It was a hot 4th of July in Chicago when I discovered the Counting Crows for the first time. I wandered into their show at Grant Park mid-set, and I remember standing in the back, completely entranced. The next day, I raced to Sam Goody's (I miss you, early 2000s) and bought every Counting Crows album I could find.
The Counting Crows have been the soundtrack, both literally and figuratively, to the first time I fell in love and the last (Adam himself introduced me to my now-husband). My sleepless college years of playing "Up All Night" repeatedly. Moving to Nashville with a suitcase in my hand. Starting over again in New Orleans with $100 in my bank account and curiosity about Mardi Gras.
I didn't discover the Crows music when it was brand new (I was 5 when August was released and presumably rocking out to Barney), but it was intoxicatingly fresh to me as a teenager, shaping the way I'd consume and digest music permanently.
Last Monday, the Counting Crows played The Forum on their A Brief History of Everything Tour, and looking around, I realized I wasn't the only one who relates so much of their own history with this iconic band.
A girl two rows in front of me had tears pouring down her face during "Long December." The crowd sang "Rain King" with such a force, I was pretty sure precipitation was going to start falling from the arena ceiling. And during "Round Here," even though I've heard it more than a dozen times live, I had goosebumps up and down my arms.
They always say, you can't know where you're going unless you know where you've been. And last Monday night, a crowd of thousands revisited where we had been- maybe the night we had blared "Miami" as we shut it down in New Orleans or the time when "Hard Candy" became one summer's soundtrack.
The band's History tour feels like a celebration, much in the vein of a birthday. They're another year older and it's a commemoration of who they've become over the years. Adam's voice and passion is stronger than ever, drawing you in with his trademark raw honesty that weaves in and out of his lyrics. In that dark arena, I felt moved the same way I did when I stopped in 100 degree day in Chicago. I may not have known who they were then, but they always sounded like they knew me.
If you have the chance, don't miss out on seeing the Counting Crows play one hell of a show on the A Brief History of Everything tour.