Rock and Roll

“The thing that experience has taught me above all else is the primacy of fun and frolics and devilment and mischief and joy as a defiant act of our mortality.  That brings us back to rock and roll.  That’s where U2 came from.”  Bono

When I heard Bono speak this in an interview, I said Yessss!!!!!   This is why I love music and live concerts. I am so grateful for music and musicians.

Music is where I feel free. Music is where my body and mind become one with the energy of music.  Music is where I feel bliss and have fun.  Music is where I connect with others. Music is where I feel my most authentic self.  Music is where I frolic and jump head first into devilment and mischief and joy.  Music allows me to be present and forget the world for 2 hours.  Music celebrates life, living out loud, and freedom.

So……… I just got tickets for Melissa Etheridge and I am going to get U2 tickets in two weeks!

Rock and Roll speaks to our darkness, our fight for authenticity, and our right to let it all out!!!!!!

Totally Loving Now!

Where do you feel free and authentic?  Where do you feel a place to let it out? Where do you feel a place where you can dip your toe into the frolic, fun, and joy?

One of the Best Nights of My Life

Hi friends!  So you might remember a post way back in February about how I purchased Goo Goo Dolls tickets, which included a meet and greet and VIP treatment.  Last night was the show.  It was at Mohegan Sun in CT.  A group of 5 of us drove out and had the best time!  Myself and one other friend had the VIP tickets.  I was soooo nervous.  I wrote on my hand each thing I wanted to happen at the meet and greet.  Many meet and greets are quick and you literally say hi, face the camera, and walk away, not my boys.  They are so gracious to their fans, and I know this so I had my plan.

On my hand it said:   Fan (tell him I’m a fan since the 90s and never miss a tour)/ Hugs/ Talk/Pictures and one just with John/kiss/presents.  I am happy to say all of it happened and more.  As I waited on line for my turn I watched him hugging as the girls approached.  Here we go:  I walk up to him; he opens his arms and I tell him I’m Traci; he hugs me and says in my ear: “What’s your name? Traci?”  I say yes.  I tell him I’m a huge fan since the 90’s and I point to my concert buddy and tell him we see them every summer. Then we are face to face and I told him how much I loved his music and one album in particular meant a lot to me. I said it was Something, and I couldn’t get the rest out, and he said, “Something for the rest of us.”  I said I know that was a difficult album for you, and he said it was the worst time of his life. I told him it was my divorce album. I told him I listened to it every night and sobbed for hours; I told him Soldier really hit home, because my world had slipped away.  I said I needed to do that and he said that’s why I wrote it; I needed to do that too.  Then he said but we are here and we’re all good and we did a high 10.  Then I took my picture with both boys and then I turned to Johnny and said can I have one with you and we hugged cheek to cheek for the picture.  Best part……I pointed at my cheek and said, “Can I have a kiss on the cheek?”  He kissed me!

Johnny recently became a dad to an adorable daughter Lili, so I had a shirt made for him that says, “Because I’m the dad and I said so, that’s why.”  He loved it and he put in front of his chest and he said, “Yeah I’m the dad!”  Then we took another picture with the shirt as I leaned on his shoulder.  I gave Robby some cool socks and he gave me the biggest hug. I said thank you and then I went to my seat in the 6th row!!!!  The concert was amazing and there’s nothing like sitting that close.  I jumped up and down for 2 hours and screamed my head off.  My package also included a huge lithograph poster signed by both boys; it is now hanging on my wall. I am still basking in the high of it all; it was surreal.

My friends and I had so much fun too; we had drinks and krispy kreme donughts, oh and dinner…lol.  We stayed at a no frills, yet quite nice hotel a mile away. It came with free breakfast too!  I woke up without a voice and I keep replaying the meet and greet over in my mind, and oh by the way, his eyes are soooo blue!

