Wednesday, June 26, 2013
...A Passage that would Change Everything
...this past weekend my oldest son and I attended a local musical competition known as The Battle of the Bands. As the title proclaims, musicians from around the area, some from across the state, others peddling in from down the block, meet up at the fair grounds for a winner take all concert.
The concept...play four or five of your very best songs, offering musical sustenance to an impatient audience baking under clear skies, for a chance at winning some free recording time, their best tune played on the local radio station, and an hour long concert during the yearly Octoberfest.
For an unknown artist of the lyrical tune, this is playoff time.
My son and I sat toward the back of the grandstand, enjoying a taste of local flavor, occasionally offering support, at times yearning for the chorus to end.
Nearing the conclusion of the show, our true reason for being there ambled onto the stage.
I leaned toward my son, who'd never heard them play. "You're in for a treat."
Musical group Reddy Freddy, three brothers and their enthusiastic drummer, all born and bred less than a mile from the stage they now stood upon, eased into their first song.
I'm a fan of Reddy Freddy, have mentioned them in previous posts, and spend my days in a cubicle, (when not on the road), sharing thoughts and ideas with their base player.
The crowd, restless after endearing twenty minutes of bad karaoke, grew still, thinking perhaps they were listening to Dave Matthews, or Jack Johnson, as opposed to a group of fellas from across town.
Each song garnered wild applause. When they finished up their time in the spotlight with their best hit, "DNA," every last soul in attendance was on their feet.
Playing only their own work, Reddy Freddy swept the competition and took first place. Perhaps I'm biased, but in the end it really wasn't even close.
When I introduced my son to the band members, including the talented base player who, during normal business hours, shares an office with yours truly, the first question out of my boy's mouth proved a bit forward, but nonetheless worthy of discussion.
"Why are you guys still playing for pennies around here, and not on tour with The Lumineers?"
The answer was really quite simple. "Because that ONE person hasn't heard us just yet." He then leaned forward, as if about to offer my son the secret to tuning a guitar in less time than it takes to slap together a ham 'n cheese on rye, and said, "But I'm pretty sure he will...some day."
That conversation between my son, and my musical pal from the neighboring cubicle, has stuck with me since.
When it's all said and done, musicians and writers are very much alike. Starving artists from opposing branches, yet stemming from the same thick trunk. So much talent, all those dreams, each of us waiting around for that ONE person that'll change everything.
And from there, an idea struck.
What if, say...Stephen King were to somehow get a copy of my novel, South of Charm? And what if he were to be so cool as to read a passage of Charm on YouTube, perhaps even the first few pages of chapter 36, my personal favorite?
And what if that simple download, just a guy reading a story, were to earn a hundred thousand hits during its infancy?
All it would take is one person to change everything.
Pass it on...
You can listen to Reddy Freddy's "DNA" on the link below...
And in case you're interested in reading Chapter 36 from South of Charm...
Thanks for reading ;)