Friday, October 17, 2008
Blaze Foley Tribute & Fundraiser for the Homeless
Last week my friend and colleague Mickey White asked if I'd back him up on bass at a fundraiser at Ruta Maya. We had a twenty-minute practice on Tuesday after work-- more than enough time to work up "Larimer Street", "The Cuckoo", "Rex's Blues", "Going Down the Road Feelin' Bad", "Sweet Home Chicago", and a demi-medley of "I've Been Everywhere" and "When the Saints Go Marching In." Right?
Actually, I've played with Mickey twice before, and we'd done two of those tunes already, but more importantly, he's such a great musician that it's just easy to play with him. Ditto for his son, who plays drums.
In short, this evening was an absolute blast. We had a second guitarist and a saxophonist. The latter played with Townes Van Zandt back when Mickey played with him, and despite the fact that this gig WAS our rehearsal, it all came off very strong.
It was a little funny to be treated like a minor VIP. When I first got there one of the event coordinators sought me out and gave me a special bracelet that let me get free beer. It was also very cool to play for a large crowd that cheered enthusiastically between songs (for the wizardry of the guitarists and the saxophonist!). When we stepped off stage, one of the event organizers came up and asked me if I would sign some fliers that were going to be auctioned off. I declined, telling her that I was just a friend backing up the guy who had actually known Blaze Foley (we were listed as "Mickey White" after all) but she insisted. They wanted all the musicians to sign them.
Oddness, all of this. But I liked it!