Monday, June 29, 2009

Hitchcock, Bowling, and Tigers

I had a long weekend. It began with recording vocals with Brian for the new Sitting Next To Brian E.P. Jason and Brian came over to Rub Wrongways Studio and we spent the afternoon working on this great new project. Brian sang like a champ.

When they left, I flipped on the TV and scrolled through a few channels until I suddenly saw Robyn Hitchcock's face burst onto the screen. There's a new concert/interview special on the Sundance Channel of his recent I Often Dream Of Trains performance in NYC. I Often Dream Of Trains is a great old Hitchcock album and is the record that first introduced me to his music. It was a surprise to see him there on the screen.

Later that night, Lesa and I hit the road and skipped the light fantastic down to Mohegan Sun Casino. Our path was lit by the glow of one of the most intense and long-lasting rainbows that I've ever seen. Turns out that Mohegan was not the pot of gold which the 'bow had promised, but it did provide some good times.

On Saturday night we headed to Palmer, MA to play a show with the Jason Bourgeois Band. Ryan couldn't make it, so the band was just Jason, Brian, and I. But friends, Lesa, Debbie, Karen, Emily, and Mark all came along. We ate at a crazy place in Palmer called Steaming Tender, an old train station converted into a family restaurant. It came complete with actual trains whizzing by the windows and an inexplicable lack of knives.

Our gig was at Diamond Junction, a downstairs bowling alley in the center of Palmer. If you want to find out more about it, look up the word "quaint" in any dictionary. The place was small and colorful and run by the nicest people ever. It was an instant step into my childhood with it's candlepin smell and Brunswick decor.

Our gig was short and sweet and very enjoyable and all-ages. The bowling was great fun for me, though some others that I played with were more accustomed to the lumbering big bowling balls and were somewhat bewildered by the smallness of the candlepin adventure. Also there was a plastic dog vending machine.

On Sunday night, I found myself at Tigers on Tigers, a day-long party/celebration/exhibition to please the great tiger in our midst. I played a few songs during nap-time along with Ella Longpre, JP, Sylphid and more. The music ranged from electronica trance-like experimental to acoustic guitar and voice. I just brought along my little old nylon string guitar and sat on the edge of a sofa and played "The Center Of Time", "Planes, Trains and Automobiles", "Young Lucy Lavalier and the Lifeless Crispies", "Night is a Blanket", "Don't Know If I've Got What It Takes", and a singalong version of "Stephanie Says".

After the nap-time concert, a friend was blown-up in a suit made of buckets and fireworks. I fled the scene and spent the rest of the evening with Lesa and an old friend outside at the Northampton Brewery Deck.

Summer is here for real.

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