All of the Ska that Your Money Can Buy

Tomorrow night I’m going to my last Five Iron Frenzy concert ever. It’s the first of two shows in Minneapolis, on their farewell Winners Never Quit tour, which winds up in Denver on Nov. 22.

For those of you who don’t know, I have fond memories of Five Iron. I saw them live for the first time on January 1, 1997, braving a snow storm and a last minute change of venue. Since then I’ve seen them more times than I can remember.

I have two favorite concert memories, including yo-yoing at an outdoor festival in Michigan and a hot, sweaty concert in Minneapolis. At the festival I was in a full-on yo-yo frenzy when I realized a photographer was taking my picture. I tried to play it cool and pretend I didn’t see him, but then my string broke, sending the yo-yo 30 feet through the air. Thankfully, no one was killed. The Minneapolis show stands out because a bunch of my friends went, including my Mission Control co-host Josh Lewis, my self-proclaimed best man ever Tim Yenter, and my soon-to-be-wife-but-not-even-girlfriend-yet. If I remember, this was one of the many crowded and unbearably hot New Union shows where Jeff the Girl twisted her ankle while lunging for the door to get some cold winter air (assumably prompting the line in “Superpowers”: “Everyone in the band can’t stand me / just because I fell off the stage / and kind of by accident, I broke the / promoters legs.”

Ah, the memories.

Before the show I’ll be interviewing the band one more time (I’ve also interviewed them more times than I can remember), and hopefully writing a sappy retrospective piece for ReALMagazine.com (or anywhere that will give me some cold, hard cash for my troubles). I’m trying to develop some killer questions for this final interview. Let me know if you have any brilliant ideas. My best question right now is what songs would you include on a FIF greatest hits collection, should such an album ever be compiled. I’d have a hard time answering that one myself.

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