Chance Encounter: Brush with Fame


March 15, 2016. I remember this day well. It was the day I FINALLY got to see my favorite singer, Keith Harkin, live in concert. The venue? The Hard Rock Café in Philly. I go to school at Temple University, and the stop closest to the venue was one stop from Temple’s station. It was easy to get to, so I figured I’d go.My mom and brother came too.

After my brother and I were done classes, we hopped on the train to go. We walked around a bit before grabbing a bite to eat at the Hard Rock before the concert. When we finally arrived, the hostess said if we had been any later, we wouldn’t have been able to sit in the main area since they were beginning to set up.

We sat down and ordered. I decided to look in the shop and purchased a pin and a reusable bag. Suddenly, they started setting up. My mom turned to me and said, “Ashley, there’s Keith.” I turned around and there he was! Leather jacket, long blonde hair. I sighed. This is happening.

They set up the stage with microphones, stools, guitars, and even a shamrock scarf for the one mic stand. My mom then wanted to use the restroom and asked if I had to. The restrooms, mind you, were down the staircase to the left. You have to walk past the stage, where they were doing the soundcheck. I decided to go.

On our way across the room, we passed a girl on her phone. We mad eye contact. I thought to myself, “That must be his fiancé.” My mom asked if it was and I said yes. She said that we could ask if I could get a picture of Keith warming up. She asked, and the answer was yes! Free soundcheck and I got to get pictures of it!!

We listened to the soundcheck some more and went to check out the Philadelphia Room, where the Hard Rock displayed memorabilia from Philly-area musicians. I, of course, wanted to check to see if the had Hall and Oates, and they did! We then went outside to wait to be seated for the concert.

There were multiple entrances, and each entrance was designated for those with general admission or VIP tickets. We had general admission tickets, so we got in line for that entrance. We were the first in line! I was bummed that only VIP ticketholders got to meet him, but we’d still get great seats.

We sat on the ground since it would be a while until the doors opened. We listened to the music that blared from the Hard Rock and talked. The wait felt like forever and the concert could not start soon enough. All of a sudden, my brother says, “Keith!” I looked up and he, along with others, walked right in front of me. If I had my feet out, he would have tripped.

I could not believe how close he was! He was inches away! He walked through the general admission doors, which made me feel better. Hey, the star of the show walked through the door I would have to walk through. The show was magnificent and he was well worth the wait. But the close encounters that were unexpected made the night that much more special.

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