Chris Botti is a trumpet player for those of you who aren't familiar with him. Apparently, he is big with the older set--we found that out Saturday night. The old guy next to me and I had a lovely time yucking it up together before the concert. Old guys dig me--or so my family says.
Here's me and Em chilling before the concert. I liked that they had a bar on levels 3, 4, and Top-O-the world. By the time I found my seat, I not only needed a sherpa and some oxygen, but that cocktail as well.
I took some photos as we walked from the parking garage to the venue - The Chicago Theater. The city of Chicago is already decked out for the holidays. Macy's took over the old Marshall Field's years ago and they still can't pull off the charm that Field's had. And the windows? Lame. I guess some of us still won't forgive them for changing the name.
I love going into the city--there are characters galore. Here's my chef buddies who I found hanging out after the dinner rush. "See ya on Facebook!" they yelled as I thanked them for the photo. Nah, I'll do one better--I put ya on my blog.
If you haven't been to Chicago, it really is a nice place to visit. The city is very cool with its elevated trains. I never lose the excitement of going downtown--it is just bustling with activity and stories.
Back to the concert--Chris Botti always has a Meet and Greet after his shows and he boasts of encouraging kids to continue in their music. And while he did pull two older students out of the audience and gave them two front row seats, the Meet and Greet wasn't what we expected.
I had the foresight to purchase a poster ($15) when we came in, knowing that he meets with kids after the concert. I figured we'd better have something of his to sign, and sure enough, anyone without a purchased CD or poster was immediately yanked out of the Meet and Greet line. Hmmmmm.
Then, as we stood waiting, burly security guards told us to put away our cameras, as Chris wasn't taking photos tonight. Hmmmmmm--that's not what he said at the end of his concert.
And then, when our turn finally came for our "meet and greet", Chris Botti and his security guard were busy chatting up about something. He grabbed the poster from Em's hand, scribbled his name across it, and handed it back to us.
"Here's a band student for you, Chris" I pointed to Em. To which he looked up and gave us a lame "Thanks for coming" and turned to the next person. Buzzkill. Joe says he needs to "walk the talk" and I agreed. Joe is very smart on things like that.
I think we would have been better not being at the "meet and greet" at all--we were all really let down by that. I mean, if you don't want to meet the fans---don't do it. Better none at all than a lame meeting. I kept going back to Helene's story of Michael Flatley. There is nothing worse than a lame celebrity encounter--and there is nothing better than a good one.
Ours was lame and here's Em's face to prove it:
On the other hand, Botti's bass player made up for his rudeness. Dude couldn't have been more gracious and accommodating. When I mentioned Em was in band, he was all "Hey, COOL!" and thanked us for coming to see them.
Yeah, that's what I'm talking about. He made us feel good and he's a freaking no-name! Thank you, bass-guy-that-was-nice-and-made-us-feel-welcome!
Great how the nice just overrides the icky, eh? And the funny thing is that what we are gonna remember from the Chris Botti concert is just how nice the bass player was. Its a shame Botti doesn't get that.