Carroll's 55th Street - Trister surprises us playing a a first set with Donna and the rest of us
It was another "Woo-sday" (Wednesday) night for Deadstein and we were all looking forward to the jam leading up to the 8pm start-time. We were scheduled to have the whole band their in addition to Donna. As such, I prepared a 1st set that would take advantage of the time we had with Donna and circulated to the band members during the week
I decided to work on a Built To Last during the week, I grew tired of always declining to play it, claiming I couldn't do it, so I grabbed the song by the horns and learned it. During my listening to it, I remembered Jerry would often use his MIDI trumpet sounds during, so I decided to emulated Jerry. I took out my Roland-ready MIDI guitar setup out of storage in my basement, changed strings and practiced and with it on the Built To Last. I incorporated all the MIDI equipment in my gig-bag and I was ready to go.
We were in the big room in Carroll's and when I got there I got Jules to get me a Roland keyboard amp, this coupled with my Fuchs Twin Reverb, I was wired and ready to go. With all this craps at my right foot, I decided to place Donna to my left, which Kevin mocked me for, but it did work out well for me during the jam.
Just as we were about to embark on the evening and begin the Feel Like a Stranger in came the big surprise for the night, Andy Trister. We almost waited for him to begin, which delayed us a good 20 minutes or so. Delay-Schlemay, the Stranger really smoked. The serendipity of Trister showing up and me having my MIDI setup was a big bonus for the night since it meant I would play more organ sounds and no interfere with both Andy and Alan on the guitar sounds. I guess I can spew out the canned cheese for one night and not only not get to bored by it, but enjoy the mix. There were moments during the What a Wonderful World and the Midnight Moonlight where I felt the MIDI keyboard sounds were right on.
After the Feel Like a Stranger opener I decided to modify the planned setlist a bit to accommodate Trister's unanticipated presence and some potential synergies with Donna. I therefore threw an I Shall be Released gauntlet for Trister to sing leads on. When Donna came in on the background vocals on that it proved to be pretty special and that GarBand stuff really works with her.
Donna and I also continue to work on some of our Bob/Donna duets and they showed some nice improvements including the Passenger and Beat It On Down the Line. We also tried to work on a Looks Like Rain during a min-break but the whole band ended up joining in by the end of the song.
Donna had to leave by around 10:30 and Andy by around 11:00. Our close with Andy included an excellent What a Wonderful World and Midnight Moonlight. It was a really good Trister set. After another little break we started the final part of the night. I wanted to play some of the songs we skipped in the planned first set. We did the Next Time You See Me and I got to do the Built to Last. It was pretty good, but that late in the night, the focusability of my eyes on the fine print of that song is questionable. I kept it together.
We then tries to accomplish Saint Stephen into Hard to Handle and we had issues but we also showed some promise. I think our Stephen has improved quite a bit. With about 5 minutes before the 12 o'clock quitting time, we decided to go big and long with a Terrapin. I thought it had a good groove and we executed it well with the exception of the major collapse in the middle. It was a great way to end a great evening. Oops, almost forgot, Steve was our only guest for the night.