Archugeezer’s This Christmas tour: Shake-a-hand, shake a haaaaand

"Alright, Asaf..." Photos: the amazing @jenleighbarry

Between the time an LDS missionary gets his official call and is asked to report, there is a space of time to prepare. This prep period may include things like buying that last conservative tie, going to that last movie with friends, saying that last goodbye to loved ones. It almost never includes things like acting in that last TV miniseries, appearing in that last mall full of fans who scream undying love, or recording that last bit of music.

David’s protracted farewell is not only quite public; it is downright flail-inducing. In fact, it hardly seems like a farewell at all. Fans are gobbling up his goodbye goodies as if there were no end in sight. Oh, I know that last goodbye will happen; but I don’t want the fun to end either. Denial will serve me well for weeks to come.

Remember December?

I was there, heard him in person — David Archuleta announcing he had chosen to serve a full-time mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I was among those hundreds who spontaneously rose to applaud and cheer, so proud of him I nearly burst my squiggly pig button. OK, I cried a little too; but I am rarely in the presence of such remarkable courage.

Within hours, David’s announcement was publicized, analyzed, explained, praised, criticized, dissected, ridiculed, defended, sliced and diced… You name it. I will not add more, only to say I became convinced long ago that we would never see the whole of David Archuleta’s musical genius until he kept what was surely a prior commitment, to God and to himself.

Will I miss him?  Yes.  YESSS!!  With all my heart and both ears!

In spite of the current Archuleta hubbub, the reality of his impending two-year absence hit home when I tried to revisit the “My Kind of Christmas Tour” on YouTube. It took less than five minutes before I was feeling downright dejected and decided to retreat. What the heck? I was happy for David, so what was this about? All about me of course.

Still, I am not one to leave David’s music alone for long, so I plunged in a few days later and purposely avoided the emotional trap of “Silent Night.” On this second try, my first video stop was Westbury and “This Christmas,” a huge favorite of mine from the tour. I watched it, and smiled. I watched it again, and then again. This I could handle, especially with David’s jazzy reassurance of “how much fun it’s gonna be together, yeah…”

David had to be a little nervous for the first MKOC show at Westbury, but you couldn’t tell.  Little did we know that he was not only prepared, but he had secret weapons. He unleashed a few of them in rather timely fashion as he offered up “This Christmas” and killed off one crowd after another. Long before he got to the West Coast, Mr. Fancy Pants was struttin’ his stuff across the stage and singing “This Christmas” like he had groove to the bone.

I followed those videos from Westbury to Irving Plaza and had a great time — free admission, good seats — so I kept going and realized I might be able to get out of my funk by getting funky. It was my own kind of tour, a decision to watch every “This Christmas” video at every stop. (I missed seeing you there, Boise and Cedar City!)

Thanks to all those volunteer videographers, my one-song tour proved to be entertaining and somewhat therapeutic. I heartily recommend it to those who may suffer as they go through withdrawal from the “voice like buttah” and other more visual delights.

I am now in training for my next tour, but I can’t say I’m ready to tackle video memories of certain songs yet. That will take a while; maybe two years.  However, if this method of marking off 24 months seems like it might work for you, subscribe to the vibe of “This Christmas,” an excellent choice for beginners.

For your additional information, a few notes from my tour journal are included below:

