Monday, September 26, 2011

Bygone Era

Being in middle and high school in the farmlands of PA, it was always such a freaking score to be able to find a place that had their stuff on the shelves. I mean, we had the local college station (WDCV) where we could hear all this great music, but no place to buy it (and, when you could find it, it was twice as expensive as the garbage on regular radio).

On the plus side, when I went away to college, it wasn't until my junior year that most other people started to be aware that I had a good music collection to raid (and my collection became an involuntary musical resource for a lot of people in my dorms and apartments). What started out as "1001 bad groups" (my cousin, John Kling, had similar tastes in music, and, one of his fraternity brothers did a charicature with that title) became the music resource for a bunch of people. When I started at PSU, I always had to scrounge for people to drive all over the state to go to small clubs to listen to bands we liked. By the end, could easily find people to make the weekly drives all over the state. 

Still and all, by the time I had the money, means and traveling companions to be able to see REM, live, they were well into the peak of their career. The best I could do were shows like the one at the old Capitals complex in Bowie, MD (please don't ever ask me to call it US Air Arena). Seating was awful, but was still a great show (well, Stipe still had an awful tendency to go on long preaching jags - you kinda just wanted him to "shut up and play" - but still, it was a good show). So, never got to see them in an intimate setting.

Oh well, era long gone. I was actually kind of surprised by the announcement, given that I'd sorta lost track of them. I'd thought they'd faded out 10 years ago.

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