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The Four Seasons Total Landscaping concert was a big hit! Huge! Probably the best concert ever!

“I’ve played Giants Stadium...Written songs with Weezer. Been on stage with Joan Jett. None of that compares to this,” Laura Jane Grace said of performing at Four Seasons Total Landscaping Saturday.

Concertgoers sing and dance next to a cutout of Rudy Giuliani while Laura Jane Grace performs during a concert at Four Seasons Total Landscaping in Northeast Philadelphia on Saturday.
Concertgoers sing and dance next to a cutout of Rudy Giuliani while Laura Jane Grace performs during a concert at Four Seasons Total Landscaping in Northeast Philadelphia on Saturday.Read moreHEATHER KHALIFA / Staff Photographer

As Brian Sowden approached the gates to Four Seasons Total Landscaping on Saturday afternoon, past the crematorium across the street and the sex shop next door, he was dumbfounded.

“Just walking up to this location, I was like, ‘One, I can’t believe there was a press conference here, and two, now there’s a punk show!’” Sowden, 41, of North Wales, said.

Nine months after Rudy Giuliani yelled “Don’t be ridiculous!” during a now-infamous news conference at the Northeast Philly landscaping business, ridiculous is just what Philly got on Saturday, when a life-size cardboard cutout of Giuliani crowd-surfed over punk-rock fans during a performance by musician Laura Jane Grace at the same unlikely venue.

“I’ve played Giants Stadium. I’ve played Wembley. Sang on stage with Cyndi Lauper. Written songs with Weezer. Been on stage with Joan Jett. None of that compares to this,” Grace said on stage. “I’m 40 years old and I can draw a bigger crowd than Rudy, and I have more Twitter followers than [Donald Trump], which isn’t [so bad] for a transgender high school dropout.”

About 200 people, some from as far away as North Carolina and Florida, attended the concert in Four Seasons’ gravel parking lot, where staffers set up a small stage, surrounded with shrubberies, near the company’s now-notorious garage door. Landscaping equipment, bags of rock salt, fuel tanks, wheelbarrows, and a very tall Sunoco gas station sign nearby helped set the mood, while Four Seasons trucks around the perimeter provided plenty of photo opportunities for fans.

» READ MORE: No. Not that Four Seasons. How Team Trump's news conference ended up at a Northeast Philly landscaping firm.

Tickets to the show sold out in 17 minutes last month, and many of those interviewed at the concert said they were longtime fans of Grace (who also fronts the band Against Me!) or opening musician Brendan Kelly (of the bands The Lawrence Arms and The Falcon). The unusual venue, fans said, was just an added bonus.

“The fact it’s these particular people playing at this particular place makes it special,” said Janet Snyder, 36, of Gloucester City, N.J.

Snyder, who wore a face mask with an unsettling picture of Giuliani’s face on it, was one of two people who snagged tickets to the show because she has a Four Seasons Total Landscaping tattoo. After the 2016 election, she got a tattoo on her shoulder of a heart with the words NASTY WOMAN written inside. In February, she said, she got a bottle of champagne below her nasty woman tattoo and the branch of leaves from Four Seasons’ logo above it in celebration of the 2020 election.

“I was prepared for this six months ago,” she said.

Ethan Savage got his Four Seasons ink on his calf this week, after seeing concert promoter Dave Kiss tweet that he’d give away tickets to the first two people to get Four Seasons tattoos.

Savage, 23, of Deptford, is a massive fan of Grace and said he was happy to get a tattoo of a woman-owned business for the chance to see one of his favorite artists perform. It was Grace, Savage said, who inspired him to come out as trans. After the concert, Savage got Grace to sign his leg directly below his Four Seasons tattoo, and he plans to have her signature permanently tattooed on him as well.

“It doesn’t get much better than this,” Savage said. “It was awesome.”

Around the gravel lot, fans in Four Seasons shirts, Gritty shirts, and Gritty riding a Four Seasons lawnmower shirts, sipped on Four Seasons’ new Lawn Jawn beer by Funk Brewing, snacked on Philly Pretzel Factory soft pretzels, and stocked up on branded merchandise from Philly Drinkers. Neither the crematorium across the street nor the Fantasy Island sex shop next door had tables at the event.

At one point during the show, a man in the alley behind Four Seasons tried to hang a Trump flag from the business’ fence “because I thought it’d be funny!” he yelled, before he ran away with the flag as soon as Four Seasons staffers started walking his way. At other points, curious Northeast Philly residents watched the concert through the fence while eating hoagies straight from the Wawa wrapper.

Grace, who’s also slated to play shows with Kelly at Kung Fu Neck Tie this weekend, kept the crowd rocking with songs like “True Trans Soul Rebel,” “Pints of Guinness Make You Strong,” and “Osama bin Laden as the Crucified Christ,” a song that she dedicated “to the death of fascists, always.” In between songs, Grace talked with the crowd about how the show was a surreal experience “in a Salvador Dalí” kind of way.

“It’s been fun both imagining how this is all going to play out and then also just like imagining Four Seasons as a company, thinking about the strife and the drama that must go on internally,” she said. “There’s probably like the one side of the company, or the friends of the company, who are like, ‘You all lost your way, man! You used to be about cutting grass.’”

Michael Siravo, director of operations for Four Seasons, and Sean Middleton, director of sales, said Four Seasons is still all about that grass. Despite a “phenomenal show,” and requests from other musicians to play at their business, at this point, Saturday’s concert — like the company’s foray into hosting news conferences — was a “one and done.”

But between the two events, Siravo said Saturday’s show was definitely “a lot more organized.”

“A lot more planning and effort went into this concert,” Middleton said. “And we knew what we were getting into ahead of time.”