I woke up at the crack of dawn yesterday to go to yoga class, which necessitated my taking a 3-and-a-half hour nap in the afternoon.
When I woke up, I heard my phone ringing and it was my bass player. He wanted to know if I'd be interested in playing a gig that night. I couldn't see any reason why not, so I readily agreed. It turned out that our drummer couldn't make it on such short notice, but we found a fill-in guy and met up at the club around 7 p.m.
The bar was called Hawg Wild, which pretty much tells you everything you need to know about it. While we were setting up, a bartender came over to introduce himself. He said his name was Rattlesnake, and this was emphasized by his leather biker vest which not only had a rattlesnake embroidered on the back, but had an actual, taxidermied rattlesnake head attached to the front.
Rattlesnake perused our set list and expressed some doubt about our song selection. I told him not to worry - we were going to rock.
The fill-in drummer was obviously a pro and he did a pretty decent job of following along. A few songs were a little too fast, but that's actually fine in a bar setting.
The only bad part about the evening was that I had a splitting headache that would not go away and no Tylenol with me. You can imagine how much fun it is to sing with a loud rock band all night long when your head feels like it's going to explode.
Thanks to the magic of Twitter, my friends @socreepy (Happy Birthday again!) and @ms_nene came out and stayed for all three sets. I'd like to think it was because the band was so awesome, but even I have to admit that they really stuck around for the priceless people-watching.
The bar patrons who were there when we got there were already hammered. Needless to say, this made them highly entertaining to observe. Keep in mind, this is a bar that owns a portable stripper pole, which they thoughtfully set up next to the dance floor before we started playing.
A guy who was there from the beginning eventually passed out in one of the booths. He was still there, snoring away, while we loaded our gear out the door after 1:00 a.m. and did our best not to bump his motorcycle-booted feet every time we went by.
At first there weren't many people in the bar, but over time more groups showed up. I thought that was rather surprising considering that we were in the midst of a relatively heavy snowstorm.
We never got many people dancing, but the people there seemed to like us. We obviously won Rattlesnake over because he came up to the stage in the middle of a song and handed me a red rose with a rather dramatic flourish.
Oh, and during the last song, a woman lifted her shirt and flashed her bare breasts at us. That's always delightful. Later on while we were breaking down our gear, she came over and told us how much she loved the band. "You know I'm serious," she said, "because I don't flash my boobs for just anyone."
I'm doubtful if that's actually true, but I appreciated the sentiment.
Once we'd packed the trailer, we all headed to IHOP and finished the night with multiple cups of coffee and syrup-covered carbs.
It wasn't the best gig I've ever played, but it felt like redemption for our New Year's Eve disaster. I'm looking forward to completing our set list and keeping our momentum going. It can only keep getting better.