Life is made of moments and experiences.  Are you putting joyful experiences in your life?  This experience was priceless; better than diamonds (I’ve never really been a big jewelry person), designer clothes, or anything you could buy and bring home and put it in a drawer, or hang up in a closet.

I’m so grateful for last night; I’m so grateful for my friends; I’m so grateful for Johnny and Robby and their time and attention, and the kick ass show they put on!!!  I bounced black balloons and giant white light up beach balls, and the confetti was all around me.

Grateful, oh so grateful.

Epic Night

 

U2 Live at Met Life Stadium Thursday June 29th, 2017

” Our prayer tonight is to have an epic night, one of those nights you hold onto forever.” Bono  *PLEASE CHECK MY NEW DOMAIN NAME AT THE BOTTOM*

I’ve seen U2 every tour since the 80’s and they never disappoint, but this tour was the 30th anniversary of the Joshua Tree Tour.  This full circle moment has a special meaning for me. 30 years ago I went to the concert with a bunch of people all piled into those big old cars; we were teenagers headed to the Meadowlands to rock out to U2. We had on our long coats with the sleeves rolled up, and various buttons on our coats, such as: Why Be Normal turned upside down, U2 buttons, Anarchy buttons, and any other button that said we are different and we like it. In addition, we all had our high top converse on, mine white canvas with writing all over them. We were sitting on laps and drinking tall boys, and Pink Floyd was playing on the radio:  “I need a dirty woman.”  I was sitting on John’s lap and I was in heaven.  At the show whenever U2 played a classic we screamed and hugged each other; this man was my first real boyfriend, and today my child’s father.

This anniversary brought up so many emotions for everyone. His sister was with us at the original show too; she was 12 and I was 18.  John and I try to keep our relationship only about Maggie; we are not perfect so sometimes we veer off into other topics, but much less than we used to.  I didn’t tell him I was going to the show and I wondered if I would see him and his sister that night. Well sure enough, as I’m tailgating in the parking lot with my friend I get a text of the original ticket stub from 1987 and I say to myself, “Is he here?”  So I text back a picture of the stadium with the word here.  He sends back the same picture and it says, “Same view.”  I begin to feel overwhelmed and excited at the same time.  My friend shows me where their car is based on the photo; we were just aisles apart.  We go back and forth with things like: “Where are you sitting?”  “I’m outside buying my shirt.”  Beth and I have tickets in the 341 section, nosebleeds and we couldn’t see the gigantic screen which is a huge part of a U2 show. After about a half hour I get a text saying, “You want an upgrade?”  Quick note here: John always gets tickets and always gets good seats for all concerts. He tells me to meet him outside my section and as I walk towards him he hands me two tickets and says, “First mezzanine, second row.” I literally said, “What? How?” and my mouth dropped open.  Then he hugged me and kissed me on the cheek and said have fun.  I go back to my friend and tell her where we are going and she is elated.  The Lumineers are still on stage so we run downstairs to our new seats and we are amazed at how close we are. Then John and Dierdre come in front of the mezzanine and say hi; it was so great to see Deirdre.  She and I were yelling “30 years!”  And we blew kisses.  John and I haven’t hugged in probably about a year. Everything was happening so fast and adrenaline was flying. Turns out him and his sister are in the Red Zone, right next to the stage.

When U2 came out I could see Bono and he could see us; it was pure joy.  The band was on fire; they played hit after hit including the entire Joshua Tree album, with lots of visuals and inspiring messages on the screen.  I literally jumped up and down and screamed and sang for almost 3 hours.  80,000 people all singing in unison; it is a spiritual experience. Sometimes Bono would say cut the music and we all just sang together as he watched with admiration.  There was a girl next to me that came from Mexico to see the show; she said it has been her dream since she was 15 years old and tonight her dream came true. I told her I was so happy for her.  We often were jumping up and down and yelling at the same time.  This moment made me stop and think about immigrants; it was very poignant to have this experience with her at a U2 show as we go through these tenuous times in our country.  She was so fun and grateful and I’m glad I was blessed enough to sit next to her.  She taught me a lesson; I’m just like you. I love U2. I love America.  Dreams come true in America.

