I was going to stay in yesterday. There was a meet and greet I wanted to go to at 3. A friend had invited me out around 5. There were literally seven shows that I wanted to go to. I just couldn’t decide so I threw my hands up and decided a night in with the cats might be the best decision I could make. That’s when Eddie (bassist of Failing to Wake) texted me.

A couple of days ago I found a flyer about 50 Cent doing a meet and greet at a local liquor store before his show last night. I had reposted it and Eddie instantly asked if I was going. He explained that 50 Cent was his idol and to meet him would be everything to him.¬†Because I had gotten in the mind frame of having a day off and just staying home, I tried to back out of going when Eddie texted me yesterday morning. I explained that I wasn’t feeling good and just didn’t want to mess with the crowds. He was more than supportive of it and said he was more than fine with going alone but then I got to thinking…

A couple of years ago The Madden Brothers (Benji and Joel of Good Charlotte) played a free show at a Lake Minnetonka bar. I was so excited for it because I knew the chances of meeting them at an event like this would be high (and I did meet them and pretty much died). I wouldn’t have gone to that if it weren’t for my friends that I dragged along. They pushed me to stake my spot at the front of the stage four hours before the show started. They are the ones that held my bag and snapped the picture of Joel and I after I bee-lined it for the members as they were walking away from the stage. Had they not been there, I would have chickened out. Hell, I probably wouldn’t have gone at all. So I texted Eddie again. I was in. This was a moment he shouldn’t miss and a moment that having a friend by your side can mean everything.

When we got in line at Chicago Lake Liquors, we were bright eyed and busy tailed. We decided to forgo the coats, hats and scarves because, for January in Minnesota, it really wasn’t that bad out and the line really wasn’t that long. We figured it would be just a little bit before we got into the warmth of the liquor store and would get to meet the legend himself, 50 Cent. Man, were we wrong. At first I stood there just listening to Eddie talking about how much 50 Cent means to him and how truly excited he was to finally meet him. He was talking about his favorite songs, how 50 Cent is a true entrepreneur and has seriously built an empire on his own. People standing around us in line would jump in and out of the conversation as we would do the same to them. After the first hour, the conversation seemed to run dry and we did what we could to stay warm in, what proved to be, the longest line in the world during the coldest day of January. Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating a bit there but it was fucking freezing after the first hour and the line wasn’t moving at all.

After two hours of standing out in the cold, there was a commotion at the front of the line and then people started banging on the windows that blocked us from the inside. There he was. 50 Cent. Walking right by us to take his place inside the store. People banged on the windows and the thought crossed my mind that, damn, those windows are going to break. People were screaming and shouting at just the glimpse of 50 Cent and that smile on Eddie’s face was the biggest smile I’ve ever seen in my life. All of sudden we weren’t cold. Standing in this line had a purpose and we just saw the endgame. All was well and we resumed the waiting game.

Everything moved so quick when we finally got inside and to the front of the line. We walked up to 50 Cent and I could hear Eddie’s voice shake as he told 50 how he was his idol and this meant so much to him. We didn’t have time to chit chat as 50 has been running nearly an hour late and promised that he would get through everyone in the line. Even though we literally just had time to snap the picture, 50 Cent genuinely looked like he wanted to be there. He pulled Eddie and I in for the picture, unafraid to touch us and get close and then, just like that, it was over. We were rushed back into the isles of the liquor store where we had a moment to get ourselves together and look at the picture that one of the bouncers had gotten with Eddie’s phone.

I wish I could explain this picture to you but it’s something you just have to see. The smile on Eddie’s face, as he put it, was just “straight cheesin”. He looked like a dork, he looked starstruck.. he looked exactly how you should look when meeting your idol. That picture, those 15 seconds of being in the presence of 50 Cent, that look on Eddie’s face when we walked away… that made the waiting in line for hours, the sickness that I will inevitably come down with today or tomorrow from standing in the cold, that made absolutely everything worth it.

After the meet and greet, Eddie checked his phone and realized that his friend had backed out of going to the actual concert so there was an extra ticket and I wasn’t going to let it go to waste. After a quick bite to eat, we went to the venue and saw the actual concert.

The show started with a bunch of local acts. Some of which were just okay and one that made me fall in love with this whole rap scene I didn’t know existed. Lyric Marid is a local rapper who I completely fell in love with last night. His energy was on point and I loved his Minnesota brand of hip-hop. I was naive enough to think that I knew the local rap/hip-hop scene because I’m a huge fan of Doomtree and Rhymesayers but there’s this whole other side that seems to be overshadowed by those groups. Eddie explained everything to me and told me who was who. It was so mind blowing to get thrown into this whole new scene and I loved it.

I have to be honest, I wasn’t super impressed by 50 Cent’s set. It felt rushed, it felt scripted and was far too short (only about 45 minutes) but, again, being able to see a friend get so stoked over a show was more than enough for me. I will say that 50 Cent still has it over all these years. The way he commanded the crowd was amazing and just being able to see a guy that I grew up listening to (yes, I had a rap era of my life… so did you… don’t lie to yourself) was absolutely everything.

I had only had brief interactions with Eddie at metal shows. I like his band, his band likes my blog, that’s where it ended up until yesterday. Yesterday was an experience I will never forget. I will never forget that look on Eddie’s face when he shook hands with his idol. I will never forget that feeling when 50 Cent pulled me in for the picture.

I know I’m known as the Girl at the Rock Shows and I always blog about the concerts I see but that wasn’t the highlight of yesterday. The highlight was standing in line in the freezing cold and seeing just how much a musician, and music in general, can mean to someone. Like some of the concerts I go to and the feeling I get when I see them, this just isn’t something you can put into words.

Yesterday was an experience neither Eddie or I will ever forget.

P.S. Check out Eddie’s band Failing to Wake… seriously they’re going to make waves this year.