As my status as a part-time music critic indicates, I have and have always had an obsession with music. It borders on unhealthy at times, but I think I can keep it in check.
But the side of my hunger for music I have rarely fed recently is my love of the live show. Since early in my college years, I've been quite the concert-goer, with my taste developing over time from the enormous outdoor festival show down to the club show. There's something I like about being on one of a few hundred and having the chance to stand 5 feet from the band.
But my last concert was like 11 months ago, and I fear I may be losing my edge. I've talked about going to shows in recent months, but it never seems to pan out.
While I'll allow that the tanking economy plays into my decision, the kinds of shows I really like cost $20 at most. Even as a poor man, I can afford them.
Even more frightening is the fact that one of my current favorite bands, the Avett Brothers, has been within an hour of here twice since June. In both cases, I talked myself out of making the trip for some reason or another.
But in the end, I fear the problem is much bigger than me. The problem lies in the fact that most of the bands I love come from the east coast, the west coast or Texas. And if you're from any of those places, I'm pretty sure Indiana seems to be about the lamest place you can go.
Even other bands from the Midwest seem down on our fair state, as "Indianapolis," by Festus, Mo.'s Bottle Rockets testify. However, I don't know if a Missouri band really has the coolness high ground.
I don't know. Maybe they're right, but I think the quality indie rock and alt-country acts should know they have fans here, too.
In spite of what outsiders might think, we don't just sit around listening to Mellencamp all day. And some of us also think radio country is horrible.
I just want to see the quality bands I love nearby. Give me Spoon. Give me Old 97's. Give me the Gaslight Anthem. Give me Mark Olson & Gary Louris.
Just give me something that isn't another Kenny (I think I'm Jimmy Buffett) Chesney show.
We have one metropolitan area and three good-sized college towns within an hour of here. I think one or two central Indiana tour stops wouldn't be asking too much.