Saturday, September 12, 2015

A Summer Vacation Unplanned (Out on the town)

For the second year in a row, the Arizona getaway didn't happened.  Other assorted fun stuff that happened was a colonoscopy in June, A hernia repair in July and countless trips to Davenport which concluded with the Thursday night victory by Cedar Rapids and a final going through boxes that I missed before.   I have to hand it to Bob Harrington which I got to the checkout counter and mentioning about a big plastic tub underneath the albums that he had assorted DJ copies and other oddities.  Now I thought finding Mary Lou in mint condition was the find of the day, but since I was there long before closing, I thought it wouldn't hurt to look.  Hidden deep within the archives of lost 45s was a decent looking copy of Cruel World by Don Hollinger, one of the holy grail of 45s that I have been searching.  Until I Found You was the plug side, this record was one of a few promos that we won at a long forgotten drive in giveaway and it got played quite a bit and was not cared for properly.   Paying 10 dollars for it still is a bargain compared to what it sells on EBAY.  In the day and era of hipsters buying records, that finding promo copies of stuff back then costs more now than they ever did would back then.  But as I am in my winding years of bargain hunting and record hoarding, I'm still doing a fine job finding lost 45s and taking them home and playing them from time to time.  While the wallet takes an 80 dollar hit, I still end up adding to a eclectic mixture of 45s which will make some estate sales manager some big bucks once I leave this world behind.  And hoping they find a good home and not in some landfill.

This summer I did managed to have more fun hanging around in the area rather than my trek down on Arizona to spend a week blowing money and riding down Arizona 66 and getting sunburned watching trains off the Crookton Pass bridge, still my favorite zen place and wishing I could spend a day or two on my adopted home of Kingman.  I'm sure next year I'll think about going down there again but at this age and temperament it's unlikely that I will, unless I get a real craving of Del Taco and having a need to hit a Hastings store or two, if they're still around.  I kept busy with participating in jam sessions and hanging at the New Bo District and Parlor City.  Even with low gas prices, I didn't venture out to Madison like I used to do.  The thrift stores had enough cheap dollar CDs to keep me close to home.  Outside of the 45's Ragged Records had in the back room, other locations were more spotty, while last year's Davenport Salvation Army finds were the best, this year was different and nothing of note was found.  Once in a while a moldy oldie would be seen at a Goodwill, and how somebody would donate a decent copy of Bottle Of Wine from The Fireballs, which at Atco 6491 was issued one ahead of the lost Northern Soul Classic of Cruel Word by Don Hollinger which was Atco 6492 and in a stock copy to boot.  At 54 years old and collecting 45s for a half century, there's still enough of them out there to keep the interest going.  But I also know that if wanted to take that tub of forgotten dj copies at Ragged Records, I would have to take out a second mortgage to pay for it all.  It's the fun that counts and since I'm not married or seeing anybody I can still do this.

On Friday Night I thought that we were going work the whole evening and not get off work till 11, and there was a couple things I got invited to.  In the last posting, I talked about going to see The Dunshee Moon play at Checkers' Tavern, a hole in the wall off 6th St.  I remember it having wed night jam sessions but haven't trekked up there since the Bacon Jam of last year.  They still have bands playing there, usually around 7 to 11 which means I'd be missing out. One of the early jam sessions I went to, I struck up a conversation with Peter and his wife Cecie and brother Mike who is the guitar player. Familiar in his tie dyed T Shirts, Peter has participated in a few sessions, Cecie who could probably sing a better Stevie Nicks voice then Stevie herself.  Since I have been out of the loop in terms of bands playing in town, the reaction from others mentioned that The Dunshee Moon is a bit more laid back and acoustic driven, from what I heard, their playlist is very varied, and although Mike Stark is the only guitar player in the band, he did a excellent job in playing Hotel California and Whipping Post by himself.  All four of the band took turns in singing their songs, Mike doing a fair number of Beatles songs on his own, and Peter singing from behind the drum kit on Can't You See and Happy Together and a few others. But of course for the Mac songs it was Cecie leading the way be it Long Train Running or Gold Dust Woman or even Midnight Rider.  Since I promised I would get to Marion for meeting up with Dennis from Arizona, I managed to stay to hear two full sets concluding with them doing Flirting With Disaster.  While on a lengthy chat between sets Mike did say that they would going to do that, and I did wanted to hear that.  Not lost among the band, Donna might be the only person I know that has a Rickenbacker bass guitar and plays it very well.   Mike mentioned that he and Peter have been playing off and on since the mid 60s, the main influence is the Beatles and of course the Rumors' era Fleetwood Mac but they threw a few surprises in their playlist.  I don't think I ever heard any other band cover Brandy from the Looking Glass and then a Lonnie Mack Song up to Long Train Running and then Happy Together.  A few of the jam folks showed up and left and Kathy Colbert-Carfizzi showed up just about when I was leaving so I didn't get to talk to her.  So I thought I show off a picture of her and promise to make it up next time I see her at the jam sessions with hubby Bert.

