rock show in paradise…garage that is

Patterson and Cooley in Paradise

One of my favorite touring bands is the Drive-By Truckers. Ever since 2003, I’ve seen them whenever they come to Richmond and even travelled a few times to see them elsewhere. My ears typically hurt for two days afterwards because..well..they are very loud. But I’d never miss a chance to see them if I can.

Two weeks ago band leader Patterson Hood did a solo show at the John Marshall. I went to the show with my wife and friend Matt and during set break ran into an old friend I hadn’t seen in years. Mark was one of the first people I met when I moved to Richmond and is well plugged into the local scene and an especially big fan of the Truckers. It was good fortune I reconnected with Mark because he invited me to experience something I’d never done before: a private rock show.

Two weeks later myself, Matt and about 150 others go a chance to see Patterson and Mike Cooley (Drive-By’s lead guitarist) do a show at the Paradise Garage in Richmond’s Fan district. The setting couldn’t have been better: a working garage with a stage setup at one end and a ’66 Cadillac DeVille up on a lift. There were coolers filled with cold domestic beer in cans, including my favorite PBR. After a rocking opening set from Johnny Change (Johnny Cash cover band) the duo took the stage and played for a few hours. When a storm came through that nocked out the power, they took a break, then came back and played for longer.

I was introduced to a photographer Mitch at the show who snapped some great photos that he posted to his site – one of which I’ve stolen borrowed for this post.

As a father of two small kids it’s increasingly harder for me to make it out to rock shows like I used to. But for this special Friday night in late June (the day before my birthday), it was a special treat I won’t soon forget. Thanks to Mark, the Paradise Garage, Drive-By and all the fans who could made this an unforgettable experience.


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