I’m not super into music—which is sort of weird, I guess. I grew up in Austin, Texas, the music capital of the world and most of my friends from throughout my life love, love, love music and finding new bands and going to concerts and making music themselves. I just don’t. I happily take the mixes they make me, but have little desire to find bands on my own or invest in seeing particular bands live. The crowds aren’t my fave, the effort to get out to a venue, the length of time you have to commit to the whole thing…it’s all more than I care to do.
With one exception.
Mumford and Sons.
I saw them twice in Austin, most recently at the ACL music fest (if I don’t love concerts…I really don’t love music festivals…)
I saw them again this past Saturday night.
I was up in the nosebleeds—like literally the last row of the highest section—with two friends and it was just the best. Perhaps part of my enjoyment was that no one was sitting behind me and I was inside rather than out in the Texas heat for hours. Another part had to be how much my friends also love Mumford.
That was all part of the enjoyment, but most of it is that I just love Mumford and Sons. I love their lyrics. I love all of the instruments they use and the way their sound and vibe has evolved over the years.
They played songs from all of their albums and it was magic. At one point Marcus Mumford ran all the way up to our level, while singing. There were pyrotechnics. There was a beautiful, stripped down set of songs where the band just all stood singing around one microphone.
Plus, Marcus Mumford was so, so happy to be in Charlottesville. He was just overflowing with thanks for the hospitality they received and he acknowledged we’ve had a rough time since August 12, 2017. I’ve seen them twice before, but this time felt a lot more personal.
Throughout the concert I kept leaning over to my friend and telling her which song was the first I ever heard by them (Timshel), or which one I walked down the aisle to in my wedding (I will Wait), or which album I listened to on repeat while I flew back and forth across the country while dating Nick long-distance (Wilder Mind).
I just never get tired of their music. How I hear and understand it changes over time and I keep adding memories associated with certain songs because they have become a soundtrack of sorts for my life.
What is it about music that can do this for us as humans?
I like to think about the creative process that must go into writing a song or crafting a setlist. The care and time and talent that is poured out and then shared. And then, the care and time and love with which it is received. What a powerful creative connection.
I’m grateful God built this impulse and capacity into us. And I’m grateful for the chance to enjoy my favorite music live this past weekend.
What about you? Have a favorite artist, or too many to count?