The thing I’ll remember most from the Journey/Toto concert at JPJ Sunday night: the endless waves of fifty- and sixty-something women dressed as teenagers.
And I mean, to the nines – fishnet stockings, blue jean and leather jackets, mall hair held up by amounts of hairspray that will hasten the early onset of spring in Central Virginia.
The estrogen, indeed, was strong; but honestly, the Viagra being downed by the dudes, you know, in anticipation, was stronger.
The music was of the baby-making variety, but, well, you know, no worries about that, with this age group.
This one was for the teens of the early ‘80s whose parents wouldn’t let them see Journey and Toto live because the show was on a school night.
But for a night, here they were.
No school the next day.
The kids are grown and moved out.
The van with the shag carpet long ago was sent to the junkyard, but if had been a-rockin’, you damn sure shouldn’t come a-knockin’.
Journey and Toto were a smidge before my time. I was a late ‘80s teen; our mall music was different, more Beastie Boys, Tiffany/Debbie Gibson, New Kids on the Block.
My older cousins’ music was far, far better, obviously.
I didn’t think, going in, that I would know much from either’s set list, but as the show went on, I kept turning to my wife, Crystal, an early ‘90s teen, the era of boy bands, even worse than mine, and one or the other of us would say, I know this one!
We were just glad the show went on; apparently, the Journey guys have been at each others’ throats for a while now, over politics, over credit cards, the rights to the music.
It may have just been coincidental, but the two guys at the center of the spats over politics and the credit cards, lead guitarist Neal Schon and keyboardist Jonathan Cain, were set up on opposite sides of the stage, and didn’t have or find cause to interact during their set.
Cain did offer that his daughter recently got married to the son of Toto guitarist Steve Lukathe.
“That was just so they could unite their respective rock ‘n’ roll kingdoms and create a new bloodline,” I remember remarking to my wife at that news.
It was funny in the moment. Maybe.
I was impressed that the show went all the way to just shy of 11 p.m. I’d assumed, and if you’re tired of the old people jokes, sorry, but I’d assumed that they’d send us old folks home a lot earlier, knowing our bedtimes.
There was one concession to old age reality: Journey didn’t make us go through the pretense of an encore, leaving the stage, having us chant, the rest.
I won’t spoil the set list, but they ended it well.
The hard part in the aftermath wasn’t getting back to routine the next morning, but more, just having to be fifty-something again, after a night of getting to be a teenager.
Note to self: need to check the car lots for vans with shag carpeting …