Ironically, a friend invited me to a concert in Brooklyn the very next day. After a night of recuperation and a calm day at work, I met friends, old and new, to venture down to Prospect Park for the Celebrate Brooklyn! concert series at the park bandshell. I didn’t know the artists, but I didn’t mind, because my second favorite (if not favorite) atmosphere in life is that of the outdoor concert. Beach towel and picnic time snacks in hand, I couldn’t wait to find that grassy patch to lie down in and soak up the sweet summer air, mingled with the smell of cigar and marijuana smoke, foamy beer, and the detergent I used on my towel.
The acts were a blur of bluegrass and the raspy thick tone of Justin Townes Earl which reminded me of my favorite Whiskeytown sounds. The Punch Brothers played only one song that I knew, only because I had listened to it four times the night before. I marveled over pure interaction as my friends merged and I watched how people get to know one another in this type of environment, relaxed, yet still tentative. I split precious overly priced organic french fries and a chicken kebab with Greg from The Farm on Adderly. As the sun set, I admired the changing glow of the shell, from rosy purples to pure lime tones and bright yellows. Strings of lights hung from tree to tree, up to the stage. I recall a moment where I closed my eyes and embraced the smooth, milky texture of a slow song, and the way in which the woman danced slowly with her bass. You might be rolling your and thinking, “God, how cliche,” but to be honest I do find the concert atmosphere to be so captivating. The nights I remember most vividly.
There was a moment near the end of the night when I layed my head down on my towel and looked up at the bright glow of the string lights and stars and I felt so peaceful, a bit hazy from a beer and lots of folk/americana music, and I thought to myself, “This is summer.” It was exactly the quintessential type of lazy evening I had pictured myself enjoying during my first summer in the city.