I saw a couple iterations of the Dry House growing up. It was a local music venue in my hometown that didn’t serve booze, so that kids in high school could have a place to play and hear music. (The drinking part was called the Underground Railroad – a brief history of the time I knew it is here.) It was awesome in a way that only a (primarily) punk venue serving isolated punks and freaks in WestbyGodsmilewhenyousayitVirginia can be.
I very distinctly remember a guy who kept coming to shows. I have no idea how old he was. I mean, I was a teenager. Twenty five was ancient. The guy was probably as old as I am now. He just sat in the back. He didn’t bother anyone, didn’t talk to anyone. He just listened to the music. And I remember thinking that someday, I’d be that guy, enjoying the music, and not giving a damn what anyone else thought of it.
Now that I am that guy (hello, Jasper the Colossal), Dag Nasty’s song “All Ages Show” (from the 1987 ep of the same name) means that much more to me. (Lyrics here, by the way.)
To find a reason, don’t ask me
Don’t ask (anyone) for a reason to live your life
Shake your head, left and right
Like the old man who shows up here every night
What does he hear in this kind of music?
Why don’t you ask him?
Find out what you need to know
All ages show
You haven’t lived all there is to live
How old is old?
How old is old?
As this website describes the All Ages Show EP:
This is EMO not that f*cking sh*t they call emo today. F*ck. Dag Nasty, Washington DC. Made up of ex this and that and pre this and that. Solid band, good music and a very respectable cover of the Ruts “Staring at the Rude Boys”.
Uh, yeah. What they said.
Enough of this old guy rambling. Let’s rock.
(Follow this link for MP3s from the EP – the only MP3 of “All Ages Show” on Amazon is a re-recording with different band members, and sounds significantly different than the EP. The YouTube video embedded above has the EP version of the song.)