The Gin Blossoms in Manila Experience

I am a child of the 90s. 

 Can't think of anything more symbolical than Jen Aniston's 1990s hairstyle.

I used to cringe whenever my parents would ramble about missing music from the 70s and the 80s and never quite understood how they would always try to revert back to their favorites {ABBA, David Gates, The Beatles, then again that's a different story.}

As a rebel teenager dressed in elephant pants {I cringe}, culottes and Skechers, I thought the best music was from the 90s, and no I don't mean Spice Girls, Backstreet Boys, N'Sync, however much of a fangirl I am  with those, too. Despite being a poster girl for your typical teenager, I had professed my love, even then, for Goo Goo Dolls, Duncan Sheik, Paula Cole, Barenaked Ladies, among others. The soundtrack to my first love was Slide by Goo Goo Dolls and Any Lucky Penny by Nikki Hassman, my first heartbreak was to the tune of Duncan Sheik's Wishful Thinking and my first unrequited love was underscored by the jarring lyrics of Paula Cole's I Don't Want to Wait and PJ Olsson's Ready for a Fall. Now I finally understand that it wasn't so much about the mere lyrics nor the rhythm. It was about the memories that cling to these songs, it was those clumps of experiences that are forever etched on your brain when you first heard it, first sang to it, first did-whatever to it.

 And who can forget about JTT?

I was much older though when I discovered Gin Blossoms and it was through a nostalgic piece about the 90s as we stepped into the new millennium in Super! by Tim Yap. There was only Kazaa then and it took me a while to complete my track list of Gin Blossoms {such a task because they split up}. And since then, Hey Jealousy, Till I Hear It From You, As Long as It Matters, and Follow You Down were my constant mixtape / mixCD staples.

As Long as It Matters, 1992

This was the ultimate video that built the longtime dream of watching Gin Blossoms live,
from its bokeh-ish cinematography, to the touch of lomography techniques, I honestly think
it was one of the best songs of our era. And this is a secret: If you know what kind of girl
the song was trying to depict, then you'd know what song was responsible for raising me 
up to be like this =P

When I found out, over beers and yosi, that Gin Blossoms was coming over to Manila and Cebu for two concerts, I practically screamed my head off, literally. Gin Blossoms stands on the #1 spot that I'd see in a heartbeat, in a tie with Madonna and U2, so watching the concert is a no brainer. Plus, it falls on my birthday week, too, it was serendipity.

Waiting for the band {I did not watch the front act, bleh} with my Pale pilsens.

The first song was Follow You Down, so I was screaming and singing along.

Somewhere between Allison Road, Tiny and I snapped a photo.
Once upon a time, I wanted to be an Allison, if only for this song.

But apparently I was Miss Disarray.

Unforch, Robin Wilson lacks showmanship {his speech was limited to "Thank you Manila!}
but who cares?

Also, he looks so much older now {duh} as he did on As Long as It Matters
but I'm digging his concert attire and he reminds me of someone.

Recreating the As Long as It Matters vibe.

Hey Jealousy. I would've posted the video I took but it's so embarrassing
because my voice singing to it was so loud and I felt like I was high fiving my teenage self.
Plus, everyone was jumping up and down, raising beer cans and singing
on the top of their voices. Including me, so the quality was like, shaky.

This is the song that has made it so all worth it.

Robin Wilson, Gin Blossoms' front man and lead vocalist up close.
Photo by Johann Balbido

Here's the setlist, BTW, just in case you're a fangirl like me:

  • Follow You Down
  • Don’t Change For Me
  • Till I Hear It From You
  • Found Out About You
  • Miss Disarray
  • As Long As It Matters
  • Lost Horizons
  • Long Time Gone
  • Go Cry Baby
  • Learning The Hard Way
  • Until I Fall Away
  • Dead or Alive on the 405
  • Allison Road
  • I’m Ready
  • Pieces of the Night
  • Hey Jealousy
  • Wave Bye Bye
Encore set:
  • Encore
  • Goin’ to California
  • Now(The Pinsouls Cover)
  • Hands are Tied
After which, the gang and I trooped to nearby Cubao X {Mogwai} for beers and bacon-wrapped liver and yes, the beer trunk is so sosyal. I love Cubao X forever.

Poser photo with T and the sidewalk
Blazer: Colour Eighteen
Tank top: H & M
Jeans: Stylebreak {I've waited so long to wear it, heh}
Heels: Pill

Part Une of the 25th Year Celebration
Signs of more awesomeness to come

I can't say how much my heart is floating after my GB experience. After all, if I only had one to listen to my whole life, it would be them. I guess I am that much of a sentimental person or just non mainstream taste :P Any which way, I couldn't have had a better 25th year prelude part one.

Can you tell I've had so much fun?