January 21st, 2011
The Toasters, A.K.A. Rudy
The Muse, Nashville, TN
See all the photos from this show here
About a week prior, my friend Diana invited me to go to the Muse with her and her husband Ian to see the Toasters. Now, I like to think that I am fairly well versed in music, but I had never heard of the Toasters, and knew basically nothing about the genre the fall into, which is Ska. But I decided to go anyway, trusting that her taste in music would provide an entertaining evening.
When I arrived, I was able to catch the last two songs by their opener, A.K.A. Rudy. The band had horn players as well as the standard guitar and drum players, and played what seemed to be a cross of rock and jazz. They weren't quite what I was expecting, but then again, I really had no idea what to expect anyway!
Once Diana and Ian arrived, we hung around and waited for the Toasters to take the stage. When they did, it was a completely new kind of concert experience for me! They also had trumpet and slide trombone players, and the audience went CRAZY for them when they started playing! Everyone, almost in unison, started to do this dance that involved kicking your feet in front of you while throwing your elbows back in almost a running in place sort of manner, which simultaneously looked fun, dangerous and exhausting!
The Toasters lead singer
Mr. Slide Trombone Guy
A crowd shot...the people watching was so great at this show!
Some crowd surfing going on. And the red haired girl..she danced almost continuously through the whole show! No wonder she's so thin!
Here we have striped shirt guy demonstrating the dance, which I later found out is called "Skanking."
Ahh, a bloody nosed casualty of all the skanking. Never fear, by the end of the show, he was right back out there skanking while holding his bloody paper towel to his face.
And finally, Diana and Ian enjoying the show, and doing a little dancing themselves
Really, I had a blast at this show, despite not being familiar with the band or even the genre of music. I can't say that I will be filling my iPod up with Ska music since most of it sounded very, very similar, but it was definitely fun to listen to. Through the show, I made extra sure that I was nowhere near the people who were dancing the most vigorously for fear that I was going to get elbowed right in the face. Diana got a real kick out of my saying that I'd much rather be caught in an ICP mosh pit than a Ska mosh pit! But for real, at the ICP show, people were just moving around and bouncing into each other with their entire body, which didn't hurt the people you were bumping into. But these people were tossing their elbows back with disregard for the people behind them, which resulted in quite a few people getting elbowed pretty hard! I'd much rather someone bump into me full-body than to have a swift, pointed elbow jab me in the face! haha
I really love experiencing new stuff like this, and I had a blast taking a little look into a kind of genre that I was only vaguely aware of before. The Muse is such a cool little venue...can't wait to see who else performs there this year!