Sometimes the good gigs just fall into my lap. Das Awkscht Fest is a nationally respected vintage car festival and my friend Phil Forchelli does sound and books the acts for the weekend. I often sneak into the lineup when Phil gives be a band gig on the beautiful old band shell in Macungie Memorial Park. Today I put together a pretty good band with John Christie, Kris Kehr and Kevin Soffera. “Let me introduce the band. John, meet Kevin.” It happened on stage today.
With only a run through with myself and John, we were able to put together a really nice, professional set of music. The other acts are what I would call more mainstream jazz, rock and blues bands, but I thought today was a viable country/blues/folk band. (An older sax player came up at the end and asked what do you call this music? This, I guess. Spot on.)
I am always amazed that folks sit and listen to my aesthetic sense of music. I only hope that I can put it together into an entertaining public show.
I picked out a set of Troubadour songs. Kevin produced the album so I knew he was set. As always, Kris is solid on bass and he gives me room to concentrate on the show. Invaluable and professional. John was a perfect sideman; he knew when to hide and when to wail. That is a very precious skill and we all admired his work today.
But what was remarkable was the creative synergy necessary to pull this off – on the fly. These are gigs where the mutual respect, love and talent is a given from the beginning. “Here we go…….” And it works. I live for these musical moments. We enjoyed the spontaneity and it sounded good.
A young family came up at the end and wanted my kids CD for their family road trip to the West. Definitely a two-fer so I gave them Shake It! and Peanut Butter. I know for a fact (and from past reviews) that my music will get them there and back. Singing in the car! This stuff has happened for years and I rarely hear about them. Again, I take it as a given.
I tackled the hard job of playing a full set, in hot weather and standing for the duration. It was a tough go but I got through it (not far from my mind/body awareness). A tip o’ the hat to Medicare and modern surgery and my YMCA membership! I could not have done this only a year ago. It’s great to move to the music.
A good set list:
Don’t Call Me Early (D)
We Are Welcomed (D)
Mr. Bojangles (D)
Rosie is a Friend of Mine (A)
Lessons from Pete (Am)