Meeting Ben Jorgensen
I’m actually at a loss for words, and I’d rather not tell a story while being all fangirly (though that might have been the case when I retold this story to my friends). I want to write this as a story, just the way it should be.
Yesterday I went to my first show (Dylan referred to it as a gig). I don’t know what they call them these days, seeing as this was my first one of “those things”. I’ve been to operas, dance concerts, music showcases, musicals, orchestral performances, and each one of these was in some way, shape or form majestic, enjoyable and terrific. I could have replaced those three adjectives with a lot of others.
But for yesterday, no. I have to use every single appropriate adjective I can think of, and now I will explain why.
I want to thank my lovely friends Sebastian, Dylan and Ryan for tagging along. ♥️ We went to see Ben Jorgensen at the Gaelic theatre in Sydney. Ben Jorgensen, for those who are unaware, is my idol; he was the lead singer, guitarist and songwriter of Armor For Sleep. When they disbanded I was shattered, but Ben still continued to inspire me. Many people disliked his new works including his electronic project God Loves A Challenge, but I loved it, and I love his solo work. I really admire his dedication to what he does, and it’s amazing how he tries these new things.
I met up with my friends early, about three hours before the show was due to even begin. I guess I really wanted to make sure I got a good place during the show, and it being my first, I didn’t want to risk it. 😛
We were so early that no one was at the theatre yet. I wouldn’t call it much of a theatre, it’s a bit like a bar. Rather small. In my head, I tried to imagine how the show would go, but I really didn’t know what to expect. I remember chatting to my boyfriend James about it, and I said I’d really be happy just to see him on stage and even get a blurry mobile phone photo if that happened.
We walked around for an hour and came back. My stomach was being rather mean to me and I lost my appetite so I didn’t eat dinner. Perhaps I was too excited. I was actually a little worried that I’d be so excited I’d faint.
When we returned to the theatre after getting food and going to the bookstore, Ben was on stage practicing. I stood some distance from the bar and watched in awe. After some time he packed and walked in my direction and I took the opportunity to say hello.
Hello – unlike I’d imagined. I shyly asked for a photograph, which Sebastian kindly took, and nearly forgot to introduce myself as Georgina.
When I did, it sprouted a conversation. If I remember correctly, one of the first things Ben said was, “I saw all the website stuff you do, it’s amazing”. I was very flattered. 🙂 I really couldn’t believe it; I know I’d talked to him several times online, but with no idea that he might have browsed my Fuck Yeah, Ben Jorgensen tribute or my other online works.
After we chatted I told him that I looked forward to seeing him play. I couldn’t believe that I’d just talked to him. I was so amazed, and in real life, he’s just as friendly as he is online! 😄
After having to line up outside and the poor lady at the door getting very confused with at-door ticket prices, we went in. I was first in. 😆 When everyone came in there really wasn’t that much of a crowd. I was expecting to be squished and squashed but it was actually really chill in there. People danced, walked around with drinks and took photos to their hearts’ content, you could move and walk so freely.
I don’t remember the name of the band that was up first. They had a pop-punk sound and were a bit like The Used. They were really loud and as Dylan told me, I’d be able to feel the beat through my entire body.
The second band was awesome. I mean awesome. They were a four-piece from right here in Sydney, named The Initiation. They reminded me of the Classic Crime and I stood up front again because I started to really enjoy their music. 😁 The lead guitarist/singer’s (Davey) guitar string broke and he pulled out another guitar. The other guitarist (Paulie) kept throwing his guitar on its strap around his body in between sections of a song; it was amusing to watch.
At the end when we were all waiting for Ben to come out on stage, the bassist (Dana) came up to me and gave me their EP.
“I noticed you at the front, I’m gonna give this to you and thank you for coming!”
I didn’t know what to say but I thanked her almost endlessly and said that I really did love their music. I was planning to buy the CD anyway, but woah. Woah.
I stood at the front again, and waved at Ben. 😚 I think I started getting chills at this point… the air conditioner had been turned on and I was pretty cold, and Dylan had gotten me a glass of water. It was ice, ice cold, and I was incredibly thirsty, but I drank the water despite the goosebumps forming on my skin. Better than the heat outside, I guess.
Hearing Ben Jorgensen play was amazing. I knew all the songs he played, though I didn’t know the words to All I Need (a Radiohead cover, it was), so I didn’t sing along. I recorded a few videos, took many photos. The girl next to me was singing along too. I wanted to say hi, but for fear of being horribly awkward as I usually am in social situations and for missing any part of Ben’s performance, I left that thought behind.
Ben Jorgensen played with Wes, who was a whiz on the guitar. It was amazing to listen to, and I believe I almost cried from feeling the music.
I got to chat with Ben after the show, I felt weird waiting around but I got him to sign his EP (that Dylan bought and gave to me for him to sign). Not only that but I actually stayed around for a chat. He’s such a lovely guy, honestly. He mentioned something about Tumblr, I could not hear above the loud music now being played in the bar, but I managed to pipe out that I did have that Tumblr tribute to him. 😛 He’d actually seen it. He told me how much he loved it and how much it meant to him. He even said that his girlfriend loved it too. I’m glad, I actually feel really touched. I don’t know what was going through my mind then but I really couldn’t believe it. (I still don’t.)
I thanked him for putting on such an amazing show. Before I left we hugged and he said I was one of the most awesome people he’d met, and to “keep in touch on Twitter”. :’) I thanked him, finally, for writing such amazing music.
It truly is. So was last night. My head still spins and I swear on orange cows I don’t believe it. All I expected was to hear the music. But I feel like I lived it; I got to talk to Ben, he didn’t mind taking a photo, I got an autograph… he remembered me talking to him online before. He’s a wonderful person. You always get people around who don’t care about their fans but he does. And I know I’m going to support him for a long time to come, because he continues to inspire me. He can sing, write, play instruments – he makes amazing music.
It’s hard to find words, really. But that is why I need a whole box of adjectives. I never expected my first show to be this freaking amazing. 😁