Monday, March 11, 2013

Convention: Simple Moments of Beauty


There was music and beauty all around that weekend.  The old songs, new performances.  New voices, faces matched to names.  Friends you've seen at other events and people who came from England or Australia.  Lots of sensorial input.  Disappointment at the organizers for promising to send a schedule, and then selling it for $25 in a souvenir book. Not getting enough sleep.  Sheer joy.

Saturday Night, there was a spontaneous sing along.  You too can sing along here.  Even Davy's daughters are visibly moved.  During the 2011 tour, they had the crowd sing acapella, which always gives me shivers.  In 2012, they picked a single person from the audience (Mike's idea, and nowhere near as effective).  Where else in your day to day life do you see people happy, singing at the top of their lungs, sheer joy?  Where did this song, this gathering, this magic, even come from?  How is it that we are lucky enough to have it happen to us?  (Karma, God's grace, John Stewart, Raybert, drunk & silly people in a crowd; all acceptable answers, but insufficient)  Answer for yourself.

At the end of the conference, Sunday afternoon, Micky was doing a Q&A and the Dealer's Room was quiet. Peter picks up a guitar from the next booth and begins playing.  A song for a dozen people.  And I am again rendered awestruck.  A weekend of amazing encounters, and then a moment of transcendence.

Objectively, I don't think he's the greatest guitar player in the entire world.  I'm sure I've heard better, but there is something about all this history that maybe makes me pay more attention.  Or the universe just making sure that I'm in the right place at the right time to hear a message of beauty. Some guy starts playing a red guitar and suddenly you realize the rest of the world is in black and white.

It's this recurring moments of attention that has gotten me into listening more carefully to the Blues, actually seeking out and watching all those old movie references, and why I wanted to go on a macrobiotic diet when I was 8.  It's why I seriously consider traveling from NY to Boston just to hear him play his brother's composition to a Brecht play.  Not for him, but for me.  For a moment of surprise, just when I think I can predict everything that will happen in the world of the Monkees.  A strange and wonderful journey indeed.

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