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 Thing I do not understand: why Matchbox Twenty does not advertise, as part of its marketing for the USB recording of the night's show, that you are able to download not one but two shows, effectively making the price 20 dollars a show, not 40 -- or, you know, double-disk CD price (which is what you are getting, given they play about 25-27 songs a concert).  I bought a wristband in Phoenix and used it to download both the Phoenix and Tucson concerts, but even if you only went to one show, at the end of each tour the fan club votes on a "best of" collection out of the USBs, which then goes up for 'sale' -- I'd imagine that's also available for those people who bought a USB but only went to one show.

I mean, I sincerely doubt they're hurting to move merchandise, but still!  My mind was a little blown the first time I realized you could download two shows and I remember when they started the USB thing!

At any rate, I dutifully share with the rest of the class.

July 26 2013 - Phoenix, Arizona - Comerica Theater

July 27 2013 - Tucson, Arizona - AVA Amphitheater

While I was waiting for my shows to go up I was looking through the set-lists for the Goo/Matchbox tours, and I have to say it made me all the more grateful that Matchbox came back to AZ without Goo.  Since they're technically "co-headlining" it looks like Goo is getting about an hour and Matchbox an hour and a half, and as a result, in order to get all of their hits in, their set-list is packed.  It looks like a greatest hit list without much change.  Which is great for a shed tour, but we got some strange ones that we definitely wouldn't have gotten if they hadn't played the full two hours both nights.   Also, if Kyle gets "Hang" any more country they're all going to be coming out in cowboy hats and it will never not be a source of entertainment to me.  I love listening to some of the old songs now and being able to hear the new influence of the band members (there was definitely a point in Tucson where I thought Paul was going to refuse to give back "So Sad So Lonely," and in Phoenix Kyle kept going with the guitar so Rob started singing "Kyle Cook's a bad, bad boy," since he couldn't get his cue.  The moral apparently being that the band gets really, really into that song in particular.)

It also makes me appreciate even more the fact that they expanded their set since Goo wasn't there.  An hour and a half is (from what I can tell) a pretty expected time for a single headliner -- Fall Out Boy always played about that when I saw them and they were nowhere as high-energy as Matchbox.  It was so fucking hot and they were at about 120% and they still kept stretching it.   The heat did lead to what has to be my new favorite Rob concert comment, though -- in Tucson he gave the same little thing he says every time he's in AZ during the summer about how people who aren't from Arizona probably come off as total wimps, and then adds, "it's like when you come to New York and get mugged, that's how we feel.  Wimps."  Rob ilu.
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Tonight was night two of two on my Matchbox Twenty Extravagnaza, thus named because tonight marked my twentieth Matchbox Twenty/Rob Thomas show. Which is not actually that many shows, but you have to keep in mind that (a) they do not tour that often, (b) this is a span of time during which I was ages sixteen to twenty-eight, which are tragically not prime 'travel long distances to concerts while remaining fiscally responsible' years, and (c) they took a goddamn ten year break between albums three and four I don't even want to talk about the fact I only got one Matchbox Twenty album in my entire twenties I mean really.

Nonetheless! I have now seen Rob and/or Matchbox Twenty, twenty times. I've been a fan of the band since I was fifteen years old -- ongoing, non-stop, they have always been my favorite band. They're not "fannish," in the sense that there is no Matchbox Twenty fandom, but my love of them is certainly as intense as any fannish affection I've ever have, and yet whereas every fannish love I've had has waned fairly quickly (after one to two years at most, a month or so at shortest), I've felt this level of affection for Matchbox for thirteen years and counting.

This isn't of course to say that I don't still love some of the things I was once fannish about -- I mean, I still like The X Files. But it took a long time before I could watch it again after it ended. The same is true of Fall Out Boy: it was a long time after I left bandom before I could listen to bandom music, and ultimately the only artists that survived the cut were Fall Out Boy and Cobra Starship. I'd never go see any of those bands live again, though. And then there's the shows I was fannish about and don't survive or net a rewatch, like Smallville or (I feel like I should tell people to cover their ears here) Buffy.

Sometimes I genuinely wonder if fandom improves or hinders the experience of text. There are many, many people who would argue that you should never study the literature you genuinely "adore" because it ruins it; more and more I think that's true of fandom. Sometimes I think that just means I am Getting Old (kids today get off my lawn), but driving back from the Matchbox Twenty concert my friend and I were brainstorming potential wank Tumblr would create in an imagined Matchbox Twenty fandom, and my god by the time we were done even the imaginary fandom had made me want to listen to something other than "North." It also made me want Tabitha's Secret-era Rob/Paul fic but we're not going to focus on that part right now shh.

Then again, it's possible there are different kinds of affection when it comes to the things we love. Maybe fannish love is different for me than "true love," or maybe they just became a part of me at such a point in my life that I've stuck them in emotional bubble wrap, and Rob Thomas could kill a man and I'd just shrug and get a tarp and some borax. Or maybe I'm looking for an excuse to delete my tumblr. At any rate, I realized tonight that this is very likely the last Matchbox Twenty show I will see in my twenties, which made me feel horrifically old and also made me realize just how intense that hiatus business actually was. Dear Matchbox Twenty don't do that again.

