Saturday, August 28, 2004

Air Drumming For Willie Nelson

Last night my wife and I attended the Willie Nelson/ Bob Dylan concert in Madison, WI. Willie and Bob are touring minor league ballparks across the US. It was a fun setting and great show!

What can you say that hasn't been said about these two icons of American music? Willie was wonderful! He was charming, entertaining and a pure joy to listen to. Bob has a vocal style all his own, but his band - whoa! - did they rock! Amazing!

A full review of the show can be seen here in The Capital Times.

One of the best parts of an outdoor concert is always the crowd. In a stadium or concert hall everybody has a seat. They sit, or stand, in their spot, unless you're within close proximity to the stage where you are crushed together into a single reactive body. At the ballpark people sat in the stands, but most brought blankets and sat in the grassy outfield. We found a nice spot along side of third base. It had a clear view since park staff had the infield roped off.

On one side was a Harley family, the men all dressed in black, the women in tie-dye. But the people, or person, on the other side was very entertaining. Once Willie came out and started to sing, this 20-something young man put on his sunglasses and brought out a pair of wooden drumsticks. He proceeded to beat out the rhythm in the air, including the occasional cymbal crash and finger twirl.

Air drumming must be exhausting. After about a half dozen songs he laid on his back and then used his legs as his snare and tom-tom. A brief rest and he was back on his feet jamming with Willie and then all through Bob's set as well. Was he a real drummer, or just a strange little wanna-be? We'll never know. It was an interesting sidelight to a great evening.


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