Sunday, August 22, 2010

Magical Moment 199, "Destined for Chicken"

Tonight, I had the first 3-hour music set that I’ve had in a looong time. I was booked at a restaurant in Brooklyn called Los Pollitos 2.  Most gigs I’ve played recently involve only a few songs and usually none of which are my choice.

Eddie and I made our way down Manhattan in a torrential rainstorm that added at least an hour’s time to our travel in backed up traffic. Thankfully we arrived on schedule and I set up Ray (my keyboard) in the tiny corner of the small dining space designated for the musician. Thank goodness Eddie is available and willing to be my “roadie.” I don’t know what I would do if I had to unload and set up all those stands, amps, and cords on my own.

Initially, I was a little nervous about the performance, but after a few songs, I really felt at home. I played the same songs I used to play at Lee’s in Lincoln – boogie-woogie, Billy Joel, and other popular standards. At Los Pollitos, I earned a decent amount of tips and an unexpected bonus from the manager at the end of the night, so I was pleasantly satisfied. 
Three of my “fans” even came out to support my performance– my 2 neighbors and a fellow Nebraskan piano player who now lives in NYC.

Towards the end of the night, they started requesting songs – Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline, Elton John. And that’s when it hit me. I had gone from Lee’s Chicken, to Little Chicken (Pollitos).  I guess in 5 years, my biggest transformation in my career as a struggling musician, is geography. Oh well, how can you beat playing in a place with famous $4 margaritas?!