|Me and Filter! Photo by April Parsons|
So the first evening, Hinder went onstage on the pool deck. They played a little while, then we got rained on and beaten by the wind. Hinder's PA blew out, so it got off to a little bit of a rough start. We did see Jonny Radtke, Filter's current guitarist, and Richard during the set. So I got my hug and I was happy. :)
Another Animal was supposed to play on the pool deck later, but their set got postponed to another day due to weather.
After that we were mainly trying to find our way around the ship and gather information about everything. We just got dinner at the buffet because it was easier. That's when I met Lajon from Sevendust. I actually didn't know who it was at first, and he was goofing off with some friends at the table next to us. Then he started dancing and shaking his butt, and he was rather close to my face. He turned around and realized it and said, "Oh I'm sorry, I'm like giving you a lap dance while you're trying to eat your dinner." It was hilarious! So from that point on, every time I saw him around the ship he'd yell out something at me like, "That's my girl!" Or he'd high five me haha. It was so funny. And he told his bandmates the story when I went to get my picture taken with Sevendust at the meet and greet. So LJ was one of the funniest parts of the cruise for me.
Then we went to the late show to see Broken Teeth. They were pretty good. We watched them from the balcony seats in the auditorium. Living Colour was supposed to perform that night but they didn't come on the cruise for some reason. Supposedly one of them broke a finger or something, but there were other rumors floating around too, so who knows.
|The Host, Kevin from Candlebox, Joshua from Buckcherry, Geoff from Queensryche and Whitfield from Another Animal|
My friend let me borrow her little flipshare camera. They said we weren't supposed to record the shows, but I saw other people doing it so I tried it too. No security guys stopped me, so I got a few videos and took some pictures. One of the funny things is, we noticed a notice on the stage floor in front of the singer's spot that said "NO CUSSING!" I assume it was because other passengers who didn't sign up for ShipRocked could be out on the pool deck and might not want to hear any of that. But it made me laugh when Filter opened with "Welcome to the Fold" and the part when Richard normally says one cuss word, he stopped himself and looked to the side of the stage like a kid afraid of getting in trouble or something.
The setlist was:
Welcome to the Fold
Trip Like I Do
Take A Picture
So I Quit
Hey Man, Nice Shot
We managed to turn our new friend into a Filter fan that evening. And by the crowd response and overhearing comments from people later, I think Filter made quite a few new fans. The girl in front of me was headbanging like crazy most of the time. I'm surprised I managed to get any pictures or video haha. But she was having a good time and hopefully is or now is a Filter fan.
The guys put on an in-your-face performance. The pool deck stage made for a new feel for a rock concert. Richard crowd surfed during "Best Things." They didn't take him far at first and took him back to the stage. But he said he really wanted to go and jumped back in for a better ride. Then during "So I Quit" Richard ran up the stairs to the upper deck and ran all the way around through the people up there. He stopped to talk to one lady and did some funny improv covers, including a little Bette Midler. He also climbed up and was hanging over the railing above the stage. Some people next to me were saying, "Loco, loco..." I thought that was funny. Yes, Richard is crazy, and that's what makes the show great!
We talked to the guys briefly afterwards and we had dinner and went to see Queensryche inside. Now I don't want to bad mouth them. The quality was there, they had a lot of excited fans who ran to the front, but for some reason I just wasn't into it. I don't know if it was muted to me after seeing Filter, or just not my taste in music. I listened to maybe about five songs and ended up leaving because it wasn't holding my attention.
So we wasted some time until Sevendust's 1 a.m. show. I had to see my buddy LJ haha. What was funny is, during their set I realized I'm pretty sure they were at HFStival in DC when I went in 2001. I had forgotten until then. They put on a great show and the place was pretty packed. We sat in the balcony part again for that one since it was crowded in the main part. So after that and some time to wind down at the bar, again I'd estimate we went to bed around 3 a.m.
Wednesday was the only day we slept in awhile. It was our first port at Costa Maya. We slept past breakfast, then ended up spending the day at the pool, sipping on drinks, napping in the sun, and splashing in the pool. We didn't have any excursions so we took advantage of it while more people were off the ship. Candlebox played their set on the pool deck that evening and we were still in the pool. So I had a brand new concert experience, watching and listening from a pool. And it actually sounds really cool if you float around with your ears in the water. Candlebox sounded great and it was my first time hearing them live. I was impressed by their performance.
I think this might be my most memorable Filter show to date...First off, Richard said he took a nap and he looked kind of like he had just rolled out of bed for the show haha. I think that made him that much crazier in his performance. He apologized ahead of time, saying his voice was hoarse from the dune buggy excursion he did that day in Costa Maya. That was part of the Cancer Sucks fundraiser, fans paid to go on the excursion with several band members. Apparently Richard gave his passengers their money worth...It seems he was treating it more like a racecar with the other dune buggies, and yelling and having fun, which made him hoarse. He even pointed out one of the guys in the audience who rode with him, and borrowed his hat.
The setlist was:
Welcome to the Fold
Trip Like I Do
Take A Picture
Gimme All Your Lovin
So I Quit
Hey Man, Nice Shot
My friend helped me get right in front and center, and I held my spot too, despite a few women who were trying to take my space later. I think it was because they were jealous hehe. One thing that made this show more interactive was the fact that the stage had steps in front and no barrier like a normal concert. So Richard took full advantage of it and came down to the crowd several times during the show.
One of those times was during "Drug Boy." He latched onto me in a hug and then I'm not sure if he intentionally jumped or if he accidentally tripped, but he ended up being off his feet and just kind of hanging onto me. I held onto him because I was afraid he was going to fall on his face! So he ended the song like that, halfway singing and almost falling. So I may have actually caught him and saved him from getting hurt haha. I definitely won't forget THAT moment!
