Back in July my wife, Kim, and I went to see Sam Hunt in Virginia Beach. It was a great show – Chris Jansen opened the show and I sang along to “Buy Me a Boat;” Maryn Morris was next and the crowd loved her; and then came the main attraction – Mr. Sam Hunt himself. Now, I’m not the world’s biggest Sam Hunt fan, but I’ve never seen the amphitheater at Virginia Beach so full, so his biggest fans were certainly there.
He played a couple of hits and then jumped down into the crowd and ran up one side of the venue, around the middle aisle, then back down the other one to the stage. He jumped up and kept on singing – he never missed a note. Later in the show he sat alone with an acoustic guitar and described how his unique brand of “hip-hop country” was born.
His mom raised him on country music and then his city-wise cousins introduced him to hip-hop music. He brought those two dichotomous genres together and (after years of sleeping in his car and eating gas station hotdogs) found the kind of success that led him to the Country Music Awards spotlight and sold out venues around the country.
But, I’m not writing as a Sam Hunt fanboy. I’m writing to tell the story of a young lady sitting in front of us. Our row was directly behind the seat designated for handicapped fans. There were several people in wheelchairs, with service dogs, or with prosthetic limbs. Now, everybody was singing along and having a blast, but there was one girl in her mid-20s, or so, who was really into the performance. She pumped her fists, she clapped the shoulders of the people around her, she spun her chair around in tune to “House Party” and swayed to the sultry sounds of “Body Like a Backroad.”
She wasn’t the only one singing and dancing at the Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater that night, but she was one of the most free-spirited. Where she might have appeared to have little to celebrate, she got lost in the moment and let the music transport her. She made the most of the night and, in the middle of a concert, she led quietly by example. She was the definition of Zen – she was living in the moment. Her celebration wasn’t meant for anyone else, but anyone who saw her couldn’t help but smile.
The lesson that concertgoer teaches us is that we can dwell on our troubles, or dance to the music. We can wallow in what we can’t do, or celebrate what we can. She showed everyone there that we can, as they say, dance like no one’s watching.
It’s all about the “can” aboard the Chuck Wagon. Thanks for riding shotgun!