Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Ralph's World Rips It Up

(photo by something.from.nancy)
He looks harmless enough.
His first CD, Ralph's World, had melodic covers of the Winnie the Pooh theme, Roger Miller's "You Can't Roller Skate in a Buffalo Her," a toddler friendly version of "Shake Your Booty," and a couple of winning originals. He's ranked up there with Justin Roberts as heir to the King of Preschool Rock and Roll.

So when our neighbor passed on a pair of tickets won on-- of all places, our neighborhood college station KALX-- I said sure, why not go see Ralph's World?

After all, Deirdre was out of town. The boys deserved an adventure, and the Great American Music Hall was promising breakfast with this 9:30 am show! (I checked the web site: Rice Krispies is a co-sponsor of the tour, along with the House of Blues. I correctly guessed that breakfast would be a bowl of rice krispies. Actually, it was a beer cup full of rice krispies. So I had fed the kids beforehand)

So can Ralph Covert and his band pack the GAMH at 10 am on a Sunday morning?

Yes, yes he can.

Is the GAMH bar open at that hour?

Yes, yes it is.

Bloody Marys seemed the parents' drink of choice. And the kids bopped and clapped and hopped and swayed to Ralph's music.

The other kids, I mean.

Our kids?

Our kids stood frozen with their hands over their ears in dismay.

The GAMH sound techs had the sound turned up to eleven. It was louder than any band I've ever heard there, like "All Wrecked Up" (Granted, Ralph's World has a full drum kit, and an electric bass) (hmm. With the possible exception of Vise Grip and the Ambassadors of Swing). Ralph proudly announced to the kids that their parents were sharing with them the joys of a true rock concert, and he was happy to initiate them, presumably with steel-warping volume.

After three songs we ducked to the sides where we grabbed an empty table partly sheltered from the direct blast of the overhead speakers. The waitstaff helpfully offered earplugs, which Liam liked. Ro-Ro tolerated them for two songs, still with his hands over his ears.

If we had known more songs it would have been fun. Instead, it was kind of like being assaulted with sound. And wondering why all the other kids weren't huddling in a fetal position.

We left after 40 minutes, but we did learn one new song: one song, so peppy, so full of zest, we can't help singing it four days later: "We are Ants." (Link to YouTube video concert footage. Imagine this same song, eight times louder, and in the dark)

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