Not every gig is a great one; some are a long slogs as well. This was one of the tougher ones, though not without some very nice moments. I was hired by the local Exchange Club to play music for their fair on a Wednesday night in the band shell. They had hoped that lots of kids and families would make it out, but that wasn’t the case, partly because of a thunder shower around 5:30 and partly because of my meager draw. There were the rides, the food, the bingo and a Little Miss Northampton contest. Five girls showed up, a low turnout from 21 last year.
I set up my PA and started at 6 pm. The contest took an half hour and then it was two hours of me playing for this empty stretch of grass. A few kids and families came over but never with a critical mass. I was getting paid well, though. A couple of toddlers and grandmoms familiar with my CD’s did Peanut Butter and the Cat Came Back with me.
The defining moment came as the black gentleman tending the toilets passed by with his walker. Earlier, I had used the facilities and told him I get him his tip after I played. I went into My Girl and he turned around and sat down and sang along with me. I found the last $2 in my wallet and tucked into his shirt pocket.
Later his son stopped by the stage and gave me a fist bump and thanked me. We connected. After I packed up, I went back to the latrine and we chatted, the gent, his son and myself. We talked about his getting BB King’s autograph in Allentown a while back. I talked about Ray Charles and BB.
I didn’t really connected with many people during the three hour gig, but the one’s I did connect with counted.