05/11/04: yes yes yes yes YES!   (plus 10:17am update at bottom)


My friend Annie sent out a blasto email last week touting two extra tickets to see YES, so Trainor and I nabbed 'em and we just got back from the show. YES fans will hate me because my first album of theirs was 90125 and I really love that disc. It is one of the most perfectly (albeit over-) produced things I've ever heard. I loved this album before I knew who YES was, meaning, back in 1987 I never knew that they were these old skool prog rock gods; I just thought they were the band with the silly 21-odd versions of the same video for "Leave It."   I eventually discovered copies of Fragile and Close to the Edge in my brother's music collection, and I remember listening to 'em and wondering why the songs were so long, but at the same time I found myself sucked in by the melodic journies these tunes would take me on.   Way cool.

Progressive rock at its best reminds me of Bach. When I listen to Bach, even simple inventions and such, I am taken on this harmonic ride and I am always convinced that compositionally and harmonically he has backed himself into a corner, and I find myself thinking, "OK bucko, how're you gonna get yourself out of this one?" Yet somehow he always manages to get back to a nice phatty I chord, and I giggle at the trip.   Prog rock does the same thing for me... and not only do they mess with your head melodically, but they do it in wack-ass time signatures just because they can.   Give me a meandering Tony Banks solo in any old Genesis tune and I will be awestruck. Hand me a perfectly executed guitar/keyboard call and answer conversation (argument?!) between Steve Howe and Rick Wakeman and I am humbled. Whenever I think I have an ounce of musical chops, all I have to do is listen to these dudes who have been studying, playing and honing their craft for 50 years and I realize I'm a pile of suck. Jon Anderson, while one of the silliest showmen I've seen recently, has a voice so accurate and pure that it defies reason. The dude took a lap around the audience and his voice didn't waver a cent. He's 60 years old and his instrument is refined and perfect. Granted, I might not want to listen to it for 24 hours straight, but it certainly is worthy of adoration.

Do I consider myself a huge YES fan? Certainly not compared to the other audience members. But did I almost pee my pants 65 times? Yep. Did I find myself totally unable to clap because I was just soaking in the final decay of the last chord? Many times all I could do was soul-smile and nod... though for giggles Joe and I stood up and did the lower-lip-bite-plus-devil-fingers-ceiling-point a few times, because ya know, we're rockers. :-D

I was very glad to have been able to see the concert with him; I wouldn't have wanted to go with anyone else.

So Paula, Trainor's cool-o-matic girlfriend lives in Richmond VA, and he only gets to see her every few weeks. So we said that once The Ninja leaves Joe is gonna be my surrogate boyfriend... we'll go see movies and stuff. We've already got a date for the end of June to play hooky from work and go to Great Adventure on a weekday and go on some roller coasters. I imagine I'll need some major distractions at that point, yo.   I'm very lucky to have such cool friends. :-)

Speaking of cool friends, Matt-o-Blatt emailed me this tonight in response to my 5/10/04 post:

> Hey Jill -
> Howcome you're quoting "The Last Polka?" What's wrong?

So I responded thusly.

From: llij
To: Blatt
Subject: Polkas
Date sent: Tue, 11 May 2004 01:00:27 -0400

Nada's wrong.

Ninja said something kind of funny and random yesterday, and it got me thinking. I can't even remember what spawned the conversation, but the one sentence that stuck out was, "If a guy kicks you in the shins, he loves you."

Anyway, it got me thinking. Why is it that when people give me compliments (not to imply that Ninja was complimenting me by that comment), I either negate them, or thank them half-heartedly and rationalize in my head how they are clearly smoking crack. Where, if I compliment someone, I mean it so genuinely and I am hoping the recipient is feeling the impact of how much I adore them.

So it reminded me of the line "the kindest truths are often spoke but never heard."

And you can't have one line without the other, because the first line sets it up so perfectly... and I know I have spinelessly lied in my day by remaining silent, so why not?

But no, nothing's wrong. Thanks for checking in, though!

Tonight I went with Trainor to see YES, and HOLY CRAP they rocked.

(The best part about that sentence is that it could read two ways: either, I went to see the band named YES and they rocked so much that it caused me to exclaim "HOLY CRAP" loudly; -or-, I went to see two bands, one named YES and one named HOLY CRAP, both of which rocked. It's all in the commas. Ah, I love ambiguity.)

Trainor and I are still laughing over Cinco de Ocho. :-D



In other news... I'm taking a 1/2 day tomorrow (well, today) to head up to NYC to see De La Guarda with John. It's gonna rock-- I know he'll go mental for it. It'll be a long day, but worth it. I have a doctor's appointment at 8:30am to get the test results of my little zappity-zap from a few weeks ago, so we'll see what they have to say about that. I'm sure it's all good in the hood. Still debating if I wanna take the Amtrak for eleventy-billion dollars right from Wilmington straight up to Penn Station, or if I wanna drive to Princeton and take the train from there for less than $20 round trip. The only downside to that is I will be fargin' exhausted by the time I get back to Princeton to then make an hour's journey from there. Ugh.

Hey, check it out... my bedroom light just burned out. I'll take that as a sign to go to bed.

10:17am Update: Got back from the doc; all is well. Things are all good-- nothing added, nothing missing. Rah!

Silly work thing: I checked the queue right before I left at 8:15 this morning. Landed back at Chez Knapp at 9:45 expecting to be flooded with pissy comments re: why things were left sitting for so long; alas, only two cases came in, so folks were none the wiser.   Hey, look at me posting this in public! Wheee!

Very psyched about De La Guarda tonight. I gotta get me some new CDs for my car, though BFF's The Unauthorized Biography of Reinholt Messner gave me major music thrills this morning. Such a depressing and cynical album, but so damn perfect. The 4-song grouping of Army, Your Redneck Past, Your Most Valuable Possession and Regrets is just amazing. I can't listen Your Redneck Past without yearning for the remaining others in succession (Army stands nicely on its own). I swear, Regrets is so hard to listen to... not in a Hurt sort of way, but only because the lyrics for Hurt are slightly more abstract, and the lyrics to Regrets are very prose-y and crystal-friggin'-clear.

Anyway, I didn't get to sleep until about 3:30 this morning, so to be up at 7 was uncool at best. Knowing that I need to throw together some things, do some work, coordinate with Georgie re: the DLG tickets, hit the ATM, pay some bills and swing by InfoSystems is not making me think I have much time for a lunchtime nap before I have to leave here by 1:30 or so. I had best get crackin'.

Word up!