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Monterey General Store - Monterey, Massachusetts - 11/10/06

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Posts: 4472
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Played my first "solo" (okay, somewhat solo) gig in ages last night. My thanks to the folks who sent "good luck" notices during the week. That really helped.

The Monterey General Store is just that - a very small general store. They move the shelves and things around so that there's room for a couple of musicians and maybe three or four tables (there's an outdoor patio in the summer). The joke is that you want to get there early or you end up with a seat in the aisle with the Spam and other canned goods... :wink:

Nothing outworldly to report. Aside from not packing a tuner, things went very smoothly. Crowd of twenty to thirty people at times, including GN Forum member the Celt (thanks again for coming, John!), and folks were wonderfully polite and receptive.

After a very fun sound check (Karen and Joel and I played the Band's The Weight (with the audience joining in on all the choruses) and stopped at the end of each verse to ask about how the sound was (too much keyboard? not enough harmonica? vocals coming through okay?), I started out solo:

Sapphire (an old original song)
If I Had A Boat (Lyle Lovett)
Rocket Man (Elton John)
The Story In Your Eyes (Moody Blues)
Romeo And Juliet (Dire Straits)

Then switched to Open D tuning for three songs:

Below The Stair (another original - an SSG song at that!)
Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic (Police)
I'm On Fire (Springsteen - thanks to DustDevil for the idea for this arrangement, by the bye)

And then swiched tuning again (CGDBGE) for

Vincent Black Lightning 1952 (Richard Thompson)

Then Karen Berger joined me, playing piano on

After The Rain (another original)

and a group of SSG songs

One By One (written by Nick Torres)

No Reflection On You (by Kathy Riechert)

Saturn's Moons (mine)

Orange and Cinnamon (mine)

Karen and I were then joined by Joel Schick who was kind enough to get me this gig. He played harmonica for the following:

Dead Flowers (Rolling Stones - Joel sang lead and I did harmony)

Man In Black Blues (another of my songs)

Summer Wages (Dave Bromberg)

Lobster Quadrille (yet one more original)

Harvest Moon (Neil Young)

And then I closed the show with two final solo pieces:

Whiter Shade of Pale (Procol Harum)

(nothing but) Flowers (Talking Heads)

I can't believe how nervous I was about doing this show but it all came across fine. There were tons of mistakes and little glitches but I think everyone enjoyed it. Got asked back to do two more shows, so now I get to work up some more material!

Don't know if this "gig report" is up to Dennis' and Wes' standards but hopefully with more gigs I'll be able to get better at these, too. :wink:

Thanks for letting me ramble and thank you again to everyone who wrote with good wishes and especially to those who made it to the show.


Posted : 11/11/2006 12:50 pm
Posts: 2736
Famed Member

Congrats David, i am sure the people would have enjoyed your performances.

Also, did you use only an acoustic guitar ? And what about the drums and bass ?

Just wondering how did you manage the songs (I wish i could...), if they weren't there.


Posted : 11/11/2006 1:02 pm
Posts: 4472
Topic starter

Thanks Rahul - did all that with just a twelve string guitar (for After The Rain, One By One, Dead Flowers, Summer Wages and Harvest Moon) and a six string for the others. As mentioned, had piano and harmonica back up on some of the songs.

You can play almost any song you want to on the guitar, it's just a matter of making an arrangement you think people are going to like. The audience rarely expects you to sound just like the original artist. After all, they're there to see you, so it's better to have your own arrangements. It's easier to do than you might imagine!


Posted : 11/11/2006 1:11 pm
Posts: 5044
Illustrious Member

Great report David! Sounds like it was a good time. Congrats on re-launching your solo career! 8) :D


"The only way I know that guarantees no mistakes is not to play and that's simply not an option". David Hodge

Posted : 11/11/2006 1:52 pm
Posts: 2649
Famed Member


Great Gig! Karen and I had a wonderful time even if we did arrive
just as the show was starting and had to sit in the Spam section
(Actually next to the deli case). Which brings me to one minor
critique. Although the songs came through fine it was a little hard
to hear the introductions and such back with the Pepperidge Farms
and assorted sundries. (Speak up just a little David)

In the opening set I think Rocket Man was the stand out for me.
the open D set was just astounding. Interesting arrangements
all the way through.

Of course the SSG set peeked my interest and I remembered most
of the assignments and songs before David finished introducing them.

"One by One" has always been a favorite of mine and it was great
to hear it performed live.

What David and Karen did with Kathy's Vampire love song
"No Reflection On You " was so much fun.

The Tango arrangement conjured up visions of Gomez and
Morticia Addams dancing the night away.

After hearing Joel and David's arrangement of "Dead Flowers" that
song is permanently off any future play list (unless of course I'm
accompanying David and Joel) That is now the definitive version
of the song for me.

