And by blogging sort of day, what I mean is that today felt like a London sort of day. I did scary things, played with music, and met random people on the street. Here is the story:
Andrew Klimowich is a fellow I met at Wedgwood. He is a mandolin player and has a bluegrass band/jam session downtown on Wednesdays. He invited me to play a few weeks ago but I hadn't got around to it. Then this Sunday he invited me again, gave me an address, and told me to show up at noon with my bass. The address was the Columbia tower- so I got brave and decided that the worst that could happen was that I would walk around downtown looking kind of silly with my bass, and all things considered that wasn't that bad.
The first obstacle of course was finding a parking spot. But since I am amazing I found a spot on the street. I cut across three lanes of traffic (okay, not "traffic" per se since there weren't any other cars, but I was on the right side of the street and had to get to the left) and then expertly parallel parked the car. The garage attendant across the street gave me a thumbs up. Unfortunately I parked on 3rd and Cherry and had to get up to 5th and Cherry- so there was a lot of vertical walking with bassey-bye. (She has a name, it's a little cheesy, but it's hers. Try not to mock.) So I was sweaty and out of breath by the time I got to Columbia tower, but I found the elevator and then wandered around the 3rd floor trying to find the art gallery and the band.
It turns out that today was a little different from usual, because the gallery they play in was having a reception/art opening for the current bunch of artists (It is something like the Washington women painters' collective or something. Washington, women, and painters are all definitely words that are involved in the name.) So there were a lot of people around and they applauded after things (which was nice) and there was carrot cake on a table with flowers (which was also nice.)
Right, so the musicians there today were Andrew-mandolin, Tom-guitar, and Morgan-banjo. And I played a lot of roots of chords. I was faking like mad, but it was super fun and I'm now in the email loop for playing again next week. Hopefully soon I'll be able to be comfortable enough to try a bit more of a bass line then G, G, G, G, D, D, G, G. (At one point I had my left elbow resting on the neck of the bass with my head resting in my hand because all the notes I needed were open strings and I only needed my right hand. I could maybe try a little harder.)
So that was great, and then when we were done I lost my keys- so I enlisted the women painters to help me look and then we had a fun chat about gender equality and being in a male dominated profession and ignoring people who said you couldn't do something because you were a woman. One of the painters told a story about how when she was in art school her professors had told her that there were no famous female painters (famous, or good? I don't remember. Maybe successful was the term. Whatever, you get the point) so she felt really betrayed when she eventually learned that there had been successful female painters in pretty much every era. I told them thank you for fighting because I felt like I could do anything and they said you're welcome. My keys turned up on the floor behind a movable wall.
*Then* while carrying my bass down Cherry to get back to my car this fellow asks me if I play in the symphony. I said no, that I had just come from playing with a bluegrass band, but that I do play classical music. So he gave me his card because he is working on an album right now of what he calls Chicano Soul Blues and had really been wanting a low soulful sound and had been thinking about a cello. I said that sounded really cool so he told me some more about it as we walked to the car, and by that point we had figured out that neither of us were doing anything right then, so we stuck some more quarters in the meter and went and futzed around at his apartment.
His name is Dominique and he is a preschool teacher but it taking a month and half off to work on this album. We worked on one of his songs called "pepper corn" and I think we did alright. I'm going back on Friday morning to see what we can do with some of his other songs. Neat, huh?
(Okay, and I do get the sketchy aspect of meeting a random guy on the street and then going back to his apartment, but I figured if anything got weird I had my cell phone and he seemed nice and knew enough about music that he couldn't be just making up a story- so I took a chance and now I get to work on his album which is supercool. So it all worked out fine)
So now it is food time (I kinda forgot to eat. So far today I have had 3 cups of water and a slice of carrot cake) (but I do love carrot cake) and then I drive back down town to pick up Sarah in order to get to Caitlin and Robbie's apartment where we will play some of the Bach 2 part inventions that we have been working on for their wedding this weekend. So bassey-bye all over the place.