Sunday, April 23, 2006

Rockapella Roadtrip

Oregon, WI, 04/22/06

This narrative was prepared using the official fill-in-the-blank Rockapella Roadtrip Report Template.

AnnaK and Kim (Jugglernaut) met up at Anna's school the morning of the concert, and we were off to Oregon, WI to see our beloved boyz. Highlight: a fantastic pink, bespectacled elephant at a truck stop.

The weather was bland with intermittent rain, so it took us 4.5 hours to get there. We only got lost once. Yay mad geography skillz!

We headed to the hotel to check in and change, then hurried out again to find the venue and get some chow. Kim wore a brown suede pinstriped blazer and rhinestone-embellished tank top plus silver sneakers, while Anna wore her classic Rockapella t-shirt, and we both made sure to wear our new pink elephant caps. We were looking mighty thuggish if I do say so myself.

We went to the venue first to make sure we could find it, and to check on what time the doors would open before the concert. The house manager said doors were at 7:00, which gave us 2 hours to eat and get back to stake out a place in line, since it was general-admission seating.

We ended up eating at slanty-floored Maria's pizza, where we ordered uh, pizza and Sierra Mist. The food was good; the prices were excellent; the service person was very tan. Then we hustled back to the venue to grab our places in line.

While we stood there in the lobby, we could hear sound check going on in the concert hall. We recognized Jeff’s voice knocking out some beats. Ooh, coolness! Unfortunately, we couldn’t sneak in to witness sound check in person. But we did catch a glimpse of George talking on his cell phone and trying to find the backstage door. He looked stunningly hot, as usual.

We considered finding the Pellamobile in the parking lot and leaving something from Victoria's Secret under the windshield wiper, but decided against it. That would be crossing the line.

Standing there waiting, we immediately spotted Lisa/lfo in the lobby. She’s a Midwest concert regular. She was there with her husband Greg and their kids, plus the Big Oaf (B.O.) we remembered as a Zombie-crazed lummox from the Madison, WI, concert last September. We hadn’t seen them since then (although Kim did run into Lisa in the ladies' room at the Jefferson, MO, show in December). We spent a few minutes catching up with Lisa during intermission.

Then the doors opened and we went in to claim our seats. They were row 6, Jeff side. Some annoying choir girl was pissed because hers were "waaayyyy back here, you guys!", but that’s the way the cookie crumbles, toots.

The opening act consisted of a high school group called The Blue Notes and the all-female college ensemble Tangled Up in Blue. They were annoying. Note to openers: If your group has more than three people in it, not everybody needs a frickin' solo, all right? However, I guess we should give Tangled some credit for having a vocal percussionist, which a lot of girl groups don't.

Since this was a show to benefit the Muscular Dystrophy Association, the emcee then introduced Cody, the MDA goodwill ambassador. He's a fourth-grader and looked extremely uncomfortable onstage in his wheelchair. But he received a check for $5,000 from the sold-out show, which is fantastic. Nice work, Rockapella!

After all this time, you’d think we wouldn’t be breathless with anticipation for that first note, but we were. Only when we heard Scott, Kevin and John’s perfect voices kicking things off with Tonight could we finally relax. Squeeee!!!

Scott looked fantastic in his shiny dark blue suit with a blue and white striped shirt. I nearly swooned when he gyrated. Does that guy have a rubber skeleton or what?

Kevin looked adorable wearing the same damn suit as always with a sky blue shirt. Could this man dork any more? (Can I use "dork" as a verb? For Kevin Wright, yes I can, and with great, great affection.)

John looked shimmery decked out in a loose suit and royal blue satin shirt. I think I could see his prodigious eyelashes from where I was sitting.

George looked unutterably hot sporting a sleek collarless black suit and snowy shirt, and a smile to match. There ought to be a law against that magnitude of sexiness. If he swivels his hips one more time, I will surely die.

Jeff looked like he’d just come in from raking the yard in his usual T-shirt/overshirt uniform, which is fine because he looks totally cute in it. His overshirt was blue-black, in keeping with the evening's blue theme.

The concert was awesome, as usual, despite Scott being at about half strength. Don't know if he was ill or tired or what, but surely he'll be back at the top of his game soon. Even what was, for him, a weak performance still blows the competition out of the water.

For the Beg Girl of the night, John pulled a collegiate-looking woman named Jill out of the audience. She was wearing "some sassy pants," according to Jeff (flowy black palazzos). The guys totally asked her to hook them up with some good drugs when she said she was a pharmacy student.

The guys were in decent bantering form as well, but very toned-down, possibly due to the presence of the MDA kid in the front row. I could not believe Scott said almost nothing, but he sounded hoarse, so he was probably saving his voice.