I didn't expect to see when I headed to Louie's Scoreboard in Marion in terms of meeting up with Dennis and Russ, in fact Russ was hounding about my whereabouts.  But in some ways it turned out to be our high school reunion of sorts although I was a year ahead of Dennis. Last year, our 35th reunion turned out to be a dud, only selected folks got invited and showed up at Bill's Tap last year, probably the worst reunion ever recorded in our life.  Which was why I saw Alan Heeren as the first person who greeted me at the door and then locating Dennis and Russ and Doug Bonesteel, still in town after his dad's funeral on Tuesday.  In other words it was Tyrus/Open Highway reunion again, this time with Doug in tow although I don't think anybody took pictures of it.  Now the 1980 Marion Reunion is a bit different, I went out with three girls back then, two became Girlfriends for about a week or two. I don't think Janice was there, she lives in Texas and basically has nothing to do with this town anymore, but Penny was there with Karl, they were at the May Tyrus Reunion when Dennis was in town too.  For the first time in 35 years I got to see Sue, and of course she didn't say two words to me and I didn't expect that she would.  A long time, her and Janice ended up giving me a Valentines cards you would trade off in grade school or junior high and it's still around here somewhere.  Out of all the girls who had their names and phone numbers on that card, only Jenny Hansen came up and said hi to me.  And she still looks good as ever although she had to introduce herself to me since I couldn't place the name.  I seem to do a lot of that, forget names and faces.

Of course the usual band talk from Russ and Dennis and me but perhaps the highlight of the night was reconnecting with Jeff Kewley who was one of my best friends at Longfellow.  We kinda lost track of each other over the years, he had surgery and couldn't make it to our 30th reunion but we got spend a half hour talking about life and he mentioned that he was taking up the guitar and now has 10 of them at his house.  Which led me to tell him about the jam sessions around town and he should consider showing up at one and do a song or two. If I can do a song or two on guitar anybody could. Even we are of the same age, Jeff still looks as he did back in 4th grade.  I remember the times that him Russ and Me would ride our bikes around the old area and he had a crazy streak of doing things, jumping the old hill in front of the church and bending his Schwinn bike's frame in the process.  His brother had a very excellent record collection that he'd pick and choose and we listen to while Jeff's getting the newspapers ready to deliver, plenty of early Led Zeppelin, Jethro Tull and Rolling Stones was played.  Looking back in those years some of the best childhood memories was hanging with Jeff and Russ, and it's great to reconnect once again. I told Jeff if you want to jam look me up.  (perhaps we should have gotten more serious with band playing like back in forth grade eh?).  Nevertheless, Jeff will always been one of my best friends.  Brothers for life so to speak.

I really didn't talk to Dennis all that much, I figured he had friends from his class he wanted to chat with and women to talk to, so I hang out with Doug Bonesteel and Randy Hartwig and his wife most of the evening and then chatted with Christ Mundorf and Craig Canavan.  Al Gruwell says he remembers me selling him beer when I worked at Derby in 1979, which leaves me to think he's have a better memory of that then I do. As the night progressed on, Dennis was mentioning a certain kind of root beer that had a kick to it, and I was thinking was is he talking about?  Something called Not Your Dad's Root Beer, so I flipped him a five spot and told him to grab me one and one for himself. Turns out that he was right, it was  a different type of root beer, with about 6 percent alcohol to it.  I only had one of those things and I was getting a hell of a buzz and knocking it over a couple times I decided it was time to call it an evening and head home.  I stopped at a car wash to wash the crap off the car due to some overzealous road repair guy splashing concrete bits and water on the car and I still didn't get half it off the damn car.  And then parked it just in time for Callie to park her flea bitten butt on it, which she did get to meet Mr. Spray Bottle.  And to protect it from leaves and a crazy cat, put the car cover over it.  And I managed to do that being half crocked.

In the end, although I didn't plan it this way and thanks to my boss for giving me part of the night off I got to meet with friends and hear a great band led by good friends. On a side note, The Marion Indians lost again, Cascade came back in the second half and defeated them 29-26.  It was 35 years ago that Marion won the 3A football title in the state.  Now they can't even win a game anymore. They're 0-3 and Tony Perkins may be tied with Les Hipple for most wins forever way things are going.

And so it goes.

1 comment:

2000 Man said...

We had our 35th reunion this year. The girls that usually do it said they were done, so a guy I know did it. He did a hell of a job, and we had a lot of fun. It's funny, there's still a good core of us that still live in town, or nearby. More than one person asked me how my one friends' father's old AR XA was doing in my house, which was cool. A lot of them said they were interested in records but since they had let them all go they really couldn't see any reason to get back in to it again. Hell, most of them don't even have a stereo these days. It was still fun, though. We had an entire downtown Cleveland bar to ourselves (no Indians game, I guess) so that was funny. Some woman came up and tried to get us to buy her drinks by pretending she was in our class. I asked her what year she was born and she said, "Uhhh...1975." I told her that's why I didn't remember her, because I was 13 when she was born!