eye (2006-31)

I, Audience


I, Audience

As the show wore on and Adams’ storm clouds showed no signs of parting, factions of the audience grew restless and, pardon us, increasingly obnoxious. Adams rose to meet the challenge halfway, giving us the silent treatment and closing the show with a rant about his record label and the air conditioning. At which point, he marched straight offstage and into his trailer—do not pass go, do not perform an encore. The crowd prematurely spilled into the nearest bar, grumbling about how many IPAs could be bought for the cost of a $30 ticket.

The complaints eventually made their way back to Adams, and he had his knives ready. “ITS OBVIOUS WHY BANDS STOP COMING THERE…,” he wrote in a ryanadams.org blog entry entitled “Dear Knoxville Fans.” “DONT WORRY I WONT BOTHER NEXT TIME. SERIOUSLY. I WILL PLAY SOMEWHERE ELSE AND WILL SLEEP LIKE A FUCKING BABY AS WE ROLL PAST YA.”


Undeterred by the virtual hostility, a couple of MP staffers made their way to Charleston, S.C., for a show a few days later. Lo and behold, Adams seemed downright jovial—joking and playing his guts out, even dragging out some old-old-school fare, including a Whiskeytown tune. Then, in a weird twist of fate, he struck up a conversation with the MP staffers after the show.  

“You know, not everybody hated your Knoxville show,” one of them suggested in consolation. Adams bashfully responded that a member of his backing band The Cardinals went to school in Knoxville, and so there’s always extra pressure to perform well when they pass through town. He muttered something about the show’s weird vibe, then abruptly changed the subject to a weird dream he’d had the night before about an ex-girlfriend turning into a vampire….

Hey, Ryan, no hard feelings. After all, if you were all sunshine and posies all the time, your music would probably suck.


Friday, Aug. 4 : Ah, First Friday. The one day of the month it’s socially acceptable to stumble around downtown guzzling Franzia, pocketing cheese, and flirting with hot, enigmatic art students. If they look too cool to approach, remember that they’re probably just as wasted as you are.

Saturday, Aug. 5 : Take a ridiculously long lunch at Tomatohead just in case Fiona Apple shows up for a salad, then make a beeline for the fountains at Worlds Fair Park. Take a nap in the sun; you’ll thank yourself for the extra energy later when you make your world swingdancing debut at Preservation Pub, to the tune of Christabel & the Jons .

Sunday, Aug. 6 : Know who just inherited the “Best Sangria in Town” tiara? La Costa. Split, or don’t split, a liter of it over brunch (come on, surely you’ve recovered from Friday night by now). Bide your time picking four-leaf clovers until sundown, at which point it’s time to stage your grand entrance at Sassy Ann’s Indie Dance Night, featuring Cold Hands .

Monday, Aug. 7 : Aren’t you worn-out yet? Order in Chinese and call it a early night.

Tuesday, Aug. 8 : Don a scowl and a set of bunny ears for the Bad Animal show at Pilot Light. Alternately, dress like a Mito or act Smitten to honor the other bands performing—although they’d probably be just as honored if you bought them a PBR.

Wednesday, Aug. 9 : Don’t be scared to connect the dots/ Dig for gold in the parking lot/ Find love, then give it all away