Yesterday evening the same aforementioned band played a 30-minute set in Galveston at an open-mic showcase. The host of the jam is a great guy named Joe, his band is the house band in the sense that it's their back-line that is used for all the acts to work with...well, I brought my keyboard and my hundred-pound Twin Reverb amp...took me about 8 minutes to get all set-up and ready. Joe couldn't have been nicer, but he was a little confused about what band we were...he thought it was going to be Pee Wee and his band (we played there last Saturday night and he was there) and he was announcing us as such, but I pulled him aside and said no, it's THIS band...he was like, oh! OK! Anyway, with no "practice", no music stands and no set list, we played a house-rocking 30-minute set of kick-ass rock n' roll (Love The One you're With, Gimme Some Lovin', James Dean, Jenny (6345789), Balinese, One After 909, a couple of others that I don't remember, which means it was a great set). We rocked, we ruled, we won over a completely alien audience. Folks were coming up to us, thanking us for the set...Bikers, Regulars, Musicians, everybody...my own world was given a gigantic boost of confidence when a black gentleman well into his 70s pulled me aside and shook my hand and he talked into my ear: "I just wanted to tell you. You're the best I've ever seen." I was taken aback. I received similar compliments from the open-mic participants and I appreciated that, but I know that guy. He's been around a lot of the gigs I've played down there over the last several years, but this was the first time he'd ever seen me play keyboards. Joe the host was utterly flabbergasted...he expected me to play guitar...what's coming out about me now is that I've built this long-standing reputation around the Bay Area as a guitar player and now I'm showing up playing keyboards. It is confusing to folks at first but they immediately dig what I'm doing...yesterday evening was one of those gigs where I "let go"...I just kicked into it and played from the heart...it went over LARGE...well, glory is fleeting. I entertained thoughts on the drive back home (72 miles) of having my own band, of playing this song, that song, playing here, playing there, but I woke up this morning and put all those ideas to rest. I'm making great dough as a sideman and I don't have any of the headaches of a bandleader. If it works, don't fix it! It was a wonderful evening, and a great way to cap off a laid-back weekend. Congratulations to the Texans...monster win yesterday, I just hope they can be consistent all season with stuff like they showed in that game. Listening to the radio today, you'da thought they just won the Super Bowl... Cheers, WC1
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