Wild and Goosey

The week of musical fulfillment continues.

Saturday night’s Bobby Wildgoose show was great!!! And for all of you seeking a formula for success, here ya go: Surround yourself with people better than you. It’s been my model for living – if you don’t believe me you haven’t met my wife. And it’s also been my model for making music €“ see Jason, Micah, and Justin for further evidence. And it was the key to the Wildgoose show. The Ragged Regiment included vocalists far more talented than myself (Matt Maas, Joel & Aimee Pakaan, Chris Ohland, Grant Applehans, and Carol Seilhymer) and a band that surpassed me musically (Micah Taylor, Michael May, Erik Ritland, Jonathan Rundman, Bill Singsaas, and Steve Seilhymer) All I had to do was hand them the songs and we were off. In theory we were going to practice beforehand, but in practice there was no beforehand. The sound guy (Nick) was running late and that worried me a bit because generally sound men aren’t excited when there are 13 folks up on stage. Especially when you’re a club that generally has 4 piece heavy rock and roll outfits. But as it turned out Nick was great! In fact he’s the best soundman I’ve ever worked with in a club setting. Generally speaking when there’s 12 people on stage, the monitor mix is set and the soundman is working on the front of house mix, you don’t want to be the one saying, €œHey Nick, our accordian player just joined us, can we through up another mic?€ But I think Nick was genuinely excited about setting up that next mic. So thank you Nick. The other cool thing took place when I went up to inquire about drink tickets for the band. Generally speaking bars want to make money off of you. When you have 13 people in the band it’s only natural to be a bit apprehensive about asking for drink tickets. So I asked Steve behind the bar in a sort of timid fashion how many drink tickets I could get for the group, expecting him to say something like €œHere’s a beer and 13 straws€ But instead he said, €œAll bands get 2 tickets per member, the guy playing the washboard is just as important as the guy playing drums!€ That’s the spirit Steve! I tipped the guy more than I’ve ever tipped a bartender before in my life.

Oh, and we haven’t even gotten to the set yet…

I handed out music folders to everyone with little notes concerning intros and stops and stuff. We had a quick and effective sound check and we started playing. Highlights for me included 12 days of Christmas with parts assigned to various audience members, leading the place in a round of €œChristmas is Coming€ and Jingle Bell Karaoke. It was a blast. For the final €œGo tell it on the mountain€ I invited the other bands on stage and handed my guitar off to the real Martin Marty so that he could do that thing I can’t. Solo. It was great I did my chicken dance all over stage. We got everybody soloing. Party.

But wait there’s more. (For all of you who appreciate the brevity of my blogs I apologize)

the next band up was floating bridge featuring my buddy Erik Ritland. I’ve seen Erik play for seven years now since he was in the youth group at Lutheran Church of Peace and harmonica player Steve Seilhymer was his Confirmation mentor. All I can say is that this performance single handedly blew every other performance out of the water. I’ve always enjoyed Erik’s charisma and rock and roll attitude on stage but now here he was with a tight band invoking a sort of Mike Watt/early Uncle Tupelo punk rock ethic as he took on Bowie, the Stones, and all his original material. Honestly, the guy’s always been great, but this night he was freaking awesome! Way to go Floating Bridge!!!

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To top it all off I’ve just finished putting together the bootleg I recorded of Bill Mallonee and Jonathan Rundman. It’s really weird editing Bill’s songs and putting them on a CD. He’s such a hero of mine. Does life get any better?


Posted: December 17th, 2007
Categories: friendship, music
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