I went to The Dismemberment Plan reunion show last night at the Black Cat and, unlike most folks who are writing about the show, it held absolutely no nostalgia for me whatsoever, excluding the three minutes that J. Robbins was on stage and I was sent back to SAGA (circa, uhhhh, 1992?), or to that club in London where I saw Jawbox with Amy and couldn't have wanted to go home to the States more, but was glad that home had come to me.
The catalyst for the reunion of the Plan was to raise money to help support J.'s son Cal's medical bills. It's hard to imagine, looking at this devastatingly gorgeous child, that there could be anything wrong with him, but Cal was born with Spinal Muscular Atrophy. According to the DeSoto Records site dedicated to Cal and his family,
"The facts are brutal: SMA kills kids. The disease affects the brain's ability to communicate with the voluntary muscles that are used for activities such as crawling, walking, head and neck control, breathing, and swallowing. Type 1 SMA is usually fatal; most Type 1 babies will die before their second birthday. Those infants who survive into childhood are in for a long road of occupational therapy, wheelchairs, and assistive devices. Despite years of work on its treatment and "ongoing promising research," it has no cure."
I made a donation to the fund last night, but plan to donate a little bit more in the coming week. As someone with no kids, but with good employer-provided health insurance (something Cal's parents do not have), it's what I should do.
It's what you should do too.
Anyway, I went to the show last night because, a little over four years ago, I met Jason at our friend David's film festival out in Missouri (yeah, that one) and when we were getting to know each other, he asked me if I had heard of his band and -- yes, I will regret my geekiness forever -- I said no. But then I proceeded to spend some time with Jason over the weekend and pretty much thought he was one of the most amazing people I had met in a really f*cking long time. And so I went home and I bought all of The Dismemberment Plan CDs I could find at the Tower Records in Harvard Square and I became a fan.
And, since then, I have become an even greater fan of Jason. And so last night I went to do what I like to do most: see a friend do something that makes them happy. And Jason, despite the crazed man of the mountain look he's been sporting lately, looked damn happy. Giddy almost.
I couldn't stop smiling myself.
And, oh yeah, they were a great band to see live. Personally, I'd like to put Travis in my pocket and take him out at parties. His dance moves are killer and his I-can't-believe-I-lucked-out-like-this persona is infectious.
Update II: The Post has a review of the show in this morning's paper, pointing out the fact that the band led "a celebration in the face of adversity". And another post from a very happy fan.
Update III: Brightest Young Things has photos of Jason in his, "I look like I have been on an island for a long time, making friends with a volleyball," look. Aww, hell, as long as the hair doesn't grow up over his eyes, he's still lovely.
Update IV: Almost missed this post from DCist, which then led me to this Flickr set from Rory.
Update V: KG at The Diplodocus is feeling sentimental about the Plan AND about Eastern Market this morning.
How sad am I? I've been getting all sorts of folks coming to the site -- all sorts of Dismemberment Plan fans -- and the comments on this post were turned off. How the h*ll did that happen? Fixed.