Posts tagged Sweden
Posts tagged Sweden
Some Ladies Have Oprah, I have Ola Salo.
Someone asked me recently why I stopped playing music at the beginning of the last decade. Probably the more important question is why did I start up again. I found this very earnest post from an old MySpace blog I wrote after SXSW in 2006 or 2007 which pretty much sums it up. Here’s an excerpt:
The best thing about SXSW this year was the realization that I am not a jaded old fuck. I still love rock ‘n’ roll. And after (I’m not gonna say how many) years and countless rock shows, the fact that I can still find something that knocks me flat on my ass is completely unbelievable. And I was knocked on my ass on Saturday, unfortunately in more ways than one.
With the rain came terrible news. My next door neighbor’s mother was brutally murdered in her sleepy coastal community in Oregon. Some psychopath stabbed her multiple times, rolled her up in a carpet, set her house on fire, and drove off.
Totally Fucked Up.
She wasn’t my mom or the grandmother to my kid. She was the woman who sat on the front porch smoking, waving, and watching the world go by. Just a few weeks ago I drank wine while she schooled me on Olympic figure skaters. She was a tremendous relief and support for friends just beginning to experience parenthood themselves. And she’s gone. It’s not just death. It’s senseless, unjustifiable, completely random and Totally Fucked Up.
Enter: The Ark
Sometimes the universe just takes care of you. After a tragic death came an electrifying affirmation of life. Maybe it was the news that made me so raw and open but I really wasn’t expecting to have my world shaken again. Fortunately this time it was in the right direction. Ilse and I braved a soggy and overcrowded Emo’s to watch the future Mr. Melissa and Mr. Ilse (in the TL TX Polygamist Colony), Ted Leo. When he ended with Stiff Little Fingers’ “Suspect Device” I thought I’d seen my highlight for the week. Was I ever wrong.
We cruised over to Emo’s IV to see the Ark. Michael Bertin, a music scribe pal who is as jaded as he is passionate and always-in-the-know Robert had been raving about this band all week so we decided to check it out. Holy shit. These Swedes blew my mind so hard I can’t stand it. Their frontman, Ola Salo (a palindrome, how cute), is the perfect showman — charming and sexy, yet ridiculous enough to be disarming and inviting. Suddenly there was life, right in front of me. I can’t remember how long it’s been since I’ve felt this high after a rock show. As the music melted the pain away it liberated a grand knowledge of the pointlessness of being scared, that life is about living to the fullest — passionately, purposely. The room was captivated by the man in white hot pants and we’re all giddily singing the “hit” (that we’ve heard for the first time today) “one of us is gonna die young” at the top of our lungs, but it’s okay. It’s okay that one of us is gonna die young cuz right now we’re all SO fucking alive.
So in the midst of the darkness comes beauty. A reminder of life and living it to the fullest. Power. Redemption. I won’t go as far as to say Peace, but a reminder of its proximity. I love rock ‘n’ roll. I love The Ark. And maaan, life rules, even when it’s totally fucked up.