You Look Good

Remember what I said last week about loving Lady A?

Welcome to a walk through my obsession with all things music & lyrics.

Last night was magic. You might be sick of me saying that, but maybe now you’ll understand why I can’t stop going to shows. Once they stop feeling like magic, I’ll be ready to call it quits. Until then, you get to read about pure, true love.

Lady Antebellum’s You Look Good Tour opened up with Brett Young and all I have to say is mmmm mm.

I first saw Brett Young earlier this year at Tortuga, making sure we got to the beach early enough so that I could rush the stage and sing all of his beautiful songs. Brett is the true definition of an artist who has songs that just rip right through you. They are actual stories that I can sit around and listen to, imagining them happening to me. You’ve heard the bangers like Sleep Without You or In Case You Didn’t Know – but the true talent sits inside of songs like Like I Loved You and Memory Won’t Let Me. He played exactly five songs and it wasn’t enough for me to be satisfied, but it was amazing. With only a couple of songs on the radio I stood out like a sore thumb dancing around like a fool, but that’s what it’s all about. Go get his music, see him when you can, and fall in love just like everyone else. He also posts super cutesy sentimental things on Instagram (@brettyoungmusic) just like a man after my own heart, so, swoon.

Kelsea Ballerini is someone I actually got to check off of my list of artists that I haven’t seen (there’s maybe 2 left) that I was actually excited about seeing.

I tend to like female artists more than my friends do because of that whole sentimental/sappy thing I have going on, but Kelsea is different. She has plenty of those, but when it comes to true talent and songs that aren’t always love songs, it was almost obnoxious. I’m one to get goosebumps even just singing along to songs in my car if I love them enough – but this was on another level. Her new music, her old music, all of it is ridiculously good. She did sing about loving her cute fiancé (Morgan Evans who also has a banger out called Kiss Somebody) and that’s what really gets me. The stories these people are singing about are REAL stories. Either the artist themselves or the songwriters who put them together felt some type of way and put it on paper for someone to record, sharing this beauty with the world. She does that a whole heck of a lot and I really appreciate it.

There was a point in the show where she slows everything down, of course, and chooses to sing a song with the crowd that everyone would know. This is of personal importance to me because as a concert goer, you want to feel like the artist understands who is in their audience and what they want to see/feel. She gets that, being a self-proclaimed concert lover herself, and did just that for us. Brought us in to her “20,000 person living room” just to hang out for a while. Kelsea, I’m about it.

Of course, though, we were there for Lady A – and Lady A was there for us. I already told ya’ll the story of my first time seeing them – up close and personal the same night I saw Sam Hunt for the first time. Last night was admittedly much better. I think it matters where you are in your life when you start to appreciate songs for different reasons and I’m at a point in my life where Lady A just gets me, and I get them.

If you haven’t heard their new album Heart Break, I suggest you go get it right now. This is songwriting at its absolute finest and the reason I continue to believe in good music. This album is what made my best friend ask me why I don’t write songs because of how closely it resonates with my passions. There’s probably two distinct reasons why that is.

One is that the songs are passionate, full of love & feeling & heart & truth, just like me. The other is that the songwriter on a handful of these songs is someone I really admire. Nicolle Galyon is a boss of a songwriter. She moved to Nashville wanting to represent artists, not be their writer, but alas here she is with a serious gift and turned it into her career. Interesting how someone can have a passion for something and try to go down different paths until life just steps in and tells you otherwise. I’d recommend following her on Instagram (@nicatnitemusic) because she is amazing & admirable and I want to be just like her when I grow up.

Back to last night. You forget how many bangers an artist has until the first few notes and you’re just standing there as the sun sets and the breeze kicks up like “oh shit I Run To You, I see you!!” and you’re lost in a moment. I don’t have many pictures because I realized a long time ago that it’s much more fun watching a concert through memories and not through a phone screen. That’s also something to keep in mind about life.

 

15 in a 30

For those of you in South Florida, you know that last weekend most of your Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram were full of pictures and videos of tailgates, pretty girls in cowboy boots and lots of swooning over Sam Hunt. Yeah, you’re right, I was there, too.

For his first headlining tour I have to hand it to Sam for not only selling out amphitheaters, but for putting on a damn good show. You can lose a lot to theatrical value when you become a headliner, but that’s not what I saw.

“But, like, what do you even know about Sam Hunt?” you might be asking yourself, in the snotty voice that I just wrote that in my head.

Fair question, friends – let’s take a trip.

