The very first gig for The Social Gospel is in the books. There were some bright spots and some slip-ups. I am personally more than a little embarrassed to have completely forgotten some of the lyrics to a song I’ve been singing for several years in a way that was unrecoverable. And I’d even dedicated that one to Johnny Cash. My brother said he thinks Cash would be cool with that. So far he hasn’t haunted me, so maybe Dave is right.
On the positive side (“WHO ARE YOU AND WHAT HAVE YOU DONE WITH DEREK?!?”), we had a basically solid first gig that at moments felt like we’d been gigging in this format for years. (As long as Dave and I have been working together, don’t forget that this was only his second live-show as a bass player.) For the most part we hit the really complicated stuff and recovered quickly from the errors we did have. And the audience was good. They clapped and cheered. I was particularly smugly pleased to more than once receive applause from people DURING my guitar solos. I think that was a first for me, in fact.
On the negative side (“Oh, THERE you are! Don’t scare me like that!”), there WERE highly noticeable mistakes that we all made–though I don’t think any so noticeable as my lyrical freeze-up. And that was on the LAST song, too–the one people remember. But given that the backline was just our amps (we weren’t plugged into the house and really should’ve angled the amps so we could hear each other better) and we had no monitors (new system and they weren’t installed yet) some of our hiccups were just environmental and therefore dismissible. (That is in no way an insult to the venue. Every place is different and that’s how this place was set up on that night. They’re great folks and it’s a great place to play–the room sounds good no matter what you plug into the board and you can really tell they thought that through. I’m really looking forward to being back there and will be better prepared to give a better performance now that I know the set-up.)
In all, I’d grade us with a B-. There were some sloppy mistakes we shouldn’t have made that we DID, but we were far from failing. Still above average. Next time, we’ll be better.
My deepest thanks to everyone who came out and I hope to see you all again for my solo show at the same place on October 12!
Live Your Life
One of Us
Just Another Day
Hey Hey, My My
Mother Maybelle’s Shotgun
Guitars used: ESP Ltd; Les Paul present as a backup, but not used.
Favorite Moment of the Show: Playing the solo in “Just Another Day.” First time playing it live and it hit just right. (Cheers from the crowd.)