Oh RNR………..how do I love thee let me count the ways!
Since 1983, when I was 13 years old I have been consumed with music. Loud, heavy guitar laden music. Not the music most girls were listening to back then. It started when I snuck into my oldest brother’s room & listened to his 8-track of Black Sabbath. (Kids….Google 8-track) I don’t think I have the words to describe how I felt that day. There was a connection. A connection that I still have at the age of 45. My Mom used to tell me I’d “grow out of” my hard rock phase. I guess it’s possible…………NOT!
Back in the 80’s concerts were not just an event. They were a party! They were a way to connect to other people. Music was REAL…..bands played instruments & sang. Auto tune wasn’t around so not just anyone could rock it out. When you found out a band was hitting your city you bought a ticket ASAP. You’d go to the venue early the day of the show to wait in line for a good “seat”……back then general admission was standard. If you wanted to be up front ya waited in line early. It wasn’t just about the music though. It was also about the people. While spending hours in line waiting on a venue’s doors to open you met people. People like you. People that you didn’t know but made friends with immediately because you shared a massive love of the same music & lifestyle. All the teenage feelings you had you KNEW other metal heads understood. It was a community & it was a way to feel a part of something. Something that your family & some friends just didn’t understand.
As I grew up & entered my 20’s my love of RNR only increased. I spent countless weekends rockin’ out with my close friends. My girlfriend Cyndi & I, for some reason, always managed to secure backstage passes at many shows. No. It’s not what you’re thinking. Although I HATE to ruin my “bad girl” reputation I wasn’t a groupie chick. Neither one of us were. We didn’t sleep with roadies, sound guys or band dudes but somehow we always managed to meet them. And they always managed to hook us up. Maybe it was the combination of our personalities & looks. Cyndi is tall, gorgeous, model like. I’m short, sassy, talkative. I can’t explain it but we always got the hook up. Both of us are now in our 40’s and we STILL manage to get the hook up. I’m not complaining…just explaining.
Last year & this year Cyndi & I were lucky enough to secure spots on “Motorhead’s Motorboat” This is a cruise with numerous heavy rock bands including Motorhead. It is truly an amazing time! Not just because of the bands but because of the people. You feel like you are immediately a part of a RNR family of 2,000. I’ve never experienced anything like it!! It’s such a cool feeling to know that even as a grown up there are still LOTS of people around the world that still have a passion for RNR and the lifestyle. You’re part of something that is truly astonishing! You don’t have to try and fit in, you don’t have to try to impress others and no one cares what your “real” life is like. For a magical week you are a ROCKER and THAT’S all that matters. You are a part of a family that understands you. It doesn’t matter what you look like or where you come from. Your profession, your income, your looks do not matter. YOU are family. It’s the most awesome feeling!
I have many folks that ask me why I don’t take pictures of all the rock stars on the boat. Well, I actually DO have a reason. And it’s this: I cherish the memories in my head. I don’t need pictures & videos of every show/rock star. I also recognize personal space………..yes the band folks are on the ship to play & interact with their fans but they are also on a vacation. Many band members bring their significant other and/or kids. I realize that it can be taxing on the rockers. I LOVE Scott Ian from Anthrax! I LOVE Zakk Wylde! BUT I’m not gonna roll up to them while they are having dinner. I’m not gonna roll up to them while they are playing with their kids. It’s just tacky. I’m not BUSTING anyone that does it but I just recognize boundaries.
Over the last 5 years I’ve had numerous relationships go sour because of my profession. Now I’m NOT a rock star but I play one on the radio sometimes. The last two dudes I’ve dated have not been a fan of my job. Yeah….at first they think it’s cool when people recognize me or when I can get them free tickets. That never lasts though. Eventually they get upset when people wanna take a picture with me or say hello. I’m not comparing myself to REAL rock stars but just mini-fame can take a toll on a relationship. With that said I DO recognize that the dudes I dated that got jealous were obviously insecure. This is one of the reasons I haven’t dated in over a year & a half. BUT when I see a rocker on the boat with his/her spouse I tend to hesitate before I run up to them. Joey Belladonna from Anthrax is BEYOND friendly to his fans. He is cool with signing autographs & taking pics. He had his wife with him on the cruise this year and she seemed to be totally cool and patient as fans slammed Joey for pics. But ya know at some point she gets annoyed. Hell anyone would! I guess I just empathize a bit since I’ve had boyfriends get pissed because I stop & take pics with folks. I don’t need physical pictures/videos of everything. I have the memories in my head. Those will last forever.
The point of my ramblings: never give up something you love because it doesn’t “fit the mold”. Being an adult doesn’t mean you have to give up your passion. Ya may have to rearrange a few things to still enjoy what you love but don’t let go of it!! Screw what other people think! Just when you think you’re “odd” for what you dig the most…BOOM! You meet 2000 other people that are just like you! It totally rocks!
We go around one time in life. Fill your life with the things that make YOU happy. Grab the things that make you smile. Dream. Hold onto what you want like grim death! Take a chance. Snag what’s in front of you before someone else does!
To quote Stuck Mojo: “I live my life like my last. Learned many lessons but I have to laugh. Because you’re not promised tomorrow….” Good advice. I need to remember it.