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Live Local Music

Reel Big Fish Play a Real Great Show

Posted by Marcus Correll on 09/20 at 01:30 PM

I may speak in pun, but the truth is that Reel Big Fish did give a great show. And it was probably the first time that “skank” was used in a non-inappropriate context at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park.

The 90s ska band opened with “Sellout,” one of their most popular songs, and continued with “Brown-Eyed Girl” and “She Has a Girlfriend Now.” They finished with their college hit “Beer,” and the audience loved it. Everyone was bopping their heads and tapping their feet, and the circle pit grew larger as the night progressed.

The trombone echoed off the outfield scoreboards, and even the band members were dancing around the stage. Lead singer, Aaron Barrett, despite looking a little over-the-hill, kept the crowd moving with reggae, punk, and of course, ska. He even encouraged everyone to chant the f-word in preparation for a song, which lead the band to chime in with an A Capella-esque rendition.

Generally I’m not a ska music fan, but this performance was genuinely great from the trumpet player to the commentary courtesy of the bearded keyboardist. I even found myself moving to their more punk-reminiscent material. They also played nostalgic covers for Metallica’s “Enter Sandman” and Aha’s “Take on Me.”

The best part of the show was the ambiance. Everyone was smiling and hooking elbows and shaking legs. Audience participation was at a high level, with a multitude of crowd surfers, circle-pit makers, and skankers. My only complaint is that most of the songs, however clever or funny, seemed to follow the same beat. This may be because I don’t have a refined ear for the genre, so I won’t discriminate.

Otherwise, the show surpassed expectations from both fans and newbies.

This event, sponsored by SPA, was an admirable attempt at changing up the venue and the music. But now that we’ve gotten our fill of 90s nostalgia, we would love to see more music from our own college years.

Aaron Barrett - Vocals, Guitar
Dan Regan - Trombone
Scott Klopfenstein - Trumpet, Vocal Harmonies, Guitar
John Cristianson (Johnny Christmas) - Trumpet
Ryland Steen - Drums
Derek Gibbs - Bass

{name} Author: Marcus Correll
Bio: I am a junior at the Pennsylvania State University majoring in journalism with hopes of achieving a writing position for a prominent music magazine. I am an avid concert goer and enjoy rock climbing, golfing and hanging with my friends. My top bands right now are Blink-182 (always a top choice), Man Overboard, Manchester Orchestra and Vampire Weekend.


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