Once we parked, we tried to cross to the Lucas County Arena via the walking ramp, but the arena doors were locked. As we were turning back around, I spotted the band buses and semis parked outside. Woo hoo for that scrapbook moment! We went back out of the skywalk and down to the street level to wait in the chilly cold weather. So worth it!!
Another Christian band called Skillet opened the show. (OH wait...another band really opened the show...House of Heroes. Then, Skillet was on the stage.) I had only heard one of their songs on the radio, so we had no idea what to expect. They are more of a heavy metal band...but the lyrics are all Christian. Might seem like an oxymoron, but I guess it's not what the music sounds like, but rather what message the lyrics hold, right? Other people like mainstream heavy metal music, but the message isn't the same. So, Skillet was created by people who like to jam hard and share a good message. The lead singer joked that he knew their name was stupid. LOL! At least he can laugh about it. They were incredible musicians, by the way. Incredible. The main four band members were joined by a violinist and another guitarist. You'll see more about the violinist below. So you wondering what heavy metal and a violin have in common? Well, let's just say they make it work and work well.
We thought these "elevator" platforms were neat. The musicians stood on them, played their instruments and they moved up and down. Don't worry, there were safety bars for them to lean on.
Heavy metal and fireworks go hand in hand. What else can I say? There were fire blasts,too, that felt like they could melt my hairspray. I was a bit taken back since they had such a jammin' metal sound, but we survived. Once we got used to it, it was all good. Kevin has since bought their latest CD and really likes it. So, they gained a new fan from this show. :) I wore ear plugs for that part of the show. Whew! I'd be deaf today if I hadn't. Then..............
......Toby the man came out! Of course, there was a short intermission as they set up the stage for Toby and his band Diverse City. Oh, I forgot to tell you that our tickets were for the general admission "standing only" section up by the stage. Can you say.....uh, I danced like a girl I knew in college who loved to jam to techno music and dance until she ached? Yep, that girl was ME in college and me on Sunday night! It was so awesome to dance, sing and raise my hands high all while praising God out loud. Can I get an amen? Mmmm Hmmm....
Ok, back to the picture. You see the man with the black hat who is facing the left side of the photo? Yep, that's Toby Mac! He was THAT close as he walked through the crowd. I snapped this pic, walked over and squeezed his shoulder. Not a squeeze to say "you're my idol", but rather a squeeze to say "praise God you use your life to glorify Him". Big difference. Back in my Duran Duran days it would have been the opposite of that. Just raw lust for a hunky rock star. shame, shame Toby Mac is so not in that category for me. Attractive, yes. Lusty idol guy...uh, no. I just love his music and LOVE that he uses his talent for one purpose. God.
So, once Toby made it onstage, he joined the rest of his band as they finished the opening song, Tonight. Remember I mentioned it and posted a link to it in the last post? Oh, let me tell you...it was even better in big arena live sound just oozing with goodness. MmmHmm...loved it! Rock on! The guy in the center is the lead singer of Skillet. He sings on that particular song and we wondered if he'd show up for it. Yep!
This humble man took the time to explain some much-needed goodness about our awesome God. He is so real and so down-to-earth. He could have taken his talent in any direction. I am so glad it is always pointing UP! Not in this pic, but later on...he actually read a passage from the Bible that led into his next song. How refreshing to pay good money to see remarkable talent and hear the Bible being read. I didn't just go to a concert, I went to church that night! Amen! I know I sound like a Jesus Freak. Very interesting he called us all that....you got that right...and proud of it! He and his previous band DC Talk recorded a song by that title. Jesus Freak.
He later went back to the small stage at the back of the arena. This is where he read the Bible and did a few more songs. Then, back to the big stage again. I loved that he arranged it so that all the fans in the arena could enjoy him more close-up. As a joke, he sang a bit of that wacky song off American Idol called "Pants on the Ground". If you watched the early parts of Idol this year, you'll get that one.
Here's Toby with his bass player. See below where I met him!!
After a wardrobe change and giving us even more of his great music in live-Toby-Mac-jammin' style, it was time to say goodbye. Bummer. I could have danced for God all night long. I can't wait 'til Heaven when I am singing His praises forever and ever. Forever and ever. Wow.
Boom! Yep, the confetti shower flew. Wow! Kinda neat to be up by the stage and get a serious bit of it all over me. It was just made out of tissue paper. I started picking it off of me and shoving it in my pocket. SCRAPBOOKERS save EVERYTHING! Yep, I am a maniac. At least God loves me the way I am.....confetti savin' and all! :)
I stopped, took in the moment and then thought to myself to take a pic of the confetti all around me. OH and the dark spots on my pants.....the band was flicking their water bottles on the crowd and it made it all the way down me and on my face. I love water so no big deal. I just kept dancing and singing like no one was watching. OH and the girl in the top right part of the pic...well, she stole by body and I want it back! She was seriously so stinkin' skinny. ha ha
After the show, some of Toby's band members came out and mingled. How cool is that!??! This guy was so humble and nice. I was so super impressed with the kindness of these people. Gotta love how his 'fro was so big that when I stood in to snap the picture, it smooshed my hair down. I loved his hair! One kid asked to touch it. He is an amazing bass player. Wow! Whew, can you tell I am still "high" from this concert? Love them! Love their music. I think I've made that point quite clear by how much I've typed so far on this post. *giggle*
See that smile on my face? So happy to be there and so glad our trip was safe going and coming home. God blessed us in another awesome way that night. The pants I wore....well, I found a $20 bill in the side pocket with the button-down flap. I had bought these pants at Goodwill for $3.50 and they've been worn and washed a couple times. When I went to put my cell phone in the pocket I felt something crumple up. I just beamed and knew exactly who had put that there for us. Thank you, Lord. We enjoyed a nice meal on the way up with that $20. I still get teary-eyed when I think of that blessing. OH and I forgot to mention....FREE PARKING! I had found a map online of the parking garages in Toledo. The one closest to the arena was where we targeted to park. So glad we skipped the open lot for $10 and turned left to find the garage with the skywalk. We parked for free and yep, remember that photo opportunity of the buses/semis. So not a coincidence we parked in the garage. So not. :)
I really, really wanted the gray Toby Mac shirt with the shiny blue letters and girly bling. It was $35 so I skipped it. Instead, I'll use that money to scrapbook about my time at the concert. I can cut letters out using the Cricut that sort of look like that and use my bling to make a shiny "O". :)
Last but not least, here is Jonathan Chu. He is the uber-talented violinist for Skillet. He and the other guitarist were right in the lobby area by the merchandise stand just visiting, taking pics and signing autographs after the concert. Here he is with Kevin's ticket. Such nice people. Such a great night. Such great memories. Thank you, Lord.
It took a looooooonnnnnnnnggggggggg time to upload these pics on my dinosaur computer that has PMS!! I will try to post some more crafty things I have saved on here that I completed at the Craft Farm. I wanted to get this Toby one done and then it will be all crafty for a while.
P.S. Thursday is Jack's 2nd b-day. He's such a sweet furbaby! We got the boys Frosty Paws (dog ice cream). You know I'll be taking pictures. :) Thanks for stopping by!