Sun Jun 11, 2006 9:11 pm (PST)
Picture this: Last night. Vienna, Virginia, USA.
EXACTLY this time twenty four hours ago. The weather
is so perfect and balmy/sunny. A massive crowd has
descended upon WOLF TRAP, a fine arts center, where
Blondie are about to take the stage. With the grace
of the heavens in getting tickets (who knows?), I am
sitting in "THE PIT", a sectioned area up-close with
only about ten feet between me and Debbie's sequinned
microphone. The 'cubic Z's' are really sparkling in
the setting sun! The venue is wide and very tall and
the whole place is just absolutely cavernous! The
usher told me that the place "holds about eight
thousand" and all around, it is capacity. So many
people have Blondie T-shirts on! Even six year-olds!
It was amazing! Albeit outdoors, the inner venue
under the balcony seats makes the place look eerily
like the "tall" set of the "Dreaming" video.
Blondie's set tonight is stark and modern with the
massive city skyline backdrop and only Chris's unlucky
stuffed animals (one had it's eye bloodied and
bandaged a-la South Park's "Kenny.") to break the
neo-geo look. Very "street". As I sit and stare at
Clem's glimmering drum set in the fading sunset, you
KNOW that this is Blondie's last tour and it literally
hurts to even think about it. But, lifting the heart,
you can smell the wafting scent of honeysuckle in the
warm breeze from the hills above the stage. It is
sooooo beautiful tonight. Looking back and around me,
people are virtually "creating" the entire lawn around
the packed arena. All you see are excited faces,
side-by-side, people lying on blankets and fixated
throngs surrounding the stage area. It is a fortunate
place to be. It's eight O'Clock P.M on the unluckiest
of dates, "6-6-06", which all said and done, was
absolutely not a product of such silly superstition.
Before I can really prepare myself, Chris Stein
casually steps out and peeks around the stage to view
the crowd. That's all it took! Too late for a grand
entrance! The swelling cheer of the crowd ensued and
soon, the "boys" filed into place to a standing
ovation. Debbie bounced out in her VERRRRY coiffed
and VERRRRY fluorescent-yellow-self and commanded the
rest of our attention. In recent photos, you say to
yourself, "well, she's gotta age sometime", and you
strain to find fault, but there she is. Out of sheer
reflex, my hands went up to cover my gaping awe
because I could not believe that she *still* looks
that startling in-person. Debbie's figure is getting
so diminutive, she almost looked "doll-like" with her
Barbie figure! She looks so confident and radiant!
Hands on hips, staring and smiling, waving and blowing
kisses. Flat-out SEXXXY! That dark lipstick of hers
does it to me every time! Only Debbie Harry can wear
"Whore Red" and come across like an angel. Look at
that mile of smile! VINTAGE DEBBIE HARRY! [Note:
You can't tell me there wasn't some enhancement done
on the melons, though. Debbie is HEAVING now! Are
you kidding me?] She looked perkier than ever! She
is complete hourglass and svelte. Her hair was
nothing but "Blondie" tonight! All teased-out full
and "heart of Glass", making her head look HUGE --
like an alien female of impossible beauty. But it is
her face. Her apple cheeks and her valentine lips.
The bedroom eyelids and dramatic sweep of her brows...
they are all intact. It remains a mystery.
Debbie has the crowd's dowdiest all hooping and
clammering to get closer. Suits and ties everywhere,
yet sweating and shaking their arses as if it were
1980. But when this next song begins, Debbie stands
still as the set darkens and the backdrop lights-up.
It is a moody city-scape and the lights above are dim.
Only two purple-blue lights hit Debbie and she is now
"glowing", literally. The fluorescence of her
"Sprouse"-inspired yellow attire is on fire and she
stands out amongst the pillars of buildings behind
her. The throb of the revamped "In the Flesh" begins
and builds and builds. That cutesy, baby-doll voice
of hers comes in and makes your hair stand up and you
can actually feel a "chill" because of *THAT* sound
and Debbie stands there, singing. Staring. Only her
hips move. She sings, drops the mike down, and stares
again. Same place. Same dead stare at the same spot,
directly ahead. She KNOWS she is hot and she KNOWS
what she is doing to us! When Paul and Chris come in
with their "spooky" guitar parts and their incredible
echo and 4x4 reverb that makes it all "loop" and seem
like some kind of wicked acid trip, and I look up and
Debbie is still staring in that same place, the
"buildings" are all aglow behind her, Debbie's
fluorescent glow under purple-blue lights... the
throbbing, echoing, reverbing, pulsating Blondie-only
feelings... I almost went out of body.
Brian La Fountain
Thanks Brian for letting me post your cool review!