The Natural History Museum has these events called First Fridays. They do them the first Friday of every month. They have special lectures and concerts and such, usually by people you've never heard of. Sounds pretty boring.
But, I was excited about it, because just about a week after my obsession with Tune-Yards started, they played at the NHM's first First Friday of the year.
Because I'm anal-retentive and like to have a plan in place, I bought a ticket ahead of time (which is just regular admission to the museum), but wasn't expecting much of a problem. This was a museum on a Friday night in Los Angeles after all. I was expecting me and about 15 other people. I didn't think anyone would show up for the lecture on spiders.
Boy howdy was I wrong.
I show up to see this massive line in front of the museum. And by massive, I mean probably about 200 people. But I'm bad at estimating, so who knows. I walk up and stand in the line for a bit, but every time I stand in line, this little voice in my head reminds me of my friend Jamie who is infuriated by people who just stand in lines without knowing what they're for. They stand there because it's what the majority is doing, but they aren't sure if it's the right line for them. So after a few minutes I asked the people behind me to save my spot and went up to the doors. Good thing, because guess what, me and my advance ticket - we got to go right on through!
This is a load off my back because the concert is supposed to start in about 10 minutes. But then I see it - the line to get into the concert room. It's longer than the line to get into the museum. It's longer than the line I stood in to get into the airport 2 days before Christmas. No, it's longer than that line AND the security line that I went through. This line crosses the museum and heads down a flight of stairs before I stop and rethink.
There's no way I'm getting in. So, I head back up to the front of the line and just linger, wishing I was a little more confident or at least drunk so I would be able to slip into line. It was just me after all. Instead I hung around until some security guy said we had to step back, but not to worry because the show would be projected onto the wall.
And so that's how it came to be that I stood next to a T-Rex and a roomful of hipsters to watch a concert projected on a marble museum wall. And I'll tell you what, I don't even care. The concert was that awesome. Merrill Garbus was there with the bass player guy that's always around, but she also brought three chicks to play drums. She played a lot of new stuff, which was awesome, but also a little sad because I knew it wasn't released yet and I'd just have to wait around forever. But, it was totally amazing, and I'm glad I went. Now I just have to wait a little more to see a proper show.
There were a ton of people there to see the show, but apparently a lot of people went to the spider lecture and some people were just hanging out. I'm still a little confused, as it doesn't really seem like an Angeleno thing to do. The other thing I can't figure out is why the museum doesn't do it more often. They had to be making bank! Not only with the price of admission, but they were also selling booze. I guess Silverlake's hipsters are standing behind their personas.
Anyhoo, I still highly recommend checking out Tune-Yards. And if she plays at a museum near you - GO EARLY.