Friday, April 17, 2015

Thank You No Doubt

When I first heard No Doubt I was riding the bus to school, I was 10 years old, and the song was "Don't Speak".  I remember trying my hardest to hear the song over the other kids conversations, laughing, screaming, and yelling.  Though I may not have been able to hear the entire song in complete silence, I was able to catch their name at the end of the song.  When I got home I begged my mom to buy me the cassette, after a few "mom" questions (is there swearing, who are they, I don't know them) she agreed to order it for me.

About a week later my little Tragic Kingdom cassette came, and an official fan was born.  I listened to that tape every chance I could.  OK I'll be honest, I was 10 and therefore did not fully understand or appreciate an entire album.  I listened to "Don't Speak" so much that I had actually worn down the tape.  The song sounded great until it got to the chorus, and that was when Gwen's awesome voice started sounding like a slowed down demon, which thankfully forced me to listen to the other 13 songs.

As much as I loved Tragic Kingdom, at 10 there was just no way for me to understand how emotional of an album it was.  I hadn't felt true heartbreak yet, I wasn't sixteen, I was a girl but hadn't experienced any of those restrictions, and while my mom worked at Disneyland during my childhood, I had no idea Tragic Kingdom literally meant Magic Kingdom.

The older I got the more I understood the songs, and appreciated them more.  Then in 2000 Return of Saturn came out, and that would be the album that would get me through my hardest, darkest days.  When it came out my mom took me to Sam Goody and we listened to it all the way home, from there it went straight into my CD player and only came out occasionally for my *NSYNC CD (don't judge RIP *NSYNC).  I loved ROS more than I thought I would, especially because it was so different from the band most of us were used to.  It was mostly slowed down, and not as angry hurt sounding, but just more sad.

The came 2001.  Even as I am writing this 2001 has to be one of (if not) the hardest year of my life.  I had my heart broken for the first time, and went through many things that left me broken.  There was a point in that year that I thought I was never going to recover.   I thought that I was never going to be able to be the fun loving, happy person that always made people laugh, again.  It was at that point I found Return Of Saturn again.  In addition to my family and some friends, I credit that album for changing my life and bringing me back to life.  Its hard to explain how a band, or an album, can spark something in you, but in some cases it just does.  Return of Saturn made me realize that I was going to be OK, that bad things happen to everyone, and made me realize what everyone had been trying to tell me, that I would get through it.  And I did.

Later that year Rock Steady came out, and I had a car.  It was the ONLY CD in my car, and I think all of my friends at the time know that CD by heart because of me.

I have been to many concerts, always one of the few that would brave the elements outside for hours to be up front.  Then in August of 2009 No Doubt played at the Palms in Vegas and that too would be a highlight of my No Doubt fandom.  When my friends and I pulled into the parking garage I noticed all of the tour buses were parked out front instead of being hidden somewhere.  I told everyone in the car "we are so going down there after the show."  Sure enough after the show my friend Janel and I made our way down to the curb next to the buses (poor Sarah hadn't felt good and went home). We waited for over an hour and no sign of the band.  One of the drivers had been keeping an eye on us, probably to make sure we weren't some nut cases, and finally offered us some food and water because of how late and hot it was.  After another 30 minutes or so I spot Tom walking (rather quickly) towards one of the buses. "oh my god, Janel, its Tom". I was frozen, and super starstruck, I mean here was a guy I had just seen on stage, and not to mention 1/4 of the band I credited with changing my outlook on my life.  Janel said "Well GO, go say hi!".  I felt so bad, he looked so tired, he really looked like he just wanted to go to sleep and be left alone, BUT I knew I would regret it forever if I didn't try to get his attention.  I yelled "TOM!" and he stopped.  I think I said something like "Can I get a picture, please?" poor guy looked even more exhausted than I had originally thought.  "Sure" he said with a smile.  Then he said "you know Tony, Adrian and I were all over there for a while signing stuff and taking pictures don't you?" Yeah they had been on the other side of the big ass bus almost the entire time we were waiting to pounce.  I could have died.  He took some pictures with us, and even took more than a few to make sure we got the perfect one.  As much as I wanted to ask for an autograph I felt like he had done more than enough for me, and I didn't have the heart to ask for one.

Right around that time I found out I was pregnant with my second baby, that turned out to be a boy, and in case you are wondering no  didn't name him Tom haha.  Since then I have had some back and forths on Twitter with Tom and even one from Tony (a happy birthday!).

Over the years I have continued to be a big fan, and support them all.  Whether it be Gwen's solo and fashion stuff (L.A.M.B., Harajuku Lovers, and GX oh my!), one of the first in line for a new album, or scrounging money up to catch a show, I'll be a lifetime fan and forever thankful to them.  To this day when I am having a hard time, or anxiety their music helps me through it all.

Even if they don't actually see this I'm glad its out there, but I hop they do  They should know what their music can do for people.  Everyone should have a No Doubt.  Thanks guys


  1. i loved your story!! It kinda remembers my story with No Doubt (I was also ten when I listened to Don't Speak for the first time.. I was at a hotel.. I tried to catch up the name of the band as you did). As I grew up, their albums helped me go through a lot of staff... they we'll always be my favourite band. It is still my dream to go to a ND show.
    greetings from Argentina!
    Sole Coul

    1. wow Argentina? That is so awesome! I think it is so cool how many fans they have all over the world. I hope they come play a show for you soon! Glad this post brought back some memories :)