Lauren

The Happiest Sad Girl You’ll Ever Meet

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I am not a musician, but I can rap “Jump Around” word for word. I grew up listening to The Talking Heads, Third Eye Blind, Hootie & the Blowfish and Fleetwood Mac. I like all types of music; Country, EDM, Rap, Punk Rock, Alternative, Folk, you name it. Bob Marley’s “Three little birds” is one of the first songs I remember being able to recite the lyrics to. My first concert was Paramore & The Starting Line at the Congress Theatre in 2007, where I was driven and dropped off by a friends Dad. I was your typical high school cheerleader, C average student, but mostly just a your average angsty teen.

I was able to see some really cool bands at a young age, convincing a few friends of mine to tag along to the city.  I was able to see All Time Low in a small venue in Rockford before they became rockstars, discovered Close Your Eyes in Mad Maggie’s basement with five (literally five) other people, and heard “The Same Old Blood Rush with a New Touch” before Shaant’s first public breakdown at Reggie’s Rock Club circa 2008.

In 2009 I went away to college in the city, and moved so much closer to all the music venues my parents wouldn’t dare let me go to in the years prior. Reggie’s, Bottom Lounge, Empty Bottle, Sub T and The House of Blues were all now within arms reach. Intro to meeting my best friend Ryan in our first few weeks at UIC, and realizing we both had a deep love for the same band; Mayday Parade.  It was certain destiny when you meet someone with almost the exact non-traditional taste in music as you, that grew up 15 minutes from your hometown, and now happens to live in the dorm next to yours. The rest is history. We spent the next 4 years inside the Beat Kitchen drinking Tecates ’til 2:00am and taking the blue line back to our dorm room after a Hit The Lights show.

My music taste ranged from Mayday Parade, Angels & Airwaves and Blink 182  to We Came As Romans, Attack Attack and The Wonder Years.  Ryan introduced me to the more “hardcore” bands like The Color Morale & Stick To Your Guns, slowly influencing my traditional emo punk style to something a bit more…rough. We saw so many shows together those first few years of college. This was back when you purposely got to the venue early, pushed your way to the rail for “first row” and prayed that Jason Lancaster would peel the set list off the floor for you at the end of the show.  I sometimes thought I was missing out on a true “college experience”  picking a city school, for lack of a football team and frat houses. But I had no idea how lucky I had it, being in the city and broadening my horizons one show at a time.

Fast forward to 2017. I have a full time job in the advertising industry, I still frequent the Beat Kitchen on a regular basis, and most recently discovered a PPP sanctuary called Beauty Bar. Ryan is still one of my best friends, and we still love Mayday Parade. Whether it’s a bowling alley in the suburbs, or a sold out venue in the loop, going to a show is still my favorite thing to do.

Sometimes I think I’m getting “too old” to be going to so many shows, especially when some of the members in these bands are a solid 5 years younger than me, but talent is talent. I may stand in the back these days, but I don’t think I’ll ever stop attending shows. I will be that parent at Lollapalooza with their kid on top of their shoulders, noise cancelling headphones and all.

Two things:
Blink was better with Tom. Don’t @ me
Your Favorite Weapon is my favorite Brand New album. Judge me


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