When word came out two days ago that Jeff Mangum, the reclusive lead singer of '90s rock band Neutral Milk Hotel, would play two shows at 2640, the performance space operated by Red Emma's Bookstore Cafe, it was like a bat signal to the hipster world.
Tickets went on sale at noon today both on-line and at Red Emma's, where a crowd had gathered before 7 a.m. to queue for tickets. Those standing in a line that snaked through Red Emma's aisles and out onto St. Paul St. (top) had come from as far away as Detroit and Philadelphia. Tickets were selling for $27, a great price for such a rare show, especially considering that tickets for Mangum's Boston show are going for $5,600 on eBay.
It's not surprising, given Mangum's thought-provoking, smart music, that the crowd at Red Emma's this morning was eminently friendly, with hopeful ticket-buyers passing the time reading the thousands of books within arm's reach (bottom) or chatting with the line neighbors.
By 1pm, tickets were sold-put, both in the store and on-line.