The gig yesterday at See Sound Lounge was absolutely incredible. The place was packed, which they were very happy about since it was a Sunday and Father's Day. The front of the venue has a huge window which was opened to let in the breeze and it managed to draw some passery-by in as well while we played. We didn't set up under their big movie screen, rather we were right next to the bar and the window facing the street. Brian Quist came in with his cameras and filmed the entire event.
We met some fantastic people there, including a guy named Spencer, who gave us some great ideas on other Seattle venues to play, and some radio stations to contact about our material. He also said we should consider playing in the beautiful state of Hawaii. If we can swing it, the whole band would have their airline tickets and hotel accomodations paid for, and we'd be the exclusive band for one venue for a several weeks' stint, earning whatever they were able to pay us. (But when you're in Hawaii for free, you've already been paid, really.)
We were also offered another gig to play for an opening of an art exhibit. It's involved with the Seattle Art Musuem and would be a high-profile, high-exposure show, but we would have to stay through the evening of July 1st, and we simply don't think we can make the drive back to Columbia, Missouri in two days, in time to rest and rehearse for our Fire in the Sky show. But the man who offered us the gig is on our list to keep in contact with!
Prior to the show I conversed with a woman named Dinah Brein who is a songwriter whose music has been placed on numerous television shows and movies, who's been in Nashville for a decade, been in LA for a while, and is now in Seattle. She shared some advice, and we chatted for a while about my goals and direction, and she took my bio and other materials to peruse. I will be keeping in contact with her to see if we can establish a beneficial working relationship. A publicist can really make the difference between a flop and a successful show when you go to a town in which you are virtually unknown. They set the stage before you get there, setting up in-studio performances with radio, interviews sometimes on TV, usually radio, etc. It generally works better in catching people's attention than does putting up flyers on telephone poles, although that's something else that a publicist can line up if you get some people working for you.
The last time Michael and I played in Seattle as a duo we were at the Intiman Theater in Seattle Center and that was 4 years ago. Several people in the audience who had been to THAT show noted the change, the growth, the improvement in that time. Many people came up to us and commented on our chemistry onstage, which has been there from the start and is the reason this whole thing began. It was a very cool way to get back to our roots. At that time, four years ago, Michael's favorite song of mine was 'Sometimes Sun, Sometimes Rain' but now it is a newer song called 'All Along.'
We had a sound-duo (two people running sound for us) and one of them was a friend of the family named Lisa, who was one of my brother's very best friends from college until his death. Her drummer, Dave was also there with her helping with sound. At one set break, there was a group of people who had asked about my brother's death and were given the story behind 'Find Heaven.' Although we'd opened the show with it, they requested we play it again, so we made it the finale. The people who had requested it were very appreciative (one of them had recently lost a brother) but the sound guy was also teary-eyed over it. He's never met my brother, but said he felt he knew him through the music, and through what Lisa had told him. We all felt like he was there somehow, especially since my brother's probably the person most responsible for my love of and commitment to playing music.
Finally, perhaps the most special part of the day was having my grandmother Glenda there, who hasn't seen me perform live in over 6 years. She's 80 years old but looks and acts 60, and managed to calmly accept the hot venue, the loud music and the slightly tipsy people. She loved it. Her word was 'awesome.' And I thank her for requesting 'People on a Train,' because it may well be the best tune we performed that night, and most likely will be chosen for the live DVD footage that will be accompanying the Nashville EP. Thank you, Grandma! And if any of you reading this haven't seen it in my liner notes for my CDs, my grandmother is the true voice of an angel, the first person I knew closely who can sing like nobody's business.
It was a great day...the only thing I didn't get to do was talk to my father personally. He was gone and I had to leave a message on his answering machine. I don't think he'll ever make it to one of my live performances unless it's in Sandpoint, ID. Oh well, I still thought about him all day. It was Father's DAy after all.