Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Following Jesus


Haven’t  had to do anything like this for awhile.  There’s a fresh—and large---deposit of vomit right in the middle of the front steps. Unavoidable. Something must be done. So I get David S and he brings two large containers—plastic gas container sizes--- five gallons  apiece….a mop, a scraper, a bucket…and we get to work. The job is quickly done….and we agree….we’ve both seen worse.

Lynnea and her Frog & Peach Company are back again, this time rehearsing Shakespeare’s King John. She is  down with an arm load of swords. Those could come in handy.

Well, there was a flaw in the Noche floor. Wrong kind of glue. It leeched through and destroyed the underlying styrofoam. The hallway is filled with all the supplies to start a new new floor, and everything must be cleared out before Open Mic.

Martin is in with more questions as we come closer to figuring out what we’ll need to make this a longer relationship.

Danielle helps me figure out how to use my Zoom H2 recorder so I can try and capture tonight’s open mic on my own.

Late in the day off to talk with our new city council rep Helen. We have to get serious about the long unfulfilled promises to West-Park.  Which she in her campaign promised to address, including holding the community’s feet to the fire. And look for council led policy changes that could redress the financial burdens imposed on churches by the landmarking process. I actually suggest that she look at a proposal form one of the defeated candidates. And she agrees. One thing is clear, our former council member and new Manhattan Borough President has to be involved.

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Another Open Mic finale
Pat O, RL, Nick Lantigua and Jesus on piano

As always, the Open Mic has its share of surprises. The first warm night has seemingly held down the crowd and we joke among ourselves that this Open Mic is open between 40 and 55' F.  Slowly but surely the players start to arrive.

I’ve been anxiously awaiting the arrival of my friend Jean. She has had some funding ideas for the Open Mic. The guys are anxious in their own way to talk to her about these ideas. And RL seems to have something in mind, or up his sleeve. Never easy to tell.

As it’s a slow night, RL starts us off unofficially with a set of Bob Dylan classics, ending with one of his favorites, the enigmatic All the  Tired Horses from the album that wonderfully annoyed and disturbed the critics, Self Portrait.

Happily Jean arrived in time for another Joel Gold flight of improv spoken word fancy, or  fantasy. Which always winds  up in reality at the end of the trip. She also caught Dion’s stand up (and testimony) and David S’ classic stylings. And RL got me on so that she could hear me before heading back to Jamaica for the next Hurricane Sandy rebuilding crew.

Alex plays and sings
A young woman. Alex, came  to the piano and surprised us with two Carol Kingesque originals and then a cover from the Broadway hit musical, Once.

Tonight’s surprise, a young  Italian in tight jeans, a light hoody and high heels who introduced himself
as a pop/dance singer and songwriter. Goes by the name Jesus. Pat O had helped him not be anxious about his set with the  bawdy 17th century Pirate song, Four Whores of Baltimore, rediscovered  by Gavin Friday. (who sang at Carnegie Hall with  Lady Gaga.) We have no idea what to expect from Jesus but he rocks through pop rock anthems of his own and finishes with a Lady Gaga cover.

Jesus again
Those who perform after joke about never thought I’d follow Jesus in a church…..and then David Lyons, who last week played in pubic for the first time, now sings in public for the first time.
David Lyons debuts his voice

And the inevitable Stay Awhile brings back Pat O and Nick the young banjo phenom and to our present surprise, Jesus rocking honkey tonk piano.

At this stage in his career, RL has now played with rappers and a pop/dancer guy in high heels. And the wonderful never know what to expect of our Friday night Rhythms, Repairs and Reconstruction keeps on making live music live.
Stay Awhile

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