Tuesday, May 08, 2007


The 23rd was Lucinda Williams at the Michael Rose Theatre on the University of Memphis campus. Weenie and I went over to Susan and Jeff's house for predrinks. The venue did not serve alcohol. As a matter of fact, they don't serve refreshments of any kind. Super!

Weenie and I had packed a cooler full of beer in anticipation of no alcohol. Jeff was also very interested in the beers. We figured we would go out to the van during intermission and slam a few.

Susan had procured us tickets and backstage passes for the show, so, to say I was excited would be an understatement.

We got the tickets and they were on the 7th row. The show was sold out so S & J didn't have tickets. Susan was singing with Lucinda so they would just hang backstage during the show.

The opening chick was really good. She played the fiddle flawlessly. I later learned the drummer was Alison Krauss's brother. I wonder if Alison gave her any pointers?

Before the opener was over, we, minus Susan, all headed to the van for beers. We all killed a Bud Light and walked back to our seats. Finally, Lucinda came out. She started with Greenville but soon started coughing and had to stop. She then started Fruits of My Labor and choked again. She was laughing about it and said that the pollen in Memphis had her all stopped up.

She decided to try Pineola (one of my favs) and her throat didn't let her down this time. It was smooth sailing after that. She played 5 or 6 songs and then brought out Susan. They sang Lake Charles together and I was covered in chills. It was truly heartstopping. I'm not sure if I breathed through the whole song.

Then she bought out Alvin Youngblood Hart and he let loose with his guitar riffs. They played Joy and Lucinda stood up on the drum stage and the look on her face was priceless. She was in awe of Susan and Alvin. Once the song was over, Lucinda ran to the mic and said "I believe that's the best version of Joy ever done!"

She played a bunch of other tunes and finally after 2 hours, ended with Real Live Bleeding Fingers And Broken Guitar Strings.

The lights came up and people began to file out. Weenie and I hung back. We were to wait for Jeff to come and get us.

We saw Susan stick her head out and motion for us to come back. We walked behind the stage and saw her band members. We went into the Green Room where they were making sandwiches. Alvin was in there hanging out. There were a few other people with backstage passes stuck to their shirts.

I was nervous. We sat around for a while and the tour manager walked through and said to anyone that would listen "I don't think Lucinda is coming out." A strikened look crossed my face but I glanced at Susan and she made me feel at ease.

The bass player was leaning against the wall and looked at Susan and said "Well, I guess I'm heading to the bus" and Susan said, "Well, I guess we'll be going too."

So, we got up and started following the bass player out to where the buses were. The tour manager was waiting for us and I was thinking "Is this about to happen?"

He opened the door to the bus and I was first to board. He said "Help yourself to the fridge." Jeff, Weenie and Susan boarded and then HE SHUT THE DOOR. I was thinking "wait, it's just us on the bus! OMG!" He then said, "She'll be out in a minute."

I got up and got a beer. Anything to calm my nerves. The bus was badass. Weenie and I were on the couch and I immediately took out my camera and starting taking pictures of myself in Lucinda's bus.

Susan asked for the camera so she could snap a pic of me and Weenie.

Then Lucinda opened the bedroom door and came out. Susan introduced us and she hugged us both. I was just grinning the whole time. Then we all sat down and she just started talking to Weenie and I like she'd known us forever. She was so gracious and just regular, for lack of a better word.

She was telling Susan about some songs she was working on that she would be great on singing backup. Then, she started singing them! OMG! I poked Weenie and whispered "Is this really happening!" Then she sang a little of another song. It was magical.

She told us several hysterical stories and had us laughing. The tour manager stuck his head in the door and said they needed to leave pretty soon. They were heading to Louisville.

I'd given Susan my CD to have signed. I knew she could get it done. Lucinda took the CD and we made sure she spelled Weenie's name right.

Then we all stood up and I handed my camera to some dude. It's terrible of me because I'm smiling and shouting instructions on using the camera.

We left shortly after the pictures were taken. We all got another hug. As I stepped off the bus, it was still so surreal. The grin returned to my face and was still there when my head hit the pillow.

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