Music – East/West – prt2

Music – West

Yeah, so continuing, I was off and running, well walking at a brisk pace to the train station. I needed to hop the train and go about 5 or so stations to the my next stop to a club called Overheat.
Again I had vague directions, but my iPad and smart phone maps and GPS. I figured I would find it. I got to the station and went down on to the street, to get my bearings. I got a message from Doc. M, saying it was behind the 7-11 and he hoped I could find it. Ok that was a big help, my map showed the 7-11, so I felt at ease about locating the spot. I sent him a picture of the train station so he would know where I was. Smartphone is sooo helpful! One of tHe better investments we have made in Japan. Not only for directions, but for translations for me to/from Japanese. I can even translate signs if needed. so yeah , it rocks!
Ok, so the map says I just needed to walk about 4 stop light direct from the station to get to the 7-11. Cool, very cool, I set off, at an easy pace. Just as o was approaching the 7-11 i see the Doc. He is coming from the side direction. He waits for me at the front of the club. It is good he was there. Even though the place was easy to find it did not have an easy sign. Ok so we enter together. I am a bit taken back that they are charging 1500 yen to enter for everyone! This includes a drink. I am not pleased but say nothing as the Doc covers the fee. However I am thinking, WTF. When we played in Kobe at the Mosrite. There was a fee for everyone also, it was 1000 yen, which included a drink, however that was for charity the entrance fee, most of it if not all. This was just for the club. I thought that was kind of tacky. However, there were several groups there, so it must be considered normal. Still WTF. Ok, roll with it.
We enter, get our drinks and have a seat. A duo is playing. They are doing very Japanese pop type songs. The guitarist is good, the singer so so. We listen, and wait. The next group up is very hmmm, Japanesey, cute kind of act. They are joking around, sort of like a mild comedy act. They play…I am not impressed. The guy’s electric guitar, very distorted rock sounding, the girl plays a small guitar with an open tuning. For the most part all the songs sound the same. The crowd seems to enjoy them. I am unimpressed. 
We are up next. We set up. It takes me a little while to get organized, once again the Doc is ready and just starts. 😦 ok, I roll with it. It no longer matters. I play harp as that is ready to go since I have the key. Once I get the Bass in order, I come in with that like it is suppose to be that way.
We do a couple of songs, fairly well. The Doc is having a good time, he is clowning a bit, the crowd like it. I am requested to do a couple of songs, because I have the “native” voice for these blues songs. I do a couple, but mostly let the Doc. be the show. He is the front man, I am more laid back, and serious.
All went well, in a way it was easy without the drummer. I just needed to blend with what the Doc wanted to do, and not be concerned about where or what the drummer was going to do. I could tap a few beats on the Bass body. Having the acoustic Bass gave me a different sound from tHe electric and the hollow body gave a different feel when using that as a drum or beat enhancer. We played for 30 min, and were the closing act.
Everyone seemed to enjoy the blues set. I heard someone asking about where they could see us play, they liked the Blues. We were asked about coming back also about sitting in on a Jazz Jam since one of the songs was Watermelon man, in a Jazzy format. People seemed nice, we , the Doc made arrangements to return next month (He would cover the fee). I later had to cancel since I was working. We took a group photo with everyone before leaving.
So nice folks, a couple later asked to befriend me on Facebook. So little by little I am making other musical connections here. It was a fairly long day however pretty fun, overall.
We have another gig at Chicago rock this coming Friday. I have given up pushing for rehearsals as I no longer expect to go anywhere with this group other than these local dives. Interesting the Overheat Bar, calls itself a dive Bar. Anyway, it is good to play and meet other players. For now I guess that is enough of a goal, other than for me to do my best. Kind of a “be the change you want to see for the world” thingy. In a sense it is like doing musical Tai chi push hands. I need to have myself together to be aware of the other person and go with their flow/energy. Merge, flow, ebb, and wax with that, whilst maintaining my own center and balance. We have a saying, everything is Kung Fu, everything is training. 
Therefore it is all good, roll with it!



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