No, this was not a dream. Dean called me yesterday to let me know that he had just been given tickets to the Foo Fighters concert that night at the Bell Centre (where the Canadiens play hockey). Arghghghhhhh, it was one of those days and I was tired and grouchy and weepy and discouraged and overwhelmed and not all in the mood for listening to really loud music, sitting with screaming fans, and then making fake chat-chat with famous people.
You see, we had backstage passes since Dean knows one of the musicians who plays Hagstrom guitars, a product of Dean's company. Well, it seemed that Dean wanted my less than fun company anyway, so away we went. Our tickets led us to pretty much the best seats one could have - seats being the operative word here since we could have been closer, but it would have been in the fenced-in, free for all, herd-like standing arrangement on the floor in front of the stage. Thankfully, we were sitting on actual seats, stage left, second row up from the floor. Sweet.
We saw it all: side stage techs doing their stuff, security guys nabbing and escorting crowd surfers out, press photographers squeezed up against the stage, and I guess most importantly, the lead singer strutting and strumming and screaming and spitting and singing.
The concert was pretty good I must say, especially their acoustic set, even though I do not own one Foo Fighters cd and only recognised a few of their songs. After the music stopped and the stage hands were dismantling the whole set-up in short order, we were escorted backstage to the dressing rooms along with a dozen or so other people. I was content to let Dean make his contacts, do his schmoozing thing, chat up the stars and just let me sit in a corner.
We walked in and Dean found his way to his guitar guy, Pat, and started a conversation. Since I was close-by and Dean is so polite, he introduced me as well and Pat asked if we wanted drinks. Dean said a soft drink would be fine and Pat rolled his eyes and looked at me, asking if I would like a boozy drink. I hesitated, not sure what I wanted, so he took that as an affirmative, grabbed my hand, and dragged me into the next room where a table was set out with various drinks. I refused a whisky (ew, it just tastes awful and I thought choking sounds might be slightly less than polite in that setting) and had a Coors Light thrust into my hand. It was ice cold and I was really thirsty, so I opened it and wandered around, sipping and observing.
I got introduced to the keyboard player at one point, then Pat and Dean found each other and went off to chat again. I ducked in to check out what they were doing, and Pat motioned me over to grab a seat and there we were, sitting in the lounge, listening to some chill music surrounded by the band members and a few other folks. The lead singer was only a few feet away from us, gesturing and talking it up with some people, so I leaned over and asked Dean, "What's his name? Is that rude, me being here backstage and not even knowing the lead singer's name?" I hoped not.
His name is Dave. He used to play for Nirvana. He has won several Grammys. And he just played in front of nearly 9,000 people.
Sitting there, sipping my boozy drink, I took a moment to invite God to come and make himself known to these people in whatever way they would recognise. And then I remembered that Pat had told us how his favourite Hagstrom custom guitar disappeared at the Montreal airport when they arrived. So I asked God to bring that guitar back and to show himself as the God who restores. I prayed the same prayer again today. Well, it does not hurt to ask. Thanks for the beer, Pat, and I will continue to pray that the lost may be found.
This is a picture of the Foo Fighters in concert in Montreal, March 17, 2008.