In 1997, Bill Clinton was reelected as President, Mike Tyson had just been suspended from boxing because of his ear fetish, and I was only 3. BUT, there was another event that year, Third Eye Blind had just released their self-titled debut album, paving their way to fame.
Third Eye Blind, one of the staple bands from that era, gives meaning to lyrics. The last of a dying breed, the group effectively masked their thought provoking lyrics with catchy, upbeat grooves. With hit songs like, “Semi-Charmed Life,” and “Never Let You Go,” the band embedded their brand into peoples minds, making them a household name for years to come.
Oh yeah, they came to Memphis Tuesday night.
With friend and tour partner, Emily Afton, Third Eye Blind brought their tour to Minglewood Hall in Memphis and their massive cult following showed up. People of all age groups came to see the band play the songs that moved them in times of happiness or helped them in times of grief. The songs that helped get over that breakup. Or the songs that they would listen to with their windows down at midnight on a Wednesday when you know there’s school the next day. The songs that had enough meaning to get the lyrics tattooed on your body forever. These are the people that love the band, and Third Eye Blind loves them back.
“We went to the studio and just put out an album for you guys,” frontman Stephan Jenkins spoke into the mic, “but there is just something missing. We put all we have into it, but we still needed you guys, we can’t make out music without the energy you all bring us.”
Energy? I guess that’s what you call a crowd that goes from sobbing to one song to jumping in joy to the next. Energy.
I had never seen anything like it! These fans truly love this band! Now I understand why a band that really has not had huge success since their album, “Blue,” in 1999, still tours. It is all about the energy.
From start to finish, Third Eye Blind lit up the stage. With emotional guitar playing, singalong ballads, and a little bit of angst, they pleased the crowd until the night was done. And then they played some more.
It has almost become cliché that a band will come out for an encore, but when Third Eye Blind did it it meant something. It was like they still had some fumes in the tank and were destined to run out of gas by the end of it all.
I came to the concert only knowing a handful of songs, but I feel as though I left with a better understanding of what music can be. It’s more than writing catchy riffs on a fretboard, or singing pretty into a microphone and no, it’s not just how popular you are right now. It is about how you can make your audience feel.
Third Eye Blind, it may not be 1997 anymore, but the music you make lasts way longer than 18 years.
Feel free to share the below Instagram-ready photos from the show with the following photo credit. Please do not crop or manipulate the photos in any way. We also encourage tagging the artist when posting.
(📷 @NathanArmstrong + @901Music)