‘Rokken like Dokken’ until the party ends

By Jamie Knobler
October 3, 2002

Steph Mangold

Anyone who knows me knows of my love for music. I’m pretty confident that my friends are sick and tired of hearing about the same bands, or listening to the same CDs in my car every time I drive somewhere. This is a passion of mine that I wear on my sleeve, and I make every effort to tie it in to every moment of every day.

If people think this is nuts, this is nothing. If you were to compare my daily routine to how I am at live concerts you would think I’d need help. Concerts are my favorite thing to do. Period. Nothing comes even remotely close to the excitement I feel when watching some of my favorite bands perform.

Because a lot of the bands I listen to aren’t huge in the music industry, I’m very fortunate to meet a lot of them. This also adds to the live show because having the musicians recognize me over and over and want to talk to me and say hi to me before and after the shows means so much.

Knowing that they care to talk to me means a lot, and its something I appreciate more than most people know. I have to respect a band in order to love them, and when I see the band take time out of their busy ‘rock star’ schedule to talk to people it takes my appreciation to a new level.

This year alone I’ve been to about twenty concerts, eight of which were out of state. Of those eight, two were in New Jersey, one in D.C., two in North Carolina, and two in Chicago. It wasn’t a coincidence that I just happened to be on vacation and catch my favorite bands perform, I drove out of state to specifically see these bands. Am I a little crazy to be doing this? Some believe so. For me it’s an adventure worth taking. The reason I drove to Chicago was to see Local H my favorite band. Because they’re from Chicago it meant a lot to me to see them play close to home. Their biggest following is the Chi-town area, so I wanted to experience that ultimate show. Because I’ve been seeing the band since ’97, I’ve made friends with them and kept in touch. Their old Road Manager, Gabe Rodriguez was nice enough to let me stay at his place for the week while my friend and I were out ‘Rokken like Dokken.’ Needless to say, my road trip was the best time of my life. I saw the suburban Chicago town of Zion, where the band went to high school. My favorite album of theirs was written about this town. As stupid as it may sound, this was probably the coolest part of the trip, getting to experience first hand what they really meant.

So for me, my love for rock and roll goes way further in depth than just the CD I play in my stereo. It’s on a more personal level. I can honestly say that I’ve met every musician that I’ve wanted to meet to this date, and I consider those to be very important moments in my life. I am a rock and roll professional.

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Jamie Knobler

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