For this installment of my Blog for Gibson, I’m taking an even more “immediate and timely” stance in my writing, as I’m actually talking about something that occurred last night!
There was a huge benefit for a dear friend of the community where I sometimes reside in Massachusetts, who is dying of cancer, and the outpouring of love and food and just good wishes for this man whose life we were celebrating was truly an exceptional thing to witness. There was also a great outpouring of music, as there are many musicians who live here, and it has become very normal to hear some of these players at nearly every event, large or small.
There were some actual bands, as well as many folks who were just sitting in, as me and my daughter Lexie were doing. At one point, we came up to do one song, and Lexie really belted it out and had a great reaction from the gathering there. There was, however, just before we went on, some unknown guy who said to us “make it fast, no one told me about this!” The crowd was also touched by our father/daughter combination. Suddenly, at one point for reasons no one could explain, the lights that were only on the musicians were suddenly dimmed and then turned off! The rest of the place still had lights, but only the bands were not lit!
Nobody could figure out the problem, but meanwhile, we kept on playing, and everybody had a continued good musical time. I got to sit in yet again, this time with an all electric blues band, and they let me take over the show for awhile, and I really let it rip. It felt so good to be a part of a community where there was a sense of nothing but support. But I can tell you, this “sitting in” thing always seems to flare up some of the silliest nonsense and ego problems…the thing I can’t believe was that it would ever occur on a night such as this!!! A night dedicated to the spirit of a man who is dying, and who everyone is there to celebrate! Instead, it turned out the guy who turned off the lights was that same guy who told us to “make it fast”!! Seems he told a friend of mine that doing that would “shut up” the crowd!! Hey, buddy, this crowd, some 500 strong, was there to celebrate a man’s life, not to listen to music like they were in a club or something! To add icing to the cake, there was even a mean girl who is also a quasi-musician, who apparently was giving me some kind of grief about sitting in, when I didn’t know the man who we were there to celebrate! I couldn’t believe my own ears, as it was still too loud to really hear, but by the end of her ranting and raving, I realized she was thinking that with one song, I stole the show, even though I was not asked to play! Well, needless to say, I was asked to play, and everyone there EXPECTED me to play, and was pushing me up there! Totally amazing, how even at a solemn and heavy event like this, there would be some petty amateurs to really try to ruin it!
Well, it didn’t ruin it for me, because I felt I had done my part, played my heart out, and gave what the people and the man it was all about wanted. Beware of those silly and petty musical egos that can sometimes get in the way of a good night. It never ceases to amaze me how they always seem to crawl out of the woodwork!