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One of my resolutions in 2012 was to see more live music than I managed the previous year. The fact that I made it to see a live band (read: acoustic duo) in a small bar in January meant I’d achieved my goal quickly. But what I really meant was to see the bands I’ve liked (or heard of) as they come through this city. And they do. But I’m usually traveling or not paying attention.

The list of shows to see in 2012 wasn’t hard to get started. I saw The Shins at the Melkweg, James Taylor at the Heineken Music Hall, Matt Nathanson at Paradiso (opening for Train, but they are not up my alley so I didn’t stick around long). Tonight I added another to my list – Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers at the Heineken Music Hall. The moment I saw Tom Petty was going to be in town I knew I wanted to go, but as my travel schedule can be hard to predict I didn’t want to buy a ticket I couldn’t use. That and I was hoping to get a friend to join.

Well, friends were out of town or busy this weekend but I decided I’d go it alone rather than miss the opportunity. While talking to a colleague at work a few days ago, I mentioned the show and he was also going. There you go – concert buddy for the night.

The show was amazing. I don’t know what I was expecting, but Tom Petty rocked 1,000 times harder than I’d imagined. The newest member of their band joined in 1989 so unlike most from their era, these are the originals. They played many of the ones you’d expect and songs from their most recent release. They turned songs you’ve heard before into face melting jam sessions. It was awesome.

To top it off, Pearl Jam is playing two nights later this week (which I am also gifted a ticket to) and it just so happened that Eddie Vedder is in town early with nothing better to do on a Sunday night than hop on stage and join Tom Petty for The Waiting. The crowd went crazy!

The one song I was really hoping to hear (for a few reasons) was American Girl. It got down to the last song of the encore and Tom invited Eddie back on stage. They struck that first chord and I knew they weren’t going to let this American expat girl down.

Up next is Pearl Jam and after that I’m not sure. I do hear that Shurman will be coming all the way over from the states later this year but hopefully there will be a few more shows between now and then. I certainly can’t let all this good music be so close and not take advantage where possible. So if you’re looking for someone to join you at a concert some time, hit me up!

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