Warning: this post is melodramatic.
Earlier this year I mentioned my bucketlist, and how recording an EP was the thing getting crossed off this year. But last night another thing got crossed off: playing the main hall of Paradiso, Amsterdam. Yep – August 12, 2014 I got to walk the same stairs many of my heroes have walked, going up to the stage where so many legends have played.
But that’s not really what made it special to me. Paradiso is not just ‘the best music venue of the Netherlands’ (3voor12 had a survey earlier this year so this is not something I just made up) it’s also an incredibly wonderful and magical place where I have so many amazing memories. I remember the first time I entered Paradiso, 15 years old and about to see Simple Plan live (no comment). I remember looking up at the stained glass windows of the church-turned-music venue and I remember thinking ‘imagine performing on that stage, that must be the best feeling ever‘. In the 7 years that followed I’ve visited Paradiso countless times: meeting Alison Sudol of A Fine Frenzy – a personal hero of mine, on a date at the Bastille concert – right before they got crazy famous, crying at Jose Gonzalez’ wonderful performance of Hand On Your Heart, seeing Kodaline sing completely acoustic at a sold-out show… and now it was my turn.
It may not have been a sold-out show, not even a headlining show, but I did get to perform my own songs on the main stage of Paradiso – even one totally acoustic – in front of a reasonably large crowd that was actually listening. And you know what, I was right at 15, it’s the best feeling ever.