Friday, February 03, 2006

The Grin

It's been awhile since I saw live music. I mean LIVE music. Not just a couple guitar players at the bar (not that theres anything wrong with that, mind you, some of my bestest buds are bar guitar players) But live music with a band and lights and the whole schmegga.

I plumb forgot about the grin. You know. THE GRIN. It happens involuntarily. When a band falls into the groove and really starts rocking. Working the mojo. Making the magic happen. Yeah, THE grin. It stays with for awhile after the show is over too. During my Deadheading days, we wore permanent grins for weeks on end. They were pretty sloppy sometimes, but every blessed time I saw 'em, they pulled something magic out of their collective hats and make that big old smile come on to everyone in the room who knew.

Doctor John and his band made me grin last night. And dance. Much to Obbies delight and surprise.

The night started out with 'dinner' and cocktails at a local watering hole. Pilsner Urquel (Czech) beer on draft for 3 bucks during happy hour and hot wings. Hah. What more can you ask for?!

The Whitaker wasn't sold out last night, but it was close. We had balcony seats, which would turn off some people, but it worked for me. (Note: The Whitaker seats 667 people according to the usher, so there isn't a bad seat in the joint) The back four rows of the balcony were completely empty save for some guy named Rat (No really, Rat. He introduced himself to me, "Hi I'm Rat" I said, "Hi Rhett!" He says, "No, RAT!" Oh. Okay. It fit.) his buddy, and Obbie and I. I like having rows to myself. The usher was cool and assured me that I wouldn't be ejected for taking off my shoes (can't dance in shoes ya know) and since the balcony was pretty empty that we could dance all we wanted in the vacant areas. (He told us this band called the Dark Star Orchestra comes there yearly and "Boy everyone dances EVERYWHERE then." Ah. The Grateful Dead lives thru tribute bands....)

The first part of the show, it was nice, slow tunes. I was checking my watch pretty frequently, sad to say. But during the second half, the Doc opened 'er up and let it rip. Wheeeeee!!!!! Nothing like having a whole row on the very back of the theatre all to yourself. Rat and his handler got ejected early in the second set because Rat had lost his balance and fell into some well heeled patron twice, and apparently that wasn't good protocol. Guess he was freaking someone out.

I forgot I'm kinda old, kinda fat and have no ACL in my right knee. I danced, we howled, whistled and cheered, and had a fine old time. It was like back in the Dead old Daze when we danced like fiends for an hour at a time. What Fun!!

After the show, we're walking back to our cars. Obbie turns to me, "Hey, I thought you couldn't dance." "Well, I don't think thats dancing, is it?" He grinned, "Aw honey, trust me. You can dance."

By the way, I'm sore and tired and hungover this morning. I'm counting down to five PM when I can make like a shepherd and get the flock outta here. But a 20 ounce coffee and a thousand milligrams of ibuprophen are helping me to at least look like I'm awake.

I'm still grinning though........

OH!! I almost forgot! Doctor John, Aaron Neville and Aretha Franklin are doing the National Anthem for the Super Bowl. Mores the pity they're not the halftime show, but hey, I can't think of anyone better to do the National Anthem.

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