October 10, 2009

Open Mic at La Salle Market & Deli

Got a text last night from my friend Cheryl "We're at this great open mike up in Collinsville....come". Was just finishing up a meal with Zippy and his dad (Bombay Olive, I opted out of my usual 6 pm Friday yoga) so I decided to trek northwest. Collinsville is a mere 12.2 miles away (so says Agatha the GPS) but I seem to have this "it's way off in the northwest corner" attitude about it. Wrong....

So glad I went. Turns out that the LaSalle Market & Deli has a regular Friday Open Mike, and that many of the folks I ran with back in the day (10-15 years back) when I was on the Open Mic circuit are still at it. Kent Aldrich and Gil Dube in particular, but probably a few more (I got there late so some may have come and gone) - it was nice to see them. My friend Kate Callahan was also there - as wonderful as ever. She asked if there was a particular song I wanted to hear but I'm not that familiar with her new stuff - so it's all good. She and Gil actually traded songs (years back he had asked her to "write a short song" because all her songs were long and she did with the condition that he write one about himself and his time on the earth.) It was a beautiful and tears welling up kind of moment.

In the course of organizing and purging for my move; I came across some old photos from Open Mics (yes, photos, predating digital cameras) and there are pictures from the Chunky Tomato in Bristol - Jon Lewis, Gil Dube, Jersey Steve, Kent Aldrich, Gary the Crazy Flautist. I ought to scan 'em in and post em up on Facebook.....

So a lovely evening, thanks Cheryl for the invite. Not sure if my life has time for a regular visit to Collinsville, and not sure if I'll ever brave the open mike circuit again, but it felt like familar and welcoming ground. And I was listening to Dave Carter & Tracy Grammer en route home singing along, and thinking "I could maybe sing and play this....."

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