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Date: Fri 26 Oct, 2001 at 00:00
Headline: Doing What We Do

Greetings and Salutations!

To say that Thursday's benefit concert went off without a hitch would be stretching the truth...but not by much. Despite the usual practical and technical headaches that inevitably occur when trying to cram so many artists into so small of a space in so short of a time, things were relatively smooth throughout.

Ya'Buts marqueeJames got to play with his usual Sunday Night jamming partners Dan Weldon and Dicky Martinez, and they turned out a string of solid pop-rock covers, opening the show with Tom Petty's "American Girl" and closing over 3 hours later with a heartfelt rendition of John Mellencamp's "Pink Houses". Danny was especially pleased to be doing the show, being a native of NYC.

Body Talk funked everybody up with a great set of soul & disco. Despite their guitarist breaking strings on two successive instruments, everybody kept their heads in the game and their set was smokin'.

Tornado Blue combined folky guitars, driving DJ beats, sisterly harmony and supplementary visuals for a set that certainly had people talking.

Troy Nielsen's jazz trio kept things buzzing out in the foyer, and blew most of us away from a purely musical perspective. Awesome work.

And us?

Ya'Buts marquee

Well, we gave it our all. Lots of interesting sidelines along the way. Tim, having misread our start time, was on a run to the local 7-11 when our set began. Fortunately John Clark was on hand and threw in with us for old time's sake. By the time Tim had arrived, we were nearly halfway through the set. We had a guitar amp breadown after that, but musically things were much more solid. I got a chance to make a little speech about how many lyrics seem to have taken on a new meaning in the last 6 weeks, and I thought we were especially soulful on "We Are One" that night.

Ya'Buts marqueeAs I mentioned to the audience, it was extremely humbling and gratifying to be doing the show. As citizens, we have all searched out ways to help and taken the various opportunities presented to us. However, to be able to contribute in this way, doing what we do, is really very special. And though many concerts such as this one have already taken place on both the localand national levels, I feel this was neither pointless nor redundant. Having trouble conjuring up the cynicism right now. :)

Special Thanks go to all the bands, tech crew, and especially John Clark and Ray Opheikens, who saved all of our lives in more ways than one that night. You guys RULE!

Next stop: CLUB EXPOSE on Halloween. We're gonna burn the place, musically speaking...and we even have some holiday material picked out for the occasion.

Bye for now,

your humble correspondent
Thom Bowers