Copeland’s Farewell Tour

Last night, Jerod and I were able to go see Copeland at the Masquerade. They are disbanding and this is their farewell tour…

And I learned last night. Warning: this is a very long post. If you want to skip through me ranting about the crappy opening bands, I will not be offended. But it was an important show for me. I needed the experience.

It’s really sad that a band like Copeland is disbanding. They don’t rely on a lot of album editing, so what you hear on the album is pretty much what you get live.

Their music is on the mellower side, but they never use that as an excuse to lack in energy. When they put on a show, that’s exactly what it is. The experience is very intimate, even from way in the back of the Masquerade.

The last time I saw them, the Masqerade was maybe halfway full between the stage and the soundboard. However, last night it was packed. People were standing like sardines all the way to the soundboard and past that point, there was a little more space to spread out.

I guess people made sure to be at the show, since it’s the last time Copeland will be in Atlanta.

We missed the first opening band, Deas Vail. However, a group of ladies Jerod knows said that they love the band. They were actually there for Deas Vail and drove all the way from Birmingham, Ala. (That’s about a 2 and 1/2 hour drive).

Then, Person L happened. When we showed up, Jerod saw the lead singer of Person L sitting at the merch table. He asked, “Do you know who that is?” and when I said no, he informed me that he is Kenny Vasoli, the lead singer of The Starting Line.

And the reason I didn’t know that is because I hate The Starting Line. Jerod loves their first album, but I like nothing about them. Nothing.

So when Person L went on, I was upset that we didn’t miss them. They were basically like The Starting Line rejects, in my opinion. There was nothing necessarily bad about them, but nothing was good either. Vasoli jumped around on stage, trying to put on a good show, I assume. They’re music was just a loop of the same noted over and over and over.

I was not thrilled that they, of all bands, were honored with a spot opening for a band like Copeland. For their farewell tour, at that!

After suffering through that, Jerod and I stepped outside to sit down for a while and take a break. The other opening band I Can Make A Mess Like Nobody’s Businesswent on and we came back inside to check them out. Again, there was nothing special about them. There was nothing bad or good about them. The same riffs were played over & over again.

Just a lot of the same thing is what I’ve been hearing out of opening bands lately.

At this point, our feet were killing us, and we were already exhausted (Jerod wakes up early and I hike around campus all day in the blazing sun). We were a little cranky because the opening bands were not good. Jerod kept seeing people he knew and he was tired of talking.

There was this couple standing to my left and they were all over each other. It was gross. Save your kissy faces for the bedroom, please. Don’t hang all over your girlfriend when a band like Copeland is about to go on (and especially don’t continue when they do begin).

Finally, after all the pain, Copeland walked onto the stage and played. Lead singer Aaron Marsh’s vocal are absolutely gorgeous. I’m a sucker for great falsetto and that is what Marsh does best. The notes were clear and exactly what I heard on the album, only more energy, if that’s possible. He is very talented in voice, on guitar and on piano. Nothing was out of place and everyone played so very well.

Then, there were some technical difficulties. I believe there was something wrong with the mic, or the speakers could have been the problem. All of a sudden the music sounded distorted (and not like heavy electric guitar distortion, I mean everything was cracking) and it sounded like when you bust a speaker in the car.

Jerod and I stared down the sound guy, in hopes that he could fix it. It stopped for a while and we were able to enjoy the show again.

Then it happened again! I couldn’t believe that whatever was happening, happened to Copeland instead of the crappy opening bands. But they kept their heads. Everyone continued playing perfectly and no one missed a beat.

Which shows you how well put together they really are. They perform professionally and mesh well as a band.

They continued through the last songs and I was very glad that I got to see them play one last time. Even though The Masq was packed, they made it very intimate. They made every single one of us feel like they were playing just for us.

At this point, I was growing angry. I was tired, my feet were hurting, the opening bands were crappy and there were technical difficulties. All the makings of a rough show.

But then they played the encore songs. “Brightest” was first, which is my favorite Copeland song. I knew it was coming because I saw the set list on the sound board earlier, but I didn’t expect it to have the effect that it did. I’ve heard the song a million times and I absolutely love the lyrics.

Most people will agree that music can make the most intense moments even more intense. Shows can be a spiritual experience for some people. That hasn’t happened to me until now.

And it lasted all of about two minutes.

I got a little teary-eyed. I wasn’t expecting it at all. I have never almost cried at a concert.

But at the end of the day, this is the last time that I will see Copeland. This is it. A band that is almost perfect is disbanding and it’s very sad to me. Because I look at all the bands that I think should be disbanding, but Copeland is the one that chooses that road.

When I heard the chorus of “Brightest,” I realized that it didn’t matter that the opening bands suck. It didn’t matter that my feet felt like they were on fire and about to fall off of my ankles. It didn’t matter that technical difficulties worked their way into the show. It didn’t matter that drinking girl and boy were groping each other.

Because this is the last time I will see Copeland and I’d better make the most of it, dammit.

It took until the end of the show for me to reach that point. I watched the stage as they exited after the second encore song and was almost angry that I let such little things almost completely ruin the show.

We went out to eat with Jerod’s friends from Birmingham. After the end of the encore, I was less emotional. We finally got in around 2 a.m. and we were both too tired to think, much less talk, about anything.

And that is the end. As far as Atlanta, Ga., is concerned, Copeland is gone. We only have the albums now.

I actually have a lot more to say, but I will leave it at that. This post is getting far too long and I should leave it at “Brightest” because that’s where I want to remember Copeland forever. When I think of them and am telling my children about my favorite shows, I will always remember seeing “Brightest” live and how important it was for me to hear.

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