The second part of my Thursday doubleheader began with a long drive down to Philly, a two hour drive in drive-time traffic. I was glad I figured that out and arrived in the nick of time. Dave, our escort at the hospital for the evening got us signed in and off we went to two wards in this very big children’s hospital.
Dave would knock on a door and ask if the patients would like some music. Some do, some don’t, which is fine. Those that do turn out to make some wonderful audiences and delightful situations in very trying times for these families.
Our first visit was with a mom and a very young child (a year old?) so we did a simple song that the mom started singing with us and, more importantly, with the child on her chest. That’s some deep vibes going on.
One teenage girl with four women in her family came next so I chose Giants. The other ladies and the patient had a good time with the spooky sounds, and the room shrunk right down to the moment. So very good, and I believe valuable for the folks in the room.
Another room had a shy boy with Spiderman face paint was sitting on his mom’s lap. He really wasn’t into reacting with us, but his mom had here smart phone to tape us. He got to point the phone at us to record it. It was a safe way to take it all in. Normally, I dislike using devices in a live music situation, but this was his entry into the situation, and he will also have it to look at later on. He’ll probably appreciate us down the line.
A great moment happened with a two-year old girl with arms heavily bandaged, sitting with her mom on one side and a nurse on the other. She said, ‘Sunshine’ immediately. I took that as ‘You are My Sunshine’ and we launched into it. She started to sing along. It was amazing to see such a youngster know and sing along to this classic tune. Again, some deep musical roots going on. As we played with the tune, she sat mesmerized, singing along as best she could. She thanked us as we left; it was we that should have been thanking her.
These gigs are incredible situations to learn from and bask in the love that flows in these intensely personal connections.
Ansel took me out for Korean food afterwards and we did some heavy catching-up. I am a lucky man to have Ansel for a musician/artist/friend. I hope he lands somewhere where he can do what he loves and make some money doing it. It’s really, really tough to do now a days.
Long drive back to town from Philly, but I listened to the Phillies beat the Nationals on the radio. Summer baseball on the radio is good stuff.