SMALL WORLD TOUR: DAY 3...FESTIVAL FOR THE ENO...PART 2
Based on the audience reaction (and CD sales) my opening set was pretty well received. In addition to old friends (including my sister who I've known for 55 years, and my old high school sweetie and her younger sister who I've know for over 40 years), a lot of folks who I had never met came around the side of the stage after I was done to chat with me and buy CDs.
One woman told me that she had only heard my last song, but had to have the CD. Another couple wanted the "what's not to like about that song". One man told me that "My Dog Jesus" was the most unique inspirational song that he had ever heard. Several people bought both CDs, often with a comment along the lines of "I've never heard of you before. You were great!". None of this hurt my feelings. Several people asked for "Circling The Drain" even though I had mentioned onstage that it was not on any of my CDs. I directed them to YouTube, and told them that I guessed that it had to be on the next record. I guess it does.
Off to the River Stage for my second set of the day. I got there in time to catch the tail end of a set by Anne McCue, who as it turns out also lives in Nashville and has many mutual friends. Her band for the day was a pair of brothers from Raleigh, Dave (drums) and Ron (bass) Bartholomew, who were operating under the name The Blue Millionaires. I had met Dave last November when I played S.P.I.T.T.L.E. Fest. That night, he was the guitarist for Terry Anderson & The Olympic Ass Kicking Team.
I played a lot of the same songs that I had played on the Grove Stage, and there were old friends and new faces in attendance. I started with "You Done Done It Now", which I introduced as "a song that contains two classic themes of traditional country music...infidelity and unforgiveness." After that, I played the title track to my new CD "One More Night In Nashville", followed by "What's Not To Love?". Then I played "Dickel, Strait & Jones", "Too Many Bubbas", and "My Dog Jesus". I closed out the set with "Inside That Box" and "Circling The Drain" (which I totally spaced on the words to, and then inhaled a bug or something.) It was a dramatic ending, but I choked my way through it. After the set, some folks came over to talk. One guy wanted to tell me about his friend who he thought I would have a "hoot" with if we ever ended up in the same room. It turns out his friend was Jonathan Byrd, who used to play at the Hyphen when Nina and I owned it. While we were talking, a young guy ran up and said "I didn't catch your set, but I checked you out online. "My Dog Jesus" is the best song ever!"
I packed up to hustle over to the Meadow Stage to catch Jamie Anderson's set which was scheduled to start at the same time my set was ending. As I was walking over, I heard "FORT KURTMEYER!"
There's only one person I know who calls me that...Mister Lightnin' Wells. We visited for a minute before I boogied up the hill to the meadow.
Jamie was in full swing, accompanied by Robbie Link on the upright bass and Tracy Feldman on the violin. She had the crowd eating out of her hand with such hilarious fare as "Your Mama Scares Me", "Menopause Mambo", and "Run". My sister Kate had met Jamie earlier in the day, but she didn't have a clue what Jamie was about until seeing her set. I do believe she was properly impressed. During Jamie's set, I was accosted by a cute young woman who had seen my first set. I thought she was going to climb into my lap, but fortunately my entourage (Alan and Jane) was there to protect my virtue. I did tell the girl "If I were you, I'd be awesome." which generated yet another hi-five. After Jamie's set, she and Tracy and I had a nice meal together, telling bad jokes and generally carrying on. I swear that woman is my sister from a whole different set of parents. Tracy shot this picture.
After parting ways with Jamie, I started heading (in a roundabout way) toward performer parking, to change into cooler clothes and stash my guitar. Again, I heard someone call my name (this time from the beer garden) and ended up in a lengthy discussion with Isabel Taylor, who I had met last year when I played at The City Tap in Pittsboro. She is a songwriter as well, but her set coincided with my second set, so I didn't get to hear her sing. I was almost to performer parking when I realized that I didn't have my keys. Nina had parked the car after dropping me off for my first set. I parked my butt backstage at the Grove and sent her a text. It turned out that we were only about 100 feet away from each other, since she was out in front of the stage catching Dex Romweber's set. I got the keys and trudged on toward the car. There was a younger couple walking down the gravel road at the same time I was. The guy said "I saw you at S.P.I.T.T.L.E. Fest. You were badass. I hate that I got here too late to see you today." I thanked him for the kind words, and left them by the Port-O-Johns.
After changing clothes, I wandered around a little bit, caught some of Andy Coats' set on the Chimney Corners Stage, and then hooked back up with my peeps down at the River Stage in time to catch John D. Holeman and Lightnin' Wells dropping the blues on everybody. Eventually, we had enough festival for one day, and so we headed for the car, and then the house.