Observations from a Connecticut Ska Show

I almost forgot how much I love ska until last night’s Reel Big Fish / Goldfinger / Big D and the Kids Table / Suburban Legends show at Toad’s Place in New Haven, Conn. Sure, some of these bands’ heydays were back in the late 90’s/early 00’s, but it really renewed my love for horns, skankin’, and all-around happy times and happy music.

Though I didn’t feel nearly as old as I did at The Kooks last Toad’s show (I’d say I was the median age at the show last night, at 28), the kids in the pit were energetic, unpretentious (coughNew Yorkcough), and a solid level of rowdy. I like rowdy. Rowdy is good. Though this crowd had a healthy pulse, it didn’t stop me from making a few warranted observations throughout the evening:

Can we all please keep our shirts on in the pit? If I wanted to give shirtless, sweaty guys a rubdown, I would’ve gone to a gay bar. And when you add all the bruises and horsing around and sweating and nipples, it kind of makes me feel like I’m in the Schmitt’s Gay commercial.

What’s with all the silly hats? Sure, old school first- and second-wave ska acts all had quirky, fun get-ups, costumes, and styles, but the overflow of 15-year-olds with silly hats was preposterous! I even saw a kid I knew from high school, but his hat was so fucking stupid that I couldn’t say hi to him without telling him that his hat was so fucking stupid! Ska lovers under the age of 20: Throw hats in garbage. Light garbage on fire.

Drunk Dads:  I thought I drank a lot last night, but I was no match for the screaming Dads chillin’ by the back bar.  It’s cool that you bring your kids to shows and all, but you’re so drunk they might as well hail a cab, or take their chances walking home on the dingy streets of New Haven. Sure, they might get mugged or stabbed or something, but at least that way their two feet will provide them with the chance to escape. Yikes.

Crowd surfing and stage diving are pretty radical, but you gotta know when you’re a fatass, man. I clock in at 198 pounds, and you know what I do? I keep my fucking feet on the ground because no one can support that. (To that dude I dropped – your fault, not mine!)

This tour was awesome. If ska’s your thing or if you’re simply reminiscent for the sweet, sweet sounds of 1998, they’re coming to your town! Check it out. And show up early to catch Suburban Legends and Big D! You won’t regret it.

Summer of Ska tour 2012  (Goldfinger will NOT be on all dates – check out this site for more information)

06/20/12 House of Blues Boston – Boston , MA
06/21/12 the Lost Horizon – Syracuse, NY
06/22/12 Lupo’s Heartbreak Hotel – Providence , RI
06/23/12 The Town Ballroom – Buffalo , NY
06/24/12 House Of Blues – Cleveland , OH
06/25/12 Upstate Concert Hall (Formerly Northern Lights) – Clifton Park, NY
06/26/12 9:30 Club – Washington , DC
06/27/12 Best Buy Theater – NewYork , NY
06/28/12 The Chance – Poughkeepsie
06/29/12 Starland Ballroom – Sayreville , NJ
06/30/12 Crocodile Rock – Allentown , PA
07/01/12 The NorVa – Norfolk , VA
07/02/12 The Fillmore Charlotte – Charlotte , NC
07/04/12 Revolution – Fort Lauderdale, FL
07/05/12 House of Blues – Orlando, FL
07/06/12 Masquerade – Atlanta, GA
07/07/12 Bogarts – Cincinnati, OH
07/08/12 Newport Music Hall – Columbus, OH
07/09/12 St. Andrew’s Hall – Pontiac (Detroit), MI
07/10/12 House of Blues – Chicago, IL
07/11/12 First Avenue – Minneapolis, MN
07/12/12 The Pageant – St. Louis, MO
07/13/12 Wooly’s – Des Moines, IA
07/14/12 The Beaumont Club – Kansas City, MO
07/15/12 House of Blues – Dallas, TX
07/16/12 Backstage Live – San Antonio, TX
07/17/12 House of Blues – Houston, TX
07/19/12 Ogden Theatre – Denver, CO
07/20/12 Belly Up – Aspen, CO
07/21/12 In The Venue – Salt Lake City, UT
07/22/12 The Knitting Factory – Reno, NV
07/23/12 Regency Grand Ballroom – San Francisco, CA
07/24/12 Fat Cat Music House – Modesto, CA
07/25/12 House of Blues – West Hollywood, CA
07/26/12 House of Blues – San Diego, CA
07/26/12 House of Blues – San Diego, CA
07/27/12 House of Blues – Las Vegas, NV
07/28/12 The Grove of Anaheim – Anaheim, CA

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