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

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

One for the Ages

After taking Saturday, November 14th REALLY easy--we all sleep & eat quite a lot-- Sunday, November 15th 2009 dawns, clear and cool with breezes out of the west. The members of True Margrit rise somewhat later...I wake up from a dream about the show in which GRIDDLE perversely insist on playing their set at 4:30 am in the Steve Allen Theatre (the Hollywood venue where we played the Tomorrow Show last week) instead of the scheduled time/place of 1pm at BOTTOM of the HILL. But, haha, it's just a dream. Andrew also relates his peculiar anxiety-type dream about today's show--in his dream, he has to order around a militia at gunpoint to get the show rolling without a military coup halting the proceedings...


We hurriedly undertake our last-minute preparations: bathing, eating lots of protein, procuring the promised complimentary donuts, loading the truck (and filming the loading in stop motion--for today we have a professional film crew of: Sarah Dunham, Heather Carawan & Chelsea Walton)! WOW!!

We get to BOTTOM of the HILL and there is a bevy of activity that continues to rise to a fever pitch right up to showtime. The members of GRIDDLE, TRUE MARGRIT, and 20 MINUTE LOOP greet each other affectionately and with the eagerest anticipation of the day's forthcoming rock.

GRIDDLE jump into the ring first with a SMOKING version of "BOXCARS" from their 2004 album "Turning Violet". WOW! They are sounding ...simply perfect! And the set continues in that vein--crisp & pumping versions of their catchy smart tunes. Hot damn! And as if this sublime rock weren't enough, their set also includes a performance art element: singer/keyboardist Kevin Seal is wearing a white jumpsuit and has placed a rainbow of sharpies at the disposal of the audience so they can pop up onstage and decorate him as the band plays. Most amusing...

So very excellent is their performance that I have a minor misgiving or two about following Griddle's spectacular set, but these shallow insecurities fade into the ether as the act of playing music pulls us into that special zone where time is both expanded and contracted and stretched and the melodies reel out their shapes and the piano chords ring and the bass thumps and the cymbals shimmer the air and I look out into the packed house while I sing and am truly joined and filled with this supreme moment of the public communing and sharing of the magic of live music.

Whoa, indeed. Not to mention: Dianne Nola's tapdancing is so vaudevillian and fabulous during THE JUGGLER's PROGRESS's titletrack (you guessed it) "The Juggler's Progress", that the crowd bursts into spotaneous applause--spiffy!. And our other special guest, SYMON MICHAEL blasts his bari sax into the stratosphere reprising his role as heard on "500 YEARS" on the album.

Lastly, 20 MINUTE LOOP take their turn, and it is a bittersweet glory if there ever was one--sadly, this is to be their last show as a band after 10 years of bandhood. They play a selection of sparklingly brilliant songs from all four of their TRULY inspired releases. The whole room is with them every wry lyric, every phrase of two-part harmony, and every jangly-sweet riff, and as the show finally comes to a close, there is not a dry psyche in the room.

There is much milling about & hugging and we invite the all the bands to our after-party. The truck is swiftly loaded and we are off to the ranch to chill.

The after-party is also Andrew's birthday party. We are homored by the presence of most of the members of the three bands, much pizza is eaten, a bowl of guacamole is decimated, beer is drunk, birthday cake is served. Very very very nice. When Kevin takes his leave, I hear him say to Gary:

"Great show....one for the ages". If Kevin Seal says it, friends, you KNOW it's true.

But the after-after-party is not over yet for the inner inner circle. Andrew is still drinking--a prime source of entertainment and pathos. He becomes a bit emotional....hungry...kissy...& we all wax surreal

Goodnight. Our work here is done...for now.


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