Why I will always list Hawk Nelson among my favorite bands.

9 03 2016

I was thinking the other day how we can influence people without even meaning to.  Whether for better or for worse, our actions can effect anyone even in the littlest ways.  I’ve had many role models in my life that have changed my life in so many ways.  But I had an encounter once, where a few people I believe (in retrospect) changed my life in a simple way.

I was a young, unsure middle-school/home school-er.  In the “big city” of the Western Slope, Grand Junction, there was a concert… the “big concert”.  Hawk Nelson, Audio Adrenaline, Skillet (which at the time I wasn’t ‘cool’ enough to like), and Toby Mac were all playing.  Three of my (now four) favorite groups, all for something like $25.

It was windy, it was cold and in Western Colorado… we didn’t have “big concerts”.  The reason being of course was that the rodeo grounds (yes, that’s where it was at), were pretty much empty.   There were maybe a hundred to a hundred-fifty people there.  To make matters worse: about 2/3 of the way through the show, it got so windy that they had to cancel the rest due to safety concerns on stage.

That was OK with me because I had their CD’s anyway (especially my favorite still to this day: HN’s “Letters to the President”)… which needed some autographs.  Under the stadium seating (indoors) the autograph lines made it feel more like there were a thousand people, especially for a surprisingly small middle-school kid whose (awesome) dad took him and despite having friends who were there, he didn’t hang out with because mosh pits full of big, scary high-school’ers is… well, scary.

After being hustled through the autograph lines for AA, and Toby Mac (that’s the short version), I tried to find the “best band of all”… Hawk Nelson.  Down a hall and outside through an obscure side-door, four pink-colored sweater-vest wearing artists, were casually “hanging out” with the other 16 or so fans in line.  They took their time to talk with each of them briefly as they signed all the stuff we pushed at them.  Granted their smaller fan-base allowed them to take their time.

I’m always nervous when I talk to cool people, but when they complemented me on my bright, hunters orange jacket I’m pretty sure I lost my mind.  The next 30 seconds involved them talking and me likely babbling nervously (it was all kind-of a blur after that).  But when our interactions were done, I remember thinking to myself: “Wow… that was cool.  If I ‘m ever famous, I want to act like these guys.”

A decade and a half-ish later, I’m clearly still not famous, but that one moment is still burned into my mind.  I’ve since learned though that you don’t have to be famous to be kind to others.  We all go about in our busy lives and we have just as many opportunities to either check people off of our list or stop and take 30 seconds to make a difference.

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