The rest of the last set was awesome. Great harp playing on
"Man in Black Blues" and I for one am a big fan of Karen's Blues
piano playing. It's always fun to hear "Lobster Quadrille" and it
didn't take too long for the audience to catch on to the sing along
on "(nothing but) Flowers

So I'll guess I'll close by saying:

David, "YOU GOT IT"


PS Many thanks to the proprietor Sammy.
He is a very gracious gentleman who made everybody feel welcome.

My SoundClick Page


" It's easier than waiting around to die" Townes Van Zandt

Posted : 11/11/2006 2:42 pm
Posts: 5582
Illustrious Member


Don't know if this "gig report" is up to Dennis' and Wes' standards but hopefully with more gigs I'll be able to get better at these, too.

A gig is a gig.

I've played a few interesting shows before, but never in a General Store. Clubs give you free beer, what does a General Store give you? Free canned goods? :D

I am a little surprised an old pro like you would ever get nervous.

I was looking up ads for your new book last week on the web, and somewhere I saw a poster of this show. It was really nice, but I can't find it now. Could you post it here?

Let me know about your next show and I will try to attend.

Congrats on gettin' out there again.


If you know something better than Rock and Roll, I'd like to hear it - Jerry Lee Lewis

Posted : 11/11/2006 7:39 pm
Posts: 4472
Topic starter

I get nervous more often than I'd like to admit and for some reason this time was worse than I can remember.

No canned goods to take home but they do give performers supper and beverages. Our supper turned into lunch because we took it home for Saturday.

And I'll give you a link to the poster in return for you giving me your band's upcoming dates so I can post them in the newsletter. I'd love to get to see you next time you're in Sandisfield...

And I know this is early notice, but try to keep the first weekend in August open.


Posted : 12/11/2006 2:04 am
Posts: 5582
Illustrious Member


Now you know me, I don't want links, I want the real deal. :D

Pretty cool poster I think.

We are playing either next Friday the 17th, or Saturday the 18th. The reason for the confusion is Dom (bass player) called me at work and said we got a call from Angie (the owner) to play Saturday the 17th. Well, I will have to find out for sure, but we've always played Saturdays. But I will find out for sure and let you know.

The Silverbrook is only a couple of miles from that store, I looked up the location on Yahoo maps tonight. To find Silverbrook Cafe just head over to Rte. 8, go south until you hit Rte. 57 West. Go west on Rte. 57 West about 1- 1/2 miles. Can't miss it, it will be all lit up. I'll introduce you to Angie, talk the band into letting you play. You should be able to get a few gigs. :wink:

I'll let you know if it's next Friday or Saturday early in the week. I hope you both come out. Bring the guitar and keyboard.


If you know something better than Rock and Roll, I'd like to hear it - Jerry Lee Lewis

Posted : 12/11/2006 2:20 am
Posts: 2892
Famed Member

Unfortunately I didn't read the Newsletter in time. I think it would have been a 2 1/2 hour trip. :oops:

Glad to hear everything went well. 8)

Posted : 12/11/2006 2:52 am
Posts: 2096
Noble Member

Hey David,
well done mate, great report. Its always nice to hear little snippets of other peoples experiences. "One By One", great song and of course "Orange and Cinnamon" I remember that assignment.

Great to hear that you get to go back and do it all again.



Check out my Reverbnation page here

Posted : 12/11/2006 3:13 am
Posts: 686
Prominent Member

I am so dying to hear your version of "No reflection on You!!
And I am honored that you chose it as part of your repetoire.

Falling in love is like learning to play the guitar; first you learn to follow the rules, then you learn to play with your heart.

Posted : 13/11/2006 2:48 pm
Posts: 2118
Noble Member

More karma connections, as Laura and I played "Sapphire" for the first time in years last week.

We need to update our Hodge songbook!

Posted : 13/11/2006 5:01 pm
Posts: 5582
Illustrious Member


Not to hijack your thread, but Twist of Fate will be playing the Silverbrook Cafe on Rte. 57 West in Sandisfield, Ma. this Saturday, Nov. 18th. Everyone in the area is welcome to come, if you do, expect to play a few songs. :D

Easy to find, take Rte. 8 into Sandisfield, Ma.. At Rte. 57 West turn west and go maybe 1 1/2 miles, Silverbrook will be on the left. It is all lit up and in the middle of nowhere, can't miss it. Hope to see you there.


If you know something better than Rock and Roll, I'd like to hear it - Jerry Lee Lewis

Posted : 13/11/2006 11:34 pm
Posts: 2801
Famed Member

David, congrats on the gig. I have been moving and didnt see this post originally. Sounded like it went great.


“The hardest thing in life is to know which bridge to cross and which to burn” - David Russell (Scottish classical Guitarist. b.1942)

Posted : 15/11/2006 10:45 am
Posts: 4472
Topic starter

Don't sweat it, Geoo - and I appreciate the thoughts. Best of luck to you, too, on next Friday's gig (I went and posted it in the newsletter!). We're expecting a very detailed report. :wink:


Posted : 15/11/2006 5:44 pm
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