Saturday, March 20, 2010

I Have Love

I have love.
Love that will fight
With fist and conscience.
Love that will wait
To watch you grow.
Love that knows no time, no past.
Love that is present.

It's not glamorous
It takes you as you are
The hopes and dreams
With the faults and heartaches.
Love that may scold you
Never judges you
But will hold you.
I have love
And it is yours.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Beyond The Lights, Home at Belly Up Tavern

Photos by Philip DeFalco

Last Sunday night I played my first solo show at the Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach, CA. I opened for the talented singer/songwriter of Maverick's fame, Raul Malo. It was an strange experience for me...lonely and liberating all at once!

Belly Up is my home stage. I played my first show there in 1996 and since that time have shared the stage there with Dr. John, Candye Kane, and Tommy Castro, among others, as well as won a "battle of the bands" competition there in the late 90's. As a bandleader, I have always been accustomed to the company of my bandmates at a show. Their drama. Their problems. Their support and encouragement. Their laughter. Like a family. And on stage there is safety in numbers. Confidence and security and comfort in that cloud of sound surrounding me with the band...not to mention the interaction and creative challenges we spark within each other. I found myself backstage before my set feeling oddly lonely. It was quiet, too quiet, despite my friends and goings on before my set. Where was my family? My comfort zone, my home?

Once I hit the stage, however, the show was on, and I was in my or not. Peering beyond the lights into the audience was a sight I'd never seen at the Belly Up. The usual rowdy, dancing, nightclub patrons were replaced tonight by a listening crowd. I don't know what was scarier...the fact that I was to play solo or the fact that everyone in the audience was seated and their attention was focused on me! The entire dance floor was lined with rows of chairs and as far as I could see, the bleachers, the upper balcony, and the floor were full. A few nervous strums, a deep breath, a swig off my bourbon, and I was ready.

I stumbled a bit through the first song. Tentative. Unsure what to expect from this crowd. From myself. I launched myself fully into song number 2 "Beyond The Lights" -- I told myself to get over it and bring on the SHOW. And so I did. I had the audience laughing in between my sad love songs. I sold out of my EP's. I didn't even drink the cocktail (thanks Gabs!) that I thought I really needed. I was home.

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