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New York has a countless number of music venues, concert halls and plain old bars that host live bands any night of the week. So it’s pretty embarrassing that I really haven’t taken advantage of all that the music scene in Manhattan has to offer. My boyfriend and I went to Carnegie Hall two weekends ago to see Justin Townes Earle and that was really my first show in NYC. It’s even worse because one of NY’s famed venues – The Beacon Theater – is literally around the corner from us. I walk past it on an almost daily basis and it hadn’t escaped my notice that The National, one of my favorite bands, was coming to town. As an active job seeker, though, the ticket prices were a little steep for me. Luckily for me, my boyfriend decided to surprise me with tickets! He also came home at 7pm last night, a first since I moved here four months ago. It was an awesome concert, made even more spectacular by  the old-world ambiance of the Beacon Theater.

If you are interested in seeing a concert in New York, the two best websites I have found to cull information from are: Pollstar (which actually provides you events from across the country) and Oh My Rockness (a New York specific concert/venue/band website).

See You in the City!

The marquee outside Beacon Theater. As soon as we turned onto Broadway, I knew we were going to the concert.

The Beacon Theater opened in 1929 and has hosted vaudeville acts, musical productions, opera, film and even President Clinton’s birthday celebration in 2006. It was designed by a Chicago architect named Walter Ahlschlagar in the Art Deco style and the interior walks the line between gaudy and glamorous. It has superb acoustics and remains a popular venue for all sorts of artists from Jay-Z to the Allman Brothers to the Cure and Adele.

We had seats in the balcony, which actually were pretty great. The only awkward part is that you are in a theater with seats, so…do you stand, do you sit…?

The National is an indie rock band from my home state of Ohio. They are currently based in Brooklyn. I started listening to them in 2005 when my bestie Natalie (who writes a fantastic blog called the Haute Housewife) sent me a copy of their album Alligator. High Violet is their most recent album.

This was my third time seeing them. The first two times were at the 930 Club in Washington DC when they were touring for Alligator and then for Boxer, which was released in 2007. Their songs range from haunting to soulful and from rock to folk. Here is last night’s set list.

They closed the show by singing Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks a capella. It was very Arcade Fire of them, in a good way.

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