Recently, my wife was invited to Lebanon for the first women-only classic car rally. I was invited to come and perform too. She took second place and I got to play! Wonderful people, fabulous, never-ending tasty food, drinking and partying all day – what a life. We are recuperating now. Travel expands the mind and heart like nothing else. Our bodies are trying to catch up.
I’d always hoped that my music would be the catalyst for travel. What could be better than having locals host you in a foreign country? In Lebanon, I got a little taste of this dream (even though it was my wife’s event).
When it came time to play, I was a bit nervous to follow the exceptionally good Pop and Arab music party dance band that had been featuring “four on the floor” dance music all night. As I took the stage, I invited the audience to come closer and sit near the stage. After an evening of hard-drinking and dancing, they did just that. For a moment, music was my international language. They were warm and receptive.
Sometimes I remember that we should celebrate the little victories and milestones along the way. So, today I celebrate my mini-concert in the hills of Lebanon to an international crowd who sang along with the songs as if they had heard them before. I celebrate that two days later and while severely jet lagged, I played a trio gig (guitar, bass and drums) at the local Ojai watering hole. Out of practice and tired, I stepped up and it went off well. Even made some new fans that stayed all the way through both sets. I celebrate that I went the very next morning and played with a small nondenominational church band (having learned two new songs the day before). I celebrate that when I started calling for gigs for our summer tour, I received immediate positive responses from places we had played before. Finally, I celebrate that new songs are coming to me and old songs are demanding a revisit.
Truth is, I started this piece in a bit of a funk and by the time I’m done, I’m ok and hopeful. Hope you are too. Keep dreaming.