The year is nineteen seventy-something. I am 7 or 8 years-old, lying on the chartreuse shag carpet constructing a village out of my Lincoln Logs (the ones with the flat, green pieces for roofs, not the new plastic pre-shaped kind), playing on my mom's stereo record player is a little Loggins & Messina. I hum along, I know all the words. Little do I know that the works of this particular artist and others such as Judy Collins, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Linda Ronstat, Barbara Striesand, Rod Stewart, Bread, the list goes on and on, will be forever ingrained in my childhood brain, likely to fester there until just the right time. Today was one of those times.
The scene: The Evergreen State Fair.
The Concert: Kenny Loggins.
The Company: My parents and my husband.
The People Watching: Phenomenal.
This was/is my only concert for 2006, and I enjoyed it immensely. Never before had I been to a concert with such a wide variety of folk, from the tatooed, goth, green-haired to the cane-wielding, orthopedic-wearing, white-haired. All there to see Mr. Kenny Loggins rip it up in his black leather Members Only jacket (remember those?) and, ready for this, gray jeans! I didn't know that they even made those anymore.
Well, the set opened up with some familiar crowd pleasers (Conviction of the Heart, This is It) in which the crowd gently swayed and sang along, and then, brace yourself and grab the tissues, up next is House at Pooh Corner, all the parents and grandparents in the stadium lose it. Throw in a little I'm Alright and you've got my mom and I (and my Dad--I saw you out of the corner of my eye) clapping and bouncing in our seats. All the while, I'm bumping into Brett, trying to coax a little craziness out of him by reminding him that this is the theme song to the movie Caddyshack! He is having a good time, he just doesn't show it like WE do.
A few more memorable tunes and then the most-appropriate-for-being-at-a-state-fair song, Your Mama Don't Dance (the crowd goes wild), and my Mama did dance. Now time for the encore, the silly ritual in which the crowd begs the performer to come back out, and of course the mics are still set up, everything is plugged in and the lights are out, and still some people leave. Which gets me wondering, if you always leave before the encore, are you even aware that they come back on stage and play more songs? But, I digress.
Out comes Kenny and the band and oh boy, they play Footloose. Suddenly, I am staring at Kevin Bacon and Chris Penn and I, of course, am Sarah Jessica Parker, dancing like a fool, trying my best to make my husband laugh (yeah, I saw you smile, just a little, out of the corner of my eye). Another encore and we wrap it up with the middle school dance (you know where the boys were in a line on one side of the gym and the girls were in another line and sometimes the lines would dance together) tune Forever, which I had completely forgotten that I knew, but recalled the words exactly (my mind is a steel trap "forever in your arms, forever I will be..."). And for all his Members Only wearing, Kenny Loggins has a clear, strong and gorgeous voice, not at all in as bad as shape as his gray jeans! Bravo, Mr. Loggins, bravo!
And yes, he did play Highway to the Danger Zone, in case you were curious!