. It is the size of a one-car garage. Maybe I’m not giving it credit. It’s a one-and-a-half-car garage.
They did have a black light going, and that was cool. The lead singer of Bombshell Academy had dyed her hair, which reacted impressively with the black light.
But it’s still a crappy little venue.
Suburban Legends didn’t even show up until after we had played and packed up our gear. I understand they had been on the road for 8-ish hours. Still. No sound-check? Whatever.
I have played shows with some musicians who are super grateful you’re on the bill with them. I’ve played shows where the headline act teaches you a song backstage then everyone comes out and plays together.
I’ve played other shows where the headline act didn’t even recognize you existed.
Suburban Legends was the latter.
It was disappointing.
When we were hanging out with the other bands, setting up our merch, etc. Suburban Legends just … ignored us. Well, their touring trumpet player, Chris Lucca, made the rounds and said, “Hi,” but that was it. The rest of the band put off this air that they were better than us.
I cared so little for them, that I left. I didn’t even hear them play. I’m not sure the last time I left a concert early. But, congratulations Suburban Legends, you’ve lost a fan.
When I was younger I wanted to be in a rock band and tour and have music be my life. I’m sure my disillusionment had been growing – and it didn’t help that I became a dad a month before this show – but while I’ll never abandon music as a past-time and a passion, I doubt it’ll ever be a priority.
I don’t know. Maybe if my day job as a PR/marketing guy is stable and flexible enough, and I get together with the right group of musicians. But for now you can just find me at open mics and local, acoustic, singer-songwriter shows.