A couple of years ago I had a gig with the legendary songstress Melba Moore. We were in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and we were playing at a big auditorium. The headliner for that evening was The Spinners (“It takes a fool, I’ll be around, It’s a shame, Rubber band man”). The guys in my band love to meet up with other musicians and have fun before the show. Usually it is a trademark thing when most groups are doing shows with other great acts. Well, the Spinners themselves (The guys who actually sing the songs) were just as nice and they could be. We all had dinner together before the show and had a great time talking music. The guys in their band were nice too, but maybe with a little bit of an edge. Their bass player decided to talk to me while playing this great slap bass solo at the same time. If I didn’t know any better I would have sworn that he was trying to impress me with how fast he could play. It really felt rather disrespectful. I calmly talked to him while he kept slapping his bass in my face and I acted like it was no big thing. The band had never seen us perform before and we got the impression that they thought we were somehow “beneath them.” In fact, when it came time for us to open the show they said that they would be sitting in the audience to check us out so we need to do well. They also said for us to make sure that we “warm it up” for them. Those words came back to haunt them. My guys huddled with Melba and we detected a little bit of arrogance on their part. My suggestion was to do a whole lot more than just “warm the stage” for them. Melba was all for it, too. We started out onstage and I could see the band members sitting near the front. We started with a song by Melba entitled “You stepped into my life” that had a nice entry groove. It was only supposed to last for a few bars but Melba was feeling the groove, so she let us take it away (and that was “exactly” what we did). We killed it onstage, and I even took a bass solo on it. While I “played the fool out of that groove” I made sure to keep my eyes totally focused on the bass player guy who decided to make an impression on me. I never took my eyes off of him as I whipped it down, just like he did earlier. In fact, I looked at him rather intensely as if to say “Now you take THIS!” We had a great show and the audience loved us. The Spinners themselves came on after us, and most of their show is usually slow and drawn out. After the program many of the people that we met said that we “took the show.” The guys in the Spinners band could not be found afterwards. We heard that they skipped out immediately afterwards. It was a fun moment for us and Melba, and we smiled about it all. When it comes to my music career I have had some really fun moments. I hope you don’t mind me sharing this one moment with you today. Thanks for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.
Melba Moore, with Brett Jolly in concert