A wonderful and warm day at Campus Square, with plenty of sunshine and moderate temps for an October gig. Last week, I was called on to fill in for someone and I got to do it acoustically, but this week called for setting up the sound and playing in the center of the brick square. Not a friendly, but I need to project for this one.


Behind me is a fountain that adds quite a bit of ‘white’ noise, so I asked the market manager Megan if we could turn it off, like we had in the past. She said that there was a change in the procedure, with work order and a fee for the market. I said that was too bad but I’d manage.


I was sloppy by my own standards, screwing up words and being imprecise on guitar. There were some folks I knew sitting and listening, so I felt a little uncomfortable, though I knew I sensed my mistakes more than they did. I haven’t played this messy in a while. I mentioned that I was playing in the key of H2O with the fountain behind me.


Half way through, one of the gentlemen who was sitting and listening, apparently heard my comment, and since he had some kind of job at Lehigh, came back and nodded to me. I waved back and then …. it was quiet…. He had stirred the pot and found someone to come down and turn the fountain off. The silence was remarkable, and made me realize how much I had to fight that ambient sound. Perhaps it had contributed to my ill ease and my struggle for the first hour.


Once I had quiet, the rest of the set went well. I commented that now I had to be in tune for the rest of the day. Actually, things went fine from there on. There’s something to ‘industrial noise’ that clouds the artistic pallet.


I have an evening gig in Nazareth at a retirement facility, so back to the shack for a few hours.