Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Wolf Trap - Indigo Girls and Matt Nathanson

Maybe we hit it on a good day, but I think Wolf Trap is amazing. It has everything that an outdoor concert venue should have (good acoustics, pretty setting, lawn area for picnics) and I was floored that there was free parking and no lines! We went to see the Indigo Girls, one of our favorite singer-songwriter duos. The opening act was Matt Nathanson, an up and coming singer-songwriter that played a lighthearted and soulful set. You can currently hear his hit "Come on Get Higher" on the radio. As an added treat, the Indigo Girls welcomed Matt Nathanson back to the stage at the end of the concert to join them on their hit "Closer to Fine."

"There's a place we like to drive, way out in the country,
five miles out of the city limits we're singing..."

As the Indigo Girls took the stage, a huge thunderstorm rolled in. The lights went down and the lightning intensified. It was a beautiful backdrop for the Indigo Girls' music and we were very thankful that we could watch the show under the protective cover rather than getting drenched on the lawn.

There was something uplifting about joining together with thousands of people and singing along to the soothing voices of Emily Saliers and Amy Ray while a spectacular lightning show danced behind us. Wolf Trap is only about 30 minutes from Washington, D.C. but it felt like we were in another world. What a treat after a long day in the office.

"The best thing you've ever done for me,
is to help me take my life less seriously, it's only life after all...."

Second Thoughts from B

nos·tal·gia: a wistful or excessively sentimental yearning for return to or of some past period or irrecoverable condition

Some of my fondest college memories in the entertainment capital of the world are the late nights in hole-in-the-wall bars, clubs, and coffee houses listening to aspiring singer/songwriters, several of whom were good friends. Some of these people, like Sara Bareilles, have emerged from the tremendously deep pool of talented - and yet unsigned- artists to become household names. Others, like the Elevaters, are on their way. Why do I bring this up? Because it is written in the official code of conduct for singer/songwriters that all sets must contain at least one Indigo Girls cover.

Flash forward to the other night at Wolf Trap, where I found myself surrounded by stereotypes, huddled under the overhang that protected some of us from a lightning storm that would make any roadie light tech proud. In the sweet-smelling fresh air and beautifully sounding arena, each socially conscious lyric came back to me and I was home.

Some would argue that is the power of music - to transport you to another place and time - and I would not argue. But I would also say that the environment surrounding the music that night played a part. Maybe it was the freedom to bring a picnic or breathe fresh air. Maybe it was the power of the storm. Maybe it was an exceptional performance. Maybe it was the subject matter that seemed so appropriate for this particular time and place. I honestly can't put my finger on it. Regardless, I hope that our next trip to Wolftrap is half that much fun.


Vidda said...

You bring back memories of Dad and me going to Universal Studios, when they had an outdoor venue for the popular singers/groups of the day... we'd share a potluck picnic dinner with friends before the show and then (Steve Kluewer alway managed to get up front seats) enjoy great shows. We're glad you are creating so many special memories!

Quinn said...

I have been to Wolf Trap probably more than 20 times in my life, and without fail, every...single...time...there is a torrential downpour. Must be something about that place - or the outdoors this spring in general.