This feature was originally going to be a discography feature. But I got a bit too sentimental before writing it out. This is different.
Earlier this year, Yellowcard announced that they would be releasing their last album, and subsequently embarking on their final tour. Yellowcard have never been one of those bands that I've considered a 'favorite', and I honestly haven't the slightest idea why. When you look at their music not only as a pop-punk band, but as a rock band, their music is flawless. They're a band that can be admired all the way back to their humble beginnings as a punk rock band. Hearing the progression between the first three albums up to Ocean Avenue, which is the Yellowcard most of us know and love.
Yellowcard is a band that has always been there. They've done numerous tours, and I think with the exception of one, I saw them every single time (multiple times in multiple cities, if possible) whenever they came through the Bay Area. And I'll be honest, I sometimes took it for granted. I regret that, because they are an unbelievably fantastic band to watch perform, time and time again.
That's another thing: they've always been there, even if they weren't actually there. Southern Air was playing the first time I ever tried alcohol in college. When You're Through Thinking, Say Yes was the first vinyl record I ever purchased with hard earned money. Your songs came up in conversation with a good friend when she told me, the first time I met her, that "View From Heaven" helped her say goodbye to her father when he passed away. Track after track from numerous albums, particularly Ocean Avenue, blared through the stereo in my room as I learned guitar riffs and replicated Ryan Key's infectiously melodic vocal lines. They helped me grow as a musician in ways I didn't think were possible, and without even knowing it at the time. I'm confident that they've done this for hundreds, maybe thousands, of other burgeoning musicians around the world.
Not to mention, there were actually times that I met this band, conducted interviews with them for the VERY early beginnings of what would become the podcast on this site, For The Record. They were nothing but kind, and answered whatever questions I threw at them.
But perhaps the most memorable and most gracious thing this band has ever done for me, as a person, was support the work I was doing when I was just starting out in the music industry. I began a charity called The Project 143 Foundation when I was a teenager. In a nutshell, it's a charity that works to connect teenage cancer patients with music and artists. Most bands have an intense schedule the day of a show. I can't tell you how many times interviews/meetings have to be re-scheduled or all around cancelled due to how hectic a show can be.
These guys personally made sure (along with their manager at the time, Missy Worth, and their publicist Rey Roldan) that we would have a meeting. They signed a number of pieces of merchandise that we were able to include in auctions, and we were able to raise hundreds of dollars for the charity that went towards helping teenage cancer patients. It's something that I've never forgotten to this day.
To be completely honest, I haven't listened to their last album yet. I can't bring myself to do it. I'll probably do it before the final show, but things have been so crazy in life lately that I decided it would be better if I waited until a later time to give it a proper listen. It's one of the only albums out there with a conclusion that'll probably bring tears to my eyes. But then, I realized something, Yellowcard fans:
Yes, it's very sad that the end has come for this band. It's a fact that none of us have wanted to accept these past several months. It's here whether we like it or not though, and I will close with this: we still have the music. After the last note rings out at the final Yellowcard show this year, we will always have their music, whether it's in a digital iTunes library, streaming on Spotify, or sitting on a shelf with CDs and records, their music will always be there. If you have a chance to see this band one last time, don't sleep on it. Go and experience it. Laugh. Cry. Smile. Let their music flow through you and help you escape from the world temporarily like it has for thousands and thousands of people. I know that I'll be there in San Francisco this Saturday, and I wouldn't miss it for the world.
To Yellowcard: thank you. For everything. You'll never be forgotten.
This article wouldn't have been able to have been completed without the help and assistance of Mr. Rey Roldan, who took my countless requests for interviews, photo passes and review tickets over the years, and helped me make all of this happen. It's been a pleasure working with you surrounding Yellowcard, and I look forward to continuing to work with you in the future. And to Missy Worth for taking my email all those years ago for Project 143, I can't thank you enough.
This has been another Shameless Promotion.