The following photos capture a back alley moment with the Fender Rhodes, the day after a gig at a club called "Tropics" on Miami Beach.
|My awesome green Mercury Monarch.|
Yes, that is Poky (of Gumby and Poky clay-mation fame), who had come along for the ride and was suffering from a bout of vertigo. I like the way my car still has a Kansas tag in this picture, even though this was August of 1988 and I had moved to Florida in January of 1987. (And what's going on with my gas cap?). I got pulled over on more than one occasion, and was ticketed each time. Once for driving with an expired tag, and once for driving with a Kansas driver's license. Silly motor vehicle laws.
Back to the Record Bar. My reverie over the streets of Miami was abruptly broken when Roger yelled out to the stage from where we were sitting, "More bass sax!" After he had shouted this several times, the jazz writer for the Kansas City Star, who was seated nearby, turned back to look at Roger and cracked, "Who keeps calling for morbid sex?"
I managed a grin at this, but I was very tired. I had agreed to go out to the Record Bar because I knew it would be dark and not heavily populated and I could just zone out while listening to the music.
My mom and sister had been visiting from out of town, and I was suffering the natural effects of staying up late, crashing on my local sister's couch, eating heavy foodstuffs, like brats and Smokehouse Hickory Pit beans, and walking for an hour up and down the hills of a suburban enclave known as Creek Brook Ridge, or Wood River Glen, or Oak Pine Crest, or some such. Anyway, I was so bushed I didn't even want any alcohol. I passed on the Magic Hat ale I usually like to order, and asked for pomegranate juice instead. But the waiter came back to the table, lowering his head and whispering that they were afraid that the pomegranate juice might be going bad. So I got a Republic of Tea Raspberry Quince instead. (Raspberry-flavored tea.)
I had ordered this drink from a menu that had been made out of the old album cover for the Bread's Greatest Hits LP. The last time we were here, the menu was an old Neil Diamond album. Roger had once owned that Bread album, and loved it. When he was ten.
What about those of us who never outgrew the pop music of our childhoods?
We come here, hoping to be rehabilitated. Hoping some irregular jazz chords will blow the dust off our neurons and re-wire us for a new musical fluency. Dreaming in the old music we've known but processing some new stuff too. Finding a way to straddle both.