Tuesday, May 14, 2002

Saw Charalambides last night. God damn they were good. I can't wait to see 'em again at Terrastock.

I remembered that I made a show diary for the debut mitre gig, which I figured I'd post here. For whoever wants to read it

March 30, 2002: Joe’s Ringside, Las Vegas, New Mexico
The show was a benefit for the Highlands University literary magazine (which, incidentally, shares its name, Sendero, with a group who recently blew up an embassy building in South America), featuring four standup comedians and me doing my thing. I wasn’t even invited, technically. One of my classmates suggested to the professor who organized and MC’d the evening that I play. He wanted to give me a 10-minute slot, from 7:05 to 7:15. I asked if I could start at 6:45, giving myself a half an hour, and he caved. There was a PA with a single microphone. I suppose I can’t complain, as it was donated for the evening. So there’s me and my pile of gear on a tiny stage, and my amp isn’t mic’d because I’ve decided to sing. I play about 20 minutes of textures and other noodling (none of which resembled stuff from either of the CD’s) before drifting into a 10-minute version of “Tomorrow Never Knows.” Hopefully, John Lennon will never know, because I added a second chord, thus going totally against what he was doing with that song. Oh well. I was planning to record the evening, and even lugged my 4-track to the venue. Unfortunately, I couldn’t record because a) I hadn’t brought a microphone so I couldn’t just set up a floor mic in front of my amp and b) I didn’t have any spare 1/4” cables so I couldn’t run out from the amp. The crowd was totally not into what I was doing, and I can’t blame them. If I was expecting four stand-up comedians and was greeted by a guy making a wall of noise, I probably wouldn’t be into it either. The hostess told me I had to turn my amp down right after I started, which was pretty pathetic. I guess people couldn’t hear themselves yelling to each other over the noise. I think I played pretty well, though, all things considered. I know I’m not going to reach all the people who end up seeing me play, but if one person digs what I’m doing, then it’s all worth it. To that end, a couple people (all of whom I knew) told me, in very earnest tones, that they’d enjoyed the show, and I sincerely believe them. At least nobody booed or threw fruit.

So there you have it. A couple weeks later, a woman I'd never met in my life complimented me on my set while I was making copies in the library. Guess I did okay. Now to book some Chicago gigs...


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