If your high school years were anything like mine, then you would spend your lunch breaks or sometime after school listening to music with friends, next to the field or on the back steps, and one of the key players in the playlist was Bowling for Soup (BFS). A few years later, the band again found its way into my life by way of the music in the Disney show, “Phineas and Ferb”. Without me realizing it, BFS was present in a lot of ways for my teenage years, despite the fact I was only born the same year they were formed, which speaks to how their music has reached across generations, having been active in the music scene for over 2 decades.
On Friday the 30th of March, I got to see this band perform at Rumours Rock City. The evening was warmed up with local acts: Slippery When Wet; Made for Broadway; and Grassy Sparks. By the time the opening acts were finished, the crowd was sufficiently riled up and already singing BFS’s hit ‘1985’. The crowd was so excited in fact, that when the band’s dedicated sound guy went on stage to set up everything, they consistently cheered and lost their minds. Suffice it to say, that when BFS finally strode out on stage, the cheering was passionate and the crowd basically cheered for everything the band had to say.
BFS not only make great music, close to our hearts, but they are great entertainers with interactive and bubbly stage presence – in between songs, the members bantered and made jokes – sometimes earning jeering from the people who just wanted to hear their music. We were told it was the lead guitarist’s birthday the day before, and the entire crowd sang “Happy birthday”, although it was definitely not in sync.
After several of their songs, including “Come Back to Texas”, Jaret Reddick, the lead singer, mentioned their work on Phineas and Ferb; to which the crowd responded by demanding they sing the intro theme. After a bit of encouragement, BFS complied and was joined by the entire crowd singing the intro theme song along with them, at some points, the lead singer even stopped singing, and just nodded in appreciation at how well the crowd knew the words. Needless to say, playing this song scored no small amount of crowd satisfaction.
The night continued with performances of more great numbers such as “Turbulence” – their only ballad, and “Almost.” The crowd was very displeased when they left the stage, and began chanting phrases such as “1985” and “Soup, where it is”, the band came back on stage, and proceeded to laugh at us, but were very pleased we weren’t done rocking with them yet, and finished off the night with “Girl All The Bad Guys Want” and “1985”
The concert was a success and the experience was fantastic. If you missed their show at Rumours Rock City, I hope you got to see them perform either in Cape Town or at the Lush Festival.
Happy Easter to you too, Bowling For Soup.