Friday: Back at the Park Tavern! This used to be our big gig of every month in the summer, but now it's just "where are we this Friday." We have this date in May and one in June, and I think that's all our schedule will allow.
We played three new ones on this gig: Jackie Blue, Shakedown Street, and Lady (by Styx--not to be confused with the Little River Band song or the Commodores song or the Kenny Rogers song). I really like Jackie Blue--it's fun and the vibe is cool; Shakedown Street was unexpectedly enjoyable; Lady is pretty over-the-top, but definitely a 70s classic. The rest of the setlist was pretty much our standard stuff these days.
We had a decent crowd for this one--maybe six or seven hundred people? Not a slammin' sellout by any means. Maybe it was the holiday weekend, or school had just let out this week, or the Atlanta Jazz Festival was cranking up, or we were supposed to get rain...who knows. This group wasn't bad at all, though, and it didn't seem any miserably drunk people while I was loading out. Easy gig. Plus, home by midnight! I can't say that very often.
Sunday: Airport time! The highway was very pleasantly quiet this morning. "Nobody's in town this weekend," I thought. Turns out, they were all at the airport, and everybody was acting like they hadn't flown in fifteen years. Major traffic jams at the check in, the security, the gate--the kind of annoyance that makes you want to push old people and little kids out of the way.
This crap carried over to the plane. The main cabin had three seats (A, B, and C), the aisle, and then three seats (D, E, and F). My seat was F. A couple got on the plane after me, and their seats were D and E, except that instead of a seat, D was a jump seat for a flight attendant, so the Dude decided he was going to sit in C. Then his girlfriend/wife asked if I would switch with the Dude because she's a nervous twit and hates to fly and all this crap. Fine. I'm half asleep. I sit in C, Dude sits in F. Five minutes later, a huge, muscular guy shows up and says his seat is C, and I say, "Cool. My seat is actually F." The Dude in F jumps up to sort this out by calling the flight attendant. The flight attendant sends him to the gate person, who is apparently standing in the jetway. All I want to do is go to sleep.
The Dude and Muscles go to the front, and according to the Dude, the gate person basically tells him to go sit in his seat and shut up, so he's all worked up--the gate person was rude to him. Muscles sits in F. I'm in C. Dude sits in the jump seat. Flight attendant quickly nixes this. The dude whines, the girlfriend whines--"Why did Delta sell me a seat that doesn't exist?" Fair enough. The flight attendant finds them two empty seats two rows back. I go to sleep...
...only to be awakened an hour later by a flight attendant, trying to get Mr. Muscles' attention in seat F: "Mr. Freeman? Mr. Freeman?" Out of REM sleep I stumble and tap the flight attendant--"I'm David Freeman." "Oh! We at Delta want to thank you for flying with us and congratulate you on your Platinum Medallion status." Cool/godfuckingdamnit. Please--NEVER do this to me again when I'm sleeping. Seriously. Sleeping on the plane is how I got to Platinum Medallion. My status should say "ASLEEP."
Onward--we landed at LaGuardia, and a van drove us to Darien, CT for a birthday party in a tent next to a house. Incredible house.
Darien is apparently pronounced Dairy-Ann. It should not rhyme with Marion. Got it.
I had another crappy Fantom keyboard--the pitch bend joystick was weird, the high G# was broken, and the thing didn't read my card, so I had to upload my settings from my laptop. The lower keyboard was a pretty nice Nord stage, but I'd much prefer a Nord Electro. At soundcheck, Zach had to do a lot of extra work to find some open frequencies for the in ears. The sax line went bad right before we started, too. Once we got up and running, though, things were fine--it was all easily tolerable for one gig.
Lots of time to kill before our first set, so I went for a run, this time on a route suggested by the birthday boy. It was a very quiet day.
The house where we'd set up was right on the water, with a long pier right across the street. Check it out. Super cool.
|the crow's nest patio outside of our green room|
|our green room|
|we watched Jaws and Jaws 2|
When I started playing, it looked like we were going to mostly be ignored, with most of the party congregating around the bar. However, people gradually made their way over, and by the start of the second set, we had a everybody's attention. It turned out to be a nice gig, and we played two encores before shutting it down.
None of the three new songs made it on to the set list, though, which is disappointing. I was hoping we'd at least play Jackie Blue a few more times.