Monday, April 18, 2011


Up at 7:30 with breakfast waiting for me at the lodge. Changed into something warm and I was skiing the slopes at Loveland shortly after the lifts opened. A gray, snowy day, alternating between a weak sun trying to burn through the clouds and fast moving snow squalls. This is the kind of weather I'd expect in February, not mid April. They had received nearly two feet of fresh snow over the course of this past week. Powder was still to be found in the trees.

Changed back into street clothes by mid afternoon, making the short drive to Vail to see Train perform a live show at a free music festival that evening. My short time in Vail reminded me why I haven't been there in at least 20 years: there is a one square block area that constitutes the "town center," surrounded by a sea of condos, hotels and other private residences. High priced paid parking. I'll take Aspen over this place any day.

Lines began gathering at the park gate by 5:00 PM. Watched the shadows lengthen on the aspen covered hillside. Gates opened by 6:00 and I staked out my position within 15 feet of the stage. Train is an American rock band from San Francisco, California, formed in 1994. The band currently comprises a core trio of Patrick Monahan (vocals), Jimmy Stafford (guitar, vocals), and Scott Underwood (drums, percussion).

Vail, CO – The band Train played a free outdoor show to headline Saturday night’s Spring Back to Vail Concert. With popular hits like “Calling All Angels”, “Hey, Soul Sister”, Drop of Jupiter and other catchy pop tunes, a crowd spawning across multiple generations joined together for a singalong under the stars. Cover songs were also played ranging from Led Zeppelin to the Moody Blues showing the talent and diversity of the Train’s band members.

The front row seemed to be packed with children mostly under 15, one of the youngest crowds I have seen for these events. Going into the show I had a hard time remembering any Train songs but after there performance I was almost embarrassed to not know the band that was responsible for so many radio hits over the last 15 years.

Great show by the band, with Patrick Monahan being a very charismatic and entertaining performer. The flask of tequila brought in made it an even better experience. The place was packed and the crowd was loving it. Was glad I made the trip.

The show was recorded in its entirety. Download it here:

After the show I navigated the traffic, getting back on the highway, traveling over two mountain passes to park it in the moon lit darkness of the Loveland ski area parking lot. I attempted to listen to another music set but halfway through another show I decided I was too tired and went to sleep in the back of the truck.

Next morning I checked out the weather to determine whether I should ski a second day. The mountain slopes were raked by fierce winds, plumes of snow blowing over peaks and ridges. The upper lifts were in a fog of blowing snow. Snow devils swirled down Loveland Valley. It looked cold and miserable. After breakfast I got back in the truck and was back home by 10 AM. I'll save my lift pass for another day.

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