So now I have my ticket stubs from 1987 and 2017.  My friends were concerned about John and I hugging and I told them it was because of the nostalgia and I felt strong enough to experience it, yet know that he can turn around and be an ass next week. The difference is now I know that; now I know that John who gave me tickets is a good part of John, but the lying and manipulating parts of John are there too.  Being at this show was fantastic, and seeing John and his sister made it even more special.  U2 actually played a song that he and his sister danced to at our wedding.  But I felt no longings, no I miss him, no awww; I just felt grateful. Lately I have been integrating my past into my present life; my therapist says that is healthy and healing.  She says rather than cut things off mentally, it is better to learn how to include them in my life today, and to honor them and understand they are part of the fabric of my life.

Well I definitely fulfilled Bono’s prayer that night; the feelings were visceral and pure bliss.  It was one of those life changing moments in life that I will hold onto forever. Bono also said, “Our prayer tonight is rather than being used or using, that you are useful.”  When he says these prayers, it’s like he is setting an intention for the evening.

The next day I woke up without a voice, the humming still in my ears, and I think I lost 5 pounds!  I went home and I sent John a text thanking him and telling him it was great to see him and his sister.  Bono also said, “So it’s been 30 years and we’ve changed, but we’ve also stayed the same.”  So true.  John and I will go back to our co parenting, and he never texted me back, and I am totally fine with that.

Epic is an understatement. Mind blowing. Inspiring. Freedom. Joy.

IMPORTANT:  NEW DOMAIN NAME:  tracihalpin.blog

Long Way Home

screenshot_2017-03-15-10-16-47.pngHere we go again!!!  Goo Goo Dolls are touring this summer with Philip Phillips. I usually go to Jones Beach with my friends, but this year we are going to Mohegan Sun. I am so excited; I’m always excited, but this time is really going to rock. I joined the fan club which gave me access to pre sales. The first day the tickets went on sale for fan club members I was able to get my tickets in 5 minutes. Some people had trouble with their code and getting locked out of ticketmaster. When I put my code in I crossed my fingers, and then it said, You now have access to the pre sale. I breathed a sigh of relief.

This show is also really special because for the first time I bought VIP tickets!! VIP tickets gives us a bunch of stuff, like a water bottle, a signed lithograph, a VIP laminate, and wait for it……….. seats in the 6th row, and……….a meet and greet!!  Woo hoo!!  I am so excited to meet Johnny again. Hopefully he won’t remember me from 2011 when I was creeping on him backstage…lol.  I keep having imaginary conversations with him in my head so I don’t ramble, again.  I’m planning my outfit, hair, presents, hug, pic pose, and what I am going to say. Oh, and I am going to ask for a kiss on the cheek. My friend got one last year; she asked him. I figure if he says no that’s fine, but I can’t let this possible opportunity go by without trying.

The tour is called Long Way Home, which is the last song on Boxes, and they usually close the show with that as an encore. My show is August 9th; it seems so far away. I remember I bought tickets this time last February for last year’s summer tour. I surprised my friend with the VIP tickets; she had no idea I was buying them. I texted her after I got the tickets, and I sent another text, Oh btw I got VIP tickets. She was pleasantly surprised. She kept saying, “We are going to meet them?”  I said yes!!!

I don’t buy clothes or go on trips. I do my own nails and color my own hair. I stopped  going to Starbucks.  Experiences, not things are what make people happy. Concerts and meeting authors and learning new things, and books fill me with joy. Yes I spent a lot of money, and I probably won’t do it again, but it’s worth it. I’ll eat soup and sandwiches for dinner for weeks!

Oh I forgot to tell you, the band is coming out with a new EP on May 12th called You Should Be Happy. The first single is going to drop, as the kids say, March 21st.

Is it August yet???