Friday, March 31, 2006

Quiet Please.

Our friend Allison wrote about her thoughts on "silence." The word "silent" automatically makes me think of a few quotations:
"Silence is golden."
"Be still and know that I am God."
"Silent night, holy night, all is calm, all is bright."

God tells us to be quiet, to be still, to be silent so that His voice can be heard and so that we may feel his presence.

Nick and I went to Birmingham with another couple to see the Pat McGhee Band record a DVD at a bar/studio called "Work Play" - hold on I'm getting back to the "silence" topic. Before the start of the show, when recording would begin, Pat came on stage and told all of us (about 300 people) that their will be times to yell and dance and that their will be times we need to be completely silent for songs focusing on the acoustics and voices of the singers. We practiced - when the "other dude" lifted his hand we all cheered and when he made a STOP signal we were silent. The band opened with a very LIVE,very upbeat, and very exciting popular hit and 2 or 3 more like it followed. Everyone was having a wonderful time. I stood on a second level off of the floor level and leaned on a rail, looking directly at the band from about 30 feet away- out of the way of the cameras. It was perfect. I was loving it. I also watched as about 40 "younger" kids - probably freshmen from B.S or UAB did the sloppy sway and "bottoms up-ped" on drink after drink. Girls and guys were leaning on each other screaming into their ears to hear each other - not the band they "came to see." I watched Pat as he looked at his "fans" on the floor level and I thought to myself... "NO! look up here...Here are your real fans!"

Then the moment came about half way through the show where Pat explained he was going to sing a song about a dear friend of his who unexpectedly passed away. He wrote a song about his experience and he wanted to sing it for us. His mood changed from "upbeat and in charge" to that of "just a guy on a stage" who was singing about his loss. He said, "ok, this is the part where I am going to ask you guys to be silent." While he made his request the room was filled with laughs, conversation, and then 250 "shh's." He asked again, "Ok, here we go, are y'all ready?" and he began to strum the guitar. Silence fell, and not one minute into the bounced.
In one place on the floor was the girl that begged the guy next to her to dance. In one corner was a guy explaining how he broke his arm to another guy. As one guy walked off the floor, up the stairs to go get another drink, he chunked his glass bottle in the can and we all heard it shatter. Another girl was drunk swaying back and forth with her drink in the air and with her other hand slapping her hip...I think she was trying to be a song about death. I wanted Pat to stop and say, "Ok, it's not THAT kind of song." And then of course, right in the middle of the floor was Mr. "Straw Cowboy Hat I'm So Cool I Know the Words to This Song" guy. I was the "Look At Your Friends and Roll Your Eyes Because You Can't Believe People Don't Know How or Just Won't Be Silent While There is Something Important To Be Heard"... or in this case sung.

When the song was over, everybody went nuts, clapping and whistling and whoooing because they heard what the wanted to hear.

I didn't clap to that song. I wanted to be silent, and wait to hear more.

Dedicated to the PMB and to your friend in "Shine."
Thanks for an awesome show and can't wait to see y'all again.


Laura M. said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Nick M. said...

"Be still and know..." has always been one of my favorite scriptures, mostly because it speaks to what I do not do enough of. Last night was a great concert and I encourage you all to check out Pat McGee and see what you think. The experience did however remind me of a couple different things:
1) the opening band tried a little too hard to be "funny" and it wasn't which makes me believe I'm probably getting "OLD"
2)the drunk girls dancing all seductive to the slow song about the loss of a friend reminded me of WI playing in Pensacola and watching the middle school aged girls "dirty dancing" to Love Song for a Savior by Jars of Clay
3)I also had forgotten how much I value silence, most of that pointed out to me by the incessant ringing in my ears all the way home

Mary said...

You probably wouldn't know this about me by how freaking much I talk (something I am always intending to work on)... but I love silence. I did not know this until I married Lane, but I do. He is quiet. His family is quiet. Their house is quiet. Our house is almost always quiet when we aren't purposely having a conversation or having company over. I appreciate it the most after a visit to my family. I LOVE LOVE LOVE THEM, I AM them but after even 24 hours of it now, I really value the quiet ride home with Lane.

I think something Allison also mentioned was something about when we don't talk, we have to face the truth or reality or something like that. I think that is true. I am much more comfortable in my own skin and being along now than I was before I appreciated silence so much.

PS (I am a little nostalgic with you mentioning PMB. It is a LONG story, but the first time Lane and I ever really hung out, we went to atlanta to see vertical horizon and PMB opened. That was FOREVER ago, but they were pretty good then. It was such a fun road trip. Also, I met Stephanie at that concert for apparently the 6th or 7th time... but this was the first time it registered to me who she was (brian's fiance, ect...) I can't believe that was so long ago that Stephanie was Brian's fiance)

Heather said...

Sounds like one of my own pet peeves which is all the talking and moving that goes on while communion is being taken at church. Drives me nuts.

Scooter said...

Nick--I get the "Oh my, I'm getting old" feeling all of the time. But is that feeling really all that bad? I think I'm liking my age and how very uncool I am becoming. I only wish I could tolerate teenagers. I'm like an old person in the church, "can you BELIEVE what kids these days are wearing? I wouldn't have stepped out of the house wearing that!"

Silence is a hard thing for me. But it's getting easier. I like to talk and to listen to OTHERS talk, but I don't like to listen to myself, or what's inside of me, if that makes any sense. It's getting easier, though, because we have Saturday mornings completely alone in our family (David and I constitute our family). I don't mean alone together, I mean alone alone. He goes fishing or does something by himself, and I do whatever by myself. It is good.

Scooter said...

please excuse how little of thought I put into wording all of the above...
I am trying to work and blog, and it just doesn't seem to be working for me.

Mary said...

HEY, LM (which i just realized stand for love muffin AND laura mielke...awesome)...
just because you have a cute adorable puppy to consume your every waking moment does not mean you can just leave us hanging here on your brand spanking new blog!
You can even POST about the new little angel if you want. I'm for it.

The Bean said...

I'm with Mary. the Little Bean would love to hear news from her Aunt!