Friday, December 31, 2010

Remember the day, cause this is what dreams should always be.

So in just a few short hours, we'll be ringing in the New Year.

I think it's safe to say that 2010 will be pretty hard to top. At least for me, personally.

If you would have told me a year ago that:

  • Music would become an integral part of my life again;
  • I would experience that amazing music, live;
  • I would be meeting (some of) my heroes, those who created the music that changed my life;
  • I would be meeting my ULTIMATE hero, Ryan Star, who not only changed my life with his music, but managed to restore my faith in people, something that I'd lost long ago;
  • I would plan a mini-road trip to see My Ultimate Hero with my most favorite concert buddy. This being especially hard to believe when I struggle to find someone to drive me 25 minutes to a concert;
and last but most certainly not least,

  • I would "meet" (in some cases actually meet) some of the sweetest, funniest, most understanding people in the world via some social networking site that I had initially REFUSED to join;

...had you told me ALL of that would happen in the course of a year (or so), well...I would have laughed in your face. I would have said: "That just doesn't happen. Life cannot be that good."

And had you known me a year or so ago, you wouldn't have been surprised by my less than positive attitude.

But that's another thing that has changed. My outlook on life is...different now. Before, I couldn't care less about much. I didn't have a passion. That ONE thing that I was willing to work my ass off for.

I didn't have the drive to carry out ideas. "It'll never work out" I would say.

Little did I know that with just a little bit of help from lovely, supportive friends ... I can pretty much do anything. If you're reading this, you ARE in that category of lovely, supportive friends. Unless of course you accidentally stumbled across this blog, in which case...uh, let's be friends. :D

So what IS my passion? Remember those heroes I mentioned above? Well, my mission is to make sure that their hard work gets noticed. I'm determined to continue spreading the word about the music that has made my life worthwhile. I'll plug their music on Twitter and Facebook, I'll buy multiple copies of their CD's to give away, I'll invite people to their shows, I'll talk my friends' ears off about them, I'll threaten my friends into listening to the music. There isn't much I'm not willing to do. I mean, as long as it's legal. And even that's negotiable. Just kidding...just in case someone from law enforcement is reading this. Ahem...moving on.

As far as friends go, I'm starting to learn just how much I can trust people. I never went with that gut feeling. I've always felt it. Never listened. I would trust people too much, too soon. That always backfired. So I started to LOSE trust in those who were in my life. People who'd never done a thing to prove they were less than loyal. I've made the mistake of making people bend over backwards to prove to me they could be trusted. That doesn't work either. I started becoming the type of person I despised. I'm still cautious of course... kind of have to be. Just not to the point of paranoia.

Had that not changed, none of you would be in my life right now. And quite honestly, right this very moment, I can't imagine my life without you. You all have been, everything. I'm grateful to you all for everything from you letting me vent, to the stories, inside jokes, mutual love for hot rockstars...uh I mean, music. The prayers and positive vibes I received from you all have been life saving. You all have gotten me through things I KNOW you weren't even aware of. Some pretty heavy things that I never talked about. With anyone. When I asked for prayers, no one questioned me and only said "of course". I'll forever be indebted to you for that.

So before I start sobbing to the point where I can no longer see the screen, I'll close this thing.

To all my rockstars, friends and anyone who made 2010 the best year of my entire existence: I love you. Thank you for the happiness and support you provided.

To the year 2011: I know it'll be hard, but get your shit together and kick 2010's ass! I'm ready!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Music, Friends, Rockstars. What life should be about.

"You'll always miss 100% of the shots you don't take."

I love Ryan Star. If you didn't know, now you do. Wait, if you didn't know, where the hell have you been? I mean, it's no secret I borderline on worshipping the man. Well, OK not really. Let's not go that far.

I've always said that I'd do anything for him, within reason of course. He's my favorite musician/person...ever, really.

Before last night, the last time I saw a show was in September. In fact, that was my first full Ryan Star show. A headlining show. Which as I've said before, was by far the best show I've experienced.

About a month and a half ago, I got a tweet from someone named Heidi. I'm sure a lot of you know who I'm talking about. She tweeted to inform me that Ryan would be in Tucson soon. Of course right away I tweeted back thanking her for the info, but that I was sorry that I wouldn't be able to swing Tucson. And that was that. That is until I had a total meltdown over the fact that I can't just up and leave somewhere. It wasn't specifically about the concert though. It's not easy for me to do something like that. But it started getting to me.

