Kodaline was set to play at Exit/In, a Nashville venue, last week; I had my ticket and was ready to go. It was one of those weeks when the notoriously fickle Tennessee weather decided that it should try to be wintry for change, and I was growing weary standing in the elements waiting for the doors to open. Fortunately, Cafe Coco, a good place to warm up, eat some dessert, and do some serious people-watching, was a short walk from the end of the line where I was standing. I decided that I would forgo listening to the opener and headed on up to Cafe Coco. There was a seat by the door, next to a table of gentlemen, one of those “community seating” situations, so I parked it by the door to enjoy my cheesecake and the view. I couldn’t help but overhear the guys talking, and my ears perked up when I heard Irish accents coming from that general direction. Now, Nashville is home to a diverse group of people, but I can’t say I regularly encounter Irish folks around town. Then it dawned on me: I am one block away from Exit/In, the opening act for the Kodaline show was (looking at my arm where a watch should be) about to start, and Kodaline is from Ireland. Kodaline is from Ireland…..WAS I SITTING NEXT TO KODALINE??? I decided to consult the Google, and I pulled up a picture of the band. Yep, that was them alright, except for their lead singer, Steve Garrigan. As I sat there in shock, a nice-looking blonde-haired lad slid in next to me to join the group and sat on my coat. I snapped out of shock for a moment to (gently) pull my coat out from under him. I hear an Irish voice voice apologizing to me, and I looked up, and was eyeball to eyeball with Steve Garrigan. I was about to pass out, but was able to squeak out a meek “no worries” and turn the attention back to the Google. “What should I do??” I asked myself. I don’t want to bother them, but the good Lord had decided to drop this opportunity right in my lap, I had to do something. I shifted my eyes back and forth quickly to see if anyone was staring (no one was), slowly leaned to my right, and said to Mr. Garrigan, “are y’all Kodaline?” Mr. Garrigan looks at me, nods his blonde head and says “we are.” “Well that’s a relief,” I said, “Because I have tickets to your show and if you’re here, that means I’m not missing anything yet.” “Oh good, well I hope you’s enjoy the show then” says the blonde head. I know, graceful.
I leaned back over to my cheesecake, knowing full well I had to redeem myself from that stupid comment. A couple of moments elapsed, and I still hadn’t thought of something coherent to say to them. Then I noticed that Steve was eating pasta, which isn’t something I’ve ever had at Cafe Coco. “How’s the food here? I usually just get dessert,” I asked/said. “It’s good, I like it” says he.
Me: When did y’all get to Nashville?
SG: This afternoon.
Me: Are you going to get to do or see anything while you’re here?
SG: Not really, we leave in the morning for Austin.
Me: Oh! I love Austin.
SG: It’s ‘Keep Austin Weird’ right?
Me: It is. So you don’t get to enjoy Nashville at all? That’s so sad.
SG: I know, it’s Music City and all.
Me: You didn’t do any radio interviews or anything like that?
SG: No, nothing at all.
(What in the world Lightning 100?? Quite the missed opportunity.)
We started chatting about their travels, where home is exactly (Dublin), whether they miss Dublin (side note, their crew manager/tour manager was sitting with them, and he said he was from Scotland…I said “no way! I’m Scottish, can’t you tell?” In my southern accent. Which made him laugh…), and what Dublin is like. After a little more conversation, I told Steve that I write a music blog and asked if he would he be willing to take a picture with me. He graciously obliged:
It was time to head back to Exit/In, so we all shook hands and I wished them luck for the show. I think I might have floated back to Exit/In. Anyway, I was pumped.
Kodaline took the stage and Steve said “Nashville, how you’s doing?” as they began playing songs from their first studio album, In A Perfect World, released in the summer of 2013. Kodaline has great chemistry, they aren’t pretentious, which I learned during the conversation I had with them (hee hee), and it translates really well on stage. They ended the evening with a fantastic performance of 60’s soul sensation Sam Cooke’s “Bring It On Back To Me.” Steve has a beautiful, buttery voice, I could have listened all night. You might think, “I’m not sure I know any of Kodaline’s music” but I bet you have heard it…their song “All I Want” was featured in Google’s 2012 year-end commercial, and some of their others have been featured in episodes of “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Vampire Diaries.” If you still don’t know it, you should remedy that. Quickly.