Monday, August 10, 2009

Starstruck..

So on Friday my Mom, Ben, Megan and Megan's mom went to Ramsi's (my suggestion) for dinner. I was debating on whether or not to meet them for a drink and then my Mom called to inform me that this guy was sitting at the table next to them:
Yeah, that made my decision pretty easy. I mean it's friggin' Jim James!

I never know what to do when I see famous people. If it's someone I don't care all that much about I usually just ignore them. If it's someone I do care about I usually just want to leave them alone because I'm sure they're just trying to enjoy themselves.

However, this was different. It was different because Jim James is an absolute idol of mine. When I got to Ramsi's and sat down (borrowed a chair from Jim's table. OMG!!!), all I could do was think about how I wanted to go up to him and tell him how great I thought he was. I wanted to take a picture with him, get his autograph, ask him for an interview for the blog, see if he wanted to hang out sometime, grab a lock of his hair, etc.

I mean honestly that guy is probably the reason I play guitar. I've always loved the Beatles and I've always loved music, but after seeing My Morning Jacket in concert for the first time...music had a different meaning from then on.

I wanted to shake Jim's hand and tell him how much I appreciated the fact that he understands what it means to be in his position. He's a rock star without the rock star qualities. He uses his fame to bring awareness to lots of things and give money to charity. Most importantly, he understands that the best thing about music is that it can speak to more than one demographic. Rap isn't just for gangsters, county isn't just for rednecks, pop isn't just for teenage girls...it's all for everyone. I would argue that no one in the music world has carried out this belief more in the last decade than Mr. James.

Last but not least, I wanted to tell Jim that I would give my left arm to be able to sing like him. Honestly, I download every bootleg and live recording of him that I can because I love the way that he sings. The sound of his voice makes me like a song, no matter what it is.

But, in reality I knew I would never say all of that to him. Heck, I knew I wouldn't say any of that to him. Mainly because I didn't want him to call security on me, but also because as I sat there (and eavesdropped like hell on his conversation with his two buddies) I realized the most important reason that I like Jim James...

He's just a regular dude.

That guy is one of the most famous up and coming rock stars on the planet. He's probably a millionaire and in Louisville he's most definitely famous enough to get star treatment at most places (esp. in the Highlands). But he didn't care. He just sat there and laughed with his friends and talked about a tv show, and wore rubber flip flops. It was weird to see him that close, because for the last 5ish years of my life he has truly been an icon in my eyes. But at the end of the day...he's just a guy...and that's what makes him so cool.

I didn't get up the nerve to tell him any of those things that I wanted to say. I would have bought him a beer, but he was just drinking water I think. Anyway, as I got up to leave I put my chair back at his table and said, "I don't mean to interrupt, but I just wanted to say I'm a fan and I love your stuff."

"Oh, alright...Thanks!" he replied. Then he shook my hand and I was on my way.

I'm sure he wasn't overjoyed that I told him I liked is stuff, but he smiled and seemed genuinely thankful when he spoke....that's all he needed to do.

Anyway, I'll went on my way...calling Taylor and Lautaro to tell them who I just saw and I'm sure he went on his way, forgetting who I was and being his awesome self.

But man, I had a drink and shook Jim James' hand on Friday. That means nothing to a lot of you I'm sure, but to me it meant a lot.

Here's a picture that my Mom took of Ben and Me while at dinner. Our heads are strategically placed so you can see Jim between us. (I can call him Jim now because we're totally friends)
I'm a dork I know it.

In honor of Mr. James. Here is some of my favorite Jim stuff.
"Bermuda Highway"


"Steam Engine"


Also this is a song from his new Monsters of Folk project. It bops for sure!


Also, I shook the Avett Brothers' hands back in April at their concert in Danville. So I'm pretty sure I'm on track to shake Paul McCartney's hand sometime before the year is over.

I'm such a loser.

Song of the Day: Jim James - Goin' To Acapulco
GRE Word: Urbane - Sophisticated; refined; elegant

2 comments:

Wilhelm von Rall said...

Very cool.

Jake H. said...

That's awesome. My little brother is 90% sure that he saw Common at Niketown in New York, but didn't do anything about it. It's a lot easier to talk about what you would do if you saw someone famous that you admire, but it's a totally different thing to act on it with it actually goes down.