It was a long time coming. I bugged Deb S. for a gig at Lehigh’s wonderful arts center, and she said, ‘How about February 2013?” Well, it finally rolled around.
A Curtain Warmer – play in the lobby for the gathering folks for about an hour. Then everyone goes in to see the pros. low pay…. live audience.
Mountain Heart were pros. 6 piece bluegrass/newgrass band, all hot players, great stage show, good music played well. They’ve played with Allison Krauss and the like, and played the Grand Old Opry 150 times. That’s pedigree.
My set was vintage Dave Fry, and I must say, I really enjoy playing for a listening arts crowd. I can have an artsy edge, play hard, engage, tell stories, react to people, create a conversation with a room full of people.
A few folk showed up early, so I started early, and that’s okay. One had a guide dog, so I did I Wanna be a Dog for them, and the dog loved it, and continued to be a vocal participant throughout the set, to much amusement and commentary on my part. Mandolin tunes, a mix of swing, novelty, country and rock and roll. I even had a request for Santa Assassin, which I honored – only 11 months til Xmas…….
I headed down to Godfrey’s after the long set by Mountain Heart to hear the strains of another hero of mine Chris Smither. He’s been paying the rent here a GD’s for a long time – though, in our first few years, his show was $3 tix, a $100 guarantee (which we didn’t make). I also got to see him at Lehigh when I was a student there. He played Maybelline. I didn’t know that somebody could play rock and roll on an acoustic guitar. Seriously. Opened up a few brain cells in this poor boy.