I knew this would be a strange gig as we set up at 5 on stage in the community pavilion. No kids and families were gathering, but old folks with lawn chairs started setting up in and outside the pavilion. I was glad that I was asked to take part in this summer series but I don’t do oldies, polkas or youth band stuff. But I knew I had a full sound with John Christie on guitar and Kris Kehr on bass, and I was right.

We started strong from the beginning with Don’t Call Me Early, The Cat Came Back and July. We followed with Mr. Bojangles, Nadine and other equally strong material but no amount of clever patter and good renditions of obscure songs could hold this particular audience. Bit by bit old couples drifted off to their cars in the far parking lots and after an hour (out of two), the energy was ebbing in the building. This is a challenging kind of music for the general public.

I sprung BoJangles and We Are Welcomed on the boys and they did fine. I also did Here Comes the Sun out of nowhere and they did fine not playing. Spontaneity!

I had to check myself from making comments (I did make a few) on the departees, but thanked those who hung around. About an hour and quarter in, I felt that we should end it up early (9pm?! closing time), so we finished up with Pay Bo Diddley, Lessons, Dixie Chicken and brought it home at 8:40. The organizer lady didn’t complain and said she enjoyed what we did.

I realize I don’t have the repertoire for these kinds of gigs – giving ’em what they want. In spite of no drums, chick singers, etc. John, Kris and I have a remarkable full sound, especially on this wooden stage. It was Phat! and each of us played strong. I’m proud of what we did.

A couple of times I found myself distracted by the departing audience, muffed a few words in Rosie is a Friend of Mine and didn’t set up the right rhythm for Dixie Chicken (came out Bo Diddleyish), but the lads caught on. My Martin roared, John got nasty on guitar and Kris rocked on bass and I sang well. All in all, a good, creative gig.