Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A Universally Fab 17 Monday

Monday was a busy day. The Boy still had a bit of a fragile stomach, but we had already made plans and bought tickets to go to Santa Cruz to see a concert, so with a bit of trepidation, we headed down there.

On the windiest road we could find. We headed out west on 84 through La Honda to Highway 1.

First stop along the way was at the amazing bakery in Pescadero called Arcangeli Grocery Company. We have been buying bread there every chance we get since our days camping at nearby Memorial Park.

It didn't disappoint - they had just pulled out loaves of artichoke garlic herb bread from the oven. We also picked up a bonus half-baked loaf of garlic herb sourdough. Half of the artichoke bread was gone before we made it back to the coast - with The Boy even eating some.

We hit the coast just as the sun was about to splash into the ocean.

The weather along the coast was amazingly nice - not particularly warm, but not really cold either.

We made a quick stop at the Boardwalk where Mrs Notthat scored a 2-for-1 end of the year token deal. These tokens will come in handy next year once The Boy is mobile again.

Speaking of The Boy, this picture shows him eating a "small" Caesar salad for dinner at the Santa Cruz Diner. (He ended up eating half of it - I was amazed he ate much of it at all based on how much of the artichoke bread turned up missing by the time we got there.)

And then we were off to the main event - a performance titled Across the Universe by the White Album Ensemble at the Rio Theatre.

The Rio is an old movie theater that has been converted to host a variety of concerts and other sorts of performances. It is extremely laid back and mellow about the whole going to a concert thing. We got there a little over an hour before the show started, picked up our tickets, and got in line. Since it is general admission, it is like going to the opening of some new hot shot movie involving hobbits or wookies - a line forms of people wanting to get the best seats (there were about 50 people ahead of us).

Note: Obviously, if the weather had not been so nicely tolerable, I would be grumbling mightily about having to stand outside like this. But not this time.

The White Album Ensemble is a group of Santa Cruz musicians that are dedicated to faithfully reproducing songs from the various Beatles albums. For example, tonight they are performing Rubber Revolver in which they all the songs from the Rubber Soul and Revolver albums in order. They don't attempt to look like the Beatles (much) though - they are really keen on playing the songs the way they think the Beatles would have played them live if they were still playing concerts. (Can you imagine the Beatles still playing concerts like the Stones? Me neither, but it would have been awesome!)

To accomplish this, they have a few more members than the Fab Four - I counted 17 all together last night, with maybe 58 different guitars. There was a small strings section and a small brass section. There were also a few more female singers than I believe were in the original Beatles, but this was due to this particular concert - playing the 33 songs from the Across the Universe movie. This movie had covers of the songs, so this concert contained some non-faithful versions of a few songs (While My Guitar Gently Weeps was stunning, Blackbird could have used some tweaks, Let it Be was very good). Most of the songs were very close to the originals though, which was amazing.

The guy who sang the Paul parts REALLY did not look the part. Mrs Notthat said afterwards that she half expected him to say "That'll do pig, that'll do" since he looked a bit like Farmer Hogget. But he sounded just like Paul, even on the challenging songs like Oh Darling and Don't Let Me Down.

The guy who sang the John parts was also amazingly close to sounding like the real thing.

In any case, it was very great fun and a fantastic show. All You Need is Love and I Am the Walrus were stunning. With a Little Help From My Friends started out traditional and then broke into the Joe Cocker version. These guys are really good (and I'm pretty sure this was their first time performing this show).

Mrs Notthat mentioned wanting to go to tonight's show, but man, driving down there and back makes for a late night. (The Boy volunteered to stay home this time - he claims to have heard only five or six of the songs before, which tells me I've failed in exposing him to good music.)

That's it - move along...


DAK said...

That sounds like a really fun day. The Boy's salad makes me drool, especially to go with that artichoke bread. We've always stopped at Duarte's in Pescadero, even though it's not all that great and 'way too pricey. Now we'll try the bakery instead. It's great country -- when Dan was in Santa Cruz we explored down there a lot, but not in several years.

mary ann said...

What fun ~ don't you work anymore?

notthatlucas said...

DAK - Every time we go to Santa Cruz The Boy starts wondering out loud what it would be like to live there. As a young single guy, I would have loved it there.

I don't know if Arcangeli Grocery Company is cheaper than Duarte's - The Boy and Mrs Notthat mentioned that they make REALLY good sandwiches, but they aren't cheap.

mary ann - we theoretically have this week off. Unfortunately, I'm using parts of it to catch up on work that I have gotten behind on. But mostly, no - no work this week.