Tuesday, September 17, 2013

17--Alabama Shakes and Dawes at Sloss Furnace

I've never been to a show at Sloss Furnace before, but what a great place to see a couple of really awesome bands.  We ordered tickets a few months in advance and were really excited about seeing this show with our friends.  And neither band disappointed.  The only thing disappointing was that Dawes didn't play longer!  I think they only played about 6 songs, and they have so many great ones.  So, I was sad about that, but once the Shakes came on stage, I was over it.  Brittany Howard can straight up sing!  Her voice is what I wish mine sounded like.  It's raw and soulful, and I just love her.  Now, she can be a little odd to watch close up because she makes some seriously weird facial expressions, but you sorta get over it because her talent is insane.  We weren't able to stay for the whole show because my parents were watching the kids, and we had church the next day.  But it was awesome nonetheless.  I sorta wished that she had broken out into some covers of Led Zeppelin or Janis Joplin or something like that.  She could totally rock that.  Of course, she rocked their original stuff anyway, so...  If you ever get the chance to see either of these bands, then do yourself a favor and go to their shows.  Both are really great musical/vocal talents.

Here's a video of Alabama Shakes singing "Hold On."  Please excuse the awful camera work.

Alabama Shakes--Hold On

Friday, September 6, 2013

15 and 16: Girls' weekend in Tuscaloosa and a New Restaurant

Back in January, a few of my sorority sisters and I decided to plan a reunion trip for the Spring.  Destination--Tuscaloosa.  My friend, Melissa Vergona Conner (who will, from this point forward, be referred to as "V"), found a great house in Tuscaloosa to rent, so we all decided to make it happen.  A few weeks later, they announced that A-Day was going to be the same weekend.  Naturally, we were super excited.  Not only would we be going back to the place where our friendships all started, but it would be during a really fun weekend on campus.  And if you've ever gone to a college with a BIG football program, then you know that Springtime weekends can be pretty dead compared to the games, band parties and crowds that accompany weekends in the Fall.  But we were all grown up now and weren't necessarily looking for a band party to attend.  (Well, I say "we."  "THEY" weren't necessarily looking for a band party to attend.  "I" on the other hand...)  So, after a few months of planning and anticipating, we were off.

That Friday happened to be the morning of that huge manhunt for the Boston marathon bombers, so I spent that morning on the couch, watching the Today Show coverage and dosing in and out of sleep while waiting to hear from V that she was on the road from New Orleans.  It was a GLORIOUS morning.  Well, the news was sad to watch, but a chance to relax all morning in a semi-conscious state was awesome.  Once I got word that she was in Meridian, I hit the road.

We met Candice and Kim (who from this point forward will be called "Watty") at Phil's on the strip for lunch.  It was the perfect way to start our weekend.  Afterwards, we went over to our very cute house and met the rest of our group, and the rest is...well...a sworn secret among girlfriends.  Let's just say there was alot of reminiscing, alot of laughing and alot of good, old-fashioned girl time.  But the highlights included visiting our sorority house, meeting some football alums, eating lots of great food and just enjoying our college town as grown ups.  I highly recommend a weekend with friends in the place where you met and got to know each other.  It puts so many things in perspective and is just a great way to refuel the mommy engine so to speak.  Many times, I find that I pour so much of myself into work and home and kids, and this was an awesome chance to just soothe my soul with my best friends.  It was amazing!

Our cute house that turned out to be massive on the inside!

Watty getting an autograph from "the bookends" John Copeland and Eric Curry.

Fun at A-Day.

Pure awesomeness.

As a side note: we ate dinner at Chuck's Fish.  I HIGHLY recommend it!  I had sushi, and it was wonderful.  Definitely give it a shot if you are ever in Birmingham or Tuscaloosa.