Affitin A. from Orlando, FL was the winner of the Propeller experience to Win a Backstage VIP Experience with Incubus in West Palm Beach that took place in July 2022. Below is her recap of the experience.
Our trip was truly epic.
It started out Saturday when my sister-in-law and I arrived at the Hilton West Palm Beach. We checked into our lovely room and headed down to the pool area to enjoy drinks by the pool bar, some live music, and corn hole on the lawn by the pool.
The hotel was perfectly located across from a large plaza with several great restaurants and bars. We enjoyed some more live music and bar-hopped the night away. It was a perfect girls-night-out.
Sunday afternoon we met up with the rest of our guests (we got four additional tickets to the entire VIP experience!) and headed down to iThink Financial Amp for the day. We met with our angel of a coordinator, Kimberly with The Make Yourself Foundation upon arrival. She was so friendly as she stayed with us throughout the entire day, navigating us from one experience to the next.
We started with the pre-show jam session, where we got to watch Incubus warm up. Brandon grabbed a guitar and we enjoyed Pistola and The Warmth amongst small riffs here and there. The guys joked with each other and with us in the crowd. A few lucky ones around Mike got a guitar pick. The atmosphere was intimate and casual, and offered athose of us in the small crowd a moment to simply exist in their space quietly.
From there we moved to the meet and greet. While Covid restrictions were still in place, and maybe one day hugs can again happen, at least masks were off to see smiles. We expressed our love and thanks for their craft, and they were as gracious as always.
From there we hung out in the shade of the fishbowl and enjoyed Sublime doing a few more sound checks as the stage was reset. Afterwards, we were taken on a backstage tour, meeting audio, tour crew members, and the chefs. We saw tour buses and trailers. We got snow-cones, that Jose exclaimed excitedly came in all kinds of flavor colors!
Everyone was beyond welcoming and no one seemed the least bit put-out that six fans wandered through their world.
Kimberly led us to our private dressing room, casually next to Sublime's, with The Aquadolls down the hall, where we were allowed to relax. Adult beverages, cupcakes (compliments of the tour chef) and tour merchandise were waiting for us.
Outside the trailers the venue had a pool and pool-side bar where we enjoyed some pizza and more adult beverages. Kilmore even came to hang out with us. He bonded with my girlfriend over their shared Philly origins (and his love for the Steelers while she's an Eagles fan). We took shots to celebrate the start of their tour. He was kind enough to take some pictures and we sent him off with many a good luck wishes for the show.
Some more people joined us by the pool, friends of big Ed's. They're from the Keys, a place we frequent regularly and an instant easy connection was made. More cheers were shared for the show and their tour.
As show-time approached, much to our surprise, Kimberly tells us we get to watch all of Sublime with Rome's set on stage! They killed it. Rome's vocals and Eric's bass (along with his red wine he sipped on through the set) brought alive the music of my high-school years. It appeared Rome had some family and close friends in the crowd who were very clearly enjoying every moment for him. Proudly and loudly rocking out in the crowd. With Santeria playing, the entire amphitheater including the lawn filled in the back, waved our phone flashlights as they ended their set.
Kimberly moved us from stage left to the stage right risers, getting us prime spots for the main event as the first people there.
As the lights dimmed, and the crowds anticipation rose, the guys took the stage.
Kilmore begins the background track, Brandon starts beat-boxing and with that opening drop of Nice To Know You, the atmosphere was literally palpable.
To be on stage, right next to them throughout their set was like nothing any of us have ever experienced. I apologized to everyone around me as I jumped up and down, excitedly dancing, likely similar to those inflatable men in car parking lots. I can't help it, that is how I enjoy Incubus.
Of course their hits were played and enthusiastically received by the audience; Megalomaniac, Anna Molly, Stellar, The Warmth, Pardon Me and Drive. As a long-time fan, it was others that I relished in the most; Brandon and Mike playing Mexico, Here in My Room, Just A Phase, and Dig. We were treated to Vitamin, a song off their S.C.I.E.N.C.E album and one I literally scream-sang in excitement. That one I am unaplogetic for.
Brandon kicked off the encore with some pew-pew-pewwwwww noises (the pre-jam show people will understand that reference). He's the party starter.
The encore included Warning, a song that has a lot personal meaning to me, and always feels like a near-religious experience when I hear it. I have a tattoo dedicated to that song.
The show ended with Mike, the pipa and Aqueous Transmission. Pure bliss.
Kimberly went out of her way to get me the set list, autographed by the guys. That is now framed and on my office wall, next to other Incubus memorabilia.
I have loved this band since 6th grade when someone let me listen to Make Yourself on their portable CD player on the bus. Their music has been the constant background soundtrack to my life, 25+ years after discovering them. As I worked in the ICU as a Nurse Practitioner during Covid, I found myself exclusively listening to them. On the drive into work and on the way home, their music became my audio security blanket. Morning View and If Not Now, When? in particular.
The melodies, lyrics, and instrumentals helped me to deal with the emotional trauma of what we saw in the ICU. Their music continues to help me heal from it.
This band just brings me pure joy.
Can't wait to see them at Red Rocks in October!
So thank you Propeller, VIP Nation, The Make Yourself Foundation, Kimberly, Hannah, The Aquadolls, Sublime with Rome and Incubus for this experience.
With love and great memories,
Affitin, Jessica, Mike, Corey, Michela, & Ro