About a week after that, I asked my parents how long of a drive Phoenix to Tucson is. They said anywhere from an hour and a half to two hours. My mom then asked why I wanted to know. Of course I said "No reason". Did she buy that? HELL NO she didn't. She then says "Whose concert?" Dammit, how does she do that?! I asked her "what makes you think it's for a concert?" The look on her face? Priceless! And she says "That's all you ever want to do now. I KNOW." Then I did the whole dramatic sigh and said "Well, it doesn't matter anyway. Not doing it."

A few days after that, my sister and I were on our way to see our other sis at the hospital after she had her baby. I semi-jokingly (of course) said, "Hey we should take a trip to Tucson. I wanna go to a concert there." She says "OK". Just like that. I told her that I was serious and that I'd have to buy my ticket ASAP. She says "Buy it, we'll go". On our way back she says "Wait a second, when is this concert?" when I told her the date she tells me that she's busy that weekend. My sis makes cakes as a side...thing. It just so happened that someone she knows was getting married the weekend of, and said they'd wanted her to make the cake. I said "OK, that's fine." I few hours wasn't enough time to get me too excited about it, so I wasn't too shocked or disappointed. Well, OK maybe just a little disappointed.

I thought that was the end of that, until a few weeks later. My sis, niece and I went shopping for my Wii. I brought up the NeedtoBreathe concert just to remind her about it. She offered to drive me to that one a few months prior. Way before I knew about Ryan's show. Then all of a sudden she says "Oh by the way, I'm not making the cake after all." I was waiting for her to keep talking but that's all she said until I said "So you're saying...." and she says "Let's go to Tucson". She said, "All I ask is that you plan something for us to do while you're at the show. Find a movie theatre maybe, and a place for us to eat prior to dropping you off at the venue." I said, "piece of cake!" Ha! I searched for a week and I couldn't decide on anything. I didn't know the area, obviously. So I decided that maybe I would ask my Twitter buddy @cool_shades *waves* to help me out, since she lives in Tucson. And she did. I'd like to take this moment to give her a big THANK YOU for saving me from getting lost! Thank you Coolie! <3

After a bit of trying to figure out how exactly I would pay for tix and trying to figure out what seating arrangement would suit me better I went on the site to buy my ticket. I had already decided on GA. Which was lawn seating. But suddenly it hit me: I didn't want to do this alone. Immediately I thought of asking my buddy and concert Partner In Crime, Laura if she wanted to go. Why I didn't think of it way before, is beyond me. Terrible. Just terrible! So I asked her, she said she could possibly swing it. We went back and forth on the seating thing. The least expensive tix were of course GA lawn area. She said I should probably call the venue to find out if lawn was wheelchair friendly. I called. Long story short: it really wasn't. I mean, the lady said they could accomodate once we got there. In other words, they would have to FIND a place to seat us that was safe. We then decided on mid-range priced tickets. I checked the seating chart. They didn't have any accessible seating in the area. I called to double check. None. We decided on going for it. Screw trying work out GA. Once I bought the tix it was smooth sailing. (For the most part. But I'll spare you the lengthy details. Stupid arguments, getting sick a week prior. You know.) Also we found out that it wasn't going to be full band. *sadface* Oh and Serena wouldn't be there either. Booo! I automatically assumed It would be just Ryan and Dallin. Not quite, though. More on that later.

(If you've gotten this far, I heart you. Sorry I ramble so damn much!)

So finally the day of the concert. Before leaving, I made a Twitter callout asking who wanted me to give Ryan a hug on their behalf. I got about 5 responses LOL.

I was feeling much better. Physically, emotionally. A couple nights before, we decided that we would eat a late breakfast at my mom's before leaving instead. But then sis decided last minute that we should stop to eat on our way there afterall! *headdesk* It was 1:00pm and I hadn't eaten at all. *sigh* So, my sis, mom, niece, nephew, niece's boyfriend and I were on our way to Tucson. About an hour into the trip, my sis asked if we should stop at In-N-Out. We all agreed we should. It was my first time trying In-N-Out. As we neared Tucson my stomach decided that it would wreak havoc. We were a good 5 or 10 mins from the venue when we had to make a stop. We were already running late as it was. I was pissed. Not only was I in some serious pain, but Laura was already waiting at the venue. I had the tickets. I hate making people wait.

