Tuesday Night Tunes – The back of the room..

I had the corner seat that was in the back of the room.

It was awesome!!

My seat was in the back of the room as you can see that from the picture. The audio on my phone does not do this duo justice so I have found a few clips of the songs they played that night. This first one is written by Danny and sung by Carrie. I love the words and her voice is breath taking.

I have been trying for a long time to get to one of these house concerts. This one is hosted by Art Bowman and The Bowman House Concert Series. I finally got there last Saturday night and it was perfect. The house was in the end of the cul de sac and there were already lots of cars parked around the loop. The driveway was steep and dark but I could see folks walking up that way, carrying coolers, food and boxes. This must be the place.

Up the driveway it was obvious the traffic was to the back door via the large deck. Just like home, so I walked in and there was Art.

I recognized him from his picture on facebook. I have been emailing him for years. I had the concept in my head but seeing it in real life was something I had anticipated and it was exactly as I pictured it. Imagine someone who does this for the sheer pleasure of the music. That is Art. The money collected goes to the artist. All of it. We had almost 50 people there and I guess about 20% were first timers. They were there to hear the two that were stepping up to play later.

Dinner was a pot luck or ‘covered dish’ if you’re a church goer. This felt a little like church to me. Anticipation of something really good about to happen. I will say the case of beer from Terrapin brewery in Athens was a little un-churchlike but it certainly made for a great time.

Food was being spread out on the counter, table and anywhere else we could find a horizontal spot. Lots of food. Paper plates, plastic forks and lots of people. Instruction to the newbies to mark your name off the list and put the money in the envelope. CD’s set up for sale and some T shirts too.

Introduce yourself and enjoy. The concert will start soon. Take off your coat and put it on a chair to save your spot. I got to meet Stephen and Lindsey (the guy from Athens with the Terrapin beer and his wife) and we spent time eating and talking about what we had in common. They had followed Danny and Carrie to this house. Turns out they had hosted them in Athens a while back and they wanted to hear them again.

The room was about 15 feet by 18 feet. Low ceiling and a bit dark. Art (our host) leaned over to me sitting in the back of the room and said “can you move that switch right there on your shoulder?”. I found the switch and moved it. Spot lights!! Now it wasn’t dark. We were packed in shoulder to shoulder, cheek to cheek and there were seats down the hall and into the kitchen.

Art stepped up and introduced the pair and it was on.

To hear them say ‘Hi’ and start playing something they wrote themselves. It’s a concert like none I have ever been to before. Close. Really close, intimate and after a few minutes the artists got comfortable and warmed up.

The show was on. Carrie Elkin and Danny Schmidt. Here are a couple more clips to share of songs they played.

What you don’t get in these clips are the stories. Stories about leaving a good job as a chemist in Colorado to drive a VW bus to the east coast to busk for money in the subway and to be able to play her music full time. Freedom to do what you love. Freedom from the 9-5 grind, bosses and pay checks.

We sat enthralled as they told the stories, we laughed at the jokes and watched these two interact on stage just a few feet away. They are engaged and planning to marry in October.

This clip shows some of the interaction and story we were treated to in that story about him asking her to be his wife.

So for about 3 hours we got the stories, songs and more stories. There were CD’s bought, autographs given along with hugs. We made some new friends and I can’t wait to do it again. Stay tuned because I am working to be able to do this in my own home (Art said he would help 🙂 ) and you never know who you might get to listen to or the stories you’ll hear.

Stay tuned. We might be able to increase our company of friends.

Thanks for listening,
Jerry Robertson

One thought on “Tuesday Night Tunes – The back of the room..

  1. Laura Monk

    Hi Jerry,
    They are really something, house concerts, I mean….something on both sides of the instrument! I’ve attended several and truly they are magical. Whether you play and perform or you are the much needed other side…audience, listener, smiler, clapper….the event is unique. The musicians that tour in their cars and pack it all in are so full of their passion and it comes through in their craft and the telling of the story in their music.
    There are other musicians, though, that maybe aren’t quite as daring or maybe they are older and have responsibilities that took precedence over their craft…they are local folks who are trying to accomplish the same as that brave traveling troubadour…only within a smaller radiance. I would ask you, as you begin your hosting of these wonderful events to remember the local artists who are just as wonderful and full of stories and love and amazing music. Supporting local music is like supporting the local shop owner or farmer….they sometimes get passed over…you know…you’re just not as special in some folks eyes if you didn’t travel to get “there”.
    Thrilled that there is another kind music lover soul who is opening a new venue for events like this…I hope you will add me/us to your email list….
    And…..should you be willing to try a local group…we would love to be a part of your series. We are mature, seasoned musicians…now a trio(our percussionist just moved to NC) who love music, performing and sharing. Please visit our website and take a listen. I would be happy to send you a CD…we can be a duo or a trio….we are lots of fun and we are from Cumming and Sugar Hill, Ga.
    All the best….would love to hear from you!
    Laura Monk