Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Thankful for... John Roderick


Sometimes the things for which we are thankful may seem trivial, superficial even, until we delve into the reasons behind the thankfulness.I am not someone who easily names their favorites.  Favorite color, favorite movie, favorite author.  I see so much value in so many people and things, it is difficult to narrow things down to just one favorite.  But John Roderick might be one of my singers/rock stars/podcasters/people ever.  This comes as no big surprise to anyone following me on Twitter, but what is surprising is the reason why.


Several months ago, Hubby and I decided to start the summer off by attending a concert of an indie singer we both loved, named Jonathon Coulton.  We knew nothing of the opening act, nor did we care, because we were so focused on Coulton.  I had no idea that this concert was going to change the way I thought about and experienced the rest of the summer.  We got to the concert early, and I stood at the edge of the stage.  The opening act was this guy named John Roderick; Hubby and I were wholly unfamiliar with him, and his band, The Long Winters.   With shaggy hair, glasses, a beard, and cool nerd style, he looked pretty much like a West Coast blond version of, well, Hubby.   He started singing, and immediately, his music touched me so deeply.  His lyrics were so down to earth, and the musical arrangements tore at my heart in ways that I could not describe.  As any good rock show attendanee would, we waited after the show to meet John, and to support his brilliant talent by purchasing one of the band's CDs.  I got all extremely fan girl when meeting him, and I believe my exact words to him were "you remind me so much of my husband, only you are musical, you are my musical husband".  Talk about a face palm moment.


But that extraordinarily fan girl geek out was pretty much spot on.  John does remind me of my husband.  And meeting someone, and not just anyone but a rock star, with such similar brilliance, quirks, and eccentricities as Hubby made me see that Hubby, in his own right, is a rock star to me.  I learned that John has a popular podcast with fellow famous nerd Merlin Mann, entitled Roderick on the Line.  Both Hubby and I have since become pretty big fans.  It is full of obscure references, irreverence, and sheer genius, and sounds so much like many of the conversations Hubby and I have on long car trips.  John often interacts with his fans on social media.  He never acts snobbish, never puts on airs, but also never hides who he is.  He is, at some times, confrontational, and at all times, thought provoking, all in chunks of 140 characters.

That CD of The Long Winters that we purchased at the show was quickly joined by another CD and a DVD of one of their concerts.  And let me tell you, that music set the stage for the summer.  Three months of me seeing Hubby in a new rockstar light, and realizing how extraordinarily perfectly matched we are.  John's music is moving, the stories told in his lyrics are mysterious, and often more tender than they appear at first glance.  And while my Hubby is not a singer, when he is singing me my most favorite song of The Long Winters, it really does make me melt.  Typically I am not one to get starstruck, but meeting John Roderick taught me what it is like to be a huge fan.  And the reasons I am a big fan of John are the same reasons I am the biggest fan of Hubby.


John Roderick provided me with the soundtrack of a summer where I fell even deeper in love with my husband.  How could I ever be anything but thankful for that?