We made it to the venue a bit after 5. Thank goodness they were running late also. When I got there, there was a HUGE line of people waiting. Laura and I sat at some bench waiting. When they finally opened the doors, Laura said we should try and see if someone would be nice enough to let us cut in. They did. When we showed the person our tix, she pointed in some general direction. We made our way over and looked for our seat numbers in the area where the lady pointed. We looked up at the stage. Not bad. That is until we actually found the seats. Laura's view was obstructed by some Pepsi machine...WTF? She said "hell no. We're moving over. If people claim these seats we can move back". I love her! :D

All of a sudden, something seemed off. I looked around. Right behind us was the lawn area. That didn't seem right to me. After spending weeks looking at that seating chart, I knew the damn thing like the back of my hand. I said, "this isn't our area. This is area is labeled "rear" on the seating chart. Our tickets are "front" area" and I point at the rows in front of us. She said "I'll be back!" Within 2 minutes she was back, freaking out saying "I FOUND OUR SEATS! LET'S GO!" Ladies and gentlemen, our seats kicked ass! We had SUCH an amazing view! I was so excited. Headachey but excited!!! :D By the time all this went down, the local DJ's were already introducing Christina Perri. We got to our seats just in time to see her come out.

Let me take a second to say that I'm totally cheating off a pic of her setlist that Ryan tweeted earlier. I remember the performances, just not the order the songs were performed. And if I tried to work off memory, I would remembered maybe two songs LOL. Anyway, so Christina and her guitarist/keyboardist John Anderson hit the stage. She kicked off her set with a song called "Daydream" which is on her "The Ocean Way Sessions" EP. Next song also on the EP, is called "Bang Bang Bang". I THINK she said it was a song about revenge. It's basically about a guy hurting a girl (possibly by cheating) and then in turn getting hurt by the girl he's with. My favorite lyrics from this song are "But how does it feel to swim in your own tears?" Love! She did a few other songs which were off her EP. Two were not though. One is called "Arms" and the other one called "Distance" which she said would be on her full length album which she's set to start recording in the next couple months. She ended her set with her single  "Jar of Hearts". She thanked the station for supporting it, and thanked the audience for coming out and also supporting her music. She said she'd be over at the merch table signing. As soon as she walked off the stage we headed over. There was a HUGE line. Some people were there to buy merch for the other bands too though. We were kind of overwhelmed. Or at least I was. I wanted the hardcopy of her EP. I ended up taking the last one :D I think. lol Her merch person was at one end of the table and she was at the other end. We were already by the front so we kind of...moved over, not really getting in line. Ahem. After a few people went, the security guy said we could go next. Mkay. LOL She smiled at me and said hi. I said hi and asked her to sign the EP. She said "Of course, thanks for getting it!" She asks me my name, I tell her and she repeats it (pronouncing it perfectly, btw.) and asked me to spell it. It took everything in my power not to laugh. LOL So I spelled it for her and I then said "Hey you did much better than Ryan! Don't tell him I said that!!" And she laughs and says "OK". :D I was going to tell her I had already downloaded her EP but Laura asked her if I could get a pic with her. She said "Of course". <3 Here's the pic:

She is adorable. And I couldn't smile, could I? *sigh* Anyway, bottom line: She's amazingly talented, sweet and I love her!

