My First Big Concert – Van Halen, Ten Years Later

Promo photo of Van Halen in 2004. Village Voice.

Promo photo of Van Halen in 2004. Village Voice.

2004 was a magical year for me as a music fan. No more than two years prior, I adopted an inactive Van Halen as my favorite band. My first concert was Sammy Hagar and David Lee Roth on the Sans Halen Tour in 2002 at the Tweeter Center. Eddie Van Halen was a god to me.

You can imagine my excitement when they announced their big reunion tour with Sammy Hagar along with three brand new songs. My dad promptly bought tickets when they went on sale at the end of March, and we were set to see Van Halen at the United Center on July 19, 2004. To that point in my life, this was the biggest concert I would ever attend. Read the rest of this entry »

Ten Years Later, Napoleon Dynamite Still Sucks

Jon Heder as Napoleon Dynamite. Mashable.

Jon Heder as Napoleon Dynamite. Mashable.

The year is 2004. American Idiot sparked a punk revival among all junior high students, paving a way to their interest in Fall Out Boy and Panic! at the Disco in the coming years. Hair dye and eyeliner sales increased to heights they hadn’t seen since Poison was relevant*. And Napoleon Dynamite was the hottest comedy film on the market.

I missed much of this cultural zeitgeist, opting to avoid Green Day and hang my hopes on a reunited-but-broken Van Halen. At a mere 13-years-old, I was the old 40-year-old dad yelling about how music isn’t what it used to be (and how American Idiot wasn’t my Green Day). I wasn’t a total snob; I enjoyed Family Guy like any 13-year-old did (or does). Ten years later, I love American Idiot, but can’t remember the last time I watched an episode of Family Guy.

One thing has remained constant: Napoleon Dynamite, now celebrating its tenth birthday, is still an annoying, God-awful movie. Read the rest of this entry »