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Band Practice (And Chris Is Better)...


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Practice today with the full band—and the band is good. Very, very good. It is an honor to play with these guys. (And to use a hackneyed phrase, I hope it’s as good for them as it is for me.) I would pay money to hear us, and I hope lots of people do. The revised April 24 setlist (1-1/2 hours, played straight through) is:

Dead Things in the Shower (mod. fast two-step)

Armadillo on the Interstate (slow & sleazy)

Things Are Getting Better Now That Things Are Getting Worse—Gene Burnett (fast two-step)

Tillamook Railroad Blues (deliberate blues)

For Their Own Ends—Southern Pigfish (folk-rock)

Eatin’ Cornflakes from a Hubcap Blues (slow & sleazy quasi-blues)

Welcome to Hebo Waltz (fast waltz)

Test Tube Baby (Elvis-style rock & roll)

Un-Easy Street—Stan Good (mod. two-step)

Duct Tape (mod. speed country)

Hey, Little Chicken (sleazy quasi-blues)

Dance a Little Longer—Woody Guthrie (country rock)

No Good Songs About the War (slow two-step)

Love Trails of the Zombie Snails—Southern Pigfish (folk-rock)

She Ain’t Starvin’ Herself (mod. fast blues)

Free-Range Person (fast bluegrass)

Goin’ Down the Road Feelin’ Bad—Woody Guthrie (fast bluegrass)

A good mix: some blues, some rock, some bluegrass, some country—and even a waltz. Shows off the band’s versatility, I guess. We even have Arrangements for some of the songs. I still have the Rap to re-do—but I succeeded in cutting the setlist by three songs without changing the order of everything else. The Rap may not need a lot of modification.

I think we’re ready for the gig. I will get to play Wednesday afternoon at the tavern (it’s Training Day for the Census—yes, I finally did get accepted for a bottom-level Census job—but it will only last half a day), and I will get to play Friday night at City Hall. The owner of the Tillamook music store wants to start up a Wednesday evening jam session at her store, too, and I said of course I’d be interested in coming; maybe she’ll do that this Wednesday. I do need to make sure I play as frequently as possible this coming week.

Word through the grapevine is the 2nd Street Public Market is NOT interested in having me as a performer. I’ll leave it up to fans to ask why (and hope they do). At my end, as an official of the Bay City Arts Center, I’m interested in cutting a deal with the Market to display our members’ artwork, and I don’t want anything I want personally as a performer to get in the way of that.

A third college is now stalking me—another graphic-design school. Being a bit inured to this “courting” now, I can respond with less excitement. They, too, are expensive, at $350 per credit hour—and how many classes would I need to get a degree in something for which I have absolutely no formal training? I have two years of college as a history major, and roughly two more in computer programming; all my graphic design expertise has been self-taught. It is, as I explained to one of the college recruiters, simply something I can do, and do well. But if I want a degree, I probably should try to pyramid on what I already have part of the credits for—as well as do it somewhere cheaper.

Finally, Chris is out of the hospital, transferred to a nursing facility in Forest Grove (a little over an hour away) where he’ll get 24-hour care. They’d originally expected to keep him there a month, but now say he can come home in two weeks—apparently he’s doing lots better. I plan on visiting Thursday.

Joe

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