We made our way back our seats and the DJ's came out once again. This time: The moment Laura and I have been anticipating for WEEKS!! They introduce Ryan. He runs out and high-fives all the DJ's. Of course Laura and I laughed! Of course! :D Remember when I said I assumed it'd be him and Dallin? I was wrong. It was just him. He kicked things off with "We Might Fall". Alright, obviously I have nothing to cheat off of for his set, so let's talk about the high points of his set. Not in any order. He did "Last Train Home" before going into it, he mentioned that it's on the soundtrack for P.S. I Love You. He then says "I wrote the movie. I AM Gerard Butler." Everyone laughed and at that moment...*sigh* I decided to yell out "You're much hotter!!!" OK what the hell is in that Tucson air? Whyyyy did I do that?! He didn't hear, but WTF? LMAO! Oy. Moving on. Afterwards he did the Meatloaf banter. Laura says "Why does he always say that?" LOL I said "I don't know, but it's still funny!" *sigh* Of course I would think it's still funny! =P At one point while he was talking, someone in the front yelled something out. I didn't hear what it was but he looks over and says,  "You KNOW I can hear you, right?" She says yes and he says "OK, you know EVERYONE can hear you, right?" Damn shame I missed what she said. LOL He then introduced "In Your Eyes". I asked Laura if she'd seen the video where he brought out the Backstreet Boys to sing. She said yes, and right when I said that he mentioned that. LOL He said he wanted us to take their place and sing the "In Your Eyes" part. I yelled out "booo!" Ahem...BSB fans, let's blame the Tucson air again, ok? :D I love you. LOL. He said he wasn't a fan of theirs before that moment. Then said "Now my e-mail is BSB4Eva ...or something." LOL. Then, you know how he snaps a pic of the audience and has them tag themselves on FaceBook? Well, he didn't have a camera. Normally Serena's camera is used. So he asks if anyone has one. He says "None of this camera phone stuff. A real camera. If you have one come on up and take the picture." No one goes up for like a minute. Then I hear him say "Not of ME. Get up here and take a pic of the audience." LOL!!! All of a sudden there are like 5 people on stage with him taking pics! HAHAHA! There was one young girl, who I thoroughly enjoyed watching lose her shit over being up there close to him! LMAO! He asked everyone to get up and make it look like a real rock show. After all that craziness, then comes "Start a Fire". He gets behind the keyboard, and towards the end he tends to ask the audience to sing back "We're gonna start a fire". But then he says sees a couple kids backstage and brings them out. Well rather than TELL you what happened, I'll show you. A big thanks to Laura for getting the epicness on video. Note: At the beginning he's telling the little boy to say "How are you doing in the back?" (meaning the people sitting in the back). Ryan had to repeat this like three times for him. Watch what happens:

Priceless amazingness right there! I can't remember the last time I laughed so hard at ANYTHING. As you can tell by the video, Laura and I pretty much lost it. Pretty much! LOL By the way, did you all notice he left off the "sexual desire" part? Uh-huh! <3 Love! He ended his set with "Breathe". Perfect ending.

One more thing that I just remembered: during the intro to one of the songs (can't remember which >.<) he said that once, he did the song in front of a class of first graders and asked them to close their eyes and tell him what they see. He said "I got everything from 'I see  trees' to 'I see pink'. And some said 'I DON'T SEE ANYTHING! It's all black!!' Of course they're first graders so none of them raised their hand. This is what I get for asking a group of first graders to close their eyes and tell me what they see."

He then announced that he'd be hanging out by the merch table. HOLY CRAP at the amount of people that got up! When we got out there, we figured we'd not get in line and just hang back on the opposite end of the table, until the line got shorter. Only...the line kept getting longer! Aaand longer. We stuck with our plan and just watched him be amazing with people. When the little ones would come up to him...OMG my heart! He's so amazing with them! <3 *sniff* Ahem :D Soon, Ingrid Michaelson  hits the stage. Neither Laura or I were really familiar with her. Well, Laura was a bit more familiar with her than I was. We stayed there and just talked for a while longer. All of a sudden, Ingrid is talking and Ryan tells the person he's talking to hold on a second, and he RUNS over to the stage! Honestly, I have NO clue what went on. None. All I heard was some loud cheering.  LOL A minute later he returns and continues talking with people like nothing happened. :D Then  some random dude comes over  and asks us who we're there to see. We said MOSTLY Ryan but we like Christina and Sara too! He said he got free tickets. Said he likes Sara, Christina and was somewhat familiar with Ryan. He then says "He was fuckin' awesome! That guy's going places." Just remembering...*sigh* He kept going on about Ryan. LOL But I don't really remember what else he said. I think I was too happy to hear such great things that I just mentally agreed and my mind went somewhere else lol

Laura and I continued talking, then we noticed Ingrid had finished up her set. The only thing I could think was "Dear God, please let Plain White-T's go next. I don't wanna miss Sara Bareilles!" LOL Sure enough, Plain White-T's hit the stage minutes later. I think they were into their 3rd song when I hear someone say "Hi Guadalupe." I look up and then I hear "I'm Serena's mom!" I was COMPLETELY thrown off by this. Serena's mom knows my name? For serious?! Laura and I said hi to her. We told her that we were bummed that Serena wasn't there and that we missed her. We chatted for a minute and she says "You guys should come with me. I'll take you to Ryan." We didn't really want to cut in front of the line of millions :D and we tried to tell her that we could wait. She wasn't having it. She said she'd get him for us. OK! Who were WE to argue? LOL A few minutes later, a friend of Serena's mom came and got us. She took us to where  Ryan was standing. Now, I should tell you:  I was completely calm and collected while watching him talk to people before. I was confident I'd be OK. But the SECOND we were 2 feet from him, I could NOT think or breathe.We sat there about a minute until he finished up with the person he was talking to when we got there. The millli-second she walked away, Serena's mom got his attention. This happened:

