Howdy. I'm Matt Todd. My wife and I have four kids and a dog,. I'm passionate about orphan care. I'm a die-hard fan of the Evansville Aces, the Indiana Hoosiers, and Star Wars. I'm trying to live life by the Todd family motto: "It behooves us to live!"

This Bon Jovi concert was worth the 28 year wait.

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Once upon a time, not so long ago…

It’s no secret that I lived under a rock for a long time when it came to non Star Wars related pop culture, especially when it came to music. Bon Jovi’s Slippery When Wet pulled me out from under that rock and helped me see the light. Whenever my friends, Matt and Aaron came over, we’d pop the album in my cassette player. We subsequently turned my room into a stage in the center of a packed arena, pretending to perform Bon Jovi’s jams in front of thousands of screaming fans.

We needed another member to complete the group. Fortunately, Kevin was always a willing participant. So the four of us would jump up and down on my bed, shouting the lyrics at the top of our lungs and shredding the air guitar with each rockin’ solo.

See? There’s more to having a younger brother than just having someone to sneak attack with a pillow at Grandma’s house.

But that’s pretty fun, too. Continue reading This Bon Jovi concert was worth the 28 year wait.

The Todd Boys Take Over Cincinnati at Winter Jam 2013

Keep Calm and Jam On Winter Jam 2013

Keep Calm and Jam On Winter Jam 2013

Remember a few weeks ago when I said I was taking Aiden to Winter Jam that weekend? Well…that didn’t happen. Stupid snow forced us to reschedule our trip. I picked Aiden up after school on Friday and we made the trip to Cincinnati to rock out with 10,000 of our closest friends at US Bank Arena so he could finally get his Christmas present. Yes…one of his Christmas presents was a road trip to Winter Jam.

waiting anxiously for Winter Jam 2013

With general admission seating, I knew we had to get there early to get a decent seat. It’s a good thing we got there when we did! The website said that the doors were supposed to open at 6 p.m. for the general admission audience. We walked up at around 5:15 and the line was already moving. Unbeknownst to us, the show really started at 6 p.m. instead of 7.

OK….the official show began at 7, but the Pre Winter Jam Jam Party started at 6. So if you have a chance to go to Winter Jam this year, be sure to get there early. That way, you’re guaranteed a seat (I hear people have been turned away from a few stops because the arenas have been filled to capacity), and you get to jam with the Winter Jam PreJam Party Jam. So you definitely want to get there early.

We had a great time at Winter Jam. To quote the Boy…

Best time EVER

I’ll admit that I was pretty excited to go to this concert. Even though I’m not necessarily his target demographic anymore, I’ve been a fan of TobyMac’s for more than 20 years. In fact, dc Talk might have been my first-ever concert (I’m a little bit fuzzy on this fact). It was pretty cool to be able to rock out to him with my son. That was a pretty neat experience – one I’ll never forget.

And while I was looking forward to the headliner, I must say that I was pretty impressed with Red. I think I would’ve been more impressed with them if I was more familiar with their music. We really liked when they blew up the stage.

The band Red on the stage

and again

The band Red at Winter Jam 2013 in Cincinnati

and again.

the band Red at Winter Jam 2013 in Cincinnati

Yeah. They liked a lot of fire. And we loved them for it. They put on a pretty good show, too.

Matthew West was a pretty good show, too. And it was for completely different reasons. He’s such a good storyteller in his song writing. He introduced a couple of songs to the crowd, including , Hello, My Name Is. I’ve been humming it ever since we heard it.

Matthew West Hello My Name Is

The highlight of the night was still TobyMac’s performance. Loved the drumline. I don’t think I’ve ever seen or heard a drumline quite like this one.

TobyMac's drumline at Winter Jam 2013 in Cincinnati Ohio

And at the end, he blew up the stage again.

TobyMac's grand finale at Winter Jam 2013 in Cincinnati

We crashed at a hotel in Florence Y’all. But before we could sleep, we had to find some food for our bellies. Other than sharing some popcorn at the concert, neither one of us had really eaten anything since lunch. We were hungry. The only fast food joint near our hotel that was still open was a Steak n Shake. Unfortunately, I think the entire town of Florence Y’all was there. After waiting a while, we decided to buy some Lunchables from the local Meijer and go to bed.

Of course, no visit to the Cincinnati area is complete without a trip to Graeter’s. I had their Blueberry Pie ice cream. It was uh-mazing!

blueberry pie ice cream at Graeter's

Aiden had Caramel ice cream with a pretzel cone.

Caramel ice cream on a pretzel cone from Graeter's

I think he liked it.

Aiden eating his caramel ice cream on a pretzel cone from Graeter's

Remembering Roberts Stadium: Kenny G

Yeah. I went to see him live.

It’s the only concert I went to see in Roberts Stadium.

Don’t judge me.

When I agreed to go in mid-1993, I was dating a girl from school. Of course, by the time I went to the concert in late-August (or early-September), we were Splitsville.

I went to the concert anyway.

I sat by her anyway.

Probably not the smartest choice I ever made. Lots of love songs. That’s great when you’re feeling all lovey-dovey. Not-so-great when you’re still dealing with the fallout of a breakup. Definitely not my favorite concert experience of all-time.

But at least I got a free dinner from Western Rib-eye out of it.

What’s the most memorable concert you went to? What made it so memorable?

We’re a Band

A few weeks ago, I bought the DVD chronicling Audio Adrenaline’s farewell concert from Hawaii. I cried at the end, but that’s another post for another time. I showed the DVD to the kids and Aiden absolutely fell in love with the band. He told me he wants to go to one of their concerts. I haven’t had the heart to tell him that’s not a possibility since this was their final concert…ever.