Kevin filled in with a story about winning $5,300 in the lottery. He'd had four out of five correct numbers, and had an 11 on his ticket when the final winning number was 12. He was happy enough with his loot but felt that because he was so close, he should have gotten 80% of the $82 million pot rather than just $5,300.

George was less naughty than usual, but no less smokin'. Damn, but that man can sing low! But as usual, Jeff got off the funniest one-liner of the night with that "sassy pants" remark.

Jeff’s VP solo was the usual: amazing, I kid you not. He stopped midway through it to respond to some whooping with a quick, "Thank you, sir!" and then kept right on going.

I got some major stage love from George, or so I'd like to think.

Finally it was time for the finale, and I can't believe I don't remember what it was, but I don't, which totally brought the house down. I was hoping they’d do "Jenny Come Away" for one of the encores. They didn't. And when they sang "Up on the Roof/What a Wonderful World" off-mic, it seriously brought tears to my eyes.

They sang:

Main set
___ Ain’t Got Nothin’
___ Baby Girl
_x_ California Sad-Eyed Girl
___ Dancin’ in the Streets
_x_ For You, For Now, For Life
_x_ Greatest hits/jingles medley — may have been cut short; do they usually do anything else after Folgers?
___ It’s a Small World
___ Jenny Come Away
_x_ Lazy River
_x_ Love Potion #9
___ Make Love Last
_x_ My Girl/Ain’t Too Proud to Beg
_x_ Nothing But Perfect? Somebody help me out with the title here.
_x_ Papa Was a Rolling Stone
_x_ Rock the Boat/Rollercoaster
_x_ Stand By Me
___ Surrounded
_x_ Tell Me What You Want
_1_ Tonight
_x_ Under the Boardwalk
_x_ Use Me
_x_ Up On the Roof/Wonderful World

_1_ Shambala
_x_ Happy Birthday — The guys were hoping to serenade Amy, a shapely blonde birthday girl with a tramp stamp tattoo who had sent gifts backstage with road manager Bryan before the show. They'd met her before, I think. But when they announced this event, other people began calling out their friends' birthdays, so all the birthday people were invited onstage. Somehow, though, the tattoo topping the crack of Amy's butt still managed to monopolize the guys' attention.
_x_ Zombie Jamboree — Train wreck! Kevin forgot the lyrics to the first verse and tried to cover with a improvised rap. Let's just say that this did not work at all. When he halted with his usual legbone pain, Scott said, "Oh, the pain must have made you forget the words." "No," said Kevin, "the tattoo did that." Poor, distracted Kevin. He also tried to get back-to-back with Scott at the wrong time and bounced off Scott's outstretched hand. By the time the song ended, Jeff was laughing so hard he couldn't stand up straight.
_x_ Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?

Then it was time for the m&g. The boyz had changed into extremely casual clothes and looked very comfy, if tired. We waited around for a while for the crowd to thin out. Then we finally went up to Jeff and asked him to sign our junk. Of course he did because he’s so amazingly crinkly-eyed and gold-hearted.

Kevin admired our stylin' pink elephant caps. We felt like completes dork when we said we bought them at a gas station, but he was cool and acted as if we were not the most idiotic fangirls ever. He also recognized Kim, which was truly amazing because they hadn't been face to face since their last 15-second hello way back in September.

Then the boyz came out from behind the autograph table to pose for pictures. Kim got a couple that were less than great, but Anna's were better.

Eventually Rockapella split, breaking up the m&g. On the way out we swiped a quartet of "Rockapella concert SOLD OUT!" signs from the lobby windows and hung them in the back windows of the Subarushi instead.

We knew we wouldn’t be able to get to sleep right away after all the excitement, so we spun a few donuts in the parking lot and sang along loudly to "Jews Jews Jews" from the Unorthodox album several times. And we only got lost once on the unlit country roads on our way back to Motel 6. It was at least 12:30 when we finally went to bed after watching part of Twister.

We got up the next morning at 9:45-ish, even though we were still groggy from the incessant slamming of doors interrupting our sleep and staggered back to the car to head home.

This trip was totally SPRING BREAK ROCK AND ROLL!! WOOOO!. We’d do it again the next time Rockapella comes to the Midwest.



  • I don't know them but it sounds like a great concert and it is an interesting post! Here via Michele's blogroll game :)

    By Blogger mar, at 1:38 AM  

  • Scott's hair is long-ish again. :(
    But I still love him. Sounds like you had a blast. It looks like they'll be back here in November, which is just too far away. I need some 'Pella love here! ;) Thanks for the pics! Enjoyed lookin' at 'em.

    By Blogger Aura, at 5:51 PM  

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