Serena's mom: Hey Ryan. This is Guadalupe
Ryan: I KNOW who she is! Come here!
*then he hugs me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!*
Ryan: How are you?
Me: I'm good!
Ryan: Can you guys hang out for a bit?
Me and Laura: Yeah!
Ryan: OK I'll be back.

We continued watching him be his amazing self. *sigh* For the most part he stayed behind the table unless someone asked for a pic. Laura and I started chatting again and completly lost track of what was going on. She and I (mostly me) were brought back to earth when he walked from behind the table (on his way to take a pic) and hit me over the head with a Sharpie. He didn't throw it. Right when he was close enough to me he just took the Sharpie he was holding and tapped me over the head. Kind of hard, actually LOL Laura and I looked at each other like "What the actual f... just happened?!" and laughed! I don't think he even looked back at us. Which made it even funnier!

Soon enough, he came over to us (I think I got another hug) and we chatted for a bit. Mostly he talked though. He was telling us about his crazy schedule. He's been everywhere. He actually told us where he'd been the past couple of weeks. I think hearing all the places gave me a bigger headache. Poor RockStar, he was SO exhausted. :( He said "I really really appreciate you guys coming down here." He looked over at me and the following exchange happened:

Ryan: Hi. How are you?
Me: *sigh* *shrug* I'm OK. [at this point I wasn't feeling too great but the WAY in which I answered his question was not intentional :/ ]
Ryan: What?
Me: Nothing
Ryan: What?!
Me: Nothing
Ryan: Whaaat?!
Me: Noooothing.
Ryan: *sigh* OK *glare*

And  I just smiled at him

We're 12. Yep lol

As soon as I got a second, I asked him to sign  the envelope in which a birthday card that my buddy Vanessa sent me, came in. She drew a star and wrote "Shine on, bright like the sun...when even the sky turns grey." on the back of it. <3 He said he LOVED it and "Of course I'll sign it". Then I handed him something I brought for him. (Julie, I LOVE YOU! Thank you for everything!) I had to wrap it in a small paper bag. You'll understand why in a sec.

He looks and says "What is it?" I said, "Well open  it!" He shook it before he opened it. I think he was even more confused cause he actually heard sound coming out of it! LOL So he rips the bag open. Inside were two boxes of Lemonheads. :D He smiles, stares at me for a second and says "YOU are amazing, you know that? Thank you."  What do you do when your favorite rockstar calls you "amazing"? You remind him that this is all part of a bribe. All my brain could muster was "You owe me a song!" he shakes the boxes and says "I know".

He then takes The Weapon and signs my card. When he hands it back to me I hold out my hand and ask him if he recognizes what I'm wearing. He looks at my Hero Band, smiles and says yes!

If you guys remember, I posted a pic of the bracelet that I got from the Hero Program. He has one too. My buddy Lisa is also a fan and she gave him one! I love that! :) *sigh* So we took a picture together, then he and Laura took one together. Before we parted ways, he said "Come here. I want a big hug" <3 And we went back to our seats. Laura and I did the math, he talked to people for a good 2 hours. Yes we waited just as long. He is...incredible. That's all.

We caught one last song by the Plain White T's and soon, Sara hit the stage.

All I have to say about her is, she has the most amazing stage presence. I liked her a lot before last night, but I LOVE her now. She had the cutest interaction with a kid who was dancing to her first few songs. She said "You are my hero" She asked him what he wanted to be when he grows up and he said he wanted to play guitar and drums. She said "At the same time?" and he said yes. She says "No one's ever done that before, you could be the first!" LOL I have her album Kaleidoscope Heart, but I've only had it for a short while so I didn't all recognize all the songs yet. She did "Love Song", "Uncharted", "King of Anything" and... others. LOL Oh and she covered Single Ladies! :D

Overall, it was an amazing night! Amazing talent. I missed my RockStar so much and I'm so grateful I got to talk to him. I'm glad I took a chance in doing this. IDK if I would do it again, lol but it was all worth it! Until next time!