...being the observations and navigational extracts
from the ongoing expeditions of San Francisco Piano Pop trio
True Margrit

Monday, August 20, 2007

Platform Two

Andrew arrives in town Tuesday afternoon and by 5:02 we are rehearsing "Syllable" (and other songs) and having a nice musical reunion.

It is so grand
Playing as a band,
You can understand that
We also rehearsed on wednesday
& I'd say
We played even better
I could write you a rather lengthy letter--
or a note noting every note of note

After rehearsal on wednesday, Gary has to pop off to rehearsal with Vicious Fish, and Andrew & I embark on a odyessy via BART to go to downtown to Tom Erikson's)photo show at the WRiter's GRotto. Andrew, I discover is a maestro at imitating the BART VOICE ( he says, "ten-car Dublin Pleasanton Train now approaching platform two" absolutely perfectly) and this amuses us for a long time--far too long, and we repeat the robotically delivered phrase: "on platform two" so much that we come to the brink of some kind of hysterical/ obsessive/ A.D.D./ fugue state. Spectacularly fun.

By the end of the evening we have enjoyed Tom's photos thoroughly AND we have Monica Pasqual & Tom also attempting the BART VOICE. Hilarious. Wonderful.

Meanwhile, the number of guests staying at the loft is ramping up. Friends and family from far afield are all heading to our place. It's a mysterious convergence of relatives and friends all occurring within 48 hours. On the peak night we will have 10 guests...whoa.

Thursday: my (belated admittedly) birthday show at Bottom of the Hill with Girls with Guns and FAUN FABLES. It has been much anticpated by all of us in True Margrit & the night does not disappoint! The bar gets nice and full and the crowd is raucous and friendly and all three of our bands are pumped and the peeps are pumped and the good not-overly-clean fun of female-fronted rock is had by all. I am particularly pleased to have my nephew, Elan Eichler in the house (aka Misc of State of Mind Crew). Yay!

Our gig Friday is at a private Powerpoint anniversary party at Microsoft (!). The contrast between last night's down and dirty rock-club glory and this conference-room scene with the fancy food and software speeches makes us a little vertiginous. We enjoy playing and taking breaks and eating dim sum treats, Kobe beef(!!!) and ten thousand mini-cheesecakes. I do love singin for my lunch.

Saturday we head up to Sacramento to play with TERESA ESGUERRA at Weatherstone. We have dinner with Kim Stupke and Teresa before the show at two restaurants-- that is, we sit outside and the waitstaff gives us menus to adjoining eateries. We order many delicious tapas and middle eastern dishes including some delish garlicky and minty shrimps (I LOVE SHRIMP) and something called, "Chi Chi Del Fuego" which is fried dough stuffed with cheese & quince paste and flambeed by the brave waitress right before our eyes. Wow! Teresa points out the the name Chi Chi Del Fuego might be translated as "burning nipples". Hmmmm. If there were an accident with the flambeeing process that could indeed happen...

The show is fun, both playing wise and listening wise--Teresa is a fab songwriter/ singer/ guitarist, and she never disappoints-- and we do our best to rock, as always. We drive home and I look up once again at the friendly Milky Way pointing our way back to the streets, bridges, hotels, and all the BART platforms of our town.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Of Spectacular Spectacles, Rush and Roadtrips

Down Highway 5 we zipped rocking out to RUSH (!!), to Hermosa Beach for my nephew's bar mitzvah and a mega-colossal family & friend reunion of---including but not limited--- to Eichlers, Rivases, Geffens, Willses, Oak RIdgers, and Sarah Lawrence graduates. There were meetings and meals, buffets and brunches, tears and triumphs, dancing and dawdling. There wasn't a dry eye or empty stomach when the final breakfasts were eaten and the last airport shuttles departed.

After those activites slowed, Sarah & I zoomed over to Vegas for a few nights, continuing our roadtrip rockfest with a selection from my Uncle's CD collection of early, mid, and late Led Zeppellin (and a smattering of Cat Stevens, Bowie, Peter Gabriel, Steely Dan, U2,and Joan Armatrading) . But inexplicably, Rush is best for the late night driving. Out in the desert I could indulge in the playing of airdrums--particularly fun to Neil Peart!

And Las Vegas?

Well, it's comical at first with the spectacle of neon, behemoth casinoes, drooling drunks, amped gamblers, hungry tourists in line for the bounteous buffets, countless fountains & gargantuan effigies from pop culture and history standing in spectacular desert heat. But then your smile might freeze a bit at the caged lions and tigers in hotels displayed for mildly curious humans or that vague sense of a divorce from reason that comes from the relentless pressure of opportunities to submit to compulsive drives and to suck up resources like money, water, food, and oil as though they were air....well, it's really something to witness and to partake of, and then get the hell away from, aint it?

Our antitdote was a drive home through the Sierras with the most spectacular sunset I have ever seen. The dropping sun turned fushcia and its color spread out across the horizon and tinted all the sinuous mountains, hills, and valleys pinky-gold and the air was cooler --such a relief after the implausible hell-heat of the Mojave. As we headed back up Hwy 5 the Milky Way sent a sparkly benediction upon our vehicle, and that was a whole other kind of spectacle.