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The Day that Music Died: The End Of The Penny Arcade Era

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It’s the greatest question in rock n’ roll, “when was the day that music died”? Well for me and for my band Penny Arcade, that day was yesterday, September 17, 2014. It was the day that we no longer owned our band van, Lincoln. The last symbol of our “Road Warrior ways” and of a time that we believed anything and everything is possible. After many nights of debate and long discussions, my husband (who is the drummer in the band) and I decided to sell our band van. After 24 hours of being on Craigslist, we had someone buy it and it officially became the end of an era, the day that the music of Penny Arcade had died. I sat there, as I watched Lincoln and his new owner drive out of our driveway and away from the house with such a sullen smile and a goodbye wave and I had to keep telling myself to not cry. I asked myself ‘Did we do the right thing?’, ‘There were so many memories in that van, why did we just sell it like that?’ but then I realized that Lincoln did the same thing for us in selling it as when we first bought it; he helped us move forward. When we first became the owners of Lincoln, he gave us a hope that we would succeed in our dreams of being a touring band and ultimately professional musicians. With many miles, smiles and tears, he carried us from California to New York to help us follow our dreams and now he has helped us move on to other dreams because maybe it was just time for us to realize that he needed to help other peopleachieve their dreams. Maybe by holding on to him for as long as we did, it created a constant reminder of a past and a far removed dream that would never revive itself. I had this vision of selling the van to another band that would probably put another 50,000 miles on it before he would retire but I felt it would have been right that he went to an owner that surrounds themselves with music. Luckily for me, the new owner works at a church and the van is going to be used for church services and choir concerts. So I feel fortunate that we have found a new owner that will take good care of it. Yet, I still can’t help but look out to the driveway of my kitchen window, gazing at the now empty space where he was parked, lost in thoughts of the many memories that we have all shared with that van and my dreams for the hopes I had for the van in our future.

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I would tell myself that Lincoln was just a part of our lives that defined the “Penny Arcade Era” but now I realized that he wasn’t a part of our lives but we were a part of his. From a couple who used him to rescue dogs, to another couple that used him to travel the country and play music, and to now a retired Vet that will use him for his church and a personal vehicle. Who knows where he will end up next? Let’s just hope that he will bring his new owner and any future owners as much happiness that he has brought me.

Shortly after the new owner left, I got into the car to go run an errand and ultimately to get my mind off of selling Lincoln. I turned on the radio to lose myself to some music when I find I’m listening to the song made famous by Uncle Kracker. And the lyrics that I heard were:

Thanks for the joy you’ve given me
I want you to know that I believe in your song
And rhythm, and rhyme, and harmony
You helped me along, you’re makin’ me strong

Give me the beat boys and free my soul
I wanna get lost in your rock and roll and drift away
Give me the beat boys and free my soul
I wanna get lost in your rock and roll and drift away

This became for me the perfect way to send off Lincoln to which, every time I hear it I will now forever think of myself driving across the country, with the wind blowing my hair, a cigarette in my hand and my love and my friends by my side.

Carry on and keep moving forward for the only thing you can see in the past, is how far you have come.
Good bye, Lincoln.  May we cross roads again.

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