THREE DAYS AFTER another epic store party, we are starting to recover. Sheryl and I had a blast and our eighth anniversary was a roaring success.
We had a big day in the store, and a jam session interrupted only by Frank Haxel somehow winning the Bedford Memorial Beer Can Bowling Invitational for the second time. Many thanks to all who came by and hung out, like Travis Hoffman, who arrived around noon and jammed almost to the end.
I'm going to leave somebody out, but Jim Puskar and Jim Percy were there early too, and when Paul Lester showed up with his magic mandolin we really got going. Rick Emery showed up, saw what was happening, then went back to his car to say farewell to his wife and dog, and he and Adam Yates fired up the keyboards. Cori Lyssy got her pipes warmed up and belted out the tunes.
Patrick Ballard, brother of local audiologist Kevin Ballard, arrived to do some picking. Literally. Patrick is a judge who lives in Alabama and is a flamenco guitar player, and he gave a concert later that night at the Unitarian church. Patrick played his brother's Breedlove acoustic guitar and used his amazing fingerstyle talents, and there were few times when I was playing that I got lost just staring at his fingers on his strum hand.
Cheeseburger drummer Kirk Gribler and his lovely wife Susan arrived with a batch of chili and the fixins. There wasn't any left at the end of the night. Everybody loved it, everybody.
The Pleasant brothers showed up to try out a microphone and ended up playing on a couple of songs. Can't say I've ever played a Backstreet Boys tune at one of our jam sessions, but we have now. They blew the roof off the store party and it wasn't even 3 p.m. yet. Geesh!
I also really enjoyed our new friend Vicky, who recently bought a Luna guitar from us and is learning how to play. She showed no fear and hung right in there, even sang on a few songs. I have always said playing with other people is the best way to learn. She even figured out how to cheat on the dreaded F and B chords. See? Learning is fun!
In the afternoon, Pete Magliocco and Ted Holt showed up. They haven't played much since Ted and Libby brought a new bundle of joy home a few months ago, and it was great to hear them again. Lincoln Smith and Isaac Lester jumped in to play along too, bringing back memories of the "Uninvited Cajon" incident from two years ago. This one worked out better!
Finally, Blake Gardner and Zac Bentley came by, bringing back memories of The Funions (Zac filled in on bass for a few memorable gigs) and I think they had just as much fun playing with Cori Lyssy as they normally do at Blake's shows.
Again, if I'm forgetting somebody, my apologies. So much fun! Sheryl and I again thank everybody for a great eight years and we'll try our best to make No. 9 the best one yet.