Metal, Metal Monday

Metal Monday

robbanders

This is the first story in my Metal Monday theme, and I thought what better story to tell then the story of how I was able to take a picture with Robb Flynn and Anders Friden. This entry is coming from an old blog, where I wrote about this special weekend back in 2012. I hope you will enjoy it: 

This weekend had all kinds of moments.

Moments of Laughter

Moments of Happiness

Moments of Home sickness

Moments of ‘Is this really happening?!’

But best of all, moments of realization. I know I have a lot of those right now, but there is so much going on, that it is hard for certain things not to wake me up from the deep slumber I have been in, for what seems like forever.

I met some new people this weekend that made the whole thing not only amusing but also incredible. It is strange to be surrounded by happiness and laughter instead of anger and stress but I welcome the change with open arms. I tend to take a lot of photos in these situations and can tell you there will be more photos to be posted, but for now bare with my ramblings.

Dom and I drove for about 6 hours up to Nils’ place where I enjoyed some good food and great company. Then we were off to the airport in Hamburg where we had to meet up with the tour bus(night liner or whatever you want to call it) that was taking us to Wacken. So here’s the kicker, I slept once again in a bunk, which this time was quite uncomfortable. No complaining the next morning because it could be worse, I could be back in NJ and lets face it that would suck donkey balls. (if you just shook your head at that statement, please stop reading now, I never claimed to be proper and classy) Showers are like a lovely rare jewel you find in the dust, and when you step into these on site showers your first thought, (as a lady anyway) “where the fuck am I putting all of my crap?!” then you get past that and wonder if this is truly a shower or a soaking in semi dusty trailers. Whatever it is, you still step out feeling fresher and smelling like candy and not like sweaty ball sacks.

The next thing to wonder about is what will be available at catering, which hasn’t been so bad the past few times I’ve tagged along. I usually take the stroll hoping for some coffee. Coffee makes me human, before the liquid gold I am somewhere in between a troll and a zombie. Wacken was cool because they had a few options at dinner, including sushi but I am not a huge fan of the stuff unless it is fresh but who really gives a fuck about sushi, that’s not why you chose to read this.

When we arrived at Wacken, Volbeat was on stage and I enjoy them but didn’t make much of an effort to see them. The In Flames crew was starting to set up after their set which might have been at 1am or somewhere close to that. So cases were being rolled everywhere and scaffolding was being built up on stage. I had no real reason to be awake at that point, there was nothing for me to do and I was free to go to sleep but I find all of it too interesting to go to bed. Especially when the man I love is working hard until late late hours, I feel less of a tag along and more of a support system staying awake.

I am glad I did because I received some amazing advice from Jez. Sometimes you need to know someone has been in your shoes so you truly know that you’re not alone. Love that man like an older brother who is free to pick on you but will fuck someone up if they mess with you. I appreciate people like that.

I went to bed when Dom was good to go to bed, and fell asleep at some point even though it felt like I was sleeping in a coffin with air conditioning. The next day is filled with new faces and emotional moments. All day I carried around a little heart with the initials R.C. On it. My friend who passed a way a few months ago loved Wacken and I felt it to be a sign of love and respect to have that with me all day. In fact during the closing song for In Flames set “my sweet shadow” I cried. It was dark enough where I hoped no one saw but now all of you reading this know it. Fuck you if you are laughing.

A beer here, a beer there… I met Henry Rollins .. :: scratch on disc :: back the fuck up you say?! Okay!!

Henry Rollins did a performance of his spoken word stuff and after I made Dom run out of the tent so I could try to catch henry. I had a mission to meet him and I am glad to say mission accomplished!!! “you’re awesome” yes that’s what my numb nuts of a brain decided to say to him. It’s okay though, he is still one hell of an inspiration for me so fuck it, I MET HENRY FUCKING ROLLINS!!

Some more sleeping in a coffin and I wake up in Belgium! It was a day off for everyone so I joined the crew guys out on the town and man was the town filled with all kinds of activity. It was like a state fair blew up in the streets only better because it’s Europe and not filthy. We all had beers, shots of some kind of alcohol and surprisingly enough I wasn’t drunk, can’t say the same for some others hahahahaha. After some more drinking, Belgian waffles, kebab, and a chain of swear words Dom and I headed back to the bus. The next day I showered “where the fuck does my stuff go now?!” and enjoyed the rest of the day.

At lunch Dave from Machine Head ate at our table and I wanted to spew out phrases like “you’re a machine on the drums” or “your bald head is shiney” followed by “I say stupid shit when I’m nervous” but I stayed fairly quiet. Later in the day he actually handed me a pair of drumsticks and I spoke to him briefly and I am sure I said some stupid shit(nervous).

