John and I showed up at around 5:45 for sound check with great soundman Nimal... Big thanks Nimal.. after a short 10 minute check we headed for the little restaurant that is part of the venue and got some very good Turkish food before we hit the stage.
The venue is a small little cabaret type place with dimly lit lights almost like you’re playing in the lower Village in New York City back in 1950s.. with a little bar in the back… I like this place.
First and foremost, this audience was a wonderful audience to play for... they seem to be so into what we were doing from the start to the finish… that’s about as good as it gets!
The result was that this is one of my favorite shows .. just everything felt real to me and I was living the songs as I sang them and I felt that the audience was right there with me… And the connection with John Platania was on a very high level to where little extensions of his guitar licks would lead me certain places and what I would do might lead him certain places as well.
We divided the show into two sections:
We started with “The Real Thing” from my 1974 Last Chance album, which has become my theme song after all these years.
Then we got right into the heart of my new album “Whiskey Salesman”.. I explained that there were 11 videos to go along with the 11 songs… All of them shot in and around my local bar, Parnell’s and the streets of New York with a lot of my love for Joan my wife weaving through the entire album.. I mentioned that the video of the song was accepted into the prestigious New Media Film Festival in California and that my wife Joan and I would be walking the red carpet on June 4 .. this brought spontaneous applause from this kind of audience.
After the title song we did several love songs for Joan that are on the album, including “Hold Her“ and “I Love You Today“.. both of which seem to hold his audience ...you could hear a pin drop.
We had a lot of fun with “A Sip or Two of Good Scotch“… The song that Joan suggested I write to make sure that the people were careful with their whiskey… In other words suggesting not to drink too much.
Told a little bit about John Prine’s new album and one of the songs that puts him in heaven drinking vodka and smoking long cigarettes...., then sang the song which included some of these thoughts.... the audience seem to love it.
We ended the first set with a wonderful warm version of the title song of my Yonkers New York album.
John Platania was a magic man tonight from start to finish and the audience let him know it
We took a break and were surprised that the great Tom Wilson stop by to see the second half of the show and to converse with one of his heroes, the great John Platania! Tom is known as one of the amazing front men of Blackie and the Rodeo Kings .. he is an amazing performer!
Aside from his musical accomplishments, he has a book out that is a best seller called “Beautiful Scars” that traces some amazing family history that he newly found out about...I don’t want to give too much away ... it’s just a wonderful book and a worthwhile read! . He also brought a present of his album of songs inspired by the book I am sure it will be a good listen. Big thanks Tom! Great to see you
At halftime a wonderful guy of Indian descent requested a song that I wrote back in the 70s. It seems his father was a huge Chip Taylor fan back then and he listen to a lot of my music. The song he requested was the song called “Circle of Tears“, which I haven’t sung in 25 or 30 years.
But I just decided to give it a try so I open the set with the song for Arnab... The audience seem to like it quite a bit and it brought back special memories to me. Thanks for the request my friend.
The rest of the set seems to fly by in total communion with the audience.. we went back to the Whiskey Salesman album and played “I like Ridin’“, “Some Hearts“, “Naples“ and “In the Stillness of the Night“ which had everybody singing along by songs end.
Then it was onto the Meyer Lansky section of the show.. again, the reason is called that is because aside from writing my hit songs at a place called 1650 Broadway… It is also the place where I made my horse bets and my bookie was Mr Lansky.
We played a song I wrote with Al Gorgoni called “I Can’t Let Go“ which was a very big hit by the Hollies and Linda Ronstadt back in the day.
We took a little break from this section to go back to a current hit, a song I wrote for the Canadian golfing girls, Brooke and Brittany Henderson, “ I’ll Carry For You“... there were several in the audience aware of Brooke and Brittany’s success and they cheered when their names were mentioned.
After the show, several in the audience said the song brought tears to their eyes thinking of their own sisters.
We close the show with the “Angel of the Morning”… Such a beautiful version... then a rockin’ “Wild Thing“. Then my current big hit on Spotify, a song I wrote for the prisoners, “Fuck all the Perfect People“… With everybody singing along at the end.
This sounded so beautiful.. we ended with another song on my Spotify charts .. and speaks about injustice... “ I’ll Only be Me Once”.. The audience sang loud and clear on this one on the ending choruses!
This was a beautiful night!.. thanks to all who attended..
Said hi to several… Somehow I lost my notes, so mostly from memory here’s A few names I remember:
First… Hi Ginger… Nice meeting you at the door… Best of luck with your own career… Big thanks Nimal for the great sound
Hi to DJ Fred and his friend crazy Bernie.. it was wonderful seeing you guys and talking with you for a bit.. Fred thanks for playing ready and rolling stone I love that one too.
Great to see my friend Melissa.. I was hoping you would come… You look as beautiful as ever.. and you are as soulful as ever.. thanks for bringing your great spirit.
Hi Arnab ... thanks for being here and reminding me of the music you and your father liked and requesting Circle Of Tears… I love doing that tonight.
Hey Norm.. (another big Brooke fan)... Nice talking with you thanks so much for your wonderful comments about the music .. hi Craig and Laurie… so good to see you ..thanks for the kind words.
hi John great to see ..special hello to Dave and Darlene and all the kind folks at that table on my right ..it was great that you were there!!! you were a great part of this wonderful audience!!! I will look forward to seeing you next time!!
Hi Sarah it was nice to see you when the show ended and your kind words meant a lot to me. I hope you enjoy the CD don’t forget the DVD that has a video for each the 11 songs on the CD.
God bless you all this was a special night for John and I and our cohort Neil MacGonigill. these are the nights that make some of the tough journey all worthwhile!