Friday night, I went with some of my good friends to see Switchfoot at Martini Ranch. It was quite the adventure. We left right after our play practice ended and picked up everybody. Hungry, we stopped at McDonald’s because we all wanted some sweet tea. While there, we heard that the concert was sold-out. Bad news because two of my friends were planning on getting tickets at the door. We went back to school to drop them off and then sped (within the legal speed limit) of course) back over to Scottsdale. We waited in line for about twenty minutes in order to enter the venue that is about as big as my living room. The place was packed to the brim. Because we were so late, we were stuck in the back. As people moved around though we made our way closer to the stage using the classic wedge formation.
The show itself was spectacular. They played the full set from Hello Hurricane, their new album. If you haven’t heard their new stuff, check it out. It really is quite good. True to form, the songs are both hard hitting and soul searching. Jon’s lyrics are vulnerable and relateable, filled with hope and the power of real love. One of the standout songs was Needle and Haystack Life, which Jon sang from the middle of the audience. The Sound, one of the harder songs, sounded amazing live. Raw energy just flowed through the room. At the end of Free, Jon pounded the rhythm out of a bass drum. The addition made an already emotional song that much more powerful. Red Eyes brought the set full circle with the echoes of “We are once in a lifetime”.
Switchfoot played seven of their older songs as an encore. It started with Meant to Live, then a Stars/The Shadow Proves the Sunshine medley (I loved it when he sang “My shadows prove the sunshine”). After that was 24 followed by Oh Gravity! Then they dedicated Yesterdays to a soldier who was at the show. To end the night, they played Dare You To Move. It was a wonderful greatest hits style ending.
After the show, we bought some merch, including two fedoras and a golf hat. Then we went over to the trailer and met Tim Foreman, the bass player, and his brother Jon, the lead singer. I got them to both sign a cooker wrapper from McDonald’s. Jon lead a crowd to the other side of the street and started a little acoustic concert. After a few songs we were asked to leave by the police because of the noise. It was really cool that Jon would do that. We went back over by their bus and I listened to all of the conversations people were having with Jon. One in particular was really cool. A guy who was very emotional explained to Jon how thankful he was for his lyrics and how the gave him hope. The guy was just so genuine. He even sincerely apologized to the crowd for being kind of drunk. That is why Switchfoot’s music is so amazing. It gives hope to people who may not be exposed to the idea on a regular basis. I also listened to Jon explain his faith in a God of love. It was really inspiring to witness a regular guy who has been given an incredible platform to reach people with love and hope. Listening to Jon talk about Jesus on the street with a couple of dozen people around him, I couldn’t help but think that I was getting a little taste of what it would’ve been like to follow Jesus around and hear him talk to the crowds. It was a really cool experience.
Thanks Jon, Tim, Chad, Jerome, and Drew for doing what you’re doing!!!
Here’s video from Jon’s impromptu acoustic concert.