I can’t tell you how many times I sang along to this CD as I played it in my boombox.
BIG NEWS! Boyz II Men is coming to the Iowa State Fair this year. They’re coming, they’re performing, and it’s FREE. I mean, you have to pay like 47 zillion dollars admission to get into the fair, but then, you can wander over to the Susan Knapp Amphitheater and SEE BOYZ II MEN! In 2012. I am so, so, so excited about this, as are all of my born-in-the-80s-Boyz-II-Men-was-an-integral-part-of-my-adolescence-type friends. My friends had the following to say about this concert:
We are SO going!
All I want is to see “On Bended Knee” live and I can die happy
It’s on a Sunday night but…of COURSE I’ll drive 4 hours round trip. It’s Boyz II Men!
As you can see, this is a BIG deal (did you see how I didn’t make a Joe Biden joke there? I’m growing, you guys). And not just because Boyz II Men sing fantastic songs such as:
End of the Road
I’ll Make Love To You
One Sweet Day w/Mariah Carey (This song made my head explode with its awesomeness. Don’t even get me started.)
On Bended Knee
Water Runs Dry
I also love Boyz II Men because they were my first-ever concert. It was the first time I went to our arena, the Five Seasons Center, for anything other than Sesame Street Live or some random cousin’s high school graduation. It was the first time I spent $25 on a t-shirt that immediately shrank, faded, and the design peeled off in the wash. It was the first time I got that my “ears are ringing and I can’t hear anything for hours afterward” feeling that comes from an awesome concert. It was everything an 11-year-old’s first concert should be.
The concert was in the spring, but let me back up to December 1994. When I turned eleven, the only thing I wanted in the wholeentirewideworldpleasepleasepleasepleasemomcomeonpleeeeease was a CD player. Having just recently discovered non-country music and top-40 radio, calling the radio station and requesting my favorite songs just wasn’t enough, I had to OWN that music. I did own a few cassettes, including Some People’s Lives by Bette Midler, featuring quite possibly the best song ever written, “From a Distance.” But we’ll leave the Divine Miss M for another post. Anyway, I needed a CD player. So, my mom fulfilled my dearest wish and bought me not only a CD player, but the newest Boyz II Men album, II, for my birthday. Thus began my love affair with Boyz II Men. So when my BFF Erika and I found out they were coming to Cedar Rapids, we did what all self-respecting pre-teens would do: we made our moms drive us to our nearest Ticketmaster Authorized Outlet (Hy-Vee grocery store) at 10:00 on a Saturday morning to stand in line. This was before ticketmaster.com, but not before crazy ridic fees. What exactly is a “handling fee” anyway? Sorry, I’m getting off topic. So we scored tickets for ourselves and our moms (because firstly, they were paying, and secondly, we were 11 and they weren’t quite ready to turn us loose at a concert).
The concert was absolutely amazing, of course. My mom was worried that I wasn’t going to enjoy it because the music wouldn’t sound the same as the produced-in-a-studio CD I listened to 1,000,027 times. But I didn’t care. I was only approximately 50 rows from my favorite band and they were singing to me. You may not believe this, but Nathan looked right at me during that concert. Trust me, he did. I was on Cloud 9. That concert rocked my world for so many reasons:
- It was my first concert, therefore so very exciting
- It was a weeknight and I got to stay up until, like midnight. So cool
- IT WAS BOYZ II MEN. What else do you want?
My first concert was incredibly memorable, and even though (according to Wikipedia) Boyz II Men is currently only a trio, I will still go to the Iowa State Fair and be transported back to middle school and love every minute of it.
Do you remember your first concert? Who did you see and how old were you?
If you’re in Iowa and want to geek out along with me, here’s the link to Boyz II Men’s performance on 8/19.