The Workin’ Band at Central Ave 6/07 - show blog

A few months back a dude named Ira started booking gigs for us. He schedules roadhouses outside of town that want working bands. The Greenwood All*Stars play lots of covers and our originals sound like 70’s classic rock, so it works out okay. Last night, Ira booked us at the Central Ave Pub in Kent. It was the full meal deal. We brought our own PA, played three sets from 9 to 1 and we MC’d a wet t-shirt contest.

Our first set started really strong. We opened with A Tear for Eddie. People started arriving just as we were killing the jam in Johnny on the Spot. We had the groove for a while, but then we started feel like we were loosing the room. This happens sometimes early in the night. The band will do a big ending on a really jamming cut, and the room gives us dead silence. It’s not that big of a deal, but for the band, it makes us think we need to do something different – like play a cover, or turn up the volume, or freak people out. The truth of the matter is, folk just need to get loosened up. They’re not really there to see us, they just want to have a good time with their friends. We’re the entertainment. If they don’t clap, they don’t clap. Our job last night was to be tight, play good music, and have fun. Our first set was the working part of the working band. We played for an hour and fifteen and took a short break.

Second set was when it all came together. We opened with Workin Man Blues, and headed deep into cover land, playing tunes like So Lonely by the Police. We really nailed the room with No Quarter because we fully ripped the jam to shreds. As the room warmed up to us we started cruising around and playing improvised jams and interstitials. It was really fun. Dan sang great on Soul Kitchen and Signed Sealed. Our originals went over pretty well with the crowd. We played for another hour or so and took another break. Dan and Matt went outside and got viciously stoned. Abe did some tequila shots. I ordered a few more pitchers.

By far, the highlight of the evening was the wet T-shirt contest. We helped to MC the proceedings as three courageous women in flimsy cotton tops were hosed down with cold water. The All*Stars did a slow bada-boom bada-pow style jam as the ladies gyrated. Needless to say, the crowd went wild. We’ve never experienced anything like that before. It was uproarious. After a crisp $100 bill was awarded to the most bodacious lady, we attempted to keep the room alive with Centerfold, but we clammed the hell out of it. Oh well, the night had peaked. The energy in the room gradually subsided. Folks drifted off and we drifted into space jam world. Dan did a 10 minute drum solo on Donna and we did an extended version of Interstellar.

By the end of the night we were exhausted. We got our hard earned $300, but ended up paying $50 of it back to the bar for our drinks. After Ira’s $30 commission, we were left with $220. All in all, it worked out to about $5 an hour for each guy in the band. However, it’s not about the money, it’s about the opportunity to share our music and to connect with each other through it.

petenice posted this as: show blog