  • A slower tempo to “This Christmas” for the second concert; it works. And I see you, you tall and burly adult male fans in Irving Plaza!  Yes, I mean you men with the cameras, singing along with the Archuleta and hooting approval in all the right places. You cannot fool me anymore!
  • The Band!  The Band!  The Band!
  • Pretty sure the diva hand has its own choreographer for this song. There are numerous artistic man-hand moves to signal the band entrance, direct the vocals, express the passion and acknowledge audience reaction. Diva hand choreographer deserves a raise.
  • Verona, New York:  David, you do not need our permission to tie your own shoes. In fact, we will tie your shoes for you. We will even shine your shoes.  You don’t want to bother with shoes? We will carry you wherever you want to go.
  • More chitchat in Stroudsburg, all of it enjoyed by both David and the audience. (Note to self:  Renew airline chaperone license.) David experiments a little with new “oohs” and “whoahs.” Well, those were perfect.  Scat away, you little scamp, I can take it… THUD!
  • Blackfoot videos are personal, as I was in the front row and focused on the details.  I felt embarrassed for those people in the audience who had no business being so enthralled, especially that woman off camera who was hanging from the chandelier and gasping for air.  Really now.  It is quite obvious that “This Christmas” in Idaho was for me.
  • The Band!  The Band!  The Band!
  • Yowser!  Full frontal eyebrow flirt in Santa Rosa, making those brows eligible for their own Twitter account.  (The recipient of that gesture was treated and released, but she will never be the same.)
  • What were they serving in Ventura and Anaheim?  David and “This Christmas” were in a groove so deep nobody wanted to get out. The band members couldn’t quit grinning; and they couldn’t quit playing at the end.  Whew!
  • David rocks a blazing fireside, sings carols through the night, and then convinces us that this Christmas (tiny pause, soften, wait for the hand) will be very special.  No kidding.  David’s phrasing is delicious.  Just how sweet can a “will be” be?
  • The Pants!  The Pant…  The Band!  The Band!  The Band!
  • The riffs played by Asaf Rodeh during this song are worthy of their own 13-track CD. I swear there were a few concerts when Asaf’s guitar was having an intimate conversation with David.
  • “Throoo-OO-oo-oough the….”  Let me try that again.  “Throoo-oo-oOoOoOough the…”  No, wait!  I think it’s “ThrOOO-o-o-OOo-ough the ni…”  Dang it, David.  I need lessons!
  • Make that private lessons. Thank you.

~Archugeezer

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23 Responses to Archugeezer’s This Christmas tour: Shake-a-hand, shake a haaaaand

  1. I ♥ this, Archugeezer! Your descriptions of “This Christmas” tour hopping is perfect. I, too, can’t listen to certain songs, yet and probably won’t be able to until almost two years is up. I can listen to “This Christmas”, “Fa La La La La”, “Little Drummer Boy”, “Sleigh Ride” and the more upbeat things, but those more serious carols I just can’t quite handle yet. Maybe at Christmas I’ll be able to … Christmas after next that is. Yes to the Band AND the Pants! LOL

  2. --bianca says:

    Aw, Jeez, Geez, you get me every time. This blog is a breath of fresh, crisp, wintery air. I think I’ll bookmark it and read it this Christmas.

    Was the woman hanging from the chandelier in Idaho anyone I know?

  3. Heidijoy says:

    Thanks for the trip down Memory Lane. I saw David posing with your name in SLC but never did meet you!! Love your humor and enjoyed Your recap. This Christmas has been One song from SLC and Beaver Creek that I watch often. Love the way David gets his groove on.
    I’ve listened to all the songs by now which was therapeutic since I no longer had to use energy in avoiding them. There are some that are too painful to watch again for now.
    I also enjoy “I’m Trying To Be Like Jesus” and Waiting on the World To Change.
    I’m so glad to have the Memories from MKOC Tour

    • annie318 says:

      Archugeezer~I just love what you wrote about This Christmas. I have been on the same one song tour. In the past when David performed with different band members I was just vaguely aware anyone was on stage besides David. This group of musicians “the Archuband” is just so good. In particular, Asaf’s playing is spectacular! I hope during the next 2 years they might be appearing near me.

      I was at the Anaheim show (row 4 perfect!) and it was a really groovy performance.

      Thank you for your witty post!

      Annie

  4. Kizzi says:

    ArchuGeezer – Had to take a quick moment to read your blog when I saw you posted at SAz. When you put your thoughts on paper, well, it is a treat not to be missed. 😀 So ‘quick’ developed into something a bit more.

