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Business as usual! 4/7/2015
Thought Archive

March began with a trip to Seattle for two shows in Kirkland, a charming town about 15 miles outside The Emerald City. Jim and I were flying in from Phoenix, where we had performed the previous evening.

We were up at 5:30 that morning to make our 8:00 am flight. It was a smooth trip; we picked up our rental car and drove to our nearby hotel without a hitch. My singing partner for this back-to-back concert date, John Trones, was on hand to greet us as we pulled up to The Double Tree Hotel. We soon learned that we were going to be charged an extra $50 for checking in before 11:00 am--even though our rooms were ready. As it was 10:48, we decided to wait it out with the other early check-in wannabes, storming the front desk en masse at the stroke of eleven! No, it didn’t make a lot of sense to me either…I mean, seriously??

In my room by 11:15 though, I gratefully grabbed a half-hour nap before meeting Jim and John in the lobby at 12:30 for our short drive to sound check at Kirkland Center. It was a magnificent day, and we greedily drank in the crisp clean air of the Pacific Northwest. There’s nothing like it! If only we could enjoy more time outdoors on these trips…

Our first show was at 3 pm. I love playing this intimate theatre where Jim and I have performed before. It was great to be back. The crew there is wonderful and I was looking forward to seeing my dear friends, Bob and Denise, who were driving in from Tacoma to attend the matinee. The audience was fantastic and Bob, Denise and their friends clearly enjoyed themselves. I also got to meet Helo Matzelle, after the show. A very lovely lady, she wrote her memoir, “Halo Found Hope” after surviving a rare brain tumor. It’s quite a story!

With only an hour before our 7 pm edition, the boys and I enjoyed a yummy salmon dinner in haste before returning to the stage. Again, the crowd was great and I can’t stress how much fun it is to sing "up close" to the audience...

I slept sweet dreams that night. And the following morning, I was flying home to Cleveland.

It would be two weeks before our next show, in Cincinnati, on Friday the 13th. By noon, Jim, Wendy, Clay and I were on our way. After a lunch stop at Cracker Barrel, and the entire drive in the pouring rain (a nod to Friday the 13th?), with Wendy at the wheel, we arrived at The Taft Theatre at 5:30 pm.

This was our first time at The Taft and it was great to have Tracy join us there for a fun evening. The audience’s enthusiasm was contagious and we all had a ball!

The following Wednesday, Brynne, Brickman tour manager, and I met at Cleveland Hopkins Airport for our flight to Tampa, FL. We had a concert date at The Lakeland Center, in Lakeland. Fun fact: Air Force One was landing in Cleveland at around the time of our departure, which set our take-off back an hour…

On arrival Tampa, we embarked on the hour-long drive to Lakeland. We were picked up at the airport by the driver from the theatre and I warmed up in the car before we were delivered to the theatre--in rush-hour traffic--at 5:45pm.

Once there, we visited a bit with our friends Peter and Rachel, who had driven in from Orlando, to see us. It would have been nice to have had more time to visit, but we had to make up for lost time and get ready for curtain call!

We were to have a special guest that evening. Guitarist Pavlo and his band opened the second set with his Mediterranean sound. They were very good and the audience loved them. Jim rarely has special acts perform in his shows, so this was a nice surprise. I would love to join them for a song or two next time!

The next morning I flew back to Cleveland and drove straight to the studio to rehearse with Abe for our upcoming Nighttown show, April 2.

The following Saturday, I joined Abe, pianist LR and saxophonist, Jim Witherspoon for a private event. It was a short set but the audience enjoyed it and I always have so much fun singing with Abe.

That was March, folks! Sound like business as usual? I look forward to telling you all about our sold-out show at Nighttown next month!