A little later, during "Dose," Richard came down to me and handed me his guitar pic and showed me how to make the scratching noises he does on his guitar in the breakdown of that song. I started out doing it too fast and that's when he started teasing me. I'm not going into detail, but he embarrassed me to death! It was really funny though too. I think I'll giggle and blush every time I think about it from now on.
I accidentally hit the button and stopped recording for a second.
They played "Skinny" too, which made me very happy because it's my favorite Filter song. The dynamics are amazing live, and it's just one of those magical songs that makes me feel connected. I requested it awhile back, but I'm not sure if they played it for that reason or if it was coincidence. Either way, I was pleased.
During "Best Things" Richard attempted to crowd surf again, but instead it was more of a crowd hover. The way the seats were arranged in the auditorium, it was kind of difficult to pass him along. So I got my second time of actually helping to hold him up. It was funny because we were just holding him and he wasn't going anywhere.
Then in the latest tradition of "So I Quit," he ran out into the audience and mingled with some people who were sitting toward the back. Earlier in the set, he beckoned them to come down to the front and join the rest of us. So he decided to go to them instead haha. He didn't let them off the hook that easy!
They ended the show with "Hey Man, Nice Shot" and he pointed the mic at the crowd for the chorus, encouraging more participation to scream along with him. The interaction with everyone throughout their performance is one of the main elements that makes a Filter concert so awesome.
|Mika, Richard, Jonny and Phil|
The twist about Cage9 is, one of my online Filter Friends actually recommended the band to me awhile back and I listened to them on Facebook. Then when ShipRocked started a voting contest to select two bands to perform on the ship, I posted about it just to pass it along to any bands I knew. My friend told Cage9 about it because he is friends with them. And Cage9 ended up winning the contest! So it's one of those strange connections in life...between my Filter Friend telling me about them, to them getting on the ship, then the bass player giving me his Filter setlist, which Richard signed and is now a keepsake for me. :) I will frame it at some point, along with some pictures.
Thursday we slept in a tad, then about 11 a.m. we were hungry. But we had missed breakfast time and lunch wasn't being served for another hour. So we discovered that the ice cream bar was open...I think it was my idea initially hehe, but we ended up sharing a banana split for "breakfast." And it was the most decadent banana split I've ever had. My justification for it was, at least it has fruit in it right?
After that we went to Cozumel for awhile, just strolling around the shops and stuff. I got a nice tiger eye necklace, which I have a thing for...I bought one in St. Kitts about 6 years ago, and it's about to fall apart. So I was happy to get a new one, and it's a nicer one too. We also got a nice surprise and got to hang out with Richard Patrick some, and got to play with parrots for a few pictures. It was a fantastic day in Cozumel. :)
When we got back on the ship, I kind of caused a little confusion that threw us off haha. They had told us ahead of time that at the ports our phones might get signal but would be an hour behind based on their time zone. They wanted to make sure we weren't left behind. So I was an hour ahead until dinner time, thinking we had to hurry up and shower and get changed and everything for the evening. We missed Sevendust's set on the pool deck. Then we missed Hinder for some reason, I can't really remember why haha. But I did want to see Cage9, so we went to see them in one of the smaller lounges. They were great! There was a good turnout for their set, and they had lots of energy. I really enjoyed their performance. I didn't get any pictures because the stage was floor level, and we sat at one of the tables toward the back. A crowd of people stood in front of the stage, so we didn't really "see" the show haha, but we did hear it. I also spotted a few of the Filter guys in the audience, so I think they liked them too.
Friday we strained to get up for the meet and greet, because I wanted to get my picture with Candlebox. Nevermind the lack of sleep! This time we got there later than the first time, so we had to stand further back in the line, which extended out to the deck. It was very windy as we got closer to Florida again, so we were fretting over our hair getting messed up for the pictures. By some miracle our hair looked fine in those pictures after we tried to smooth it over with our hands once we got inside haha. I also joked that ShipRocked must have Photoshopped out the dark circles under my eyes. We met Another Animal, Candlebox, Buckcherry, Lynam, and 3 Pill Morning. Might I add that we skipped the second of the three meet and greets earlier in the week. We weren't as hyped about those bands and it was too close to the first Filter concert for us timewise.
|3 Pill Morning|
|In This Moment|
|Me and Richie at dinner. Photo by April Parsons.|
The singers pretty much led the conversation for the whole dinner. They were great at bringing up things to talk about for the six of us ladies sharing the table. It was one of the top experiences of the cruise and the perfect ending. It kind of summed up the main theme of ShipRocked, the opportunity for fans to mingle with rockstars on a personal, down-to-earth level, and of course rock out to awesome music for a solid week. It will be a lifelong memory for me.
My full ShipRocked photo album
Footnote: I just want to put out a special thanks to my friends who made ShipRocked awesome for me. They only enhanced it for me, by making some extra things possible for me. I also want to sincerely thank all of the musicians for their awesome performances and their openness and friendliness to all of us fans. And of course thanks to the organizers and crew who thought of this crazy idea of getting a bunch of bands and fans on a boat together! Last but not least by ANY means, I want to especially thank Richard Patrick for always being so awesome to me and all of his fans, and making me feel like a million bucks! I don't care if I spent all my money on this trip, it was worth every penny!
Please support all of these bands! They're all on Facebook, so give them some Likes!
Check out officialfilter.com for updates! They are playing two dates in Alaska Dec. 9th and 10th. Then Dec. 12th-19th they will be performing in Kuwait for the troops for their third time.
One of my favorite local bands is releasing their 4th CD on Jan. 1st!
Mindless Faith will have their first CD release party on New Year's Eve!
Come check it out at the Warehouse Loft in DC: BOUND New Year's Eve PervBall!