Every day, he asks if he can watch the DVD. Whenever he gets to watch it, he performs with the band, as if he were on stage with them. So, the apple doesn’t fall that far from the tree. I remember many an afternoon pretending my friends and I were part of Bon Jovi, cranking out tunes like Livin’ on a Prayer, Wanted Dead or Alive, and You Give Love a Bad Name. Yes – my son is doomed.

I’ve been trying to catch some of his performance on video, but he tones it down when he knows I’m trying to record him. I still managed to catch some of it. Unfortunately, I had to record it in segments so the video hosting sites would accept it. One of the larger portions was too big for me to upload at this time. I’ll see what I can do to compress it and post the rest at a later date. For now, enjoy what you can of Aiden and Audio A performing We’re a Band



Yes – he’s still playing guitar. You almost expect him to kick over a speaker or trash his air guitar on the ground, don’t you?If you’re not familiar with the original song, here it is…


And yes, I think the ending’s pretty corny. But that’s OK. Aiden likes it.

SC Squared

Saturday, we took the kids to Mamaw and Papaw’s house. They spent the night there so Christy and I could go to a Steven Curtis Chapman concert at Anderson. We ate dinner at bd’s Mongolian Barbecue, which is always an experience. I had duck for the first time. Tasted like chicken (imagine that!).

When Christy picked up the tickets a few weeks ago, she asked them if we would have an unobstructed view. See, we have a God-given gift of choosing seats that wind up having a huge speaker blocking our view of the stage. The lady promised we would have a good view. And the tickets were 5th row, which was pretty exciting.

So, we sit down and directly in front of us is a huge speaker tower blocking our view of the screen. I’m thinking the ticket office didn’t realize the speakers would be so far out on stage and would block so many people. After we sat down, Christy decided to go back to the ticket office and ask if there were any other seats available. While she was out exchanging our tickets, the people in the seats next to us arrived. And they were people we knew from my youth ministry days in Indy! I wondered if we would run into anyone who had connections with that church, but I didn’t expect to have tickets right beside them! We still moved to better seats (just four or five rows further back), but it was pretty cool running into them. Christy was even more excited because she found out one of the couples had recently adopted a girl from China (this was a dream they shared and talked about all the time). It was cool seeing them and catching up – even if only for a few minutes.

The concert was great. Steven’s wife was in the crowd. And it was funny watching him make googly eyes at her during some of the songs. He’s always kind of goofy, but he kicked it up a notch this time! I tried to catch a picture of him, doing it, but I don’t have a quick enough trigger finger. In spite of that, here are some pictures that did turn out…

More Pictures

Busy weekend

Tonight: concert #1 at Indiana Wesleyan with friends from church.

Tomorrow: Aiden has basketball camp, then we’re taking the kids to Mamaw and Papaw’s house.  Going to the Louvre exhibit at the Indianapolis Museum of Art, then concert #2 at Anderson University

Sunday: Preach, lunch, pick up kids from Mamaw and Papaw’s.

I guess this makes up for us not making the trip to the Fall Festival this year.  We had a good streak going on.  Maybe we’ll be able to revive it next year.

The Concert


Audio Adrenaline
Originally uploaded by mattdantodd.

So – we’re back from the concert. I’ll post more about it sometime tomorrow. I wanted to go ahead and get a picture up, though. It’s not the best quality, since we were some distance from the stage, but we had a good angle.

This is the final song they sang, Adios, which was fitting – seeing as how this is their final tour.

The Audio Adrenaline segment was way too short in my opinion (they were touring with Mercy Me), but if a band’s been around for 15 years, any amount of time is going to be way too short, isn’t it?

Thanks for the good times, fellas!

**Remind me to post something about the flu vaccinations the kids got Friday morning…**

CORRECTION: They sang Goodbye, not Adios.

Merry Christmas (early)

As mentioned earlier, Audio Adrenaline is on their final tour.

For an early Christmas present, Christy bought tickets for tonight’s concert in Asheville. It’s been six years since I’ve seen them live, and I’m not as familiar with their recent stuff, but I’m still pretty excited that we’re going.

If any pictures turn out decent, I’ll post some tomorrow.

Adios

I’ve known about this for a while, but kept forgetting to mention this here.

I’ve mentioned earlier that I had the pleasure of being exposed to Audio Adrenaline back when they were still in college and were known as A-180. Todd would bring them over to play for our youth group several times. We even got to play basketball with them in our gym. I remember the first concert they had in Evansville after they changed their name from A-180. There was much debate about whether the promotional posters we printed up should have an “e” or not at the end of “Adrenaline.” I think the “e” was kept off. I used to have that poster. I wonder if it’s still at my parents’ house. The concert was at the old Victory Theatre, before they did the major renovations. We hung out with a bunch of “skaters” (maybe you could call them “pre-Goths”?) and the show wound up being a huge mosh pit with a bunch of stage diving happening. I think Jarod dove off. One of my favorite memories of that was pushing Scott Brooks, our D-Group leader, up on stage. He started to run to the edge to dive off, then paused. I think he was scared that no one would catch an older (early 30’s…not so old anymore!) bald guy. He eventually did it and we did catch him.

It was pretty cool to be able to say “I knew them when…” I’ll admit that their music hasn’t always been my favorite, I’ve always tried to follow them and there will continue to be a special place in my heart for them. When I did the whole youth ministry thing, I tried to connect our youth with many of the “up and coming” groups so they could have a similar experience. While I don’t think we played basketball with Esther’s Request or Alathea, they managed to perform some pretty spectacular shows for our ministry.

With that, I’m sorry to share that Audio Adrenaline is hanging up their instruments and calling it a day. It’s been a fun run and I’m sad to see them go.