Growing up in a very rural town in Arkansas, there was never that much to do to occupy my time. So, like most teenage gay boys, I got lost in music. Most of that music was introduced to me by my older sisters.
The Go-Go's were always being played by them, and so I became a listener to their music. More importantly, I remember when, at the age of 8, the lead singer of the The Go-Go's busted out the hit single Heaven on Earth.
It was the moment I heard that song, that I got hooked on the style and voice of Belinda Carlisle.
I have followed Belinda and her music since then. I even went back and acquired her music prior to the release of Heaven on Earth. My Mom would order me all of Belinda's CDs through the mail from Columbia House because our local stores didn't carry them. I remember that back then, to be a fan of somebody took work and dedication. You couldn't just use Amazon or Spotify to get their entire discography in a matter of minutes. I had to work hard to get her music sent to me.
Over the years, whether it was watching her videos, listening to her albums, or finding her appearances on television, I have always looked forward to catching her music when I had the chance.
Unfortunately, I have never had the opportunity to see her perform live. UNTIL NOW!
Belinda closed out the first day of Market Days 2014 in Boystown last night.
Since the day they announced she was performing, I have been counting down the days, hours, and minutes until her show.
It finally happened, and let me tell you, it was magical.
From the moment she took the stage, I was in Heaven. She performed Mad About You, Leave A Light On, Heaven on Earth, Circle in the Sand, Live Your Life Be Free, and various hits from her years with The Go-Go's.
For 45 minutes tonight, I felt like a teenager attending one of my idol's concerts. Each song was perfect, and her voice flawless.
Almost everybody in the audience knew every word because the section I was in was full of true Belinda fans. To my surprise, my partner even sang along to all the songs except for Live Your Life Be Free - he admitted he had never heard of that one.
The expectation I had of seeing her in concert, was met and exceeded. From the weather to the fans to the star, everything aligned to make for a perfect evening that, even though we were in the middle of one of the largest street fests in America, felt like an intimate concert.
So, after over 25 years of waiting, my boyhood idol finally got to be graced with me in her audience. :) I hope it was as excellent for her as it was for me.