Just last year, together with my bands, we sang amongst the beauty of the vineyards. We attended parties, weddings, grand openings and hippie festivals. We played alternative covers at church functions and sang gospel after hours at the bar.
At times, we were showered with praise and once we were showered with grapes thrown by a mischievous little boy.
We dressed up in costumes and closed out the night for a sweaty mass of ski bums. We have learned to protect our microphones from over-zealous fans and steer them toward the nearest karaoke. We have been gifted instruments by fans.
We’ve played outside in the bitter cold with frozen fingers that quit working. I once played a six-hour-long performance solo. The memories blend together into a whirlwind of nostalgia.
Knowing that concerts and live music are one of the last things to reopen, a lot of musicians have packed up and left town.
We are getting by, exploring other options, but certainly missing music.
Meanwhile, there is some time to reflect on what we had — the music scene we enjoyed in our own backyard. Joni Mitchell is right: You don’t know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone.
Leavenworth may not be on the map of top musical destinations in the country, and we have yet to produce any hit singles or Grammy winners (prove me wrong?), but we have a healthy musical community and for those of us who participate it is a joyful affair.
Our people love music. We play on the porch, attend concerts, and support, hire and host musicians from around the world. We generally agree that live music is a necessity.
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