This month, I've been exposed to a wonderful variety of live music. Of course, I've already told you about my fantastic Pura Vida Tequila/Uproar Festival experience, but here's a rundown of the other performances I've been to over the past few weeks.
On September 2nd, I met up with my dad and some of his friends to go to Knucklehead's Saloon and see Eric Lindell & Co. Eric is a New Orleans-style blues guitarist and he played a nice mix of songs that I recognized from past albums and new songs I'd never heard before.
He's also my first cousin once removed (my dad's great-nephew), so we like to catch his shows when his tours take him to Kansas City.
Last week I went back to Knucklehead's with my husband to see Living Colour perform. I hadn't seen them in concert since they came to Kansas City in the late '80s in support of their hit album "Vivid."
This was mostly the same lineup—guitarist Vernon Reed, vocalist Corey Glover and drummer Will Calhoun, with the addition of the very talented Doug Wimbish on bass—and we enjoyed their set from beginning to end. We bought their live CD after the show and got it autographed. Really nice guys.
Then this past weekend I attended the Kansas City Yoga Festival and had two very different musical experiences. The first was a kirtan, a chant-based yoga practice designed to facilitate meditation, led by Moses Love. I sat on the floor in the circle throughout, singing and trying to add some percussion with a shaker. It was fun to join voices with so many other people at once.
After that was a performance by MC Yogi and DJ Drez. I didn't know what to expect from a hip-hop emcee with songs like "Ganesh is Fresh," but it was a really fun show and I danced until I was exhausted and drenched in sweat. There wasn't a huge crowd, but that didn't faze the performers and they actually played beyond their alotted time, despite the fact that some people had filtered away by then.
This past Saturday night, I performed with my own band and worked on applying some of the lessons I'd learned from seeing such a diverse group of performers. I think I picked up some good tips for connecting with the crowd and even though I was very tired from two yoga workshops earlier that day, it felt as though I had the audience with me throughout.
When I was younger, I was a lot more limited in my musical tastes. Today, I have considerably more appreciation for all types of music. I still have my favorite genres, but it's amazing how powerful any music can be when it's performed by people who clearly love it and want you to love it as well. That's what matters most.