My Friday started off quite early as I head to Scottsdale and drop off the 2001 Lexus RX300 for scheduled service at Scottsdale Lexus at 7:00. From there I get the courtesy car, and head off to a Starbuck’s for some reading time waiting for my doctor appointment concerning my elbow. I see Dr. Dean at the Arizona Sports Medicine Center who works with athletes and those who wish they were athletes–i.e. me. http://www.asmcmd.com By 10:00 I’m done with my elbow diagnosis, and it may involve surgery but I have to wait on a scheduled MRI to determine exact course of action. I head on over to the bookstore and Marshalls and back to pick up my Lexus. Finally I’m on the road and get home around 2:00 and meet up with Jordyn for our long anticipated trip to Prescott Valley and Tim’s Toyota Center to see my favorite band Third Day. Carolyn can’t make it due to not feeling well and having to prepare for Saturday’s planned road trip adventure. She is genuinely bummed out because she knows she will be missing out on something special.
Third Day is playing at some festival and I’m not a fan of festivals but we are going to see Third Day no matter what. We pick up our tickets and “meet and greet” passes and get to hang out with their tour manager Lott Schudde and Mac, Mark, and David for awhile. We are always excited to visit with Lott and the band. They always make us feel special and seem happy to see us. We find out that Third Day will be back in Arizona on October 31 at the Arizona State Fair. That just happens to be the weekend that Carolyn and I are road tripping to Denver with Caitlin and Bryan for a Packer/Bronco game. That is always a bit disappointing that we won’t get to see them, then but we make arrangements for Jordyn to get to go so not all is lost.
The guys are always fun to visit and catch up on things, and for me it has been about 15 months since I last saw them. We get the “mandatory” picture taken for archival purposes. Third Day has always made time to visit with my family and I am most appreciative. They really are quite humble and always go above and beyond to be accommodating. I get to discuss weddings since Lott, Mark, and Mac all have daughters and I now have some experience under my belt. I let them know that Carolyn is under the weather and greatly disappointed that she couldn’t make it, and Mac says “oh well, it’s not like she hasn’t see us play before.” It was kind of funny. Lott lets us know that they are scheduled to be on stage at 9:45 that translates into a late night for Jordyn and I. So we head out to get our Costco fix on and eat at Red Robin, head back to Tim’s Toyota Center around 9:30 and know immediately that the event is way behind schedule. We grab our seats down on the floor some 20 rows back which is about the furthest back I’ve ever sat at a Third Day concert.
Third Day hits the stage around 10:15 and absolutely rips the place apart. During our time prior to the concert, I can tell that these guys are tired from being on East Coast time and now they are hitting the stage well after midnight on their internal clock. I know Lott well enough that he is probably a bit irritated as he runs a tight schedule and he doesn’t like to be off schedule. I can’t blame him since schedules are critical when you have planes to catch and you expect things to run smoothly.
I don’t know but Third Day somehow gave a performance that I will not soon forget. Jordyn and I thought it was just about the best they have ever sounded. It was incredible! I have seen Third Day play about 40 times and in my opinion they were never better.
They lead off with a new song Spirit from their latest album Soul on Fire. They have a choir onstage and a female backup singer, Harvest Parker, and it was amazing. Jordyn and I felt a spiritual connection that I will say I haven’t felt in awhile. It is an incredible start to an amazing concert.
The set list is an incredible mixture of old and new. Mac is his charismatic self and seems to be on top of his game. The music is exceptional as David, Mark, Scotty and everybody else they have on stage nails it. I laugh, I cry, I rejoice, I pray, I am on a spiritual high.
Song of the Lamb–the backup singer Harvest Parker gets to sing her song and it is an awesome story she tells as Mac sings back up.
Somewhere in the song list they played a small bit of “Free Bird“, the Skynard classic, and it was a hoot. Mark was just ripping into the guitar solo and they abruptly quit. Mac said they didn’t have an extra 32 minutes to play the song. He tells the audience that they are committed to playing Free Bird on October 31. That makes for another reason to go to the Arizona State Fair performance.
The concert is over at about 11:45 and Jordyn and I hit the road playing Third Day’s latest cd Lead us Back over and over. The concert was incredible. Lott and whoever else put the song list together did an amazing job. I still can’t figure out how these guys did it. Maybe it was the new haircuts on Mark and Mac. Hard to explain. It was a spiritual experience that sure connected with us.
I send a thank you text to Mac for the incredible performance. Jordyn and I are wired all the way home. We discuss so many things and can’t get enough of listening to Lead us Back . Musically, it is not like anything they have done before. Lyrically it connects to all things spiritual. Simply an amazing album. Mac replies around 1:20 as we head into Pine. Clearly it has been a long day for all of us.
We arrive home knowing that there is a mountain we have to overcome waiting for us at sunrise. I crawl into bed at 2:00 a.m. and the lines from the song “Soul on Fire” are playing in my head. Lord, restore the joy I had, I have wandered bring me back, In this darkness, lead me through, Until all I see is You
Mac was a soul on fire and I’m hoping to be that soul on fire.