I am a concert junkie. I love everything about a concert. From the lights, to the sounds, the crowds, the excitement, the epic ringing of the ears afterward....I love every second of the experience. Thankfully, I've been fortunate enough to see some awesome performers. Madonna (twice!), Whitney Houston (before the Crack Is Whack Tour), Amy Grant, George Strait (yawn), Luther Vandross, Robyn, Lady Gaga, Marilyn Manson, Fleetwood Mac, Heart, the B-52's, Little Richard, Cher.....just to name check a few of the crazy cool shows I've attended. One would think the most dangerous of these shows would've been the Marilyn Manson show. Well, you would be wrong.
About a year and a half ago, I had the pleasure of seeing a performer I've always admired. Her music was better way before she secured mainstream success and it was those early records that made a true blue fan out of me. Her name is Melissa Etheridge. The tour was "The Live And Alone Tour", just Melissa and a guitar. While that may sound boring on paper, trust me....she killed every song and you forgot there wasn't a big band behind her. It was amazing watching this legendary pro blast through not only her greatest hits, but all of those random songs from her earlier CDs. The only problem? I'm not a lesbian.
Look, I'm fully aware it's stereotypical to assume all of Melissa Etheridge's fans are lesbians and if you go to a Melissa Etheridge concert, it's just going to be a room full of lesbians. So, allow me to say it like it really was. It was a room full of lesbians and me.
There is nothing wrong with being a lesbian or anything or anyone else you are. You must be you at all times otherwise you are living a lie. Obviously, I am a very openminded, accepting and understanding person. The lady lovers in attendance at this show were super friendly and just as excited as I was...if not more. Somehow or another, I got front row seats. I'm still not sure how that happened. Melissa took the stage at 8:01 on the dot and rocked the house down! Halfway through the show, the crowd was allowed to stand right there at the stage...right in front of Melissa Etheridge herself. That's when it happened.
It was never my intention to block a woman three times my height and weight from shaking hands with Melissa Etheridge. It just happened. Melissa stepped away from the microphone and bent down to the crowd to slap fans hands. There is some weird sort of electricity that happens to a crowd when this occurs. Basically, all bets are off. It was like slow motion. I thrusted myself fully over this woman's arm, reached out while fully blocking her mind you, and shook the surprisingly soft hand of one of the meanest female guitar players out there. Trucker Sally didn't stand a chance. And I knew it.
Now, I'm totally satisfied in my concert experience. Not only did I see an icon perform a hell of a show, I shook her hand during the performance. The problem is Melissa Etheridge left me to defend myself from what could be a very scary situation.
I'm 5ft4inches tall and weigh 134 pounds. Ride Sally Ride was probably 6ft7 and weighs in at 259 pounds. I could feel her cold stare and warm beer chugging breath on my neck. I could feel it because now I'm in that horrid position of having to remove myself from my stance. I'm basically on top of this woman with a leg hiked up in the air. I slowly turn around and try not to make eye contact of any sort with this woman. I robbed her of a chance to touch Melissa Etheridge and now I may pay the price.
The woman taps me on the shoulder. I freeze up. What will she do to me? Will I live to see the encore? Finally, she speaks. "You must really like Melissa Etheridge.". Obviously, I was shaking. Is this a threat? Does that have a meaning I'm not privy to?? I smile shyly and respond, "Yes ma'am". She gives me a comfortable smile and we end up jamming out together. Whew! It was a close call but thankfully it ended up ok and no harm was inflicted upon yours truly.
What's the point of all this, you may ask? Silly readers, isn't it obvious?! Melissa Etheridge plays the guitar for a living and has been for over 25 years. She has the softest skin I've ever touched. So...lotion up people! Dry skin is not in!
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