Louisa and I went to her first concert on September 3 at the NY State Fair. I took her to see Sugarland. We LOVE them and it was so fitting that this was our first concert together. We have every song of every CD memorized.
As we know, the Sugarland band and crew dealt with a big loss this summer. Having your stage collapse, killing and injuring your fans, is a performers worst nightmare. Even if... they had nothing to do with it. Even if... it could have been prevented. Even if... the fans hold some liability for taking the risk (?). It's something the band and crew will always have to live with knowing they were a part of.
However, they need to move on and continue their tour. Many more shows, many thousands of fans to perform to.
I have to admit that I was very nervous about the show. Not about a stage collapsing on me, but about the level of performance we'd receive. So close to the tragedy, would Sugarland still perform at top notch levels? I mean, I did pay $60 a ticket to take my daughter to her first show, row 14, center stage. I deserved just as good a show as the people before the incident got.
My fears were silly! Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush haven't risen this high because they are bad businessmen. Right?! They not only put on an amazing show, but they gave me my money's worth, and I rarely say that.
I was also introduced to another young lady who I now can't get enough of. Sara Bareilles is on tour with them, and she's amazing!
At the show we got to be a part of two special events~
Surprise one was that Amnesty International is recording a Bob Dylan tribute CD and Sugarland recorded one of my favorites, Tonight I'll Be Staying Here With You, live in Syracuse, for inclusion on the CD. You may hear me screaming ;) I did try to purposely scream during a quiet part. Don't you hate those people?!
Surprise number two: I came across this video tonight. I was hoping someone had taped this, because it was amazing and brought tears to my eyes when it happened. Sugarland has a song called "Little Miss". It's a song about how we know that no matter how tough life gets, we'll "be okay again". Always. This song, like SO many of theirs that have come before, is an inspiration to everything I do in my life right now. The song has also created a whole movement across the country, called the Little Miss Project.
Two local school teachers contacted the Syracuse country radio station for help with this. They handed out 6,000 signs right before the show. Our instructions were to hold them up during Little Miss. The signs had words, lines, from the song. Things like, "You Are Loved", and "Brand New Start". Many signs also said, "Remember Indy".
The band knew nothing about this little surprise, so it was amazing to watch their faces as we held up our signs and sang along. I fought tears the whole time. Enlarge the screen when you watch this so you can see Jennifer's face. It's so awesome to watch her shock as she is trying to sing, perform, yet also read all the signs!
I pray that you all know that
A) You ARE loved.
B) It'll Be Alright Again.