Inspired, I have decided to try my hand at writing an open letter.

Dear The Shins,

I like you guys. It is not often I let a “new” band into the depths of my heart, but you have wiggled your way there. I find your music to be deeply gratifying of some mysterious inner craving. Thank you. Yours is a music that when I listen to it, I want to hear nothing else. It should be consuming.

The first time I saw you play was at ‘Canes Bar in Mission Beach. You probably don’t know this cause you are not from around here, but the beaches of San Diego are party beaches, and their bar’s, party bars. People often come to these places not because they are greatly enthused about the quality of music they are about to hear, but to get wasted and party. And when I saw you play at ‘Canes the conversation of such partiers around me was louder than your music. I was sad.

Last time I saw you at Street Scene. I will be honest, the only reason I was there is because my 15 year old sister is in town. And I try to show her a good time when I can. It was right up her alley. Teenagers dig massive parking lots. So while she was off with her friend watching XXX [insert any band name here] I got to see you. I am glad you are popular and a lot of people were there to see you. But a big giant stadium parking lot? Not exactly the kind of place that fosters consuming music sound.

So I bided my time, and waited for you guys to play a show here that wasn’t a festival.
And now I see that you are playing at SOMA. SOMA? Really? Have you ever been there? The sound, pretty sad, really. And it is a long long, narrow narrow rectangle with a completely flat floor and a low stage. So mostly you go to SOMA to hear mediocre sound quality and look at the back of lots of people heads.

In light of my issue, I would like to propose other Venues you might consider. 4th&B, House of Blues, and Belly Up, while all preferable to SOMA, are probably too small for your needs.

Copley Symphony Hall, on the other hand, seats almost as many as SOMA, and it doesn’t have a bad seat. Oh, also, it is a symphony hall. It sounds great. On his first tour in the us in like, a decade, this is where Leonard Cohen is playing. I mean, come on. Or, down the street, a little more modest and a little smaller, Speckles Theatre. When we saw Jeff Tweedy play here solo, you could heat a pin drop. Nice.

And finally, my favorite pick. The Birch Theatre in North Park. Home to San Diego’s lyric opera, this place is amazing. It is a gorgeous old theatre recently renovated in the heart of San Diego’s hipster neighborhood [read: your fans] so we could all walk to your show and reduce the carbon impact of the Shins touring habit, as compared with, say, SOMA, which is in an industrial/commercial wasteland where no one lives and everyone drives to. In the off seasons the theatre does things like play old musical movies and horrors and it’s just great. Ok, ok. I know this isn’t really an option, it is teeny tiny. But a girl can dream, right?

All my adoration,

[Picture of my cat because he too, is deeply gratifying to me, and I do not like having a post with no images]


  1. Oh, The Shins. I love them. The last time I saw them was at ACL Fest 3 years ago. Not the best venue to really listen to them, but better than not getting to see them at all. I wish they'd come to Austin more often.

  2. nice picture. i heart the shins.

  3. I am afraid that I am getting old, because I no longer seem to have enough patience to stand crammed into a room of sweaty people, stare at the back of their heads and rock out for hours. Ideally, I'd like an outdoor venue with seats, food, and alcohol (aka the Hollywood Bowl), but I'll settle for just having seats.
    Isn't it sad what aging does to us?

  4. I'm sure the theatre wouldn't mind having The Shins there as well. It would work out for everyone. I hate going to SOMA because 14 year old kids stare up at me and think I am the same age as their mothers. Can. not. wait. for Leonard btw.

  5. Oh, nicely done. Now you should send them a link.

  6. crap! i just re-read the inspiration.

    lesson: i used waaaaaaaaaaaaay to many words.

  7. I completely agree about SOMA. I saw Death Cab there (and Stars opened for them, which was amazing) but the venue is just not conducive to a good music-listening experience. I think I might try to catch The Shins up in LA at the Palladium, which is a pretty decent venue. We'll see! But. anyways. This post is genius, and I couldn't agree more :)

  8. I also find pictures of cats deeply gratifying. And heart the Shins.

  9. < Bar in mission really this pictures are so nice to