Today's the day!
We woke up Wednesday morning to great news - PDubbs was accepted for an interview into the UF College of Pharmacy!!! He's been waiting for weeks to hear back from Jacksonville and it was such a relief to get that email. We knew from that moment it was going to be a great day!
To celebrate, we went to our wonderfully helpful yelp app to find a breakfast place that was unique to Nashville. The reviews for Sky Blue Cafe told us that there was usually a line out the door for Sunday brunch - definitely a good sign! It was the perfect way to celebrate the good news.
We went back to the hotel to blog and send some emails before hitting the city again. We heard from several fans that they had seen the band outside the Ryman around 2 and were able to have their pictures taken with them. We casually strolled around the auditorium around that time hoping to catch a peek at the band. No cigar.
We decided to take a long walk around the city to kill some time before the show. We stopped in at Hatch Show Prints to see them at work making some of their iconic prints. I honestly couldn't tell you what color the walls were because they were completely covered from floor to ceiling with posters! So many amazing artists were represented - Elvis, Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash & newcomers like Regina Spektor, John Mayer and Wilco. The printing presses were hammering away in the back of the store. I could have spent hours (and all my money) looking around but we had other things to see!
After seeing our fair share of the streets, we headed back to the Ryman around 5 to get in line for the gates to open. We were behind about 7 other fans who were patiently waiting outside the barricades. About 15 minutes later, we spotted Ben Lovett, one of the M&S members, getting into a car with his girlfriend. A few of us from the line ran up to say hello and get a quick picture. He gave us a sweet, apologetic smile as he told us that he was heading out for 30 minutes. Of course, he ended up not coming back out to the fans but we got to talk to him!
While were we waiting, we also saw a bearded man dressed in skinny jeans, flannel shirt & vest pacing around outside. While his trademark hipster attire didn't warrant any notice at an event like this, we watched him because he kept nervously checking his cell phone and looking up and down the street. This continued for about half an hour until around 5:45, when a big white van pulled up and several guys jumped out. They greeted the skinny-jean clad dude then began unloading the van, which was also packed full of musical equipment. With their arms full of equipment, they ran into the auditorium through the artist door. As they ran away, I noticed the last one as the lead singer of Dawes, one of the bands that was opening for Mumford that night. We would find out later that these guys had just gotten into town after playing a gig in LONDON the night before. It made me exhausted just thinking about that trek, but clearly playing in the Ryman for the first time was well-worth the crazy voyage!
The crowds slowly trickled in until they opened the gates at 6:30. After a quick flash of ID, we received our "grown-up" wristbands, got our tickets scanned, and made a beeline for the merchandise counter before taking our seats. I had researched our seats online before coming so I was under the impression that they would be considered obstructed view, as there are dozens of pillars holding up the balcony seats. But I was
The Apache Relay opened the show with a solid set, followed by Dawes. When these bands were announced as support for our show, I tried to become more familiar with their music so I could appreciate it more. I was able to sing along to a couple songs in each of the sets and we both enjoyed every single song. Both bands were extremely fun to watch. I especially loved watching the lead singer of Dawes, Taylor Goldsmith, jam out on guitar. PDubbs & I were laughing most of the time as homeboy boogied all over the stage, just jamming away. We were surprised at how few people were in their seats during both of the opening sets, especially given how awesome these up-and-coming bands were.
Finally, it was time for the main event! The lights dimmed and the crowd rose to their feet, an attention most would hold all night. The spotlights came on as the boys made their way across the stage, grabbed their instruments and began with their album's namesake, Sigh No More. From my
I was a bit envious when our friends told us that Jerry Douglas had come out to perform a cover of The Boxer during Tuesday night's show. But we were happily surprised for the second time when Marcus introduced "Mr. Jerry Douglas" again! He walked on stage with his Dobro, tuned it up a bit, as Winston continued the introductions, mentioning that Jerry had "played at the Ryman about 5,000 times". Marcus joked that "he's improved". And with that, they were off with The Boxer. I might even like this version more than the original! What do you think?
Awake My Soul
They finished the set with a new song, Broken Crown, and Dust Bowl Dance. Both were rocking (Marcus broke a guitar string during Broken Crown!) but Dust Bowl Dance was the highlight of the show for us both! It was probably the best song I have ever seen performed live. There's not much more I can say besides mind-blowing. Yep, mind-blowing. Sorry for the lack of adjectives but you just need to see it yourself! And please enjoy Ben knocking over his microphone stand around 4:20 :)
Before they were even off the stage, the crowd was back to clapping & stomping in unison for an encore. After this continued for several minutes, the band returned with Bud Lights in hand ready for some more. Marcus had a little fun with a member of the audience as he began to introduce the next song as a new one, and someone yelled out "Liar!" (a title of one of their songs). Marcus took it in stride and responded "Liar? No, no, that's quite old, actually. No, now you're the liar." They began with an unplugged version of Sister, as they stepped to the front of the stage with nothing but their acoustic instruments. Their lovely harmonies were really evident in this song as long as the audience could stay quiet!
Hands down, this was my favorite concert I've ever been too. Their incredible harmonies are full of passion, which just sucks you into every song. I was kind of surprised how sad I was to see each and every song end but then I would eagerly anticipate the beginning of the next one. I was a huge M&S fan before, but seeing them in concert and hearing about how they interact with their fans just made me love them even more.
I know I speak for PDubbs too when I say that we are so very grateful to have gotten this opportunity and thankful for my awesome parents for making it all possible. We're lucky for the good people we met along the way and the memories we will always share from our last amazing spring break. We might not get a chance to do something like this in a long time between careers and schools, but I think we made the most of it and we're ready to tackle the next few months before graduation!
Sorry for such a long post! I had a lot of feelings about the show and wanted to blog about them to get them all out. As a reward for making it so far, here's a link to an mp3 of the new song! And below I've posted the set list with links to some of the youtube videos I've found from that night so you can relive it with us :)
Mumford & Sons
Roll Away Your Stone
The Boxer with Jerry Douglas
Awake My Soul with Jerry Douglas
Where Are You Now (New Song)