“You have to listen to this band.” Those might not have been her exact words – it’s been 14 years, so I don’t quite remember – but Mel said something along those lines the first time she ever told me about Phantom Planet.
But I do remember exactly where I was the first time I listened to the band that still holds the number one spot in my heart as best live band I’ve ever seen. (Even though it’s been seven years since they called it quits.)
I was a senior in high school, and Mel had come with me to the journalism room at the end of the school day. It was deadline week, so I had to stay late to work on layouts, edits and all the other putting-the-school-paper-to-bed duties my role as editor-in-chief called for. “You have to listen to them,” she may-have said as she handed me the orange CD. I popped it into the journalism room computer, let it load on the media player and hit play.