Friday, September 15, 2006

the thing about singers

Of course, next week, there may be a "What's up with the sax players?!" post, but i doubt it.

For the first time EVER i actually got royally pissed off at someone i was on stage with. So pissed off that i wanted to bodily remove him from my presence and possibly beat him senseless with my bass.

This guy played it off that he was a singer. And of course, he was well past three sheets to the wind. So he's up there doing some acapella "midnight special", which really didn't sound too bad. I was asked to come back up (it was near the end of the night) and jam some stuff with him and the other guys up there. He asks to do a Johnny Cash song. Ok. No prob. Folsom Prison Blues, the fallback song for this kind of thing. And that stupid song went on for-fucking-ever, like 10 minutes, because in the middle of it, he starts rambling off, and he's SO LOUD he's all i can hear. Ok i know the song well enough i can deal. After that, we were kind of discussing what to do next, and he's hollering fucking redneck jokes, and he keeps hollering even after we start the next song. Redneck jokes.. you might be a redneck if... and i yelled NO!!!! from the back, and he gave me the stinkeye, so i returned it. I'm just irritated now. So we're playing some other song, and he doesn't know it, so he's just standing there and in between the vocal parts that someone else was singing, he's like making monkey noises or something, and hollering some more, and still i can't hear anyone else over his blathering bonehole. And that went on for too long. So we stop the song finally, he goes "Can you play some hillbilly music?" to the lady who runs the jam, and she's being nice, because she's that way, which is why she runs the jam- she's very good at being politic. She's being nice and says "No hillbilly music" and the drunken sot says, "Why not any hillbilly music?" And i've got fucking steam coming out my ears by now, because i'm not always so nice.. and i can't contain myself anymore, "Because it's a BLUES JAM, you FOOL" comes flying out of my mouth. I get two stinkeyes, one from the dude and one from the lady. Dude turns back around and i look right at her and boot this guy in the ass (not really booting him physically, but making the motion of it and getting real close) and being pretty obvious about "get this guy off the stage, please". So he never got off stage. He just stayed up there and said all this drunkass stupid shit, never sang a song, until another one of the guys took his mike away and started singing another song.

Ok so, you know, if you can maintain, AND carry a tune in a coal car, please come up and share. But something like that, don't be surprised if you find yourself flying over the stage rail with the bass players bootprint on your back. Cos i was pissed the fuck off. Not because he wrecked it for me, but because he made it impossible to hear everyone else on the stage, and so we all sounded like shit from the floor. Once he was gone, damn we all sounded pretty good.

See, it isn't always someone else being an asshole. I have my moments, and i totally will cop to them. I really made an effort last night not to just blow it, too, and i did pretty good.

You get these life lessons sometimes when you play music with other people. You don't learn them sitting in your room jammin to "Diver Down". Surprisingly, i've become a much calmer person since i started playing.

1 comment:

  1. I know a bhodisatva, a highly realized being. He is also at times a Bohemian, a wanderer, a trucker, a healer, a father, and a grandfather.

    He is an incredible guitarist, but is impossible to play along with, because he hears rhythm and melody that no one else does.

    His favorite venue is Old Folks Homes, Senior Centers, Assisted Living, etc. He likes very old people, the ones near death. He plays, sings, and tells jokes.

    The songs are golden and the jokes are hysterically funny, but the geriatric audience never gets them, or never lets on that they do. He laughs a lot though.

    Is music medicine? If so, what does it heal?