In conclusion, I did buy the USB so in the next few days I'll upload both shows to my web space.  We got two fucking amazing set lists, including "You're So Real," "All I Need," "All Your Reasons," "How Long," "Mad Season," "Jumping Jack Flash," and "Waiting On a Train."  The last one leads me to believe I have some sort of untapped psychic ability, as I told my friend while we got drinks before the show that if I could choose any song for them to play it would be that one, but it's a B-side from Europe and I strongly suspected that wasn't exactly going to make the American cut.  And lo!  When the music started she smacked me and told me I should've used my powers to get "Busted," which is fair.  I WILL one day achieve that song.  ONE DAY.

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What do you do when you run out of steam on a story right at the finish line? I feel like I've been doing this a lot, lately. I am quite literally paragraphs away from finishing a fic I've been working on, it feels like forever, but I've reached an impasse where I have no idea how to end it, I have no fandom friends for this fandom (and no LJ friends who share the ship), and I'm burnt out on the fandom itself to the point where even though I'm really proud of what I have so far, opening the Google Docs tab is exhausting. I just keep thinking: even if this gets done, I have to find a beta, and I do not know where to do that. And then I have to re-read it, and I'm so burnt out on the fandom I don't want to do that. And then I have to figure out how to post it, and I've been frustrated by my experiences with that as of late.

I am two paragraphs from done and I'm something like 60% sure this fic will end up as yet another story in my ever-growing pile of abandoned WIPs. I swear at this point I'm honestly not allowed to write anything else. This is absolutely ridiculous.

But! In happier fannish news, this weekend is my Matchbox Twenty Extravaganza! They are playing Phoenix on Friday and Tucson on Saturday, and I am so excited you guys I can't even. To celebrate, and because I now know better than to put everything I own on an external hard drive and nowhere else again, I have uploaded my entire Matchbox Twenty collection (minus the albums because ya'll know where to find those) to my webspace:

This is a Lot of Matchbox Twenty

My personal recommendation btw is the May 2001 show -- it's an entire Mad Season era concert and it is shockingly good quality. Far better than the one I had before my hard drive crashed.
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First, I realized belatedly that I never actually posted my new (second) tattoo. I think it surprises no one that I have put Matchbox Twenty on my body -- I feel odd calling this a 'fannish' tattoo because let's face it, my fandom attention span is that of a goldfish, and I've loved Matchbox Twenty since I was fourteen years old. But also, too, because I think the biggest issue with "fandom" tattoos is their tendency to be more about the thing in question than the person getting the tattoo on their body: 'I'm getting this tattoo because I love [X]' is far more likely to lead to regret, or at least amused head-shaking at a former self, than getting a tattoo because of its meaning to you.

But I mean, at the end of the day I'm still The Girl With The Matchbox Twenty Tattoo though, so. Nobody in real life made fun of me, though -- it's hard to make fun of someone when they are absolutely unashamed of something, I have learned over the years, and if your reaction to any attempt at poking fun at something you love is a spirited explanation for why you love that thing that terrifies hipsters into shutting the fuck up because the thing about hipsters is they are defined by their lack of capacity to feel that level of affection for anything, eventually they have no choice but to respect you because, frankly, they don't understand you and your enthusiasm either scares or fascinates them. One or the other.

In all seriousness though, this is one of the things that confuses me the most about non-fannish people. I had a fellow grad-student tell me, in response to how excited I was to see "Iron Man 3," that she doesn't get excited about anything, ever. I still don't know if she was proud of that or not but it's still maybe the saddest thing I've ever heard. What kind of life are you living if it takes Big Expensive and/or Stressful Life Events to excite, entertain and delight you?

Cut for...feet? Do we cut for feet? Let's cut for feet. )

And then there's me, who gets excited about everything like a Jack Russell Terrier. Ah, well. At any rate, my chosen quote is from "If You're Gone" -- you think I'm weak; I think you're wrong. As a bonus, it's the song that made me fall in love with Matchbox Twenty, off the first album of theirs I bought on my own. Neither of those last two things were intentional; I just find them to be delightful bonuses.

Speaking of Matchbox Twenty, after a very stressful few days I managed to rescue about 85% of my Matchbox Twenty mp3 collection from my dead hard drive, and then found a torrent that contained that last, lost 15%, plus a few stray mp3s from the Napster days that even I had lost over the years (we're talking bootlegs from the 90s that sound like they were recorded underwater, and yet I am still keeping them). iTunes made my life easier on a few things, like the fact I randomly managed to lose "The Only One" -- but not "U Turn Me On," which makes no sense because they were in the same folder! Unless I lost "The Only One" earlier on, I guess.

The point of all of this is, having finally put all of my Matchbox Twenty collection in one place, the final tally is 8.66gb of music. That includes Paul, Kyle and Rob's solo music, and it does include many, many versions of the same songs, obviously, but it does not include any duplicate mp3s. Now the question is, is that something to be proud of, or do I keep that to myself?

And now in the interest of that, and because I promised [personal profile] tasyfa I would upload this forever ago, I give you two different concerts from Matchbox Twenty's last tour:

Indio, California 2013

Kalamazoo, Michigan 2013

And now ends your massive Matchbox Twenty Post Dump.


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