Back in May of 2015, I made two of my best girlfriends get into the pit with me for Lady Antebellum in Tampa. Now I LOVE Lady A (remember that in a couple of weeks…) but I can guarantee you that for that concert, all them pretty little girls with us in the pit were there for the opening act. This was the first time I got the chance to see Sam live because when I was standing outside of Dallas Bull in 2014 with one of the girls with me at Lady A that night, I saw a poster for some punk named Sam Hunt with some song on the radio called Leave the Night On and I was like “pssh, Sam Hunt, you punk.” Those were real thoughts.

Turns out, the guy’s got it. We were front of the front, touching our noses to the stage, and rubbing Sam’s sweat from his arms when he jumped off the stage and into my face (see Insta video at the bottom of this post). Yeah, girl. But it’s not just because he’s attractive, truss, he is – but he performs his freaking heart out. He sang his Single for the Summer/Marvin’s Room remix – I about lost my damn mind and I was sold on Sam Hunt.

for your viewing pleasure

The love fest doesn’t stop there, friends. Fast forward to November 2015 and I dragged those two lovely ladies from my previous post and another brave soul down to Mexico to sit on a cruise ship with me for four days and fall in love with music over and over again. I don’t think I fully lived until I was physically in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico watching Florida Georgia Line in concert from the lido deck. <–LOL that sentence, though. (The picture at the top of the main page is that moment.)

Sam was there. He made a casual appearance on our docked ship in the port of Cozumel and we sang together like only old friends do. There was more sweat to rub on my face again this time, too, because without exaggerating his chest and my nose became more than friends that afternoon in Mexico. Thanks, Sam. That trip was, to this day, probably the best one I’ve ever taken. Pure magic.

We’ve danced in the rain together on Fort Lauderdale Beach. I fought through crowds of drunk, rowdy teenagers for that and wouldn’t trade a second of it. Make You Miss Me has always been a favorite track of mine and there is something to be said for standing in a crowd of 20,000 strangers, shoulder to shoulder on the beach, with the rain starting to come down, feeling like you are the ONLY one on the beach. That’s where I went that day and I was transcended this weekend, too.

It’s a magical feeling, to give yourself over to a beat, or to get lost in a string of words that put you back in a moment – maybe it’s on a beach dancing in the rain – and I only pray for that to never end.

Maren Morris & Chris Janson opened the show and I’m sure in years to come I’ll have stories about all of the performances I’ve seen them give. Chris Janson can kill a harmonica solo and Maren Morris is the only female I know that makes a bathing suit top and sweatpants look runway-worthy.

What I continue to remind myself is that you have to make it about the experience, too. Sure the concerts and the performances are the reason my heart continues to beat – but having my best friend with me and being able to connect with her on that level is ridiculous. She’ll always be my best friend but in an amphitheater or sitting on a lawn with a couple of beers in us, I am reminded that she’s part of why my heart beats, too. It’s a really hard concept to put into words, but just know that a lot of the reason behind why I’m writing comes from her, that weekend, and the magic concert air has in it.

A few captured images from a variety of shows…

I didn’t take the picture all up in Sam’s face – because I am located physically underneath his microphone; this is the cruise situation I told ya’ll about…

BECAUSE THIS HAPPENED 😍😍😍😍 @samhuntmusic

A post shared by ginamazing (@ginamazing) on

Where It All Begins

She’s baaaaack – and with a passion project.

For those who have been around for some time, you may remember that I dabbled in (really terrible) blogging back in late high school, early college. In those posts I found a voice and some serious vulnerability, and learned a lot about who I was.

This time is a bit different and with much more meaning; I promise!

If you follow me on social media you might notice something about my life. I’m never home. Let me be clear – I love my home. But at home, I can’t really find what I’m looking for. What am I looking for you might ask?

ALL OF THE CONCERTS.

I’m never home because I am out floating around the country following my favorite people scream-singing my favorite songs with my favorite people. Those are them, up there at the top. The girls who very rarely say no to the crazy ideas I come up with about traveling around the country (or outside of it, but that’s a Song for Another Time) to see people we have seen countless times in concert. I say countless because I really have tried to count but at this point I’ve given up and decided to turn my experiences into stories.

Now these aren’t just stories about the shows – there’s a little bit of that, but it’s more about the feeling. One friend in particular called me a “sentimental little bitch” a couple of months ago while we sat in middle of the Daytona Motor Speedway waiting for Thomas Rhett. But she was right – I feel, heavily. And with feeling comes what I really hope is a line to draw between music and the words and all of us.

There’s a lot more to come – this is only just an introduction to who I am and what I do. Here’s to hoping you’ll stick with me on this journey, maybe learn a thing or two about yourself, and start saying “yes” more to what it is you really want.

By the way, that picture up there was taken on the beaches of Fort Lauderdale after getting down in the sand to some Nelly. (I was the only one getting down in the sand to Nelly).