I did it. Last night was the first I’ve pick up my bass in a long time and played songs I did not know at all. All those years of music theory paid off!
For those who are unaware, former and current members of the Eggmen and fellow Beatles fans gather every Wednesday at Waterloo Ice House from 5:30-7:30 to play Beatles songs acoustically. I have been a few times and have a blast every time.
This week was different. After being invited to play with the crew, and testing the waters, I gathered my bass, loaded the bus in the morning, and waiting patiently until the end of the day to play. Now, the twist is that I don’t know most of these songs, wait, let me clarify: I’ve never played them on the bass before. I know these songs very, very well, but I’ve never performed any of them. So, armed with Chris’s songbook, chord names and lyrics, we set off. And for the most part, I could hang!
I hadn’t played impromptu like that in years. Sight-reading: connecting my eyes, to my brain, then down to my fingers was such a cathartic and comforting experience. True, sometimes there was a disconnection (F# not F…whoops) but for the most part, for never playing some songs, I was so proud of getting up and doing something potentially embarrassing and disastrous.
I played an hour of the two hour set, as another bass player (who has been playing for 40 something years) sits in, too. I don’t mind at all. I just love playing regardless of how long it is. Before I left, though, I got to do some singing. It’s become a tradition that I play and sing Led Zeppelin’s ‘Rock and Roll’ (one week it would awesome if Robert Plant showed up. Take a break from Dart Bowl, man), and this week it was pretty solid as a group. My voice was good, my playing was better and I felt like the crowd got into it.
I then sang ‘Oh! Darling’ by the Beatles. Apparently, it is a little too high and…’later Paul’ for the guys in Eggjam to sing. So I plucked away at my bass and sang, letting it all out. It was a blast.
In the end, I was actually offered a 4 month residency at a club in South Padre Island — a one woman show with free accommodations on the island while I play there. A gentleman in the audience is talent scouting music for his club and wants me to play. Sounds fun…if I were a single, 20-something, who really wanted to be a musician (I am only ONE of those three). I gave him my card, but don’t worry, Austin, I won’t be leaving anytime soon. As much as I would love to work in the music industry, it isn’t to be a musician full time but to be an advocate of rock, women in music and just supporter of those who really do want to make money playing in clubs in South Padre Island. Just like a woman likes to get hit on regardless of her relationship status, it is nice to be taken seriously and complimented as a musician. *Raising the roof like Liz Lemon/Leslie Knope*
Besides, if I left for SPI, I wouldn’t get to come back and play Eggjam again!