Willie Mae: Josh Groban And The Grofans

Saturday, October 20, 2018 - by Willie Mae

Anyone who appreciates music - real music, would like listening to Josh Groban. Lou took me to his concert in Nashville last night. It was certainly an experience like I never had.

The young man had me liking him back when he sang “You Raise Me Up” and he was clean-shaven. Now he has a beard. I don’t like it much, but I am minding my own business.

We parked in the big garage early and we walked to find a place for dinner. We went to Florida Georgia Line. Lou got a Sausage pasta dish and I ordered the horseradish salmon. We split a soft pretzel for an appetizer. Hoo boy, if I could have tasted the pretzel before placing my order, I would just have ordered another pretzel for my meal! It was soft and bready, but light. And the outside was not ‘too malty’. ‘Dining words’ don’t come to mind now that I don’t do reviews anymore, but – it was the best pretzel I ever had.

We had time to kill before show time, so we walked around. Nashville is a bit busy for me. It’s loud with all sorts of singing from each lounge, and it’s very crowded on the sidewalks. Every few steps, there was somebody with a cigarette. There was simply no clean air for me to breathe!

Lou and I walked on the other side of the street and went into some of the stores where they couldn’t smoke. After looking at everything we could, it still wasn’t time for the concert, so we walked to a little park area with benches.

We planned to sit on a bench but all them were taken by people napping.

We found a concrete wall with a ledge we sat on and were entertained for a while by some youngsters on skateboards. When they left, we were entertained by a group of girls who were laying on the grass taking pictures of each other in front of the lit up buildings in the background.

There was a slight chill in the air so I wanted to head back towards the arena. Lou was faster going up the stairs, and this young man came over to me and asked if he could ‘buy a cigarette’ from me. I told him I didn’t smoke so he walked over to Lou who was waiting on me at the top of the steps and he asked Lou the same thing. I reached the top of the steps and heard him tell the fella he didn’t smoke.

I grabbed Lou’s arm tight as if to scold him for not staying with me. The man saw that we were together and he said, “yeah, y’all don’t look like you would smoke… I gotta get a better life,” and I told the boy, “well, quit smoking.” He said, “I gotta get woke up from dranking,” and Lou trying to speak his language said, “Quit drankin!” The man chuckled and Lou and I walked on.

When we got to the arena we went ahead and handed the usher our tickets and we found our seat. We were on the center floor – Lou got us pretty good seats (but it cost a pretty penny too).

This little petite woman sat in the row in front of us and she turned around to the gal sitting to my left and said, “I am Josh Groban’s biggest fan, I will be the one who annoys you!” I didn’t know quite how to take that.

The two empty chairs in front of me and Lou didn’t stay empty. Right before the show started, a very tall couple sat down in the seats! I just knew that would happen. And this gal wasn’t just tall – she had tall hair!

The petite lady and the tall lady struck up a conversation and when they leaned in to talk to each other, I couldn’t see the stage! With drinks in hand (that they were sloshing everywhere) they celebrated the fact that they were Josh’s biggest fans. I think this is where their competition began where one would try to out fan the other.

We got a little opening act before the opening act when the tall couple did a little open-mouth smooching right in front of me and Lou.

In the section of rows ahead of us, there was a woman who was turned toward us talking on her phone and waving her arm wildly in the air like she was trying to land a plane. I guess she was hoping her friend on the phone would see her. I told Lou that I had a mind to wave back, but I just minded my own business.

When the lady who was the opening act came out on stage, her microphone kept cutting in and out. I hoped they would fix the sound before Josh came out. I didn’t know this woman, but she had a good voice. It seemed she had done quite a bit.

When the microphone cut out she looked frustrated, but then she began twirling her dress and doing a little shimmy. Ol’ Lou sat up in his chair and started clapping. When she asked if we could hear her, he was the first one to shout, “Yes!” He started watching this gal (who had half a top on) as if he were watching a hockey game.

The sound was fixed and her show was very good. I especially liked the silver-haired lady that sang a jazzy tune with her, but Lou didn’t holler at her.

The lady in the opening act was named Indina Menzel. Lou never heard of her either and after the shimmying stopped, he checked his phone for sports game scores.

The sloshing ladies in front of us were starting to feel fine. It was now time for Mr. Groban and that is when the biggest fan’s competition really began.

The ladies both stood up and clapped as Josh Groban entered the stage. They both raised their hands in the air as if the one who could go higher would win the contest. It was no contest for Ms. Tall Lady, so the feisty little one began dancing and swaying. She was right… she was certainly annoying.

I believe she wasn’t feeling anything by this point. She looked three-sheets-in-the-wind!

Thankfully, she sat down and so did Ms. Tall Lady. I tilted my head around the tall head of hair and finally got to see Josh. He was singing a song from his new album and it was very nice. I got to snap a few pictures of him and I was happy.

Then he sang a song he co-wrote about bullying and the screen behind him had kids from the California school he used to attend. I would have like to have seen that – but the Grofans were in the way!

The ladies were standing again and this time they would not sit down. I don’t know what kind of a concert they were used to, but if they were truly fans of Mr. Groban, they would see that nobody else was standing up and this was a sit-down-courtesy-for-others concert.

But these ladies were schnockered.

I think when somebody is schnockered they don’t really care what anyone else thinks. This time I hollered a little and said, “Oh, come on! We paid good money for these seats!” And then a couple of people in the row behind us yelled louder, “Sit down ladies” but the ladies didn’t seem to care.

In fact they made a two-person wall to block us all from seeing as they danced and swayed. Ms. Tall Lady’s boyfriend patted her and told her she should sit down. She listened and sat down. But the little spit-fire next to her kept dancing and waving her arms.

When her husband reached to coax her to sit down, she pulled away from him and walked up to the next section of rows five feet away.

It was a shame for these ladies to be causing such a scene. I tried to use ‘psychology thinking’ by ignoring them and not giving them the attention they wanted. Whenever they stood up and in the way, I pretended to see around them and act like they weren’t bothering me. I thought maybe they would lose interest at their little game.

When the lights dimmed Josh sneakily leapt off stage and appeared in the center of the arena on a stage with a piano behind us. I couldn’t see him from my seat, but they also had him on the big screen so I decided to watch him on that – until Short and Tall made their wall again and I could not even pull my psychology trick, because they were in the way on purpose banding their arms together as if they were trying to not let red rover get through!

I swonny, I have never seen middle-aged women behave that way. When Mr. Groban took the front stage again, we listened to one more song and then Lou and I decided to leave early.

Maybe Lou and I are getting too old for this type of fun, but I will still enjoy Josh Groban’s music – just without the Grofan boozers.

The biggest (petite) fan
The biggest (petite) fan

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