Good People, Good Lovin', Good Music In My Life...It Makes Me Happy, Sooo Happy!

June 5, 2009 marked the Canadian debut of The Foreign Exchange and it took place at Revival. It was a highly anticipated show. There was a huge buzz in Toronto before and even after and I couldn’t be prouder of my friends. It was a sold out show and although I was inside the venue before the doors opened, I heard that the line up to get in was HUGE!
While the event was amazing, there was one major hang up. The original plan was that they were going to arrive sometime early to mid afternoon from Detroit (they had a show there the night before) and I was supposed to meet up with Darien to film a new video blog for our FB group. I get a text from D around noon, saying that they got to the border and that he’d call when they arrived. I was just hanging out with my friend who’s like a little sister to me, Amanda’s house. By 3 something, I hadn’t heard anything so I texted him to find out that they had trouble at the border. For reasons I won’t disclose, their drummer wasn’t allowed to cross the border! They were stuck there for at least 2 hours. Then I helped them scramble around looking for a drummer to fill in for them. Eventually, they did find someone. It was evident that we weren’t going to have time to meet up before the show because now, they’d have to have a full rehearsal with the new drummer so I told D that I’ll just show up when the doors open at 9 unless I hear from him.
Just before picking up my sister and my cousin, Jojo, D texted me again to ask if I could bring and iron. The request made us all laugh but I know it was because they didn’t even have the chance to check into their hotel. When I just picked up my sis and cuz, he texted asking for an ironing board too which made us crack up even more. We were already on our way so I couldn’t. Besides, I couldn’t see myself dragging an ironing board to the venue! Can you imagine? LMAO
I texted him when we arrived and it didn’t take long for Darien to run out to meet us. He quickly gave us hugs and I gave him the iron. He said that they were still in rehearsals but would try and see if he could get us inside so we didn’t have to line up. I told him not to worry about us and just to go inside. He left us and we went to line up. I probably didn’t have to line up but I didn’t want to leave my sis, cousin and Amanda. I met some friends while standing there: Zera, I met her through a mutual friend. She actually was taking care of the folks who bought their tickets through the internet. I also saw Wan who was one of the folks responsible bringing FE to Toronto and was also hosting the show. He and I also spoke earlier when we were looking for a drummer. Wan told me that I shouldn’t be lining up and asked how many people I had with me. I then introduced him to my sis, Jojo and Amanda. He whispered to me that he’ll call me in a few minutes and when he does, to meet him in the side entrance. It didn’t take him too long to do that and we got inside to watch the last half of the rehearsal. I felt sorry for my friends because they all looked tired and D looked downright sleepy!


It was way after 9 before they finished rehearsal. As they got off the stage, I quickly went over to say hi to Tay, Nic, Zo and Yahzarah before they retreated to the dressing rooms. I think the doors didn’t officially open til after 10 sometime. Manda, Jojo and I claimed our spots right in front while my sister decided to stay where we were seated. She had a really bad fall the week before and was still nursing a badly injured knee. The opening act was a local duo called Art of Fresh and their performance was pretty good. I wasn’t too familiar with them but enjoyed their music. I always feel kinda bad for opening acts because unless you are some popular artist, you don’t get the vibe you would if you were the main act. The crowd isn’t as hype when you’re on stage and it almost feels like they’re just waiting for you to be over and done with. It wasn’t any different that night. Maybe it could also be due to the fact that everything was running about an hour late. I saw some people really into them and I really liked them. I really wish people would support more talent especially when they’re local.

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Eventually, my friends hit the stage. The whole vibe of Revival hit the roof at that point. I looked behind me to see the place was jammed packed and I was pretty happy about that. It was really amazing to feel everyone’s energy rise. Perhaps I’m a lil’ biased because we were in my home city but Foreign Exchange was really well received and I’m proud about that.

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The drummer that they got to fill in, Ricky Lewis was pretty great too. Considering only going through 1 rehearsal with them and comparing the other shows I have been to, Ricky did extremely well. Phonte always made sure that he gave Ricky his props. It was also pretty cool to see Darien get one of the loudest ovations when he was introduced as well.

Despite the drama and tiredness I know they were feeling, my friends put on an amazing show…like I didn’t expect anything less from them!

Tay was jokes as always, laughing and carrying on. He even bugged me while on stage. At one point, he was asking, “how many of y’all 19 (side note: 19 is the legal age here) and over out there?”, then went on asking for 25 and older. After that, Tay was like, “Aight, this is where the truth comes out now…how many of y’all are 30 and over?” Jojo put up her hand along with a bunch of others and I actually did put up my hand but not for long because I was getting my camera set to film again. All of a sudden, I look up and see Phonte staring at me. He walked right over, grabbed my hand and held it up! “What are you doin’, Lady? You know you over 30!” said Tay, off the mic. Jojo and Manda were giggling and I saw Darien, dying with laughter and pointing at me. I smacked Tay on the arm to let me go and we cracked up too. Man, Phonte is a nut! LoL!

My 2 fave moments of the night were in the encore. The first was when they did a reggae medley which was totally unexpected. They did a great job! I didn’t capture it because I was too busy enjoying it! I was dancing and singing along, egging Tay on! Luckily, I found a video that caught the majority of it so I can share it here:

The 2nd moment was their last song of the night. They did an impromptu performance of “I Want Her” originally done by Keith Sweat. Darien told me later that they hadn’t even rehearsed it and you can tell because in the beginning, Tay beat boxed to guide Ricky for the beat. I’m so glad that I caught this. The dancing is my favorite part of this video. I also loved the fact that Tay got Zo to get up and dance! I can distinctly hear myself and Jojo laughing too!

I think it's safe to say a good time was had by all! Right after the show, the after party began and the vibe was nice. We were all dancing and having fun....well, except for my sister. As I mentioned earlier, she had a bad fall and was nursing an injured knee but she sat on stage and enjoyed the music with us. Speaking about my sister's knee, I'm about to share a few more pics from the night and thought I'd explain the pic with her & Darien because he's pouting as he hugs her: There was one point where Darien was hanging out with us, dancing and what not and decided to bug my sister. He went up to her while she sat on stage, playfully grabbing her knee, forgetting that it was injured! Darien immediately started to apologize, hugging her and that's when I took the pic! Despite the pain she felt at the time, it was pretty funny! LOL!
My Fave Shots From The Show
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Manda & D
My Sis & D LOL!
Me & D

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