Sunday, September 20, 2009

I'm With the Band

Got a late start today. It's the dog's fault. It's always the dog's fault. She was in no hurry to pull herself out of bed this morning and I took my cues from her. I've always been an easy mark for peer pressure.

I had a gig last night with my bluegrass band "Too Blue". Since banjos are mentioned in the subtitle of this blog, I may as well come clean and admit that I do play one. In public. As a matter of fact, it's been just about 14 years since I was introduced to a great flatpicking guitarist and songwriter named Betsy Rome by Ben Freed, a mutual friend and terrific banjo player. He felt we had a lot in common musically and he was right- we've been a musical team since 1995 and along the way added Michael Sassano on mandolin and Jamie Doris on bass. We have a great time playing together and actually enjoy hanging out with each other after the music stops. Believe me, that's not always the case with a band; we're pretty lucky and we know it. After all, none of us are getting rich so if it ain't fun, there's no point in doing it. And you can quote me on that. Or not.

We played at the Westchester Bluegrass Club, a monthly event produced by fellow musician Mike Burns. On the third Saturday of the month, a featured band plays a set at 9:00 while the audience members get to jam at 7:00 and take part in an open mike at 8:00. It's a great way to get everyone involved and it puts a lot of knowledgable and supportive people in the audience. Last night was no exception. Our crowd was enthusiastic and responsive and made it so much fun to play. And you know my stand on having fun.

Of course, there is a price to pay for having said fun and that would be a lazy beginning to this particular Sunday. It's not the dog's fault after all. She wasn't the one out whooping it up with her band. At least not that I know of...

Please visit to see our schedule and to hear soundbites of our music.

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