    Yes to everything you said. You captured the great joy blended with amazing fun at a David concert wrapped around a sense of astonishment and wonder. And a great plan for those of us looking for ways during the next two years to refresh ourselves and continue to enjoy David’s music.

    I frequently have wondered this —> “… I became convinced long ago that we would never see the whole of David Archuleta’s musical genius until he kept what was surely a prior commitment, to God and to himself.” Remarkable courage, indeed. Yes, especially with his announcement in December and, also, I believe he has shown remarkable courage throughout his young life conquering fears that most of us even in our mature years find ourselves quivering in our booties just thinking about most of what he does with increasing confidence and joy.

    And, though I don’t share David’s specific beliefs, I share, as do we all, the act of faith and of “believing.” Seeing David follow the path of his faith is an exquisite experience. Though I don’t personally know the traditions and customs that go along with going on an LDS mission nor the recognizable guideposts he embraces as a matter of fact in his faith, I fully share the larger picture of the beauty of observing traditions, customs of faith, the power of believing, and traveling the paths of others who went before, the familiarity of finding the same guideposts, the wonder of discovering new vistas within and without, strengthening faith, belief and the wonder of being human navigating, or is it, perhaps, being led, in the grand scheme of the divine.

    How can we not be thrilled that he is following his heart, his dream, his beliefs.

    • Heidijoy says:

      Always enjoy what you have to say Kizzi. I am thrilled that David is following his heart, his dream,his beliefs. I will most certainly miss him but even in my sadness in SLC and after, I knew this was important for David to do.

      He spoke about his decision so clearly in a recent interview with mb.com.ph

      “So many people say—-and for me too__music is one way of doing a mission. but it is not the same thing……Those missionaries changed my Mom’s life and changed my life_____ the way I grew up, the way I was raised and what is important to me. They’ve sacrificed so much__ they leave their families…and everything that is comfortable to become closer to God and closer to other people. Learn how to love the hard way…That is what I feel would be very great in my life.

      How can I not support that.

  5. tawna21 says:

    Hey Archugeezer! Love this idea!!! I think I just might try this tour… I’m hanging on to every photo, move, note, and word that David is making right now and wishing I could put them in the freezer and thaw as necessary over the next two years. Just maybe, this will be the recipe I need.

    Tawna

  6. Harold Weinstein says:

    To fan
    You are so special your sense of humor is over the top. You I am sure can keep us laughing over the next two years! Just think you could write the north American mini series for David ‘s turn. Thank you for your wonderful wit!!!!!!!!!l lol u r awesome

  7. TOfan says:

    Archugeezer, I not only love every word of your post but I just LOVE that you took this particular tour. “This Christmas” is definitely the highlight of the tour for me and was also the first song that welcomed me back to David’s music. (a big relief, let me tell you) … it’s also comforting to hear that us non-LDS peeps aren’t the only ones who felt that sadness mingled with our pride in David’s courage and strength.

    Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!!! <333

  8. Hello fellow archies, ive been looking for the part:1 and 2 of the screencaps. are you guys on facebook? BTW im a filipino working in United Arab Emirates (UAE)

  9. Nan says:

    Great post Geeze!!! Some of us watched “This Christmas” after the Beaver Creek show on Muldur’s computer when we were back at the hotel. We could get the video but not the audio. Everyone should try that too. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love his voice as everyone does, but we had a little fun just watching the groovy moves. What can I say, he’s incredible!

  10. Heidijoy says:

    This Christmas is helping me get my groove on. Thank You Archugeezer!!

  11. KathyH says:

    Love it! Can’t wait to start my own tour and the guide will make it that much more delightful! Isn’t that the way of everything in David’s fan world. Everything IS more fun because of the fellowship of fans.

    My tour will wait just a bit because I’m drinking in all that I can of “The Philippines.” (How does he manage to DO everything he does, have only SOME of it video’d, and exhaust my ability to keep up?)

