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Date: Wed 17 Jun, 2009 at 20:27
Headline: Matt's Gig Recap: Like A Record, Baby

It seemed a simple thing really.

Step One: Get Married.

Step Two: Go on Honeymoon.

Step Three: Get back from honeymoon, get the house de-boxified, settle into married life, get the remnants of a band together to rehearse a set of songs, each song being unknown by at least one member of the band (including one that none of us knew except Thom, who was 800 miles away), and play our first SoN gig after a layoff of about six months.

Ok, looking back on it, I may have overloaded Step Three, particularly considering I had just over two weeks to get it done.

I would have lent more credence to the likelihood of accomplishing Step Three if it hadn't been for the fact that the day I returned from the honeymoon, my body was telling me that it was clearly coming down with something. I had hoped that it was just a 24-hour flu kind of thing, but had to abandon that hope when I ended up in the emergency room.

As I have had to state many times before: no, I did not contract the swine flu, the H1N1 virus, or as one person stated to me after misreading it on the TV, the "hiney" virus (I thought that had more to do with Preparation H than the symptoms I was experiencing, but I digress). I landed in the ER because of a case of vertigo, which I had never experienced before. Initially it only lasted for about 5 minutes, but I would have to say it was the worst feeling I had ever felt. At least until the next day, when it returned and stayed for a much longer period.

For those of you unfamiliar with vertigo, imagine the most nauseating spinning thrill ride you can think of at your local amusement park. Then imagine not being able to get off the ride for 14 hours. The doctors told me it was a temporary condition likely caused by the virus I had. Even after the episode subsided, my vision was very blurry for days after. It took me a few days before I could really walk effectively again, and I was still struggling mightily right up to the time of the gig.

Thankfully I work with some pros. Mike Thiriot and Dave Geiselmayr brought their A-game. I was particularly impressed with Mike picking up on the new songs we threw at him. Being a self-confessed tablature junkie and not too keen on learning by ear, he really showed that he is a master of all trades. Thom came in on show day and took over most of the heavy lifting for the gigs so I could focus on the then-difficult task of walking in a straight line. I thought both shows came off very well and, more importantly to me, as I was playing I really didn't feel any of the effects of the vertigo. I guess that means we need to schedule more gigs to keep me upright.

I will let Thom comment more on the shows themselves, but suffice it to say everyone came ready to bring the house down. All of Friday's bands especially had great energy, and they are all well worth going to see. Special kudos to Ray Opheikens for running great sound for us on Thursday and to Al Stewart for letting me leech off of his gear on Friday.

I've rambled on for too long already, but I would be remiss if I didn't mention the newest member of the band family. I am referring to the brand new shiny wedding present from Nic that I got to play for our Club Vegas show and will be a mainstay of mine for many many shows to come. Playing it through Al's big rig, it had such a happy roar to it. I have to admit I tend to keep coming back to the gig pix frequently just to stare at my guitars. This new one is so pretty...

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