I can’t believe I’m even making this post right now. Oh yeah, I got to see John Mellencamp in person, with less than 50 people at that! I wouldn’t really call myself a Mellenhead but John Mellencamp definitely brings up a lot of nostalgia from my childhood. Who out there doesn’t know Jack & Diane?
I’m already a huge fan of the Tibetan Mongolian Culture Center, and it turns out John Mellencamp has a little bit of a relationship with them too. The center itself is a beautiful sight to see. It’s ran by the Dalai Lama’s brother in Bloomington and he even comes occasionally to visit. I remember him speaking at Assembly Hall when I first came to Bloomington for university and it was definitely an unforgettable experience.
My personal favorite area at the center is the Lotus pond. It blooms so beautifully in the summer with pink and white flowers! I haven’t seen a lotus pond since I lived in Japan years ago. It’s so nice to see, and it still blows my mind that the flowers grow in the water like that!
So it turns out John Mellencamp has been silently and sometimes publicly supporting the center for years. His ex-wife is the public relations director for the center and he even personally performed Save Some Time to Dream at the center for the Dalai Lama. He has even introduced him during his larger events in Bloomington and Indianapolis. He lives in Spencer and has a long standing relationship in Bloomington. One of my friends even saw him eating on Kirkwood, a major street near campus, with Meg Ryan years ago. He often comes and plays football with the IU football team. Despite him being very active around the city, I hadn’t had a chance to see him in person, let alone perform!
Well, no regrets here. I felt like I was reliving a small slice of my childhood listening to him sing. It was incredible! He sang Longest Days, Save Some Time to Dream, and of course… Jack & Diane!
I went with a coworker who is a HUGE Mellenhead and she said this is the smallest venue she has ever seen him perform at. She’s seen him tons of times and has never had the chance to be that close. They said there were about 100 people there but it felt like less to me. He was right there and he even took time to take pictures with people who wanted after. I was too shy to grab one and honestly I felt a bit bad because people were rushing all around him to get a photo.
Anyways, I’ll definitely be plugging in some of my favorite Mellencamp hits on my radio on my next Midwest road trip. It just feels right. 🙂