  12. sunny says:

    Archugeezer: Loved your witty comments! I was at the SLC show and still have a hard time looking at the videos from that show but like you “This Christmas” is one I can look at and not cry my eyes out!! This site has been so fun to read during David’s time in the Philippines!!

  13. refnaf says:

    Thanks for ths post Geezer…… I intend to relive the tour at some point in the future….. it was the best possible show, I still can’t get over it, but I can’t watch yet 🙂

    I will do as you did (great idea) watch each song at each venue>

    For now this is me “David’s protracted farewell is not only quite public; it is downright flail-inducing. In fact, it hardly seems like a farewell at all. Fans are gobbling up his goodbye goodies as if there were no end in sight”

    eep

  14. peppertara says:

    Archugeezer, loved your post and your wonderful, humourous comments. Loved your insight and how you put it all together. An epic experience for you! For me I have been reliving the tour since it happened. Didn’t want any interruptions, wanted to keep the flow going…business as usual for me. That’s my way but I completely understand those who need to take little bites at a time. “This Christmas” is one delicious big bite! Can keep you going for sometime. Thankfully we will always have David’s ‘groovy’ songs to go back to with a good guarantee to make us smile. Speaking of big bites, I thing David is leaving us with quite the gourmet menu…..could take me a good two years to catch up with all of it’s goodness and to savour and enjoy every bit of it. Has to be the most hardworking, considerate young artist out there. Can’t believe how much he has accomplished and given of himself in just the last month or so. It really won’t be a goodbye but a thank you so much David and we will see you later. 🙂

  15. Archugeezer says:

    Thanks for your comments, fellow fan friends!

    David has been the pied piper of the Philippines. I am grateful to have the upbeat “This Christmas” as a safety net, as I could be at risk for a relapse into melancholy once the OPM of “classic love songs” is released.

    • TOfan says:

      “safety net” … perfection description, AG!

      and since you mentioned the OPM album, here are some film clips from the Forevermore Press conference from Orange Magazine TV:
      http://orangemagazinetv.com/2012/david-archuleta-releases-1st-opm-album-forevermore/

      and the aMAZing JR4DA videotaped the whole thing in 8 parts!!! Check out her channel, starting HERE.

      From part 3 at 5:00 (thx. JR for including in your More Info):
      “I’ve worked very hard for the last 4 years or so. To be able to come to where I am today… to be able to have the opportunities given – to record, to do shows, to provide for the fans – and it is also been my way of living, I mean it’s been my job, too. So to have to decide and leave all that is very hard. But I think this is something when you trust God. I dunno what’s gonna happen in 2 years. I dunno if I’m gonna have to start from scratch again. But I trust God. I have trusted Him so far and He has never let me down. I don’t want to let Him down cos this decision is for Him. So I trust that He knows my intention and He will provide a way when I get back, like He always has.”

  16. peppertara says:

    David gives some very heart melting interviews. Hardest working young artist out there I think and boy did he deserve a break after working his little …. off for 36 days straight!
    Aw David, don’t think you will have to start from scratch again after two years. In any case we will be here. 🙂
    Oh and Kizzi….loved your comments, rings true for me too, very nicely said.

  17. PandasMama says:

    Archugeezer,
    Thank you for this lovely post and idea. I wasn’t fortunate enough to attend the My Kind of Christmas tour and have only watched some selected videos so I think I will need to plan my own trip down Christmas memory lane. This sounds like a great Christmas in July project for me. By then I will be totally missing David and dreading the upcoming deployment of my own son, too. When my son announced he wished to join the US Navy after high school graduation, I never in a million years dreamed that my “lifeline” would be leaving me just months before my baby. At least I will have a plethora of awesome videos to comfort me thanks to all of David’s fantastic fans.

  18. TOfan says:

    New post/thread!

    🙂

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