Sunday, May 10, 2020

Online Gigs and Offline Gigs

It's been really fun doing online gigs: so different from actual playing for so many different reasons and I'm so looking forward to getting back to that again.
The travel, the social thing of meeting new people, then buzz of wondering whether the gig will go down well or not, the come-down afterwards, the rituals of planning and publicising. At every single gig there is a moment where I become acutely conscious of what I'm doing: I am a middle aged, divorced woman with some disastrous life events behind her, two grown up daughters and a responsible job, yet in this moment I am standing on a stage with a guitar in a pair of hands that are doing complicated things, putting my body and soul into singing words and melodies that I have written, and people are listening to what I am saying. What a strange thing! I did not ever imagine this would happen in my life, yet here it is. And upstairs a stupid amount of guitars rest, waiting for me to pick them up and write songs on them. 'Me first!!', they jostle.

Home gigs are weird- the getting ready (I have to sit on a  pile of tottering cushions to be high enough), the people walking past the front window as I'm playing, the wondering who is watching, the occasional forgetting of the words when a small unexpected thing interrupts, then the end where nothing happens, apart from putting the furniture back in place and having a cup of tea.

Mostly, I miss my gig mates.
 Over the past four years, I've been doing gigs with some brilliant people, a friendly straggly gang of like-minded writers, musicians and audience members. When you see them at the next gig, it's as though you only just saw them the day before and you carry on where you left off; you look forward to their next album or gig as though it was your own.
I appreciated the openness that allowed me to be part of this as soon as it happened, and I have never stopped appreciating it because it's been so energetic and affectionate and vibrant.
At the moment it feels like a dormant desert flower: I can't wait for it all to burst into life again!

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