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Archive for November 1st, 2003

No Mail

Saturday, November 1st, 2003

Our hotel in Indianapolis has a really fast internet connection, for surfing and downloading mail. Unfortunately, I am unable to send mail out.

If any of you wrote me, I won’t be able to return your message until I get home. Since I am teaching polymer clay in the Detroit Area on Sunday, you may not get a note until Sunday night. Don’t worry if you don’t hear from me!

Update #1 from Midwest Ukefest

Saturday, November 1st, 2003

We are at Ukefest and it is pretty darned wonderful. Ukulele players are by and large fun and optimistic people, and it’s sort of amazing to feel the energy of being in a group of uke players this large. We got to re-meet Jim and Liz Bieloff, who we met a few years ago when we opened for Jim at the Creole gallery. We are also meeting lots of great folks.

Today we got to Indianapolis just before 3pm, and they were collecting names for an open mike session starting at 4pm. We signed up for the 10th slot out of 12. I love open mikes, there is such variety and I enjoyed everything I saw and heard (including a middle-school aged boy who played uke and harmonica).

Of course it was exciting, because our act (three songs) went over very well. I love playing on stage, and I particularly like it when a room full of people are clapping really enthusiastically! It turned out that the open mike was short a few acts so at the end we were asked to do two more numbers. That is always courting danger, because the rule is to always leave stage before people start wondering when you will leave! However, it worked just great and we got so many enthusiastic comments it made me feel really good.

In the evening there was a three-hour concert of really fine musicians. I hadn’t seen many of them before but that isn’t because they weren’t around… it is because I was not around. I did know Jim and Liz. Here is a picture of them singing together as Jim played in his impeccable uke style.

After the concert, many of us went to a local restaurant for dessert and a jam session. It was wonderful fun. The last two pictures here are folks jamming, and several of us at a table, at the restaurant. Far left is Brian, with Stan Werbin (of Elderly Instruments) next to him. Then there are two ladies and a gentleman who were kind to me but whose names I do not know. Following that is Jeff, the organizer of the Ukefest, and then Jim and Liz Bieloff. Don’t they look happy? I’m very pleased with this picture.