Concert Review

Owl City at Slim’s in San Francisco

Words by Emma Waldspurger

Photos by Paige Parsons

Outside of Slim’s in San Francisco there was a very long line of Owl City fans that were not only bubbling with excitement, but were stretched around the block waiting for hours and hours excitedly to see Adam Young and his band at an especially tiny venue. Grandparents, teens, moms, dads, and people of all ages patiently waited in line, most sporting Owl City t-shirts. My personal favorite accessory were some amazing hand-painted Vans worn by a young girl in front of me in line. They were painted with the cover art of “Ocean Eyes” on them! While I walked up to the box office to get my media pass, two middle aged men walked by gasping in amazement at the long line and shouted, “What is this? Is this One Direction?!”

When we stepped inside Slim’s, a slide show of vintage cartoons (Bugs Bunny, Speed Racer, etc.) was running with some music in the background while the stage was being set up. I slowly made my way up to the front, and slipped in front of the small barricade. When I settled in a spot in front of the barricade, I suddenly realized just how close I was going to be to Jamie Dee (the opening act) and Adam Young. I was a mere 12 inches away! I also noticed just how much gear and equipment was on stage, there were wires running everywhere, drums, four keyboards, chairs, a microphone, custom lights, and lots of things I couldn’t make out in the dim light. Somehow, even with all the stuff of stage, there was still a specially cleared out area for Adam to dance around in.

Since I was so close, I was able to peer underneath the curtain that the slide show was being projected on, and saw various sound technicians and stage hands setting up. Then I saw a blonde woman in a black tutu setting up the microphone. One of the guys behind me freaked out because he saw her too, and asked me if the woman was Jamie Dee. I took a closer look and told him yes. He then shouted as loud as he could under the curtain, “HEY! JAMIE DEE! I LOVE YOU!” and continued to grin uncontrollably. He told us that he had seen all her YouTube videos, and was her biggest fan. A few moments later, the curtain was lifted up and the crowd went wild as Jamie Dee smiled and waved to the cheering audience. I had actually never heard or seen Jamie Dee before, but after her act I was sold. Her voice was truly amazing, and the lyrics from her songs were beautifully put together. Of course, throughout the entire opening act the guy behind me was proclaiming his love to Jamie Dee and going ballistic over how awesome she was.

Next up was Owl City, and when the lights started moving frantically about, the crowd went wild once again. Everything seemed to go in slow motion and the suspense was really kicking in. I even started to shake a little bit I was so nervous and excited! Finally, a young man came out and there were many shouts of “I LOVE YOU ADAM!” only to realize it wasn’t Adam Young, but the drummer instead. This happened to every band member until, at last, Adam came out and the audience blew up in a frenzy of cheering, whooping, and clapping.

Adam kicked it off with Cave In, and continuously blew me away with every song. My personal favorites were The Yacht Club and Umbrella Beach. The audience was always involved, laughing, singing, or just clapping their hands along to the beat, the energy was always so fun and upbeat. Every time I looked around at the people behind to me, I just saw everyone really enjoying themselves and grinning from ear to ear. That’s the beautiful thing about Adam’s music – there is an atmosphere created by the lyrics that seems random, but it feels so, well, pure. This feeling of pureness and beauty that magically blends together the real word with a feeling of happiness thereby creating a dreamlike quality.

By the end of the concert, I felt like I’d had the time of my life with a few hundred close friends. It was a truly uplifting and amazing experience. I hope there will be more Owl City concerts in my future. Luckily I shouldn’t have to wait very long to see them again. Owl City will return to San Francisco in October to play at The Regency Grand Ballroom. It’s a show you shouldn’t miss!

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