June 17, 2004

Big Bad-Ass Wolves

Last night we saw Los Lobos (whose new album I can heartily recommend, although it's still not my favorite) for free in Prospect Park, and it was a terrific show, although we did notice a few things: Even if a band is exhorting an audience to dance, New Yorkers mostly don't want to obey. Even if the person sitting next to someone says, "Oh, come on, stand up and dance -- the people behind you are standing up," that person may just stand up for ten seconds and then sit back down, as we observed. And even if an audience is patently not rocking out, a polite band will compliment them on their ability to rock.

Any New York anecdote would be incomplete without at least one odd character making an appearance. We had two, one of which was Brooklyn borough president Marty Markowitz, who I had never seen in person before. That is one very hyper man. He reminds me a little of Harlan Ellison (in height and brassiness). The other was an audience member who Rose pointed out to me during the first song. He was standing in the center aisle, dancing...and playing maracas. He wandered off at some point and then came back again with the maracas, although this time he was clearly off the beat, which made him much more distracting. During the finale of that song, he broke out a whistle. Then he left again, and while I hoped that was the last of him, he returned...but this time with a tambourine. Apparently he had brought a whole array of percussion instruments. Once again, he left, but perhaps there were enough people dancing in the aisle at that point that it was too hard for him to work his way to the front with his full drum kit. I guess we'll never know.

Posted by Francis at 02:33 PM

so is there a story behind knowing ellison's height and hyperness level? i'd love to hear it....

Posted by: gotcha at June 17, 2004 05:04 PM

About the lack-of-rocking: I personally thought it was because the Los Lobos audience was a bit on the, um, older side. They just didn't seem so much like folks who wanted to stand and wiggle. The percentage of the audience who really really wanted to dance made their way to the aisles.

As for Harlan, I know about his height and personality from reading a massive number of his books and books by friends of his. His books almost always had anecdotal essays between the stories, and I got the general impression that he was an energetic little man.

Posted by: Rose at June 17, 2004 08:36 PM