Again, another warm and fuzzy evening amongst friends Jackie Tice and Bill Hall. We shared tales of Kerrville New Folk contests, Swiss-Italians’ love of Native American music, howling at the moon at the Philly Folk Festival and other such trivia. Most of all, Jackie and Bill shared some really fine tunes with their rich vocal talents and master songwriting abilities. Simply a pleasure to be on stage with them and soak it in. Jackie’s Native flute was great, as was Bill’s Southside Bethlehem song.
I was pleased to look up and see Rosalie, my daughter in the audience. She’s visiting from CT for the week and she’s been to several of the recent evenings at Godfrey’s. I was tickled she got to hear my artist friends and her dad in such a nice format of conversational music.
Bill mentioned how he appreciates my more ‘sensitive’ material, so I stepped up and rendered John Prine’s Far From Me, a song that is quite evocative of my recent marital upheaval. It was a good chance to be able to play a tune like that. A very rare chance, actually, and somewhat of an artistic risk for me. I pretty much nailed it and it felt good.
We played Bill’s Haul Away tune, connecting Pete Seeger, The Sloop and Bill’s song. As the lights came up and folks dispersed in communal chatter, I came off stage to hug Rosalie and there was my friend John Gorka. He’s on tour of NYC, Philly, NJ gigs and had stopped in on a relative (his brother was in the car) whim. He had picked up some food-to-go down the street (from Minnesota?) and saw that Godfrey’s was in action. He said he caught the last few songs and I hope he caught Far From Me.
What was really nice )that legacy kick I’m on) is that Godfrey’s core folks got to share some ‘Moments with John’ on a slow night in Bethlehem. True contemporary friends like Dina, Mike and Sam got to shake hands with John and experience his humble presence. John has that ‘something’ that I think he would acknowledge as a Godfrey’s learned experience, and he uses it with great craft in his shows and is no less real in person.
Nice comments from old fans and new friends on the Dave’s Night Out format. I simply wish it could have better attendance; the quality of the performances, intellectual discussions and the warmth that flows off the stage is really, really good. and unique as far as I can fathom.
Ya do what ya can in the Lehigh Valley.