BLUES ANGEL TRACK
Some people think The Blues are depressing. After all, the lyrics are about the most love-lorn depressing subjects. The music is mostly stretched out and whiny and it’s played by people who have found drugs or Jesus… and all of it is best listened to live, surrounded by derelicts, in some smokey dark bar while consuming shots of hard liquor and dancing too close with a complete stranger.
I love The Blues, probably way more than any other genre of music because it touches so many people, so down deep through the telling of struggle, story or musical phrases that are undeniably real. For me, rather than it being a music of dark sadness, I find it to strike a chord of commonality among us all which makes it almost spiritually divine.
Yesterday, I went to an extraordinary Blues festival and watched the goings on. It all started with the requisite cougar entrance, strutting her stuff in red cowboy boots. She must have woke on this day, eager to assemble this ensemble because she thought it was the perfect occasion to wear what she thought was a good look for her.
And of course, wherever crowds gather, wise advertisers promote. In concept, the idea of exposing something to crowds when they gather, is a good idea. But what get’s exposed to them often falls short. All day long this lion was walking around. He was a mascot for a bank… and that was it.
Had he worn a sign that says, “Sign up for a Lion of credit” or “Our lions of credit are larger” or “Our Lions are short to the teller” or “We’re a great bank and we’re not Lion”… then it all might have made sense. But, nope… he just walked around with his or her assistant, waving to folks with his big black mane. Even… “We take Pride in our bank” could have worked.
Speaking of pride, another proud sponsor showed up in force with more temporary toilets than you can shake a stick at. Must be the music that makes the people go… or the music that makes the people eat, drink and go. They too could have promoted more cleverly with something like, “Porta-potties sponsored by Dr. John“ or “Remember your bowels must move when you listen to our groove.”
When I returned from appreciating the large number of portable rest rooms, I noticed the food and merchant booths were getting ready to sell their wares. I caught this guy smoking up a storm and it turned out that there was a line for his Barbecue… all day long. I got to taste it actually and it was really good. Nothing goes better with The Blues, than good Barbecues….
This guy below was rock’n out on his brand of square guitars. Not sure what they were or how they worked but they were there.
All around the festival were all kinds of people diggin the music. It was like everyone had a Woodstock craving at the same time and on this perfect day and under this perfect weather, listening to this perfect music… people danced, and hugged and laughed. It actually felt more like a community at church than a crowd at a concert.
Another thing they did was wear hats. Almost everyone had a hat. Some were new and some were old and I wondered if anyone ever thought about starting a business where people could send you their new hats, or new jeans or new boots… and you’d break them in for them. Then after about a year of rigorous wear, send them back to the original owner all rugged and worn looking … along with an invoice.
Another look, that folks thought looked good on them… was the wearing of Zumba gear, even though there was no Zumba going on. At least I think that’s what this was?
Also, I noticed how so many people took such great care and such pride in their chairs. There were portable reclining LaZBoy chairs, low chairs, high chairs, cushion chairs, chairs with roofs, and chairs with umbrellas and chairs with side tables and of course matching chairs with Christmas Reindeer on them sporting gold noses.
Every once in a while I catch some older couple who still like to hold hands. Despite their age, their shape, their wear, their tear, the good times, the bad times, the fights, the changes, the odd and impossible to tolerate or forgive… they still connect in public and show the world that two can be one.
And usually there are biker gangs at Blues festivals. But for some reason there weren’t any at this one. Not sure if it was held in too upscale a place or that the bands weren’t raunchy enough or there was just something better going on for them somewhere else. But I did catch this guy sporting his cut for the world to see. I think he was more of a Vet than a biker tho.
Without any Biker Gangs… The Blues festival surely would have been missing something were it not for this strange swarm of bees that seemed to be buzzing around. First I saw two…then a few more and a few more… and before I knew it they were everywhere!
Also, being so close to the water, boats were pulling up and dropping their anchors to get a load of The Blues! No matter what it cost to get in, the sound travels as far as it can and certainly far enough to entertain those afloat.
Then twilight struck. The magic hour. I got my camera ready for the time of the long shadows when the spectrum of color kicks out the white light from the club. Suddenly there was a massive flash that poured down from the heavens.
Once my eyes got back to normal, I saw the strangest thing. An angel had instantaneously appeared at the concert! I blinked a few times because I couldn’t believe my eyes. I looked around to see if anyone else saw what I was seeing but most folks were paying attention to the busy bees and wailing guitars.
I watched as my vision settled and the sun continued to set. The angel smiled once he realized he had arrived at such a cool place.
I followed him up the ramp as he seemed to be looking for something. Then he stopped at the top of the ramp and I realized he had found his comfort zone between two crosses. And like a good crossing god, he began handing out pamphlets and hawking his wares.
I turned around and was delighted to find that the swarm of bees were trying to mate with the king of the jungle and everyone started dancing and grinding to The Blues… as they should. Now, the sun was almost completely set and the rules of arriving late and leaving early were starting to apply to me.
I figured that between the Angel showing up on one side, the animals starting to growl and the insects revealing their stingers… naturally the devil would show up next.
I marched to the car and on the way found myself standing on some tracks. To the left of me they went on forever. To the right of me, they went on just far enough to where a draw bridge was opened. At first I thought it strange that the tracks were aimed up to the sky. But then I realized… how else was that angel gonna get back up to heaven?