In Flames once again put on one hell of a show, and then I watched Machine Head as well. It was glorious and it became incredible very soon after. I had a couple of drinks, and even Dom had a few and we hung out with everyone backstage(oooooooh fancy….) Nigel of Saxon was such a cool person I told him he was my new hero but he wasn’t able to upstage the fact that a few feet away Anders Friden and Robb Flynn were talking to each other, about what, I do not know, I do know Dom and I politely interrupted and asked if I could have a photo with two of my favorite lead singers. Both obviously, happily took the photo with me. Robb that night called me the Yoko Ono of road crews and then there was a bet made involving a colorful shirt and a cat woman costume with Anders .

All in all I laughed A LOT and cleared my mind more than I knew was possible. Obviously many details are left unsaid because I realize this is literally a rambling, but before I go I need to say that Dominik is the type of person everyone adores and I see it all the time at these shows. I am a lucky girl and I know I will be lucky for the rest of my life.

Up until now I knew deep down that many fans would probably kill to be in my shoes but I’ve never rubbed it in anyone’s face or bragged. I share my adventures (sometimes even guitar picks and other random goodies with people i know)because I like telling tales but this band is important to me and my mental well being for years now and that little 14 year old Joana is still always freaking out every time, deep in my heart and mind.

Final Statement:

So this was something from 2012, almost 3 years ago. That summer I tagged along and saw In Flames in Poland,Sweden,Switzerland,Germany, and Belgium. It was the most stressful and yet amazing summer of my life. I don’t think I will ever be able to put clearly into words the way this band has changed my life, or helped me in moments that felt awful. I have been a fan for almost 16 years, That is more than half my life. I have a tattoo of their logo, I have a lot of things that will forever connect me to them. I have lost count of the amount of shows I have seen, but it is somewhere over 40. I still have the very first wristband from the very first show I ever went to. So many people have come into my life because of this band, and this music. So whether you’re a fan of theirs or not, I think you can appreciate what a band or their music means to an individual. Every one has a different story, and a different connection to a different band.

Tell me your story.

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5 thoughts on “Metal Monday”

  1. I’ve read about your love for In Flames before, but I’m not sure if I realized that we’ve been at the same Wacken – and even at the same concert. 😀
    Though I think – regardless of meeting all those fancy people backstage, which is a cool thing itself – you were very lucky to have been able to spent that Wacken behind the scenes, simply because everything else was drowning in mud…

    I’m not sure if I have as strong a connection to any band the way you do. There are a few that accompanied me throughout the years, even one or the other I know more than ten years, but I never completely stuck with one band all the time. Mostly throughout certain parts of my life and then it changed, even though I still listen to them. Currently it’s Sabaton, some years ago it was Edguy, before that there were Die Ärzte, who knows who will be the next.

    I always admire – and a tiny bit envy – people that are so compassionate about something.

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    1. haha there was mud back stage too, there was no escaping it. 🙂 there’s nothing fancy about a backstage area at a festival. The vibe Ive gotten at most shows is that of a giant family reunion because so many of these bands already know each other one way or another.

      But that Wacken weekend was probably something that will forever stay with me because it was a pretty extraordinary thing for this band, and it was also an incredible feeling to look out into a crowd of thousands.

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      1. I still like to think it was less than on the other side, simply because less people marched through it to deepen it… (At times we stood ankle-deep in the mud and you had to move your feet every fee minutes to not get stuck)

        All the Wacken – and Festivals in general, I guess – have something special. The bands have their family reunions backstage and the people in front of it.
        But barely any stage compares to the masses you have in front of the Main Stages in Wacken, so yeah, that is definitely a sight to behold. I still get goosebumps just thinking about the performance of Blind Guardian‘s Bard’s Song at Wacken 2011.

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      2. Lol it’s not like I walked on a red carpet back there. The weather was over the same area and yea it’s obviously going to have some control backstage or tour buses will get stuck and people will get delayed.it’s not a clean experience no matter what side you’re on. You’re making the focus more an “us and them” dividing line and that’s not it at all, nor was it my focus. Yea I’ve experienced these things “backstage” but first and foremost I’m a fan. I walked through the festival grounds, believe me you couldn’t really tell what color my shoes were originally because there was a layer of mud caked on them.

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      3. Oh I didn’t think you did, but I just thought it was at least possible that they could use planks and what not back there to make the mud a bit more bearable. Whereas the same thing wouldn’t have been possible in front of the stages and the camp ground due to all the feet trampling on it and ruining every effort in the matter. That’s the only focus on “them and us” I was getting at.

        There is no doubt that you are as much a fan as any other person on that field. Regardless if you have the opportunity to get a behind the scenes look or just look at it from afar, we’re all just fans in the end that enjoy a good show of our favourite or any other band.
        I just find it interesting if people share their experiences in either areas.

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